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The Mount Hood climb was an annual event for sophomores at Oregon Episcopal School and was part of the schools Basecamp wilderness-experience program.Of the 19 climbers who started the hike at Timberline Lodge at 3 a.m.when they were turned back by poor weather conditions.At night, the climbers dug a snow cave for protection.
The priest was a seasoned leader of novice climbers, and very conservative, said Don Mc Clave, father of Susan Mc Clave, 18, whose body was found huddled with others in a snow cave on the mountain.One of the primary culprits in this accident was the need to try to adhere to a schedule, the report said.It said time pressure made the climbers unwilling to delay the expedition, even though the forecast called for bad weather. The report says the climbers should have had better boots and clothing, more shovels and bivouac sacks and should have carried an altimeter and a topographical map of the mountain. Investigators found a conflict between Gomans role and that of Summers, a trained guide whose job with the group was to be a technical assistant.Last spring, a climbing party became stuck in a snowstorm.
Nine students and faculty members died of exposure on the mountain.
The prudent course of action would have been for the students to turn back at the 8,600-foot level - about eight hours before they did, according to the committee.