One confirmed dead, multiple injured in separate climbing incidents at California’s Mount Shasta

Authorities confirmed that one climber is dead, and several others were injured in separate incidents on Northern California’s Mount Shasta on Monday during “very tough conditions”. Mount Shasta is a potentially active volcano and a major peak of the Cascade Range. It has an elevation of 14,179 feet.

The Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office said rescuers responded to three incidents on the mountain near the Oregon border over the course of several hours. The fatal incident involving three climbers was reported at 8:39 a.m. around Avalanche Gulch, which authorities described as a snowy glacier climb on the mountain. One climber was confirmed dead before rescue efforts could be performed, the sheriff’s office said. The second climber in this incident was in critical condition while a third was recovering from injuries that included a broken ankle.

A second incident occurred around Avalanche Gulch at 12:31 p.m., with rescue crews airlifting one climber in critical condition to safety. The sheriff’s office said that in yet another separate incident, a fifth climber was rescued around 4 p.m. after suffering injuries on the mountain. A helicopter crew located her and airlifted her to a hospital.

The sheriff’s office later posted a climbing advisory video with another climber describing the conditions on the mountain as “very tough.”  In the video, Wallace Casper of Bozeman, Montana said a lot of people were slipping and sliding due to a layer of water ice on top of the snowpack, conditions which he said make it “pretty much impossible to self-arrest” as a skier.

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