Challenger Point Dog Chopper Rescue any updates?

Dogs, dogs and even some cats
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Challenger Point Dog Chopper Rescue any updates?

Postby sdewalt » Tue Sep 07, 2010 11:24 am

Does anyone know what happened to the dog 'Chopper' on Challenger Point this Labor day weekend? I was one of the first groups of people who got to the dog who, as explained to be by the owner, 'ran out of gas' just below Challenger Point and the owner left him over night on Challenger. Having passed the owner on my first ascent and the owners second, I got most of the story and gave Chopper some water and waited until his owner climbed back up to him. After tagging both Challenger Point and Kit Carson I passed his owner and Chopper on the steep section of Challenger Point. The dog was travelling very slowly, but his owner was determined to get him down. Chopper a Husky mix seems like a great dog and I hope he made it back home and also hope he is retired from any more 14ers.

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Re: Challenger Point Dog Chopper Rescue any updates?

Postby Doug Shaw » Tue Sep 07, 2010 11:48 am

"Chopper Rescue" may conjure wrong image in many people's minds... my first thought was "they airlifted a Dog off of Challenger Point?"

Hopefully things turned out okay. If, as you say, the owner was committed to getting him down, most likely they made it.

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Re: Challenger Point Dog Chopper Rescue any updates?

Postby benners » Tue Sep 07, 2010 4:38 pm

Doug Shaw first thought was "they airlifted a Dog off of Challenger Point?"

My first thought as well when I read this, glad this is not the case although I do hope the dog turns out alright.

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Re: Challenger Point Dog Chopper Rescue any updates?

Postby atalarico » Tue Sep 07, 2010 5:37 pm

I also thought this was pertaining to a dog being airlifted off a mountain, and I was hopeful for some awesome photos or footage. Dammit.

Well, I hope he's ok. If not, rescue him down. It's just like a rescue for a human, just much lighter and smaller.

Re: Challenger Point Dog Chopper Rescue any updates?

Postby climbit » Tue Sep 07, 2010 5:40 pm

Thank you Sdewalt,
And thank you to all the climbers on Challenger Point on Sunday who helped me find my dog "Chopper" and who gave him water, food and encouragement to us both. On Saturday, I was also climbing with my wife, our two boys and another dog. We left my wife and the other dog in the middle of Challenger, after we summited, while my boys, Chopper and I went over to Kit Carson. On our way back from Kit Carson, Chopper stopped just after leaving Kit Carson Ave back towards Challenger. My boys and I regrouped with my wife and other dog in the middle of Challenger, I sent them onward and I returned to Chopper. He looked tired, I gave him more water and food. I gave him all the water I had and the water I had taken from my family and all of his dog food. I thought about staying the night with him but at this point I had given him all of my water and his food, both of which he would need more of. My thoughts were the weather was good, not too cold, he is a tough, smart dog; I will return to Willow Lake get additional food and water and climb back to him in the morning. Also, I knew there would be other climbers that could help me in my search in case he moved and they could help with getting some water to Chopper. On Sunday morning, all the climbers that passed me, because I am slow, I told about Chopper and asked if they saw him to please give him some water and I will be there soon. Since I left him just above the avenue I traversed across Challenger in an effort to look for him if he moved. Shortly into the traverse climbers were waving their hands that they had found Chopper, they were up close to the ridge before the summit to Challenger. I regained the ridge and went to them. They told me they had given Chopper about two liters of water and some cheese. I thanked them and they went on to their summits and I to try to get Chopper back to Willow Lake. I gave him more water and some additional food and waited about twenty more minutes. It took seven and a half hours to get him back to the lake. The next day it took us five hours to get back to the trailhead. Chopper's feet are sore and he is not very active yet but he is home and alive. If this was Chopper's last 14er, to end it with a bivy is a memorable finish. Chopper has kept me and my boys on the trail of more than 35 14er summits. In our family, when you don't know which way to go follow Chopper. Hindsight, I should have done a better job of hydrating Chopper and should have left him with my wife and the other dog when we went to Kit Carson, (this was his and my second time up both of these peaks) but he just keeps going. Attached are a couple of pictures of Chopper from Labor Day weekend. Again, my family wants to thank all the climbers for their help and generosity. A truly great bunch of people!
Chopper, Rest Break.jpg
Rest break, we are going to make it to the lake.
Chopper, Rest Break.jpg (221.95 KiB) Viewed 1029 times
Chopper KC 9-04-2010.jpg
Chopper on the summit of Kit Carson
Chopper KC 9-04-2010.jpg (237.96 KiB) Viewed 1028 times

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Re: Challenger Point Dog Chopper Rescue any updates?

Postby llamaman » Tue Sep 07, 2010 6:00 pm

Tugging at my heartstrings! Glad you and Chopper made it back safely and kudos to all the other climbers who helped. =D>

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Re: Challenger Point Dog Chopper Rescue any updates?

Postby jf32 » Tue Sep 07, 2010 6:05 pm

Climbit - I met you and Chopper on Pyramid last summer. Happy to hear everything worked out ok in this situation.
When you come to a fork in the road take it

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Re: Challenger Point Dog Chopper Rescue any updates?

Postby Palmyra J » Tue Sep 07, 2010 7:58 pm

We were at Willow Lake with you over the weekend...sooo glad things turned out well for you and that beautiful dog. I hope all things 'paws' are OK. We had a hell of a time getting off the summit of Kit and scurrying down Chanllenger on Sunday. The winds were really brutal Sunday afternoon. Easy morning to the summit of both peaks, but a very difficult afternoon decent. Glad you made it home and Chopper is OK.

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