Stuck Teen Plucked from Peak

Risky rescue on ledge at 13,000 feet


Samuel Frappier, a 19-year-old Canadian climber, got himself into a bit of trouble late Tuesday while trekking up the side of 14,259-foot Longs Peak, located in Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP). He was wearing nothing but cotton clothes and tennis shoes. Without any technical climbing equipment and zero experience, he and another hiker were separated. 

That’s when Frappier got stuck 13,000 feet up in an “extremely precarious” place, RMNP spokesperson Kyle Patterson told the Denver Post. Climbers and hikers often get into trouble on Longs, a popular peak about 75 miles from Denver.

The teen was able to call for help using his cellphone, and a search team arrived just before 6 p.m. on Wednesday. The rescue wasn’t without some risk—warm temperatures and melting conditions caused ice- and rockfalls during the operation. 

By the time the boy was flown to safety at Upper Beaver Meadows in RMNP, 28 team members and several helicopters were involved.

“I imagine people saying I’m stupid,” Frappier told, “and they’re right.”