Aspen man injured in fall near Capitol peak

Andre Salvail
The Aspen Times

Mountain Rescue Aspen, along with members of the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office, was called to the K2 Peak area near Capitol Peak on Sunday to rescue an Aspen man who had fallen.

Shortly after 2 p.m., emergency dispatchers received a phone call from a climbing guide with Aspen Expeditions about an injured male climber, the Sheriff’s Office said in a statement. Dispatchers then notified the Sheriff’s Office that the injured climber was on the north side of K2 Peak. The location is about 15 miles southwest of Aspen.

The guide had been descending the regular route of Capitol Peak with his team of climbers when they discovered the injured climber, whose name was not released. The guide was able to give authorities the latitude and longitude of the injured climber’s location, which is about 13,500 feet above sea level.

Members of Mountain Rescue Aspen were notified and met at their new headquarters near the Aspen Business Center. Flight for Life, a medical emergency helicopter transport service, also was notified, along with members of the High Altitude Aviation Training Site in Gypsum.

At about 4:20 p.m., rescue-team members were in the field, having been placed into the area by the training site’s Black Hawk helicopter. The man was evacuated to Aspen Valley Hospital.

Sheriff’s Deputy Jason Kasper said it appeared that the man, who was climbing alone, had broken both arms. He also suffered bumps, bruises and cuts from the fall.

A full recovery is expected, Kasper said.

The Sheriff’s Office issued a reminder that visitors to the backcountry should be prepared to handle the risks associated with such travel. They should carry adequate equipment to deal with changing weather conditions and shortening daylight hours.


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