From The Daily Interlake June 2, 2011
After reaching the summit of Stanton Peak in Glacier National Park Tuesday, a man slid down a snowfield and off a 30-foot cliff, sustaining injuries that required him to be airlifted out of the park.
Andrew Wilkerson, a 24-year-old from Georgia, was climbing with three fellow Lake McDonald Lodge concession workers.
As they were descending the 7,750-foot Stanton Peak, the prominent mountain beyond the head of Lake McDonald, the group had to glissade down snowfields, slowing themselves with ice axes.
“They were sitting down, using ice axes to slow down” and at one point, “he was unable to slow himself down,” said Ellen Blickhan, the park’s public affairs officer.
“He tumbled through some cliffs and ended up sliding about 80 feet more on snow.”
Two women in the group continued the descent to get help, and a man stayed with Wilkerson until it arrived. The ALERT helicopter from Kalispell was dispatched shortly after the incident was reported at 4:20 p.m.
The helicopter dropped off a medic to assess Wilkerson’s condition, and eventually loaded him and his companion and transported them to Kalispell Regional Medical Center at about 7 p.m., Blickhan said.
Because no park personnel were on the scene, Blickhan did not know if he suffered broken bones or other serious injuries..
“He was conscious at the scene,” she said. “But I don’t know his disposition at all.”
A nursing supervisor at the hospital said he was in stable condition Wednesday afternoon.
Comments: Learn how to self-arrest with an ice axe before going into the backcounty!
I am thankful this seasonal employee is going to be okay.