Cliffhanger: Pooch plummets 150 feet to Oregon cliff; climber rappels to rescue

This Dec. 25, 2014 photo provided by Emily Amsler via the Oregon Humane Society shows John Thoeni, left, an Oregon Humane Society volunteer beginning his descent to save Sandy, a yellow Labrador who got spooked on a Christmas Day hike in the Columbia Gorge.
Image Credit: AP Photo/ Emily Amsler via Oregon Humane Society

PORTLAND, Ore. - A yellow Labrador that got spooked on a Christmas Day hike in the Columbia Gorge near Portland, Oregon, snapped her leash and plunged 150 feet down a cliff, was rescued in the dark by a climber who rappelled to a narrow ledge where the dog was trapped.

David Schelske told the Oregon Humane Society when 3-year-old Sandy bounded around a bend and disappeared he figured her for a goner.

He hiked to the bottom of the cliff and saw her stranded on a narrow ledge 70 feet above.

At about 7 p.m., an eight-person crew helped Humane Society volunteer John Thoeni descend.

He fitted a rescue harness on the frightened dog, and the two were hoisted to safety. Sandy suffered minor injuries but walked out to the trailhead.


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