6 Mt. Rainier Climbers Presumed Dead; Families Head to Seattle

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Four mountain climbers and two guides escorting them to the summit of Mt. Rainier were presumed dead after searchers found a trail of scattered equipment on Saturday, authorities said.


Mark Mahaney, 26, an avid climber from St. Paul, Minn., is presumed to have died during a climb of Mount Rainier near Seattle. He is shown here at the summit of Forbidden Peak in Washington in July 2013. (Handout)

Gary Harrington, operations director for Alpine Ascents International, which was leading the expedition, told the Los Angeles Times that families of the six were traveling from around the country to Seattle on Saturday night. Authorities did not immediately release the climbers’ names, but a family member identified one of them as Mark Mahaney, a 26-year-old from St. Paul, Minn.

The company told reporters that the lead guide with the group was Matt Hegeman, who was also a regular on Mt. Shasta in Northern California.

Rescuers flew over the glaciers of Mt. Rainier National Park on Saturday morning and early afternoon looking for the climbing group, which was last heard from 6 p.m. Wednesday by satellite phone.

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