Rescue personnel assisted Dolores County officials Saturday, July 23, in rescuing an injured
climber high on the flanks of Mount Wilson's northwest face. The subject, a 26-year-old female from Littleton, in a group of three climbers, was struck by rockfall around 12 p.m.
She suffered significant trauma to one arm.
The climbing party was able to reach dispatch by cellphone.
Rescue efforts involved a technical helicopter insertion of sheriff's commander/paramedic Eric Berg to the victim at 13,700 feet.
A second SAR member, Mark Neyens, was deposited on a lower snowfield at 12,600 feet to configure the helicopter for recovery. Recovery efforts on the steep mountainside utilized a skid-in landing on an 8-inch bench for evacuation to a lower landing zone. The helicopter returned for Berg, transporting him to the lower landing zone, where the patient was stabilized and packaged for evacuation.
The patient and both rescuers were loaded and flown to the Telluride Regional Airport at about 3:30 p.m.; the patient was transferred via Telluride ambulance to the Telluride Medical Center.
Additional team members on the Search and Rescue mission, which was staged at the airport, were released.
The helicopter that was used is owned by Heli-Dunn, of Medford, Ore., and was piloted by
P.J. Hunt of Talkeetna, Ak. For Heli-Dunn, working in the area on a construction contract with The Great Southwest Construction Company, this marks the second time in one week in which they have been called on to assist San Miguel SAR in the rescue of an injured climber in the Wilson Range. The San Miguel Sheriff's Office would like to extend thanks to these entities for their assistance with both missions