Helicopter rescues climbers from near Mount Rainier summit

MOUNT RAINIER NATIONAL PARK, Wash. (AP) — A helicopter has rescued four climbers from near the summit of Mount Rainier after they had been stranded on the Cascade Mountain peak for several days.

The National Park Service said in a statement they were suffering from exposure and being transported to local hospitals. Rescuers took advantage Thursday morning of a break in bad weather that had stymied earlier attempts to reach the climbers.

The park had received a report Monday afternoon the climbers needed help because wind blew away or destroyed their tent and climbing equipment.

The climbers, who began their ascent on Friday, include Yevgeniy Krasnitskiy of Portland, Oregon; Vasily Aushev and Kostya “Constantine” Toporov of New York City; and Ruslan Khasbulatov of Jersey City, New Jersey.

A park helicopter crew found the climbers Monday on the dangerous Liberty Ridge route at 13,500 feet (4,115 meters).

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