News Release

Climber fatality and recovery on Mount Rainier, 6/6/2023

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Date: June 6, 2023
Contact: Mount Rainier Press Information Line, 360-569-6510

On June 6, 2023, a man matching the description of missing solo climber Dawes Eddy, 80, of Spokane, Washington, was recovered from 11,500' on the Ingraham Direct climbing route. Mr. Eddy embarked on a solo climb of Mount Rainier on Tuesday, May 30, 2023. The last confirmed sighting of Mr. Eddy was at 8:30 p.m., heading uphill at Cathedral Gap. Mount Rainier National Park rangers were notified of an overdue climber on June 1, 2023, and immediately used aerial and ground resources to search likely climbing routes.   

Over the course of the six-day operation, the park’s A-STAR helicopter and ground teams searched both the upper and lower mountain portions of Mr. Eddy’s probable route. On Saturday, June 3, 2023, the Army National Guard 1-168th General Support Aviation Battalion (GSAB) Blackhawk helicopter conducted a forward-looking infrared (FLIR) night operation flight of the Nisqually and Cowlitz Glaciers. During the operation, no signs of body heat of a solo climber were detected.  

On Monday, June 5, 2023, at approximately 9 p.m., two guides from Rainier Mountaineering, Inc. (RMI), spotted an unresponsive climber in a crevasse while doing route work. RMI then notified the park.  

On Tuesday, June 6, 2023, the park’s exclusive use helicopter performed a reconnaissance flight of the crevasse. Following the flight, a team of four climbing rangers and one RMI guide ascended on foot to the scene. They assessed the situation and successfully extricated the deceased climber who was then flown off the mountain. The Pierce County Medical Examiner will identify the climber. 

Numerous park and partner resources assisted in search operations. In addition to the park’s climbing rangers and aviation resources, the park would like to thank volunteers from Central Washington, Everett, Olympic, and Tacoma mountain rescues; climbing guides from International Mountain Guides (IMG), Rainier Mountaineering, Inc. (RMI), and Alpine Ascents International (AAI) for assistance searching during their routine guided climbs in active search zones; the Army National Guard 1-168th GSAB for conducting the FLIR flight; and the Army Reserve F Co. 2-135th GSAB for making their Chinook helicopters available as contingency resources.  

Mount Rainier National Park is renowned as a popular climbing destination. Solo climb permits are declined or approved based on a combination of factors including the applicant’s experience, skill, plan, forecasted weather, the proposed route and dates, and their equipment list. Before departing on any climb, the park advises climbers to leave their itinerary with a trusted friend or family member. Information on climbing routes, weather, guide services, permits, route briefs and other safety information is located on the park’s webpage:  

More information about visiting the park can be found at the Mount Rainier National Park website.   

More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 424 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at, and on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.  

Last updated: June 7, 2023

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