A man and his dog, a golden retriever, were hiking on the Timberline Trail when the dog left the trail and went down a steep slope in Zig Zag canyon, about two miles west of Timberline Lodge. Believing that the dog, named Ranger, was stranded, the man descended the slope in an effort to rescue him. Although the man reached Ranger, they were unable to ascend back to the trail due to the steepness of the slope. Other hikers spotted them in distress and called 911 for help
Around 4:30 p.m., the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office called Portland Mountain Rescue for assistance in rescuing the man and his dog. Around 6:00 p.m., a team consisting of PMR, two members of the AMR Reach and Treat Team, the Oregon Humane Society Rescue Team and a sheriff’s deputy deployed to the scene. A second PMR team was standing by at Timberline Lodge ready to carry rescue gear once the situation was fully assessed. When the first team reach the scene, four good Samaritans (with two more dogs) were on the trail watching over Ranger and his master, who were still stranded on the slope.
PMR rigged a fixed line and a rappel rope. One of the AMR rescuers descended to Ranger and his master with harnesses. The man was secured to the fixed line and the rescuer put a harness on Ranger. The rescuers first raised Ranger to safety and then hoisted his master. Neither were injured.
The team hiked back to Timberline Lodge using headlamps. All subjects and rescuers were out of the field by 9:00 p.m.
Portland Mountain Rescue encourages back country users to hike with a buddy. We also encourage dog owners to keep their dog on a leash, particularly in dangerous terrain.