ALBANY, Ore. (KTVZ) -- The nearly week-long search in challenging terrain for a Mount Jefferson climber who was seen falling several hundred feet during his descent has been suspended, Linn County Sheriff Jim Yon said.
The sheriff said that "a significant amount of resources have tirelessly worked" to locate Steven Van Pelt, 33, of Salem who was witnessed falling on Friday, July 23.
Resources including six mountain rescue teams "took great risk searching for Van Pelt over the last several days among the extreme mountainous terrain with glacier drifts, falling rocks and debris," Yon said Thursday. "Resources have been exhausted, and the risk of continuing would jeopardize additional lives."
The Linn County Sheriff’s Office has been in close contact with Van Pelt’s family, who are aware of the decision, Yon said.
The sheriff's office was assisted by their counterparts in Marion and Benton counties, as well as Corvallis Mountain Rescue, Eugene Mountain Rescue, Deschutes Mountain Rescue, Portland Mountain Rescue, Hood River Mountain Rescue, Oregon Emergency Management, the U.S. Army National Guard, Air Force Reserve (304th), LifeFlight, the Idanha Fire Department, Detroit Fire Department, Amateur Radio Emergency Services and the U.S. Forest Service.