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3 Lost on Mount Hood


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Associated Press reports -

 

"The note displayed by Bernard was faxed to the sheriff's department Sunday, the day the climbers were reported missing, said officials at the U.S. Forest Service ranger station in Hood River."

 

So let me get this right....the #1 office responsible for coordinating the SAR didn't tell the individual SAR teams about the note, but a few reporters have known about it all week.

 

o.............k.

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CBS news showed a diagram of how a snow cave should have a laying area that is elevated above the entrance. Then they proceeded to have an 'expert' dig one out of the snow, but he didn't bother elevating anything.

Elevating the floor is only done normally when a team/group plans to use the cave as an extended shelter (base camp) and have the time to allow for the construction of what is a more elaborate cave. I would be very surprised to learn these guys took the time and effort to dig a cave with an elevated floor considering reports they were in a "go for help" mode.

 

 

As for the vent, I guess that's a precaution in case the entrance gets clogged(?) Seems like an escape route for the heat you're trying to retain. I'd rather just keep my entrance clear.

An open entrance on the type of cave these guys dug (probably, considering their construed situation), whose floor is near level with the bottom of the entrance would allow for the greatest heat loss possible. Controlling air infiltration/exchange is the greatest factor in trying to retain heat in this type of structure; remember, all the surfaces of this structure, be they snow, ice, and/or rock, are heat sinks. You're losing heat to the walls, floor, and ceiling of the structure itself. The only chance you have of retaining any of it is by closing it off and, then, maintaining a minimal opening to provide a comfortable amount of fresh air.

 

Of course, these measures construct a perfectly camoflaged shelter, nearly undetectable to a person outside. If these guys aren't found right after the weather window opens, I wouldn't be surprised. Most of the time I spent stranded in a snow cave due to weather I spent sleeping.

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Associated Press reports -

 

"The note displayed by Bernard was faxed to the sheriff's department Sunday, the day the climbers were reported missing, said officials at the U.S. Forest Service ranger station in Hood River."

 

So let me get this right....the #1 office responsible for coordinating the SAR didn't tell the individual SAR teams about the note, but a few reporters have known about it all week.

 

o.............k.

 

The contents of the note (concerning items they packed) would have little to no bearing on the SAR efforts; although, it is of great import to those of us who aren't involved in the SAR effort.

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I agree with whichever SAR guys said the "boots on the ground" need to have the and all the information so they know what they are dealing with. The best indicator if I was in a snow cave on this mountain is to hear a C-130 buzzing overhead. Nothing could be more encouraging than the sound of those four turbojets. I hope and pray that this will give them the strength to hold on!

 

If Kelley is turning off or turned off his Cell Phone than that would be a sign of a very smart man. Wow what a story. I can't believe I have to sit here and can't help, frustrating to say the least. This will make me think twice the next time I'm climbing. This reminds me of the Michelle Vanek lost climber all over again.

 

Come on guys today is the day to climb down!!!!

 

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With calming winds / clearing skys, and the guys should know this by their alitmeters, the copters and C130 will be making lots of noise. I would guess that from the crack of dawn, if not earlier, everyone will be in 100% overdrive for this....someone will be out of the cave, waving and creating a scene and will be spotted by something in the air. Then the task will be to move carefully since unstable terraine will be present. Not sure whether they will approached from below or above.

 

Slow is smooth.....smooth is fast....

 

This is the day we'll see them again....

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Hardly any wind at 6K this morning so far...

 

12-16-2006

Northwest Weather and Avalanche Center

Timberline Lodge, Oregon

 

Precip gage not heating 12-15-06

 

MM/DD Hour Temp RH Wind Wind Wind Wind Hour Total 24 Hr Total

PST F % Min Avg Max Dir Prec. Prec. Snow Snow

6000' 6000" 6000' 6000' 6000' 6000' 6000' 6000' 6000' 6000'

------------------------------------------------------------------------

12 15 600 19 98 3 13 26 270 0 0 7 74

12 15 700 18 98 4 12 23 269 0 0 9 77

12 15 800 19 98 3 11 22 278 0 0 10 81

12 15 900 17 97 6 15 33 285 0 0 10 81

12 15 1000 17 97 5 14 32 280 0 0 10 81

12 15 1100 17 98 3 13 23 272 0 0 11 82

12 15 1200 17 98 5 12 24 275 0 0 11 282

12 15 1300 17 97 5 12 24 284 0 0 11 82

12 15 1400 17 97 3 11 26 279 .01 .01 12 82

12 15 1500 15 97 4 10 22 285 0 .01 12 83

12 15 1600 15 97 1 9 32 299 .01 .02 13 83

12 15 1700 15 97 2 10 22 290 .03 .05 13 84

12 15 1800 15 97 1 5 13 286 .02 .07 13 84

12 15 1900 15 97 2 6 12 302 .02 .09 13 84

12 15 2000 14 96 3 9 14 315 .01 .1 13 84

12 15 2100 13 96 4 8 14 323 0 .1 13 84

12 15 2200 12 95 3 7 14 326 .01 .11 13 84

12 15 2300 11 95 2 5 8 336 0 .11 13 83

12 16 0 12 95 2 5 8 339 .01 .12 13 83

12 16 100 12 95 -0 3 5 3 0 .12 13 83

12 16 200 14 96 -0 3 9 52 .01 .13 13 83

12 16 300 14 95 1 6 11 75 0 .13 12 83

12 16 400 14 95 1 7 16 80 0 .13 13 83

12 16 500 15 93 2 9 15 81 0 .13 1 83

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I'm not a climber but have been watching this thread with great interest from here on the east coast for the past few days. This message board has been an excellent source of news. It's great getting information straight from the horse's mouth, so to speak. Good luck to all involved. Today's the day!!!

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To all of those search and rescuers out their looking for Brian Hall, Kelly James and Jerry Cooke, I say THANK YOU from the bottom of my Heart. Contrary to some reports that I have been hearing, these guys are VERY experienced climbers. Brian Hall is a very good friend of mine and I attempted to climb Mt Rainier with Kelly and Brian in 2005, but had to turn back do to whether. Brian and Kelly have climbed Denali, Aconcagua, Rainier...numerous times and many peaks in South America.

 

In talking with Brian over this past year, he had talked about trying to climb Everest within the next few years. They went to Mt. Hood to prepare themselves for the conditions they may experienced on Everest. Brian trains religiously for these climbs on an incline treadmill and stair climber with a pack filled with 80 lbs of weights for 4-6 hour stretches. Brian told me last year that he had a 1/2 bivy 1/2 Sleeping bag that he had purchased.

 

I honestly believe they are still alive and will be glad to see you find them...God Willing...TODAY! I am sending you all POSITIVE ENERGY and PRAYERS from Dallas! Stay Safe and bring the boys home!

 

Ari Chaney

Dallas, TX

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What keeps the ceiling of the cave from caving in once the cave is hollowed out? Especially after the weight of 2 ft of new snow fall on it. And which is better, fresh snow that's lightly packed, or the oldest, most packed and crusty spot you can find? I doubt I'll ever need to know this, and probably won't remember it when I do, but this event is making me want to 'hike,' (not climb), a mountain somewhere with snow, possibly in the winter.

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LHwildcats76:

 

In hard pack snow, any hole will work for a snow cave. In fresher snow, I round the roof to an arch. In warm weather you will still have to do some minor maintenance after a day or two because the ceiling may start to sag. In snowing conditions this is fine. In warm conditions you may have to build another cave in a few days.

 

In snowing conditions, if the roof will glaze over, it will last for a while. A rounded roof will keep water from dripping on you when the cave warms.

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there is a Saturday morning news conf. scheduled to start shortly after 9:00am channel 8 TV said will go live on TV or for a web stream seems like katu.com will have it (they have a link that i can't get to work).

 

Hang in there guys, good vibes for everyone up there this morning. I can see the top of the mountain from my window right now. I hope they can get up there or are already climbing now.

 

http://www.kgw.com/sharedcontent/VideoPlayer/videoPlayer.php?vidId=57406&live=yes

Edited by jbk
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As this forum is becoming a gathering place for concerned folks around the country with all levels of climbing experience, I thought I'd post this.

 

There will much discussion about the costs of this rescue. Here are some facts about rescue costs from a detailed 2005 study by The American Alpine Club.

 

The title is: "Climbing Rescues in America: Reality Does Not Support High-Risk, High-Cost Perception". For you speed readers there is a nice summary on page 1, which is too long to paste here.

 

This information will be useful if/when you find yourself talking to a "those crazy climbers, using my taxpayers $$$ to get rescued . . ." sort of person. (Any reporters who are reading this, please have a look as well. =^)

 

Link:

http://www.americanalpineclub.org/pdfs/MRreal.pdf

 

My best warm thoughts to our climber compadres who are hanging tight right now.

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