Military rescuers use helicopter to pluck stranded skiers from Turnagain Pass peak

Casey Grove

Two skiers stranded on a Turnagain Pass mountain overnight Tuesday were rescued Wednesday morning by an Alaska Air Guard helicopter crew, the Guard said.

The skiers were lost on Wolverine Peak late Tuesday and called Alaska State Troopers for help, troopers spokeswoman Megan Peters said. According to a written statement from the Guard, the skiers, who were not identified, also had lost some equipment and could not get down the mountain.

Peters said they were reported stuck on the mountain about 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at roughly 5,000 feet.

Rugged terrain and a need for a helicopter hoist prevented civilian aircraft from reaching the skiers, who "spent a cold night with insufficient clothing," the Guard statement said.

The Guard launched an HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopter after getting a call for assistance from troopers about 9:15 a.m. Wednesday and delivered the skiers to Providence Alaska Medical Center at 10:25 a.m., the Guard said. The skiers reportedly suffered from mild hypothermia but were otherwise unhurt.

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