Mt Hood Cooper Spur rescue 1963

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SonOfTamarack
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Joined: December 3rd, 2009, 1:28 pm

Mt Hood Cooper Spur rescue 1963

Post by SonOfTamarack » March 22nd, 2012, 3:51 pm

Inspired by a tale my dad used to tell me, been doing a lot of research recently into a fall and rescue on Mt Hood in July 1963. Been able to interview several of the folks involved, including my uncle (Frank See) and the three climbers that fell (all still going and doing well, despite a 1500'-2000' slide/fall onto Eliot Glacier). Though I know the site concentrates on hiking rather than climbing, thought you all might find this interesting. As a project the tale is getting longer and longer, so may have to produce it in stages and fill out the narrative ends over time. But here's the article from the Hood River News from 1963. My dad was Stephen See.

Next summer will be the 50th anniversary of the fall and rescue!

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Last edited by SonOfTamarack on March 22nd, 2012, 10:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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rick6003
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Re: Mt Hood Cooper Spur rescue 1963

Post by rick6003 » March 22nd, 2012, 8:10 pm

Wow, I have heard that the Cooper's Spur route was dangerous. I have been to Tie in Rock and the rock was coming down off the cliffs at a good rate. I never heard of the wind blowing them though, it must of been blowing madly.

SonOfTamarack
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Re: Mt Hood Cooper Spur rescue 1963

Post by SonOfTamarack » March 22nd, 2012, 8:45 pm

Apparently the upper section of Cooper Spur route (from summit to below the chimneys) is renowned for being bad, especially in the afternoon when the snow gets soft. People have fallen from there and usually end up on the top of Eliot Glacier, though usually they don't make it alive. I've got a few more newspaper article about the rescue to scan and knit together, especially interesting is from what sort of what an alternative paper in Hood River in the 60s (not counter-culture, just not as pro as the Hood River News) called "The Whistlepunk." The editor was an Alpinee who narrates the whole rescue from Cloud Cap up to the glacier top and then taking one of the fallen men out in terrible weather, and in the dark.

SonOfTamarack
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Joined: December 3rd, 2009, 1:28 pm

Re: Mt Hood Cooper Spur rescue 1963

Post by SonOfTamarack » March 22nd, 2012, 10:48 pm

Here's the rest of the newspaper clippings, for those playing along at home.

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Oregon Journal

The Hood River Whistlepunk--a multi-page epic by Bob C. Hall, one of the later rescuers:

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Note that whistlepunk summary gets it backwards--Stephen See was brother who went down, Frank See took the climbers back down until they felt safe, then made his way back to the fallen climbers but was much lower on the spur and had to avoid cliffs. Order of arrival was Stephen See, Rob Hukari and Dr. ?, then Frank See.
Last edited by SonOfTamarack on April 15th, 2012, 11:30 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Splintercat
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Re: Mt Hood Cooper Spur rescue 1963

Post by Splintercat » April 3rd, 2012, 8:12 pm

Cool history, Tamarack! Not sure why you're having image issues, but it could be that you need to post them in separate post?

Thanks for sharing!

Tom :)

SonOfTamarack
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Re: Mt Hood Cooper Spur rescue 1963

Post by SonOfTamarack » April 15th, 2012, 11:27 am

Image issues have cleared up--I'm hosting them on my website, so it's possible that any lag is due to my host.

Here's another scan--this is of the Alpinee meeting where they went over the rescue details in the aftermath.
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HRN-climb-clipping-sm.jpg

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