Video of the rescue of the hiker who slipped into the cascades below Upper Yosemite Fall (and survived) has been released by the National Park Service.
The backpacker fell from slippery rocks in Yosemite National Park into a creek raging with springtime runoff was able to climb onto a boulder just before a potentially “fatal plunge”.
To show the scale of the initial fall and boulders, the hiker is shown by the small circle in the photo below.
One of the backpacker’s friends called 911, and rangers responded, finding the man laying stranded on a boulder below a series of cascades in the middle of Yosemite Creek’s violent whitewater, rated class V+. A rope rescue would have taken too long due to “extremely wet and difficult terrain,” and the hiker was already suffering from hypothermia.
Normally, a helicopter rescue wouldn’t be attempted because of dangerous high-gusting winds from the falls. But a helicopter pilot determined it was safe on the day of the rescue — May 28.
A rescuer was lowered from a helicopter onto the boulder where the victim waited. The rescuer put a harness onto the hiker, and the two were lifted from the creek. The hiker was transferred by ambulance to a hospital, where he was treated for hypothermia. He was otherwise not injured.
Footage, National Parks Service