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jimmnn

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Press Release
For Immediate Release
Climbers Rescued From North Maroon Peak

Aspen, Colorado – 7/21/2014 – On 7/21/2014, around 5:00pm, the Pitkin County Regional Emergency Dispatch Center received a phone call from a climber in distress. The climber, later identified as Jennifer Kellogg of St. Joseph, Missouri, stated that she was somewhere below the summit of North Maroon Peak on the west side of the mountain. Kellogg stated that she and her 21-year-old daughter, Alexandra, also of St. Joseph, Missouri, had reached the summit of Maroon Peak and then North Maroon Peak before descending down the mountain. Jennifer Kellogg stated that during the descent, Alexandra, who was climbing ahead of her, followed the wrong route and ended up in a position where she could no longer climb down or up. Jennifer Kellogg lost sight of Alexandra, but could hear her say “I can’t hold on much longer.” Jennifer Kellogg was then able to ascend back below the summit of North Maroon peak, traversing along the west side of the peak until she could find a cell phone signal and call 911.
North Maroon Peak is a 14,014-foot peak located in the Elk Mountains approximately 12 miles southwest of Aspen.
Twenty members of Mountain Rescue Aspen (MRA) mobilized immediately, with five MRA climbers responding to the peak of North Maroon with the assistance of a UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter which had responded from the National Guard’s “High-Altitude Aviation Training Site (HAATS)” in Gypsum, CO.

One MRA climber was able to climb down to Alexandra Kellogg, where he found her uninjured at a rock formation called “the Gun Site.” The MRA climber was able to assist Alexandra Kellogg in climbing down to an area known as the “rock glacier” where the two people were then picked up by the UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter.

Four MRA climbers were able to climb down from the peak of North Maroon and locate Jennifer Kellogg, who had become stranded on a rocky ledge in the Lost Remuda Basin, which is on the west side of the peak. With the use of a climbing harness and headlamps, the four MRA climbers were able to evacuate Jennifer Kellogg using a climbing technique called a “mechanical uphaul” back to the west ridge just below the summit of North Maroon, where the group was then picked up in the darkness by the hovering UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter and flown to safety.
All Mountain Rescue Aspen members were out of the field by 10:30pm.
The members of the all-volunteer Mountain Rescue Aspen recommend that climbers and hikers follow well-established routes and learn about the terrain they will be climbing in before beginning their climb. Additionally, Mountain Rescue Aspen recommends that hiking and climbing partners stay together and not separate until all partners return to the trailhead.
For more information contact:

Deputy Grant Jahnke, Incident Commander.

Jim<
 
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