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Dec-12-2006 09:25TweetFollow @OregonNews
Rescue Teams Continue Search For Three Missing Climbers on Mt. HoodSalem-News.com
A UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter from Salem will help in the search if weather conditions improve.
(MT HOOD) - Clackamas County Sheriff's Office Search & Rescue personnel on Mount Hood report the search continues for the three missing climbers.
The lost climbers, two Texans and a New Yorker set out to climb the mountain on Wednesday.
Rescue teams had to suspended their operations on Monday due to blizzard conditions.
CCSO personnel report five; four man teams are deployed at this time.
These teams are comprised of members of the elite Portland Mountain Rescue and Pacific Northwest Search & Rescue.
Members of Mountain Wave are also providing communications for this operation.
These mountaineers are moving along selected routes that typically are used by ‘climbers descending' the mountain.
This tactical approach is designed to hopefully locate the missing climbers who may have been attempting to descend the mountain late last week.
It has been stated the mountain rescue teams will travel up the mountain to the summit if weather permits.
An additional weather front is approaching and expected to bring harsher weather conditions later in the afternoon.
At the present, the weather on the mountain is reported as calm, with light snow conditions.
At approximately 9:15 AM today , one UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter will depart from the Army Aviation Support Facility in Salem, to aid in the search for the three missing hikers on Mt. Hood.
Current plans will have the Blackhawk and crew reposition to the Hood River, airport where they will meet with representatives of the Hood River Sheriff's Office for briefings on the current situation on the mountain.
The crew will consist of a pilot, co-pilot, crew chief and flight medic.
Weather permitting they will attempt to locate a landing zone at a higher elevation to reposition the airframe.
This would allow for faster response time to transport additional ground crews and equipment higher up the mountain or to launch an aerial search.
Weather will play a large part in the search efforts and determining use of the Blackhawk.
The missing men have been indentified by authorities as 48-year-old Kelly James, 37-year-old Brian Hall, both of Dallas, Texas; and 36-year-old Jerry "Nikko" Cooke, of Brooklyn, N.Y.
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