Capt. Martin Garabedian: (603) 271-3128
Jane Vachon: (603) 271-3211
March 8, 2004

Two Hikers Rescued in White Mountains; Body of Third Being Recovered

CONCORD, N.H. -- On March 7, two winter hiker/skiers were rescued near Mount Washington in the White Mountains, and a third hiker in the party died in a fall. The victim was Rob A. Douglas, 39, of Vershire Vermont; his body is being recovered today.

The three men had hiked to the summit of Mount Washington and hiked down the Great Gulf Trail to a snowfield on Mount Clay above Spaulding Lake. There they began to ski, but after a short distance encountered icy conditions and stopped to remove their skis. Hiker John M. Corse III, 38, of Concord, N.H., had one ski and one crampon on when he fell approximately1,500 feet down the snowfield, sustaining injuries. His companions attempted to rescue him, and in the process, Douglas fell to his death.

The third hiker, Collin O'Farrell, 23, of Hanover, N.H., called 911 requesting help at about 4 p.m. Sunday. Corse was evacuated by a National Guard helicopter at 8:50 p.m. and eventually was transported to the Androscoggin Valley Hospital in Berlin. He was transferred to the Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center this morning to be treated for his injuries.

Recovery of the victim was left for today, but because of weather conditions, a helicopter flight was not possible. A recovery is underway involving a team of six individuals from the Mountain Rescue Society and a Conservation Officer from New Hampshire Fish and Game, who rode a Thikol (Snowcat) to the Summit of Mount Washington and hiked down to the victim to recover his body.

Click here for hiking safety information.


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