Amazing helicopter rescue of hiker stuck on cliff


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Free climbing alone in the evening. That better be one hefty donation check he writes to the sheriff’s office.


I’m sure there will be lots of comments about how stupid this guy is, how much of a burden it is on the taxpayers to fund rescue operations for people who don’t know common safety practices, etc. but frankly I don’t want to live in a babyproofed world, where other people get to tell me what activities are “safe” and which are not, and I’m happy to provide the “social insurance” to cover those who occasionally do stupid things.


“That others may live” might be the best slogan I’ve ever seen in my life.


Since the guy was too terrified and grateful to say it, I’ll say it for him:

You couldn’t grab my backpack? It was right there, and it had convenient handles. Clip a carabiner on it. Or hell, just let me grab it myself. Obviously, it’s far less important than my life, but how did that get to be an either/or kind of thing?

Just sayin’.


It’s why I code.


On next week’s episode of Rescue Quest - going back for the back pack.

In all seriousness, an amazing job. I’m always astounded by rescue professionals - so much skill, practice with a risk management mindset makes these life or death matters become routine.


They get to repeat the rescue next week after he returns to retrieve his bag.

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Wow. Much respect to these guys.

I seem to recall that they send you a bill after rescues like this. Just like how you get a bill after you take an ambulance. And likely a lot more expensive.


Great footage, but the rescue seems mundane. I once participated in an exercise where we rescued a child (pack bag) thru a really tight gap. We had to lower the rescuer head first so he could work, because there was no room to move.

Couple of points to address:

First off, yeah, the guy was in over his head for sure. However, it appears he was attempting a -modest- scramble and took some serious wrong turns…and end up cliffed out. He wasn’t trying to be Alex Honnold or anything. Lets not judge too hard, he made a mistake and needed help. He’s getting quite a bit of internet shame here, cut some slack.

Second, Snohawk10 is part of the VOLUNTEER organization Snohomish County HRT…which recently lost all state funding. They are operating 100% on DONATIONS right now, and it has been and will always remain a FREE service. This guy called the police and they told him they couldn’t get him. It is likely he would have fallen and died if he had been left overnight…without intervention from this FREE, DONATION FUNDED service run by volunteers…

Thirdly, Miles, the nice man rescuing this dude, edited the film a bit. In it, the fellow asks several times if he can bring his bag. The mountain rescue squad is headed back to this area to get his backpack on FOOT. As you can imagine, the pack adds weight, and it is -not- a human. If the pack ends up tangled in the rescue equipment or in the blades of the helicopter, you’re going to have yourself a situation. This is just a safety first kind of thing, internets.


Nope. Danger Will Robins. That spinny blade thing in the sky? We don’t want that eating backpacks.

The sheriff’s office told him no. He spent rather a long time in that spot, before they got him out. It wasn’t as if he started at dusk.

Yes, it sounds like you know for certain but I’m guessing the backpack was left because in a life-and-death operation, you don’t add any risk - period - even if it seems like it’s just one tiny little thing.

How does one become “cliffed out”? I guess you can’t always just reverse your route, huh?

I don’t think it’s either/or. I agree that society can and should cover these rescues but we should consider a deductible, like in health insurance. And maybe the size of the deductible can vary based on the level of negligence shown by the person(s) being rescued. That way, people might be more careful because they have some skin in the game. I wouldn’t consider a deductible “babyproofing”. :smile:

Going up is a lot easier than looking down 100 feet and descending. Think cat stuck in tree. Downclimbing is hard, esp. when its hard to see your feet.


But then you get in to the problem of people deciding not to call for a rescue because they’re afraid of paying a fine. It makes sense on one level, but I think it would end up resulting in a lot of people making bad problems worse.


True. But you have to weigh that against the number of people who would decide NOT to do something they’re not equipped to do because of the possibility of a fine. That might outweigh the other problem. We need an actuary. :smile:

People make very poor decisions when planning ahead - the threat of a fine for putting themselves in danger is something that I don’t think most people would consider. Do you think this guy would say “wow, maybe I won’t do this incredibly stupid thing because I might die and I might get fined $1000”?

Actuary? We need a behavioral economist.