TIMBERLINE LODGE, Ore. -- A climber on Mount Hood lost in a whiteout Tuesday afternoon was found by searchers around 11:45 p.m., warmed up by rescuers and brought off the mountain early Thursday morning.
Jeffrey Kish, 30, of Portland, was brought off the mountain about 2 a.m. He told KGW that other than his hands being cold, he was fine.
Kish called on a cell phone around 3:30 p.m. Wednesday to say he was descending from the summit of Mount Hood and had become lost in whiteout conditions.
He told KGW after his rescue that visibility was down to several feet and he had slipped several times before realizing he needed help.
Kish posted to his Facebook account from the mountainside. He posted his GPS coordinates around 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, telling his friends "Ok Guys. I have no idea where I am, other than right on the edge of some gnarly cliff. Too far east or west?"
He also posted "You're gonna hear about it in the news anyway, may as well spill it myself. Got stuck in a storm on the summit of mt. Hood. Stuck on cliffs over 10,000' in a white out. Called 911 after several hours of trying to self rescue. Search and rescue has been notified. Wish me luck!"
Kish said on his Facebook page he was trying to keep warm inside a down sleeping bag while waiting for searchers to locate him. He said he was prepared for the elements and had enough clothing, food and water for a few days.
The search was concentrated below the Hogsback near the 10,000 foot level. Kish was in cell contact with his rescuers but his cell phone died around 9:30 p.m.
When Clackamas County searchers got to the GPS location Kish had given, they could not find him. Searchers split into two crews and continued to look, and located him just before midnight at a second set of coordinates deputies received from his phone.
"Those guys saved my life," he said.
Kish is an experienced climber and hiker, having hiked the Pacific Crest Trail this summer, according to his Facebook page.
In anticipation of the climb, Kish had posted the following on Tuesday. "Anyone in the Portland area with crampons, an ice axe, a car, and Tuesday night and Wednesday off of work wanna go on an adventure?"