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Billygoat

Should Simon Have Cut the Rope?

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OK, I can think of some problems – both solutions would shock load the shitty snow stance, if Joe still went into the crevasse and was still dangling in free space, then Simon still have had to cut the rope and would’ve been left with nothing instead of 150’. If Joe didn’t go in, Simon would’ve ended up downclimbing to the lip of the bergschrund and could easily have fallen over it. If Simon had to wait until morning to attempt to get down, Joe could have died of exposure without the protection of the crevasse. Who knows? But I can’t resist trying to think of some way out…

 

Kinda makes you wonder about DIVINE INTERVENTION, eh?

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If the knot were jammed in the belay plate there are still ways to "unjam" it.

 

so...how could you "unjam" it with no other anchors available?

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If you ever find yourself in the same jam as simon, lowering using multiple ropes and having to pass euro overhand knots, I have a nice simple solution to the problem. Use a MUNTER hitch. Major note is that this only works on the EDK. No struggle with the EDK as it simply worms their way around the hitch. There is a little "pop" that must be done (try it and you will see what I mean) but it passes on its own.

For those of you who think this is a unsafe practice, I learned it on a AMGA rock guide course. This is something that I think everyone would benefit from knowing. Try it at home.

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I'm not answering for someone else or criticizing their decisions like a coach.

 

I DONT Leave friends behind alive in dire straights. I am not offering a solution or better idea.

 

I WOULD NOT HAVE LEFT joe or any partner unless I was sure he was dead or sure that I would die there trying to wait or rescue him\her. I am also not arguing that was done or is done.

 

 

I consider myself a reliable partner in the worst situations and have honor enough to follow through with my desires.

 

Cheers to reality and I cannot fathom the situation and decisions since I was not There.

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AND BTW:

 

Read some alpine journals. I have heard firsthand of other stories that were just as amazing in other ranges but not publicized. Amazing.

 

I was lucky to climb with a person that had a situation the required rescue, survival and fortitude this past summer more than once. ALthough he is not advertising about his experiences I was able to hear some of the stories and hold them close to my heart in recollection of reality. I can only respect this at a high level and remember the stories told.

 

-RB

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Those two were up shit creek without a paddle. So, yes, Simon made the right choice and Simpson miraculously survived.

That's a nifty idea for the munter hitch and the edk, assuming it works wink.gif

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Its easy to think about the perfect solution from where we all sit. I think Simon did what he thought was right and I doubt he would have cut the rope if he had thought of any other reasonable solutions. No reason for 2 people to die if that is truly the only option.

 

That said, I'm sure there is a way that might have worked that he didn't try.

 

Assuming the knot is tight against the belay device, he had both hands free, and he had just one extra biner, he could have clipped the spare biner to his waist loop (and possibly leg loops too) and set up a munter hitch with the slack rope (after the knot obviously). Then cut the belay loop (or try the wiggle the biner/belay device off). Of course this shock loads his shitty "anchor", possibly enough to pull him out of it. This might be the reason he didn't try something like this. Sounds like he was slipping slowly down already.

 

Seems like only safe way to do it would be some way that transfers the load without shock loading (like Jason mentions). Don't know how much gear Simon would need for this (and if he had it) but I'd like to hear what Jason had in mind.

 

Of course any solution assumes he has some use of frostbitten/mittened hands. (evidently Joe didn't even have use enough of his hands to tie a prusik knot, which by the way is a whole other discussion)

 

Good discussion anyhow. thumbs_up.gif

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