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Dec-13-2009 14:33printcomments

Search for Two Missing Climbers on Mt. Hood Continues

This deceased climber is identified as 26-year old Luke T. Gullberg of Demoines, Washington.

Climber Luke Gullberg died on Mt. Hood
Climber Luke Gullberg died on Mt. Hood and his body has been located, searchers are looking for his two climbing partners, Katie Nolan and Anthony Vietti.

(MT. HOOD, Ore.) - Clackamas County Sheriff's Office, Search and Rescue Coordinators and volunteers remain actively engaged in the ongoing rescue mission on Mount Hood. One of the climbers died on the mountain and has been recovered, but his two climbing partners remain missing.

Det. Jim Strovink with the Clackamas Sheriff's Office says the serious avalanche conditions that exist on the mountain have prevented ground personnel from searching; however, aerial surveillance is being conducted when weather permits.

"The Oregon Army National Guard has deployed a helicopter to Mount Hood to assist with this aerial surveillance requested by the Sheriff's Office. In addition, a Civil Air Patrol fixed wing aircraft is also participating in this search and focusing attention around the targeted Reid Glacier, at the 9,000' level of Mount Hood."

He says a U.S. Coast Guard Helicopter – equipped with thermal imaging capabilities has also been summoned to assist with this ongoing rescue mission on Mount Hood.

"This Coast Guard helicopter is being deployed from Astoria, Oregon. This helicopter is expected to arrive at Mount Hood to conduct aerial surveillance soon."

One Confirmed Death

Stovink says Search and Rescue personnel located one of the missing climbers on Mount Hood. This person was located by SAR volunteers, deceased, at approximately 10:00 a.m. on the Reid Glacier, at about the 9,000' level of Mount Hood.

Katie Nolan and Anthony Vietti are missing on Mt. Hood

This deceased climber is identified as 26-year old Luke T. Gullberg of Demoines, Washington.

"The body of Luke Gullberg has been transported off the mountain by SAR volunteers and is presently in the custody of the Clackamas County Deputy Medical Examiner."

A forensic examination of the deceased is anticipated soon, Strovink said last night.

At this point, both Katie Nolan and Anthony Vietti remain missing and are the focus of this ongoing search and rescue mission.

"Relatives of the climbers are present here at Timberline, and are providing each other comfort during this painful ordeal."

Sheriff's Office SAR Coordinators say the climbers intended to return to Timberline Lodge around 2:00 p.m. Friday afternoon.

The three climbers were all described as experienced and were well equipped for the intended climb and summit on Mount Hood, Strovink said.

The search has concentrated on or near the Reid Glacier – at around the 9,000 foot level – situated on the western face of Mount Hood.

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Marc March 25, 2010 11:11 am (Pacific time)

Have they determined what happened here yet?


Jody December 13, 2009 7:36 pm (Pacific time)

I am sorry to hear about the one dead hiker and hope that the other two make it off the mountain alive.

However, I do feel that it is reckless to climb a mountain without first checking the weather reports, leaving a detailed map of where you are going to climb and carrying some kind of a locator beacon.

Other lives are now being put in danger by having to go up the mountain and look for these people.


Ardose December 13, 2009 3:52 pm (Pacific time)

Mountain climbing is inherently hazardous no matter how experienced the climber is. Climbers should carry some kind of locator beacon for emergencies. It would greatly improve their chance of survival.

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