Two Grand Teton climbers fall after attempting to climb Teewinot Mountain in the Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. Both women were killed on Saturday after plummeting 200-feet, officials say. The victims were Tyler Strandberg, 27, and Catherine Nix, 28.
ABC News reports that the women who were killed both lived in Jackson, Wyoming. Strandberg was originally from Raleigh, North Carolina, and Nix was originally from Port Chester, New York. They were pronounced dead on the scene, according to the park.
Another woman joined the Grand Teton climbers who fell — Rebecca Anderson, 26. She called 911 to report the fall. Anderson tried yelling down to her friends, but she got no response.
Anderson suffered no injuries.
All three of the women were trying to climb up the East Face of Teewinot Mountain. Park officials say that this is the “typical” and “easiest” route to the summit of Teewinot.
Park officials add that the climbers weren’t using ropes at the time and were searching for the correct route.
According to the park’s statement following the Grand Teton climbers’ fall, the terrain at which they were venturing was difficult.
“Though the route is frequently climbed without ropes, the terrain is very steep and good route-finding skills, mountaineering experience, and caution are essential. The climbers were well off the East Face route and in much more difficult technical terrain when the fall occurred.”
WRAL 5 reports that the climbers fell around 11 a.m. on the 11,500-foot Teewinot. It took medical personnel and rescuers about an hour to reach the two women.
The Teewinot mountain is said to be the sixth tallest one in the Teton range.
It was added in the report that Strandberg’s grandfather is former Lt. Gov. Jim Gardner, and that her aunt is the wife of former state House Speaker Joe Hackney. Her mother works for Gov. Pat McCrory’s office.
Betsy Strandberg Hackney shared that her niece graduated with a degree in psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2005. She moved to Wyoming so that she could participate in extreme sports. Hackney said Strandberg was a great athlete who enjoyed skiing and running marathons.
Rescuers have been busy on the Grand Tetons. It was reported just days ago by HJ.com that 10 climbers who were stranded on the Stettner Couloir last weekend needed rescuing. Park rangers “coordinated” efforts “that lasted through Saturday night into Sunday.”
The Grand Teton mountain climbers’ fall is a grim reminder of the extreme dangers some face with this type of activity.
[Photo by Michael Smith/Newsmakers]