Rocky hands out kisses after his rescue. // Photo: Portland Mountain Rescue
Photo: Portland Mountain Rescue
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -
A Portland Mountain Rescue team performed a tricky, high-angle rescue to reach a dog who fell down a cliff at Triple Falls on Sunday.
Hikers in the Oneonta Gorge area called 911 after hearing a dog barking from the base of the 100-foot cliffs that surround Triple Falls - one of the Columbia River Gorge's most popular hiking destinations.
Multnomah County deputies responded because they were concerned a person may have fallen down the cliff with the dog. Around 3:30 p.m. Portland Mountain Rescue teams came across a distraught dog owner, who said her dog Rocky fell from the cliff the day before.
She and her friends returned Sunday to search for the dog, but they couldn't get to the bottom of the cliffs. Because Rocky was no longer barking, they feared the worst, officials said.
With no humans at risk, deputies called off their search, but gave Portland Mountain Rescue crews permission to continue on their own.
Rescuer Scott Norton was sent over the cliff; and, five minutes later, he arrived at a ledge halfway down the cliff, where Rocky was "wriggling" and "yapping," officials said.
Though Rocky was uncooperative, Norton eventually had to stuff the dog into his backpack and close it tight in order to get the pet up to safety.
Once Rocky was secure, rescuers hauled Norton back up the cliff using a two-rope system.
Rocky did not appear to suffer any significant injuries, though rescuers said he'll likely be "terrified of backpacks for the rest of his life."
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