Rescue at Ape Cave on Mount St. Helens

A man wearing light sweatshirt was rescued after getting lost while climbing through Ape Cave on Mount St. Helens.

John Lincoln, 27, and his two friends got lost after climbing through the Ape Cave and emerging in darkness and three feet of snow. He wore a lightweight sweatshirt, pants and walking boots for the Sunday night hike.

Too tired to walk further, Lincoln’s friends left him in a self-built snow hole and went for rescue help, police said.

Thirteen volunteers with the Volcano Rescue Team, including a paramedic, found Lincoln cold and wet, but still conscious and able to speak about 9 a.m. Monday, Sgt. Gary Wood of the Skamania County Sheriff’s Office told The Columbian newspaper. Wood accompanied the rescuers, who used three snowmobiles to reach Lincoln.

Ape Cave is 12,810 feet long– that’s almost 2-1/2 miles long! It is the longest intact lava tube in the United States, and the second longest in the world.

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