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mothboy88

Liberty Ridge Climber Injured

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Scott was airlifted off the mountain this morning just before 10am. He was taken to a local hospital for evaluation.

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My prayers are with all those involved, especially Peter's family and friends. Scott and the rescue team should hold their heads high. They did all that the mountain would allow. This is a loss to not only Peter's immediate family but to our climbing family.

Be safe out there

and remember: you watch my back, I will watch yours.

 

bigdrink.gif peter

frown.gif

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Sad to see. It is always worse when a father or mother dies and kids are left behind. I feel for the family.

 

I wonder what kind of helmet he was wearing?

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If anyone has details as to exactly what happened to cause the accident that'd be great. I'm sure the surviving partner has better things to do now though... Reports of a 30 foot free fall have me wondering where they were?

 

-Fear

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God damn, I got chills reading that story. I could not imagine seeing my partner(s) whither away like that. I have been against cell phones in the wilderness but am reconsidering. My thoughts and prayers to both families and all invovled in the rescue efforts. Planning on Ptarmigan Ridge in 2.5 weeks.

 

Mike

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The Times article today suggests they were roped together without a belay, on steep mixed terrain. They may have forgotten to mention a belay, but it does not sound that way.

 

This event has shaken my spouse up more than myself, mainly because I fit the victim's demographic very closely. She even had me call our life insurance to see if we're covered for such a tragedy (which we are; our company only requires a rider for mountaineering outside the continental USA, interestingly enough).

 

Like many of you, I am wondering if there is some way I can respond productively to this event, one that may ease the pain of those left behind. I'm still doing my best to sort things out emotionally.

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It was interesting that in a lengthy article in the Seattle PI today they kept referring to "Freedom Ridge". Journalistic license, I guess.

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It was interesting that in a lengthy article in the Seattle PI today they kept referring to "Freedom Ridge". Journalistic license, I guess.

 

Didn't you know? Liberty Ridge was first climbed by the French, looooong before Ome Daiber and company. yellaf.gifyellaf.gif

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The Times article today suggests they were roped together without a belay, on steep mixed terrain. They may have forgotten to mention a belay, but it does not sound that way.

 

"Just before the accident Saturday morning, the two climbers were walking atop the narrow ridge between the ice walls. Cooley was climbing on the east side of the ridge, while Richards was on the west side. Cooley was about 50 feet ahead of Richards, and they were connected by a climbing rope.

 

Cooley, Gottlieb said, tripped on a crampon, slipped off the cliff to his left and fell about 30 feet. He was swinging like a pendulum when he hit his head on a rock.

 

Cooley's fall yanked Richards forward, and he found himself holding Cooley's limp body at the other end of the rope. Richards wasn't pulled over the ridge because the rope was tied to a harness in a way that absorbed much of Cooley's weight."

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Richards wasn't pulled over the ridge because the rope was tied to a harness in a way that absorbed much of Cooley's weight."

 

???

 

rope drag?

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Since we're headed up there....

 

Any idea where this happened? Sound like maybe they were rounding the corner underneath the "Black Pyramid".... Never been on the route so I've only got pictures..... We were planning to travel unroped unless we were belaying in order to travel faster. We're both usually comfortable soloing easier ice. I hate being roped with no pro.... Really creeps me out. Kinda makes me wonder now.... If both partners could effectively stay on opposite sides of the ridge and travel side by side(like on a knife-edged ridge)... but I don't think that's possible for most of LR..... We don't have enough pickets(2) to really have an effective running belay. Only two screws a piece as well...... Short 40m 8.1mm rope.

 

I don't want to start a what-if war over the accident, I just don't wanna end up in the same situation....

 

-Fear

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I read in one article that they were doing 'sitting belays'...I can't remember where I read the article. But obviously some of the people in the media haven't been accurate, so don't take my word for it.

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I don't want to start a what-if war over the accident, I just don't wanna end up in the same situation....

 

-Fear

Then don't fall.

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more accurately, don't trip over a crampon. an easy thing to do... i've taken 100m sliding falls when i caught a point in my other leg, fortunate enough to self arest before going over a cliff edge.

 

thumbs_down.gif

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I don't want to start a what-if war over the accident, I just don't wanna end up in the same situation....

 

-Fear

Then don't fall.

 

Roger that....... lol... that's what I usually say.

 

-Fear

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I gashed a gator last time out. It is a good arguement for snug fitting gators and stiff outers.

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NPS Morning Report summary:

 

Mount Rainier National Park (WA)

Climber Succumbs After Evacuation Following Major Rescue Effort

 

Early on the morning of Saturday, May 15th, Peter Cooley, 39, of Cape Elizabeth, Maine, was ascending Liberty Ridge with companion Scott Richards, 42, when he fell at the 11,800-foot level. Although the rope and belay arrested his fall and he was wearing a helmet, he suffered a severe head injury and possible leg and arm injuries. Richards contacted the park via cell phone just after 6 a.m. and reported the accident. Rescue efforts were immediately begun, but were hindered for two days by poor weather, steep terrain and the high elevation. In the interim, Richards carved out a flat platform for a tent on the 45 degree slope, got Cooley into a sleeping bag, and cared for him. After nearly three full days of concerted efforts by several teams of rescuers, rangers were finally able to get to Cooley late on Monday. The weather that had been the principal problem abated, making it possible for an Oregon National Guard Chinook helicopter to fly to the ridge. Cooley was strapped into a rescue litter and was hoisted into the hovering helicopter. Although still alive when extricated, he did not survive the flight and was pronounced dead upon arrival at Madigan Army Hospital. Participants in this major rescue effort included nearly 70 people from the park, Tacoma Mountain Rescue, Rainier Mountaineering and the Oregon National Guard. Mike Gauthier was IC.

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Snagging a crampon on a tired stumble down from a tough summit is always one of my biggest fears. This is why if the snow conditions allow I will always stop to take the crampons off. They can sometimes do more harm than good... frown.gif

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it's got to be tough for rescuers and survivors when the chopper or ambulance picks up the climber alive but they die before the hospital is reached cry.gif

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will they do an autosopy to determine the exact cause of death? i guess there was no choice about airlifting him out, but if he died due to the extractation, that's certainly aggravating to the rescuers who had to make the call. easy to see why medics are so anal about backboards when dealing w/ suspected spinal injuries.

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