Fall on Mount McKinley Kills Two Climbers
A 1,900-foot-fall on Mount McKinley has killed two Washington state residents.
The two, 36-year-old Mizuki Takahashi, of Lake Forest Park, and 27-year-old Brian Massey, from North Bend, were roped together when they fell while descending the mountain, according to Denali National Park officials.
Ms. Takahashi was killed in the fall, while her partner died early this morning without regaining consciousness.
According to a park release, the two had left the 14,200-foot camp on Tuesday morning for an ascent of the Upper West Rib route of Mount McKinley while a third team member remained in camp. Last night about 6:30 p.m. local time a mountaineering ranger patrol staged at the mountain’s 17,200-foot High Camp witnessed the fall, which began from an elevation just below 19,000 feet near the Messner Couloir.
The roped pair fell to a point just below High Camp, according to the release.
A rescue team comprised of the ranger patrol and two climbing guides traversed to the team, and confirmed that Ms. Takahashi had died. Mr. Massey was carried back to the ranger tent for emergency medical treatment for severe injuries. He died this morning about 8:30 local time.
Cloud cover and darkness prevented a medical evacuation overnight. The remains of the two climbers will be flown down to Talkeetna when flying conditions permit.