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What was your biggest, scariest, or most destructive fall?
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By Tommy Ormond
From Eldorado Springs, CO
Apr 28, 2012
chicken suit
CalmAdrenaline wrote:
Biggest: I was climbing Blue Gramma in Indian Creek with my Ex-girlfriend,


Climbing with your ex-girlfriend? Good God man. That's horrifying. I didn't even read past that.

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By Scott O
From California
Apr 28, 2012
Batman Pinnacle
Biggest: 30-40 feet on the traverse right of the Ahwahnee ledge on WFLT. We left too much of the rack in the car after feeling overconfident about the route, so I ended up backcleaning the entire section just to make progress - my only pro was the bolt off the belay. I was almost through the thin crack and standing on a yellow mastercam that looked good, still daisied into the last piece (offset mastercam). All of a sudden, the yellow piece pulled, and my daisy must have ripped the previous piece. I took a 30-40 foot header onto the sloping stuff below, then pendulumed into a column. Aside from a broken helmet, a gash on my head, and a few scrapes and bruises, I was ok. I jugged back up to the ledge, and we went down the next day.

Scariest: See above, although I didn't know what was happening until it was over. I was plenty scared about a closed head injury afterwards, though.

Destructive: See above.

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By wankel7
From Indiana
Apr 29, 2012
Scary - my belayer dropped me on lead at r and j ...fell around 25 or 30 feet. My left ass cheek landed on her head. I was fine but she got a tibial plateau fracture in her knee.

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By Superclimber
Apr 29, 2012
40 foot cheese grater on run out slab 2 days ago.
war wounds
war wounds

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By Charles Vernon
From Tucson, AZ
Apr 29, 2012
Biggest: 40 footer on Lizard Marmalade Direct. All air.

Scariest: 25 footer on pitch 8 of Astro Dog. Scary because although it was all air, came close to hitting the slab beneath the overhanging flare. And because that would have been a terrible, terrible spot to be seriously injured.

Most destructive: fortunately none have been very destructive. During a 25 footer on the last pitch of the Doub-Griffith, my left wrist slid down the arete for most of the fall leaving it dripping blood from the slash as though I'd tried to off myself. Looked a lot worse than it was.

Although I went back up and finished the latter two, I unfortunately have yet to fully avenge myself for any of these indignities. 3 amazing routes that all still scare me very much.

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By TheBirdman
From Eldorado Springs, Colorado
Apr 29, 2012
Biggest: 40 feet, working my project. Last bolt is about 15 feet shy of the anchor, with the crux above it. I had worked the move numerous times, fallen on the bolt earlier that day. Somehow, on my at least 5th burn, I managed to spin the hanger off the bolt. I fell from about 12 feet above, ripped the hanger, and went from staring at the anchors to staring at my belayer.

Scariest: Karma Roof, Ten Sleep, WY. After a period of full-on bouldering, I was feeling strong but not so used to clipping. The Karma Roof climbs out a steep roof, with a bolt at the lip and then about a 20 foot run to the anchors. For whatever reason, I decided not to clip the bolt at the lip (in-full bouldering mode), thinking I'd clear the lip and have easier terrain to the top instead of wasting time on a difficult clip. Turns out I pumped myself stupid and got slightly off route. Long story short, I sat there, unable to move for at least 30 seconds, before letting go and taking a ride into nothing but air.

Destructive: Ultimate gumby moment. While trying a route at my limit very early on, I grabbed a draw out of desperation. This route climbed vertically for about 15 feet, and then had a horizontal traverse for about another 15 feet. When I grabbed the draw and went to clip, I somehow not only managed to miss the clip, but to wrap about 3 feet of rope around my arm. Since I didn't have much elevation gain from the start, the 8-10 feet of slack that had to remained out because of my own stupidity made it pretty certain to be a ground fall. Being a popular crag, about 5 people ran over and were going to try and cushion a fall onto the talus below. Once I ended up finally letting go, my belayer made an expert catch, taking in a bunch of slack while giving a soft catch, and kept me off the ground. Only problem was I swung pretty hard and kicked one of the guys who had tried to catch me right the face. He ended up with a black eye and I walked away unscathed. Doesn't seem fair does it?

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By Hank Caylor
Administrator
From Golden, CO
Apr 30, 2012
Pure bliss..
80' off of the Southern Belle on Half Dome, almost 2 broken ankles and extreme roadrash. If the Lowe Ball Nut and #2 TCU had blown, another 150' of tumbling and skidding would have ensued.

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By 20 kN
Administrator
From Hawaii
Apr 30, 2012
It was not my fall, but my partner took a 40 foot factor 1.75 fall on the West Face of the Leaning Tower in Yosemite and I got to catch it. That was fun...

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By Chris D
From the couch
Apr 30, 2012
Sign near the Third Flatiron
This thread needed a third-class mishap.

Unknown distance (50-200 feet?) broken ribs, bimaleolar tib-fib fracture, crushed clavicle, subdural hematoma, day/night in and out of consciousness on the mountain, helicopter ride, 2 plates, 21 screws, three months in a wheelchair.

Discussed here, complete with other's broken ankle epics/photos.

Good times.

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By Sam Lightner, Jr.
From Lander, WY
Apr 30, 2012
The Shield
Scariest: Factor two while solo aiding up Tiger Wall (to establish Year of the Tiger) on a retired rope. Three hundred feet off the deck... gri gri over cammed and melted the sheath, but all held. I will forever be on Maxim Ropes because of it.

Biggest: Dropped 80 feet and stopped at head height in Owens.

Most Destructive: Pulled 4 microcams, that I had already yanked on to test, from above the crux on The Witch. Broken talus, damaged calcaneus, at least two surgeries (still working on it).

But probably the real scariest was the first fall... 4 feet onto a bolt on a 5.9 in 1985. I practically cried before I let go. Not much time to think about the one I took above.

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By Sorden
From inside the Bubble, Colorado
Apr 30, 2012
~Here to party~
Biggest: 60+ foot whipper off the top of Lone Eagle Peak, 7/29/2001. Leading off-route, I surmounted and started to pull off a refrigerator-sized flake, brain told hands to let go and I fell 20 feet past my partner onto a single 20 year old, Chouinard Camalot #1 which held.

Scariest: 15-20 footer off the crux of Left Wing 10c on the 3rd Elephant Buttress. Pulled an under-sized cam, flipping me upside down, welded a #5 HB offset brassy below it. Partner caught me upside down, five feet from my helmet-less head going "splat," right above belayer.

Most destructive: the fall on LEP was preceded by a bad skydiving landing outside Vegas onto my tailbone five months earlier and a 30" pendulum whipper, again hitting tailbone, on the 4th pitch of Yellow Spur, two weeks after the skydive. So you could say my ass had already taken a beating when I landed on it (on rope stretch thank goodness) near the top of LEP. That fall smashed my L5 into two pieces for which I've had spinal fusion surgery of L5-S1. I had deep cuts on my shins, badly sprained ankles, bruised and cracked ribs and a badly bruised elbow. Regardless of the spinal surgery, the luckiest fall ever.

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By Ming
Apr 30, 2012
At Railay East Beach in Thailand
Love reading through this thread. I think for weekend warriors like me the longest/scariest/stupidest falls happen during my "Darwin" period - ie the first 2 years of climbing.

Longest and Scariest - so just a little over a year into lead climbing (of any type) and trying to break into 10s at Rumney on a hot and humid July day in 2008 I fell while pulling rope to clip the anchors on this climb - mountainproject.com/v/black-do... - the anchors are 15 feet from the last bolt, and I was pulling rope, and the hand holding me in place just popped because my hand got too sweaty! With all my weight on my left foot I pushed off and sailed right looking like "superman" from below - I fell so far right (15 ft?) that my belayer thought it was someone falling on the next route over. He had enough time to thinking that before the rope caught and took him up pretty close to the first bolt. Total fall - at least 40 feet (I was maybe 20 feet off deck falling from the anchors...) A friend of mine who was climbing on mountainproject.com/v/ten-of-s... saw the whole thing and said it looked like something out of a movie.

I very-lightly dinged my head (THANK GOD for my helmet) as I swung and scratched up my left shoulder - but other than that I was all good. I took a moment to collect myself and went up w/a #2 Camalot for the run-out section. It was my first trad placement on lead! :) I climbed up all the way past the last bolt, threw the #2 in the crack before the anchors, rested on it and then finished the climb. I have not been back on it since. Perhaps this year - it should feel easy now :)

Most Destructive - mountainproject.com/v/skunks-i... - I pulled off a clipping hold (it's a flake about 6x9 ish on the 5th or 6th bolt - the clipping is def. harder now! I think the route was rated 5.10b in the old Rumney guide. Again this happened during my "Darwin" period back in 2008. Sorry guys!

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By pete cutler
From Des Moines, IA
May 29, 2012
60 feet on spaceshot in Zion. Supposed to be a C2 pitch, but seemed pretty hard to me, the crack was completely blown out and flared. I pulled 5 offset brassies on my way down and was finally caught by a BD nut.

Walked away without a scratch.

I'm sure someone else here has climbed it recently, would you agree that it was hard for C2 or am I just a big sissy?

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By Storz
From Raleigh, North Carolina
May 30, 2012
I fell off Loosen Up at the RRG. Made it to the anchors but was pumped and blew it. Was on sport lead and fell past the last bolt before the bulge, yanked my belayer off the ground a bit as well. Anyone know how far the runout is on that climb between the last bolt and anchors at the top? I've always wondered just how far that fall was.

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By Buff Johnson
May 31, 2012
smiley face
Biggest I think it ended up being around 12,600' -- peanuts for some, but kick ass for me

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By Princess Mia
From Vail
May 31, 2012
Chillin' at City of Rocks
My biggest, baddest and most destructive fall was 2.5 years ago on a bus in Vail. Blew out my knee, completely tore rotator cuff, bicep tendon and had a slap lesion. Major surgery and one year of rehab.

And the bus wasn't moving and I wasn't drunk......

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