Login with Facebook
 ADVANCED
PSA: If you're setting up a TR, please check for and warn people beneath you.
View Latest Posts in This Forum or All Forums
   Page 1 of 2.  1  2   Next>   Last>>
Follow replies to this topic? Notify me at the top of web site.
1

Email me.
 
 
By Ian Stewart
Nov 5, 2012
While climbing at North Table Mountain yesterday my wife was just sitting taking a break, grabbing a snack, when out of nowhere a very sharp 3"-ish rock smashed on her things, missing her head by about 6". There was absolutely no warning, and we were not aware that there was a group setting up a TR above us until then. (Things got kinda weird after that, but I'm not here to rant about this particular situation.)

What I did want to say, however, is that if you're going to be setting up a TR when there's a possibility of people beneath you, please make an attempt to notify people of your presence. Even if you think your presence may be obvious it may not be, and ropes aren't the only thing that should be warned about. Rock fall happens to everybody, but had we known that there were people above us we could have planned accordingly: moved out of the way, put on our helmets, etc. 6" closer and we probably would have been looking at a very, very bad day.

Climb safe, people!

FLAG
By Colin Kenneth
From Berkeley, CA
Nov 5, 2012
A well-spent Saturday night. All of the college ki...
I hope you soloed up the route they wanted to do and drop-kicked them in the shins.

:)

I'm glad Ling didn't get brained.

FLAG
By Sir Wanksalot
From County Jail
Nov 5, 2012
This is why you avoid Table Mountain like you do herpes. I would recommend having a helmet on at the base of the crags their all the time... total choss... I hope you stashed a dog crap in their rope bag!

FLAG
By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Nov 5, 2012
Bocan
Those people that are preoccupied while driving, crossing the street while texting and are just generally oblivious to the fact that life is happening around them are the same people that are out rock climbing.

It's a wonder more people don't get hurt.

FLAG
By flynn
Nov 5, 2012
Sorry you had to experience that, Ian; glad both of you are okay.

And now from Captain Obvious: Anytime you're setting up a TR, you should assume there are people below you. If there weren't when you left the cliff bottom, there may well be by the time you top out. It doesn't take any more effort to yell "Rope!" - or "Rock!" You just might save somebody's life. Beats hell out of the alternative.

Gotta agree with Randy and Scott on this one.

FLAG
By waltereo
Nov 5, 2012
Ian Stewart wrote:
While climbing at North Table Mountain yesterday my wife was just sitting taking a break, grabbing a snack, when out of nowhere a very sharp 3"-ish rock smashed on her things, missing her head by about 6". There was absolutely no warning, and we were not aware that there was a group setting up a TR above us until then. (Things got kinda weird after that, but I'm not here to rant about this particular situation.) What I did want to say, however, is that if you're going to be setting up a TR when there's a possibility of people beneath you, please make an attempt to notify people of your presence. Even if you think your presence may be obvious it may not be, and ropes aren't the only thing that should be warned about. Rock fall happens to everybody, but had we known that there were people above us we could have planned accordingly: moved out of the way, put on our helmets, etc. 6" closer and we probably would have been looking at a very, very bad day. Climb safe, people!


Great advices,

Better yet, I avoid the base of a climbing cliff when I take a break or snack. I try to move 10-20m away from the wall.

FLAG
By Reginald McChufferton
Nov 5, 2012
This post violated Rule #1. It has been removed by Mountain Project.

By gearwhore
From Orange, CA
Nov 5, 2012
IMHO

Not yelling "Rope" before letting it go = BAD

Eating lunch at the base of a climb you don't have locked up = BAD

FLAG
 
By John Husky
Nov 5, 2012
I've had ropes dropped on me while leading at popular crags before. Bullshit.

Acting defensively by staying away from the cliff base sounds reasonable, but what if you intend to climb the thing. Preventing killing or injuring others by your own actions is also a very reasonable way to go.

FLAG
By Colin Kenneth
From Berkeley, CA
Nov 5, 2012
A well-spent Saturday night. All of the college ki...
gearwhore wrote:
IMHO Not yelling "Rope" before letting it go = BAD Eating lunch at the base of a climb you don't have locked up = BAD



This all seems well and good in hindsight, but it's like saying, "you shouldn't be walking on the sidewalk when that drunk person is driving on it with their SUV."

If the approach to the crag is from below, and it's single pitch sport climbing, why should you need to EXPECT to have something coming down on top of you, and move away from the base of the wall impulsively? If they were setting the top rope from above rather than climbing the pitch from the bottom, there's really no way to know they are up there unless they let you know.

It's not alpine where shit can be knocked loose or just fall unprovoked. It's an over-climbed (basalt?) cliff. It shouldn't be necessary to walk around expecting the sky to fall on top of you; it SHOULD be necessary for people to consider the safety of someone potentially below you, where, at a climbing crag, it would hardly be a surprise to find them.

FLAG
By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Nov 5, 2012
Bocan
It should be up to the parties above to make sure they aren't putting anyone in danger by dropping rocks, ice, ropes or anthing else down. Leaders have the right of way.

However it's too bad there are no rules that really govern other's etiquette behavior, so it's up to ourselves to watch our behinds. There's usually a reason why they are walking around to set up top ropes.

FLAG
By richie
From englewood, tn
Nov 5, 2012
i always warn people at the bottom when i throw rocks off the top at them.

FLAG
By Jon Zucco
From Denver, CO
Nov 5, 2012
yaak crack Red Rock Canyon, NV
Randy W. wrote:
This is why you avoid Table Mountain like you do herpes. ... total choss...


+1, not to mention the death hike, the wind, the overwhelming amounts of people, how short and wonky the pitches are........

FLAG
By Old and Busted
From Centennial, CO
Nov 5, 2012
Stabby
I want to hear the 'things got weird' part of the story....

FLAG
By Ian Stewart
Nov 5, 2012
The suggestions about sitting far back from the wall when not climbing is a good one, though you can't always get that far back. In this case, she was already sitting about as far back from the wall as she could have without sitting right on the trail. "Moving out of the way" meant that she moved closer to the climb we were on, away from the one that was (seemingly) unoccupied. Similarly, helmets are always a good idea, and in retrospect we should have had them on already. Lesson learned on our part (it was our first visit to Table Mountain).

Jon Zucco wrote:
+1, not to mention the death hike, the wind, the overwhelming amounts of people, how short and wonky the pitches are........


Death hike? Are you approaching from somewhere other than the main parking lot? I thought the approach was pretty darned short and, while uphill, easy. It didn't seem like any of the handful of toddlers making the approach were having much trouble, either...

FLAG
By Jon Zucco
From Denver, CO
Nov 5, 2012
yaak crack Red Rock Canyon, NV
Ian Stewart wrote:
The suggestions about sitting far back from the wall when not climbing is a good one, though you can't always get that far back. In this case, she was already sitting about as far back from the wall as she could have without sitting right on the trail. "Moving out of the way" meant that she moved closer to the climb we were on, away from the one that was (seemingly) unoccupied. Similarly, helmets are always a good idea, and in retrospect we should have had them on already. Lesson learned on our part (it was our first visit to Table Mountain). Death hike? Are you approaching from somewhere other than the main parking lot? I thought the approach was pretty darned short and, while uphill, easy. It didn't seem like any of the handful of toddlers making the approach were having much trouble, either...



Sorry, death march. In full sun, it sucks and none of the climbs in this area are worth it IMO.

FLAG
 
By Ian Stewart
Nov 5, 2012
Jon Zucco wrote:
Sorry, death march. In full sun, it sucks and none of the climbs in this area are worth it IMO.


Ah, gotcha, I can definitely see that (and have heard that before). It was overcast yesterday so it was quite comfortable. The climbs are short and some weren't that great, but some others were pretty good and a less-than-average day of climbing is still better than not climbing. Anyways, back on Topic! =)

FLAG
By Greg D
From Here
Nov 6, 2012
Out of the blue.  Photo by Mike W.
Colin Kenneth wrote:
why should you need to EXPECT to have something coming down on top of you, and move away from the base of the wall impulsively?



Because:

Colin Kenneth wrote:
there's really no way to know they are up there unless they let you know.



Sometimes we have the answers inside us and yet still manage to ignore them.

FLAG
By TWK
Nov 6, 2012
Because gravity. It's not just a good idea. It's the law.
And geologic time can be right now.

FLAG
By TBlom
Nov 6, 2012
Weird noob action at table mountain? unheard of...

FLAG
By TWK
Nov 6, 2012
waltereo wrote:
Great advices, Better yet, I avoid the base of a climbing cliff when I take a break or snack. I try to move 10-20m away from the wall.


Usually better, but not always. Look at the debris piles at the base where you're climbing. A lot of stuff that falls will strike the wall on the way down and carom off some distance away. Sometimes, it's safer to hug the wall. All depends on the geometry of the cliff, and on luck.

FLAG
By S.Stelli
From Colorado Springs, CO
Nov 6, 2012
Mike Lane wrote:
I want to hear the 'things got weird' part of the story....


I'm also waiting for this. I'm stuck at work and bored, what can I say?

FLAG
By Ian Stewart
Nov 6, 2012
S.Stelli wrote:
I'm also waiting for this. I'm stuck at work and bored, what can I say?


Ok, fine. Starting from after the rock fell:


Me [looking up]: Hey, is anybody up there? Hello?

[No response, so I figure it was just a fluke rock fall. After about 20 seconds, I see something moving around at the top, to our left, but I can't quite make it out...]

Me: Hey, is that somebody up there? Hello?

[Still no response. At this point I think it must be an animal or bird or something. I watch for a little while longer, after which I can see that it's a backpack moving around up there. I now know somebody is up there...]

Me: I can see you up there...hello?

[Again, no response. I still just see about half a backpack over the edge. At this point, there was a woman climbing to our right and she was now paying more attention to the situation, looking up at the people on top with a better view.]

Climber [to her partner, belaying]: Oh, it's the women that were asking us about the climbs earlier...

Climber [to the people on top]: Hey, if you're trying to set up a TR on the climb we were talking about before then you're on the wrong anchor.

Woman setting up TR: No, thanks, we decided to climb something else.

[At this point I'm really confused. I can't imagine they didn't hear me before if they heard her...]

Me: Uhm, hey, could you not hear me talking to you before?

Woman setting up TR: Yeah, I heard you.

Me: OK, well, a response would be nice.

[No response. At this point I decide to just leave it be, assuming we could have a more civil conversation when they rappel from the TR they're obviously setting up. My climbing partner decided to just have that conversation once he was near the top of our climb and within eyesight with her, however]

Our climber: Hey, if you're going to set up a TR could you try to warn people beneath you? It's a busy crag and there are a lot of people, and you caused some rock fall that came very close to hitting one of us. Had we known you were here, we could have been more prepared and moved out of the way.

Woman setting up TR: Ok. [Few moments later, as our climber was still cleaning] Rope!


At this point, she drops the rope and rappels. I didn't want to escalate the scene, so I just ignored her and said nothing. She did the same. Our climber lowered off, we packed up our things (including my pack that was sitting under their rope they tossed down), and moved to a new location.

Like I said...weird...

FLAG
By Morgan Patterson
Administrator
Nov 6, 2012
Topo - Cliffs in Green
climbers are freaks

FLAG
 
By Sir Wanksalot
From County Jail
Nov 6, 2012
CaptainMo wrote:
climbers are freaks

I'm so glad everyone else has nothing to do at work, so I can waste my day laughing about things that are funny and true.

FLAG
By gearwhore
From Orange, CA
Nov 6, 2012
Scott McMahon wrote:
It should be up to the parties above to make sure they aren't putting anyone in danger by dropping rocks, ice, ropes or anthing else down.


Excellent response - of course this is correct behavior. But my post was to direct attention to (from my limited view of the situation) that both could have prevented the encounter.

FLAG


Follow replies to this topic? Notify me at the top of web site.
1

Email me.
Page 1 of 2.  1  2   Next>   Last>>