RANDLE — A 38-year-old Portland man is in critical condition after a failed BASE jump from Tower Rock in Randle, Wash.
The man and his two friends traveled from Portland to Tower Rock for the purpose of base-jumping Monday, the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office said. Tower Rock, located in the Cispus Valley near the Cispus Environmental Center, is a popular base jumping destination with an elevation of 3,300 feet.
Sheriff’s deputies said the man’s friends jumped off the rock first.
The man jumped and hit the rock wall several times before his parachute fully deployed, a witness told deputies. He then disappeared into the timber.
The man’s friends hiked to the base of the mountain where they found him with multiple fractures to his lower legs and bleeding. One of the friends hiked out and called 911, deputies said, while the other stayed with him below Tower Rock.
Randle Fire and Packwood Search and Rescue responded to the scene and hiked in one mile in to the man. However, they decided it would be too dangerous to pack him out, so they called for an airlift hoist, deputies said.
A U.S. Navy helicopter responded from Whidbey Island to hoist the man and flew him to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.
The man is currently in critical condition at the hospital.