The Latest: Japanese climber dies on Alaska mountain

AP News
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Posted: Jun 15, 2016 4:54 PM

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Latest on the death of a climber on Alaska's Denali, North America's tallest mountain:

12:30 a.m.

The National Park Service in Alaska says a 66-year-old Japanese climber died of unknown medical causes Tuesday morning on Denali, North America's tallest mountain.

Masayuki Ikeda was part of a four-person team attempting to reach the summit at 20,310 feet.

The group was ascending by the West Buttress route when Ikeda fell ill Monday night.

A team descending early Tuesday found Ikeda and his partners between 18,400 feet and 19,000 feet.

The descending team tried to assist Ikeda and continued to a camp at 17,200-feet, where they used a satellite phone to call park officials.

A high altitude helicopter flew Ikeda in a basket from 18,400-feet to a camp at 14,200 feet.

He was transferred to the inside of the helicopter and flown to a camp at 7,200 feet.

Resuscitation efforts failed. An autopsy has been ordered.

10:30 a.m.

The National Park Service says a climber on Alaska's Denali mountain died Tuesday of an unknown illness.

The climber's name, gender and home country were not immediately released.

The climber was part of a four-person party.

A team descending from North America's highest mountain at about 2:30 a.m. met the party with the ill climber between 18,400 and 19,000 feet.

The Park Service says the ill climber couldn't move and had an "altered mental status."

The descending team continued to a camp at 17,200 feet and called for help with a satellite phone.

A high altitude helicopter lifted the stricken climber in a basket from 18,400 feet. The climber was flown to a camp at 14,200 feet, where responders could not detect a pulse.

Alaska Air National Guard resuscitation attempts were unsuccessful.

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This story has been corrected to show elevation where climber was found was up to 19,000 feet, not 1,900 feet.