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kevbone

Huge fall at Smith

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This is one of the biggest falls I have ever witnessed in person. I was at Smith Rocks this last weekend. I was standing facing Zebra Zion with Ben (Beaconben). There were about 6 people in his group and another 5 or so hanging out and maybe 20 or so people on 5 gallons buckets and the surrounding climbs. One of Bens friends (Alex) was had just led Lions Chair (I think that is the name) 10.c first pitch. It is behind the tree in the corner that splits the hard man wall (magic light) with Zebra Zion. He had led it and most of his crew had top roped it and cleaned all the gear. Then he grabbed his rack and top roped up to the anchor which was two quick draws on two bolts. He pasted the anchor and started leading up the 5.11a next pitch. He got up about 6 or 7 feet past the anchor and threw in a tiny nut. You could tell he was nervous climbing past this nut. He started crying out that he wanted more gear. So he threw in a micro cam right next to the nut. Alex started climbing again but was obvious he was getting thrashed pretty quickly. He was about 4 feet from a bolt and now his feet were a good 4 – 6 feet above his gear and he was freaking out. He lost it and fell. Both of his pieces ripped out of the wall taking fist size chucks of smith rock with it. People on the ground had to duck…….Alex came to a crashing halt about 15 feet below the two quick draws (the anchor) that saved his life. After finding out Alex was ok the crowd yelled and applauded. Alex batmaned up to the anchor and cleaned it and went to climb something else. I do not feel that the climber was being unsafe in any way.

 

Anyone else see this?

 

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was not there, but two quick draws for an anchor? Why were there no lockers. Glad he was fine. Think I would have left for the bar at that point, but I am not a hard man.

 

 

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It is common to have only quick draws as anchors. Lockers would have been a safer way to go for sure.

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Back when I could get up that stuff, I always thought both of those pitches were hard for their grades. Sounds like he might have had some rope stretch as well Kev?

 

Smith must have been perfect this weekend? It rained both days here but we got a couple of routes in anyway. Nothing as interesting as Ivan an Geoff up Beacon though.

 

 

B4 (the rope to the right was hanging just left of a route later named "Balls of Steel", it was left so that cleaning could continue. It's pretty clean now.

Northern_passage_and_Balls_of_Steel_small.jpg

 

After

Northern_passage_clean_small.jpg

 

PS, thats my new baby blue "Trad" chalkbag there, can you see the price tag on it ?

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Wew…..that only took about an hour before some person on here would discount what I wrote. Would you feel better if I changed the title to big fall instead of huge?

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Both of his pieces ripped out of the wall taking fist size chucks of smith rock with it.

 

Leading on gear at Smithie ='s scary! :eek: Of course I still do it anyways, but yikes!

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Wew…..that only took about an hour before some person on here would discount what I wrote. Would you feel better if I changed the title to big fall instead of huge?

 

Would YOU feel better if we didn't call your ridiculous exaggeration what it is? 28 feet isn't even a big fall for sport climbing (I have seen bigger whips off Latest Rage and Darkness at Noon) and for trad climbing, is merely slightly larger than average.

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It may not be the longest fall some of you have witnessed, but doesn't it confirm your suspicions that it's never wise to fall on your gear when you're climbing the tuff at smith? (the gorge is basalt is bomber, but i'm talking tuff here)

 

I have also seen a brick of tuff break off (and the pro fall out)when someone fell on the traverse of wartley's revenge, nearly decking.

 

and of course it could have been bad pro that he placed, as well.

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Wew…..that only took about an hour before some person on here would discount what I wrote. Would you feel better if I changed the title to big fall instead of huge?

 

Would YOU feel better if we didn't call your ridiculous exaggeration what it is? 28 feet isn't even a big fall for sport climbing (I have seen bigger whips off Latest Rage and Darkness at Noon) and for trad climbing, is merely slightly larger than average.

 

 

Do you feel better now that you have sprayed......

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It may not be the longest fall some of you have witnessed, but doesn't it confirm your suspicions that it's never wise to fall on your gear when you're climbing the tuff at smith?

 

omg, you're right, bolt every crack at smith :rolleyes:

 

i have seen plenty of falls onto gear at smith that didn't break rock, and even taken a few, including some onto small gear like purple TCUs. climbing tuff is no different than climbing any other type of rock, you have to judge your gear placements and when in doubt over gear or rock quality on a specific route, climb accordingly.

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i'm calling BS on the guys saying 28 feet isn't a big fall. i understand everyone likes to give kevbone a hard time, but:

 

the longest fall i've caught in 9 years of climbing pretty frequently (2-3 times a week outside on average) was about 25 feet, only because the leader Z-clipped and had to unclip his last piece to keep going - then fell while mantling as i fed a bit of slack so he could mantle. (orange sunshine at tieton, if you must know, and right at the chains)

 

i've belayed plenty of really good climbers on 5-12 sport, 5-10 and 5-11 trad and very, very rarely do they expose themselves to a 28 foot fall on terrain where there is even a tiny chance they could actually fall - and so far, nobody ever has fallen that far on my belay.

 

to fall 28 feet you have to be at least 11-12 feet above your last piece, and even that figure includes 4-6 feet of rope stretch.

 

considering sport routes rarely have you climb even 5 feet above your last bolt (except on granite slabs) i'd say even a 15-20 foot fall is above average, and 28 feet is the exception - like it could only happen if the leader skips a bolt.

 

so who here is taking 28 foot falls and considering them normal? do you retire a rope every time you fall that far? do your belayers find excuses not to belay you anymore if that's a normal fall for you?

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I just took a huge whipper off my desk chair.....whew..

 

28 feet isn't that bad at Smith, so I'll chestbeat for a moment, that I have when I fell that distance and further (squeeled like a school girl).

 

But to think about what Kev boner wrote. The guy was pretty far off the deck with a couple of draws below his crap pieces. From a leader's view that would look pretty intimidating. So given the circumstances in the middle of a very crowded area, I give the fall a solid 8.

 

:yoda:

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climbing tuff is no different than climbing any other type of rock,

 

I disagree.....Climbing petrified mudd, is way different than climbing granite.

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climbing tuff is no different than climbing any other type of rock, quote]

 

I disagree.....Climbing petrified mudd, is way different than climbing granite.

 

God I hate to agree. But he's right

 

:yoda:

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i haven't posted in a year or so, and i forgot how annoying it is to deal with g spotter, resident contrarian who will always always always find the one exception to contradict something presented as a general fact. of course people climb gear on tuff, i do, you do, kevbone does too, and nobody here is even suggesting the crack should be bolted. thanks for hijacking the thread asshole, and keep taking those "unexceptional" 28 foot falls, i'm sure it's a great habit to have and really great for your rope, gear and body. i'm out, diss me and miss me.

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i haven't posted in a year or so, and i forgot how annoying it is to deal with g spotter, resident contrarian who will always always always find the one exception to contradict something presented as a general fact. of course people climb gear on tuff, i do, you do, kevbone does too, and nobody here is even suggesting the crack should be bolted. thanks for hijacking the thread asshole, and keep taking those "unexceptional" 28 foot falls, i'm sure it's a great habit to have and really great for your rope, gear and body. i'm out, diss me and miss me.

 

 

Damn…..g-spotter just got bitch slapped. :tup:

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Wew…..that only took about an hour before some person on here would discount what I wrote. Would you feel better if I changed the title to big fall instead of huge?

 

Would YOU feel better if we didn't call your ridiculous exaggeration what it is? 28 feet isn't even a big fall for sport climbing (I have seen bigger whips off Latest Rage and Darkness at Noon) and for trad climbing, is merely slightly larger than average.

 

Gotta agree with the "G-Spotter". A fall 15 feet above some bolted anchor??? Please. It ain't a noteworthy fall...maybe you don't get out much. It might impress someone who's used to clipping a bolt every five feet.

 

50 ft+... possibly worthy of comment but for some it's just another day at the office. (Ever zipper a bunch of your pro falling on a scary aid line? You can go a good ways.)

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Depends on the venue, terrain, and what you're likely to hit. On relatively clean air I pretty much classify anything bigger than 50' to be "big" or "huge fall". I'm over my [clean air] pro 15-25' on a fairly regular basis which probably would make for 35-60' falls if one were to whip. I probably whipped 20-30' a half dozen times last year and probably in the 30-40' range only once or twice in the last five years.

 

Personally, given clean air, I'd rather fall 20+ than shorter as the lack of rope stretch make falls in the 10-15' range are pretty damn stiff. I don't retire ropes after such falls, but I do keep track of them in my head.

 

My old partner took a 110' fall off Metamorphisis in Eldo back in the day and I consider that a "huge" fall. That said, I've been in situations where a 10' fall looked and would have been "huge". I've also had a good friend sent to a nursing home for life at age 29 with a paralyzed right side and massive brain damage because of a 15' fall - I'd consider that a "huge" fall in my book anyday.

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Wew…..that only took about an hour before some person on here would discount what I wrote. Would you feel better if I changed the title to big fall instead of huge?

 

Would YOU feel better if we didn't call your ridiculous exaggeration what it is? 28 feet isn't even a big fall for sport climbing (I have seen bigger whips off Latest Rage and Darkness at Noon) and for trad climbing, is merely slightly larger than average.

 

Gotta agree with the "G-Spotter". A fall 15 feet above some bolted anchor??? Please. It ain't a noteworthy fall...maybe you don't get out much. It might impress someone who's used to clipping a bolt every five feet.

 

50 ft+... possibly worthy of comment but for some it's just another day at the office. (Ever zipper a bunch of your pro falling on a scary aid line? You can go a good ways.)

 

 

If you don’t think 30 foot gear ripping fall is not noteworthy than you have a HUGE ego. Lighten up bro……

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