Don Ryan / AP
The body of a skier was found Sunday near Mount Hood, seen in this Dec. 14, 2009 photo.
The body of a 23-year-old man who skied off into the night after he apparently drank alcohol in a hut on Oregon’s Mount Hood was found submerged in a creek late Sunday, officials said.
Clackamas County Sheriff's Office said it was “sad to report” the body had been found at about 7:15 p.m. local time (10:15 p.m. ET) Sunday near Highway 26 west of the Ski Bowl Resort.
“Searchers learned that a group of experienced skiers left the boundary of Ski Bowl's west side last night. The group gathered at a hut that is just outside the boundary,” the sheriff’s office said in a statement.
“Investigators learned from a member of the group that alcohol was being consumed and the subject appeared intoxicated,” it said. “The subject decided to head down the mountain alone but became disorientated when he left.”
“He had been in contact with a member of the group via cell phone but was still unable to find his way,” it added.
In a previous statement, the sheriff’s office said the man was last seen at 9 p.m. local time Saturday by campers at Mirror Lake and was reported missing at 11 a.m. Sunday.
It said the man “had left the group he was with to ski down the mountain. The group made plans to meet up later but the subject did not show up.”
The campers “had only been in contact with him from across the lake. The campers attempted to direct him to their location but he never arrived,” the earlier statement said.
Pacific Northwest Search and Rescue, Mountain Wave Search and Rescue, American Medical Response Reach and Treat Team, and the Oregon National Guard were involved in the search along with a helicopter.