A Fairbanks, Alaska man was rescued from a crevasse after nine hours this weekend after miraculously surviving a fall 73-feet into a crevasse.

Robert McClintock, 69, had set out with friends on their snow machines travelling up the Eureka Glacier about 125 miles from Fairbanks when he dropped into a crevasse. McClintock told KTUU, the Local Channel 2 affiliate in Fairbanks, that he landed on what he described as “a little snow pinnacle in the middle of this glacier.”

Surrounding him were narrow walls of blue ice that descended a full 150-200 feet down, making it a pure miracle he survived.

“If I’d fallen off over there, they would have been hauling a body out of the crevasse,” he told KTUU. “I’m incredibly lucky.”

Alaska State Trooper and the 210th Rescue Squadron reportedly had trouble lifting McClintock out of the crevasse with a blackhawk helicopter and a C130. A rescue worker was then lowered down to lift McClintock out with a hand crank. Afterward he praised the work of the rescuers.

“This is something you absolutely cannot put a price tag on,” he told the station. “Those guys absolutely saved my life.”

In the nine hours it took to rescue the 69-year-old he said he kept warm by pacing back and forth. His friends had lowered additional clothing and a radio in the meantime. McClintock was eventually rescued by 2 am that morning and suffered just a few bruised ribs. 

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Photo credit: Screenshot from KTUU video.