Released by:         Deputy Josh Westfall, Assistant Search and Rescue Coordinator

Occurred:              06/01/2019    10:01 AM

Location:               Smith Rock State Park

Rescued:               Hunter, Kelsey, Eugene, OR (20 years old)


On 6/1/19 at about 10:01 AM, Deschutes County dispatch received multiple 911 calls regarding a climber, later identified as Kelsey Hunter, who had fallen approximately 20 feet while climbing the Red Wall section of Smith Rock State Park.

Four Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office Deputies, 11 Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue Volunteers, Redmond Fire and Rescue and Smith Rock Rangers responded to the scene to tend to and rescue Kelsey.

Kelsey was located below a Red Wall climbing route and was treated for non life-threatening injuries at the scene. She was then transported down the Misery Ridge trail via wheeled litter and then transported to Redmond St. Charles by ground ambulance for further treatment.

It was later learned that the belay device that had been set up failed to prevent Kelsey’s fall.

The Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office is a full service agency that oversees the adult jail, provides patrol, criminal investigations, civil process and search and rescue operations. Special units include SWAT, Marine Patrol, ATV Patrol, Forest Patrol, along with four K9 teams. Founded in 1916 and today lead by your duly elected Sheriff L. Shane Nelson, the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office serves the nearly 190,000 residents in Deschutes County. The agency has 230 authorized and funded personnel, which includes 187 sworn employees who provide services to the 3,055 square miles of Deschutes County.