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Mt. Hood Terrain zoomed out - Google Maps.png


Below are photos showing the usual routes people take to climb Mount Hood and topographical maps showing Mary's inadvertent route on Mt. Hood as well as where she was found by the National Guard helicopter.


Below is a diagram of various routes climbers most often take to ascend Mount Hood from the South Face, which is what Mary was attempting to do without any particular route in mind.

Photo by John Scurlock, design by Tim Olson, of south-face approaches to climbing Mt. Hood

Photo by John Scurlock, design by Tim Olson


Mary began her ascent above the Timberline lodge and parking lot into the "Magic Mile" lift and ski area. Then she hiked along the "Palmer" lift. From there, she followed a ridge line to what she called the Hell's Kitchen basin or bowl (also called Devil's Kitchen). Skirting the fumaroles, she hiked till she got to a sheer rock wall, Devil's Kitchen Headwall, where she could go no further.

Parking lot to Devil's Kitchen Headwall, Mt.Hood.png

(These topographical maps include slope angle shading - in reality this entire area was covered with white snow and ice.)


Once Mary realized she wasn’t going to be able to finish her climb, her first strategy for heading down was to go to her right (west) to avoid getting funneled into White River Canyon. Over correcting, she went up and over Hogsback, and traversed Coleman Glacier until, going over a ridge, through a narrow opening, she ended up in a steep chute of snow and ice between rocks. She did controlled slides down the chute, which ended up taking her down the Headwall above Reid Glacier.

Close up - after the Devil's Kitchen Headwall.png


Because of her degree of disorientation when it happened, and because she was later found on Sandy Glacier, when Mary retold her story, she was under the impression she had somehow traversed around to the northwest face of the mountain and had gone down the Sandy Glacier Headwall. Later, retracing her course using topographical maps, it appears it must have been the Reid Glacier Headwall that she descended.

Below are two photographs including usual climbing routes of the Reid Glacier Headwall on Mount Hood's west face. Mary went down one of the right-hand chutes!

West Side Route, Brian Jenkins.png
West Side route, Steph Abegg.copy.png

(Continued from the first column.)

After descending through the steep chute with rocks on both sides, Mary continued her controlled slides down the glacier (Reid Glacier) until she felt a nudge to stop and realized she had barely avoided sliding into a crevasse. She then proceeded more carefully down the glacier until she found some snowboarder tracks and followed them for a while. The tracks zig-zagging down and over onto Sandy Glacier seemed direction-less, so she stopped following them and (literally) dropped down into the Sandy River tributary.



Once Mary had dropped down into the Sandy River tributary, it funneled her into a narrowing canyon. When she tried climbing out, she fell about forty feet and injured both of her legs.

Scan Sandy River Tributary.png


This is an approximation of where Mary hiked, climbed and fell. There was a snowfield below her and a steep incline after that. The circled M, T, W, Th show about where she scooted to get away from snow rolling down off the canyon walls above her. Then to where "the ridge met the canyon wall," and finally to "the little stand of trees down the spur" and "a bare patch of dirt beneath them.

Scan close up Mary's fall.png


Below is a copy of the topographical map Search and Rescue posted on their website showing the coordinates of approximately where the National Guard helicopter found and rescued Mary.

map with coordinates_edited.jpg


Below is a topographical map showing Mary's approximate route from Palmer Lift to where she was stranded, and another map below that showing a fuller view of Mount Hood and the whole of Mary's probable route.

Scan Mary's Route.png
Scan Parking Lot to Fall Area.png
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