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Multnomah County search and Rescue Saves Hiker During Training Exercise

Monday, December 14, 2015


Columbia Gorge

During a training exercise held this weekend in the Columbia Gorge, Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue volunteers saved a real hiker who was stranded on the trail.

Search and Rescue volunteers were conducting training above Multnomah Falls in the Columbia Gorge on Saturday afternoon. Shortly after 4 PM, they were told that a hiker, Fable Turas, 46, of Portland was reported lost on the Oneonta Trail.

Roughly 60 volunteers were close to the area the hiker was lost in. Two teams were diverted from the exercise and deployed into the area from the trailhead to find the hiker. A third team was deployed to move down the trail from Franklin Ridge.

The trail was hazardous due to heavy rains, particularly after dark. The hiker was found at roughly 7:15 PM. Turns was uninjured.

Turns told rescue volunteers that she had had planned to hike to Triple Falls. She decided to continue past Triple Falls once she reached them and hiked past a large slide on the Oneonta Trail above Triple Falls. It was then she realized she was in trouble as it was starting to get dark. She had a flashlight but was not prepared to spend the night. She was able to text her friend and remained where she was on the trail as she waited for searchers. 

The Multnomah County Sheriff's Office would like to remind anyone contemplating a hike or outing on trails within the Columbia Gorge and other scenic areas to research their route prior to attempting a hike. Be prepared when you depart for a hike and ensure you are carrying the proper equipment when setting out including a map, compass, flashlight, extra food and water, extra clothing, fire starter, knife, first aid kit and signaling device. A GPS and a cell phone with extra battery. Let someone know your plan and when you expect to return so someone knows if you are overdue. During the winter temperatures will get very low overnight in the higher elevations and weather can change rapidly. Be prepared for the weather.


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