VT State Police (VSP) Search and Rescue (SAR) Commander requested assistance from Stowe Mountain Rescue (SMR) to search the cliff top of Mt Pisgah, in Westmore VT, for a missing 23

year-old male on Monday 5/15.  VSP SAR and New England k9 had been unsuccessful at locating the missing individual after searching the area the prior day.

SMR Team searched a number of cliff-top access points (Overlooks) via fixed rope to evaluate the cliff and the subject was visually located about 350-400’ down on a large sloping ledge.  SMR inspected the terrain from both top- and bottom-vantage points; the examination of the 350-400’ cliff above the subject revealed very dangerous conditions, with large amounts of loose, unstable rock.  The objective hazards of this cliff section made it an unacceptable work environment for rescuers.  Access to the subject from the bottom of the cliff was possible (estimated 150-200 feet above the base of the cliff), but loose and wet rock below the subject would make the climbing difficult and dangerous.  Inadequate personnel, equipment and time of day prevented any opportunity to execute an extrication on Monday.

Thorough pre-planning activities between VSP, Colchester Technical Rescue, VT Army National Guard, and the Mountain Warfare School took place throughout the week, with the goal of a 2-day operation established for Friday (pre-rig access points) and Saturday (body extraction).

Good conditions on Friday prevailed and the operation was completed in one day.

Team Members RespondingOther Agencies RespondingTime of Call  Weather Conditions


Monday (5/15):  Veliko, Westervelt, Speer, Burke, Wehse


Friday (5/19):  Veliko, Westervelt, Reinhardt, Eykelhoff, Burke, Rogers, Palmer, Speer & Miller


-  VT State Police

- Colchester Technical Rescue

- VT Army National Guard – Air Wing (Helicopter)

- VT Army National Guard – Mountain Warfare School

- Orleans Rescue - road stand-by

- Grand Ilse Sheriffs Office - Drone

- VT Fish & Wildlife

5/15:  0800-1800

5/19:  0630-2100

5/15:  Cool (45 degrees), light rain

5/19:  Cool (45 degrees), light rain

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