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Mt Washington - Leader Fall on Rock - West Side

July 29, 2004

Note - Since the accident was not witnessed the details of what happened are unknown. It is believed that there was a leader fall onto the belay with no intermediate anchors (i.e. Fall Factor 2) due to the fact that there were no anchors on the rope between the two climbers. It is suspected that they were on a route called "Chimney of Space" which is one of the technical rock climbs on the west face. Neither of these things can be determined for certain. All routes on Mt Washington have loose rock, equipment failure is rarely the cause of climbing accidents and there is little to indicate it here.

— News services:

Two experienced climbers die on one-day climb; bodies recovered

The bodies of two climbers killed on Mount Washington in the central Oregon Cascades were recovered Saturday by Jefferson County sheriff’s deputies.

Linn County Sheriff Dave Burright said Thomas Seifert, 46, of Goldendale, Wash., and Gary Glentz, 50, of White Salmon, Wash., planned a one-day climb of the 7,794-foot rocky peak Thursday and that relatives contacted Deschutes County deputies when they did not return as scheduled.

Deschutes County deputies found their car near Big Lake. Burright’s office was notified, and a search began. The mountain is on Linn County’s east border.

Jefferson County deputies found the bodies, still roped together, on the west side of the mountain about 11 a.m. at the 7,190-foot level.

Both were experienced climbers, but this apparently was their first attempt at Mount Washington, a fairly short climb but with a difficult pinnacle. It was not climbed until 1923.

Burright said an equipment failure might have been to blame.

— News services

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