A member of the Langley RCMP is home safe after spending 24 hours stuck on the side of Mount Rainier, suffering from altitude sickness.
Const. Endo Cui is an avid climber and had been hiking the Washington state mountain on Wednesday, May 31, when the 27-year-old told the people he was hiking with he was too ill to carry on.
The U.S. National Park Service says Cui, who has been an officer in Langley since 2013, un-roped from his friends and headed directly down the mountain instead of taking a standard route.
Media reports indicate that his climbing colleagues tried to convince him to stay with them but he ended up walking down to a rock face that has a 12,400 vertical drop (3,800 meters).
His friends phoned 9-1-1.
Cui likely was already suffering from the effects of altitude sickness, said Langley RCMP Cpl. Holly Largy. Altitude sickness can include symptoms similar to intoxication, such as not feeling yourself, slurring words, having cognitive fog, and making poor decisions.
The first attempt by a rescue group to get to Cui was unsuccessful. The Army Reserve-Air Force team had to fly a Chinook helicopter to get to him after he spent the night on the cliff face.
Ciu didn’t have any overnight gear with him, said C TV News. When he was rescued he was severely hypothermic, said the park service.
Largy said Cui came into the detachment on Friday, to check in and say hello.
“Endo wanted to express his gratitude to the people who rescued him, particularly to the army team who took the Chinook helicopter to get him,” said Largy.