Over 100 Hikers Rescued in Oregon Wildfire

Crews helped those caught between two fires

 

Fire burns in the Eagle Creek area of Columbia River Gorge, Saturday, Sept. 2, 2017. Officials reported that they had rescued six hikers Sunday morning, who were among about 140 forced to spend the night outside near Tunnel Falls after a fire broke out near the popular Columbia River Gorge trail about 90 miles east of Portland. (Mark Graves/The Oregonian via AP)

 

HOOD RIVER, Ore. (AP) — Crews helped rescue more than 100 hikers stranded in the mountains overnight after a wildfire closed their trail and they were trapped between two blazes.

The Hood River County Sheriff’s Office said Sunday afternoon that the final group of hikers left the Wahtum Lake area at the bottom of the trail and were headed by bus to meet with their friends and family.

See also  Packing a Red Bag

Deputy Joel Ives says no hikers were missing but one hiker was taken out by ambulance for exhaustion and dehydration.

Many of the hikers had gone up the Eagle Creek Trail on Saturday to swim at the popular waterfalls and pools, but a fire broke out near the Columbia River Gorge trail about 90 miles (144 kilometers) east of Portland. The blaze was burning on the Eagle Creek Trail, and the only other way out was longer and more difficult, and it was getting dark, so officials told them to spend the night near Tunnel Falls. Mountain Wave Search and Rescue dropped supplies to the hikers. A portion of the Eagle Creek Trail had been closed for weeks because of another fire that erupted July 4.

See also  SoCal Temperature Records Set Amid Fire Danger

Mountain Wave president Russ Gubele says search and rescue teams headed up the second trail on Sunday morning and led the hikers out the 14 miles (22.5 kilometers) toward Wahtum Lake.

“It’s horribly smoky,” Gubele said. “Ash is coming down. It’s like a Mount Saint Helens eruption all over again.”

On Saturday, 14 hikers were brought out and returned to Eagle Creek and three hikers were rescued by National Guard helicopter.

Authorities say the wildfire had grown to almost 5 square miles (13 square kilometers) by Sunday. The U.S. Forest Service says the wildfire was human-caused and is under investigation by the Oregon State Police.

See also  Firefighters Hope for Cold, Wet Weather in Montana

About 130 homes in Cascade Locks were under evacuation orders because of the flames. A Red Cross shelter was set up at the Skamania County Fairgrounds, across the Columbia River in Stevenson, Washington.

All contents © copyright 2017 Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Topics

Crews helped those caught between two fires     HOOD RIVER, Ore. (AP) — Crews helped rescue more than 100 hikers stranded in the mountains overnight after a wildfire closed their trail and they were trapped between two blazes. The Hood River County Sheriff’s Office said Sunday afternoon that the final group of hikers left […]

Get The Wildland Firefighter Newsletter

Related Articles

Biden Signs Off on Hefty Pay Raise for Federal Firefighters

Biden Signs Off on Hefty Pay Raise for Federal Firefighters

By AAMER MADHANI Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden has signed off on giving federal wildland firefighters a hefty raise for the next two fiscal years, a move that affects more than 16,000 firefighters and comes as much of the West braces for a...

How’re You Feeling These Days?

How’re You Feeling These Days?

When I first started firefighting as a seasonal with the Forest Service, my only stress had to do with my physical stamina to keep up with the crew and making sure my boots weren’t causing me any hot spots. Did I have enough water? Should I double lunch today? By the...

Warm, Dry, Breezy Weather to Challenge Fire Crews in AZ

Warm, Dry, Breezy Weather to Challenge Fire Crews in AZ

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — Fire crews battling a pair of wildfires in northern Arizona were expecting some growth Thursday because of warm, dry and breezy conditions, officials said. Both blazes were moving through grass, brush and pine trees on the northern outskirts of...