Body of 31-year-old Beaverton hiker recovered in Columbia River - KPTV - FOX 12

Body of 31-year-old Beaverton hiker recovered in Columbia River Gorge

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Melvin Burtch (Image: Facebook) Melvin Burtch (Image: Facebook)
SKAMANIA COUNTY, WA (KPTV) -

The body of a 31-year-old hiker from Beaverton has been recovered from Table Mountain in the Columbia River Gorge.

Melvin Burtch left with two dogs for a day hike on Tuesday above Bonneville Dam.

Workers at Bonneville Hot Springs Resort & Spa spotted Burtch's unoccupied car Wednesday morning with the dogs nearby.

The dogs' owner was contacted and she told deputies Burtch had last reached out to her at 2 p.m. Tuesday and sent a photo from what appeared to be the top of Table Mountain.

Signal transmissions from Burtch's cell phone Wednesday indicated the phone was still in the area of Table Mountain. However, Burtch was not responding to calls or text messages.

Search crews found Burtch's body at the bottom of Table Mountain around 5 p.m. Wednesday. His phone was found 50 yards from his body.

Deputies believe Burtch fell from the summit of Table Mountain to the base which is a vertical distance of nearly 700 feet.

Recovery efforts were launched at 8 a.m. Thursday and concluded at 2 p.m. The Skamania County Sheriff's Office reported no injuries to search and rescue crew members.

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