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Texas Man Rescued from Zion National Park

Texas Man Rescued from Zion National Park

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ZION NATIONAL PARK, Utah (AP) -- A Texas man was successfully carried out of the rugged Pine Creek drainage Thursday after a 9 1/2 hour rescue operation, officials said.

Park rangers were dispatched Wednesday night to locate an injured hiker, Michael Hargrove of Houston, who was experiencing severe abdominal pain and was unable to move.

Hargrove was found in a large boulder field down canyon from the last rappel in the Pine Creek slot canyon.

After consulting with Dixie Regional Medical Center in St. George, officials determined Hargrove was most likely suffering from an abdominal hernia. The park search and rescue team was called to complete the rescue.

Hargrove was carried in a basket-like gurney called a litter through the boulder field, which official said took several hours.

He was then lifted to the top of the last rappel, a distance of about 150 feet, and then carried to the base of a cliff. Then he was lifted about another 200 feet to the second window of the Zion-Mt. Carmel tunnel, where an ambulance was waiting.

A message left Thursday afternoon at Dixie Regional Medical Center seeking Hargrove's condition was not immediately returned.

Most of the rescue was performed at night, and involved 24 park staff members and volunteers. Officials said it represented one of the most difficult and involved rescues performed in Zion National Park.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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