Body of missing skier in Mount Rainier National Park recovered after 200-foot fall from waterfall: officials

The body of a missing skier who appeared to have fallen 200 feet in Mount Rainier National Park in Washington state has been recovered, park officials said on Tuesday.

The skier, a woman whose name was not immediately released, was last heard from on May 18 before she set out for a ski tour above Paradise, the National Park Service (NPS) said. She was reported overdue the following day.

The search involved two ground rangers who scoured Deadhorse Creek Basin, Panorama Face, and Alta Vista for tracks in the Nisqually drainage, and two climbing rangers who looked over the Nisqually and Paradise glaciers and searched the Muir Snowfield to Pebble Creek and Panorama Point. Two volunteers also searched the Nisqually drainage.

While the search teams were unable to find the missing skier, a park helicopter crew spotted an unresponsive person at the base of Pebble Creek’s Moraine Falls above Paradise, officials said. The person appeared to have fallen approximately 200 feet to the base of a waterfall.

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The body of the skier was found at the base of Pebble Creek’s Moraine Falls above Paradise. (Thomas ONeill/NurPhoto via Getty Images, File)

Rangers were unable to immediately recover the body due to hazards in the area.

The skier had set out on a ski tour above Paradise on May 18 and was reported overdue the next day. (Thomas O’Neill/NurPhoto via Getty Images, File)

“The area was surrounded by a large, unstable snow moat that was subject to rock and ice fall, which posed too high of an immediate risk to recovery teams,” the NPS said.

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Rangers were forced to wait for another period of favorable weather before recovering the body on Saturday using traditional crevasse rescue methods.

Rangers and volunteers searched the Nisqually drainage for tracks but were unable to spot the skier. (Thomas O’Neill/NurPhoto via Getty Images, File)

The body was airlifted to Kautz Creek Helibase, where the Pierce County Medical Examiner would perform an evaluation.

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