MOOSE, WYO – Rescue crews save a couple of climbers from Utah in the Grand Teton National Park. Officials say bad weather and fatigue appear to have gotten the best of the climbers.
The climbers, which have been identified as Nick Marucci and Laura Robertson, from Utah, were reportedly trying to do the Grand Traverse climb on the Grand Teton Mountains. Park Spokesman Andrew White says the climb became far too dangerous on Monday. He says, “They were losing a lot of their manual dexterity due to the cold. The rope was frozen and the rock had ice all over it.”
Crews were able to speak with the climbers, but, the pair was too exhausted to bring themselves down the mountain. White say, “We made the decision that the safest way to rescue them was going to be to use a helicopter. [We’d] have them stay where they were. They were in a good location. We knew they weren’t seriously injured.”
Rangers did a short-haul rescue, which is when a rescuer hangs from a 150 foot rope attached to a helicopter hovering above. “He flew out on the 150 foot rope below the helicopter and returned to the valley floor at the rescue cache,” White says.
Apart from some bumps and bruises, Marucci and Robertson were reportedly fine.
White says the Grand Traverse passage is extremely difficult with several different sections of complicated climbs. He says it’s best to know each section and their escape routes before trying to attempt the entire thing. Plus, weather can change in an instant, producing rain and hail, even if it’s not in the forecast.
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