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[TR] Zapped on Tor-For Traverse

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Lowlander and I hooked up at last-minute to brave the heat of the hottest days of the year to go after The Torment-Forbidden Traverse. It was appropriate that on that fateful morning we left, that my fried eggs chose to bless us with the proper sign of the second-coming.



Reeling from the heat we left Hot Seattle at 6am and started the furnace struggle, nearly frying ourselves on the Taboo Glacier.




Once on the ridge, it was way cooler.





We didn't end up roping up at all on the whole trip. It was great not be encumbered with the stuff. We did end up rappelling a time or 2.







Cant.stop.the. VOICES!!




After running into a couple of friends, We settled into a great bivy, that kept getting better with the sunsetting!










.....Now , If I recall the "Red Sky at Night/Morning" Lore of Yore ---We should have been ..delighted..?

We wondered in the morning as to what it means if you have red skies in both the evening and morning?

I guess it meant we were to be scared sailors.

We woke to something I had never seen of or heard of before:


Behold the "Alpenglow Rainbow"!!



Like a giant red bolt of lightning, It looked even more amazing in person. As much as we wanted to just revel in its glory, we were being pressed by the coming electrical storm.



It was Lowlander that noticed the crackling first.

I suggested that we hunker down and not go more than half way up the west ridge of Forbidden. We got secured in when suddenly I got a sharp jolt across my forehead!


I jumped with the pain, making Low jump as well. He later told me that he heard,saw, and felt nothing, though standing right next to me!. It felt like we were in the what-not-to-do illustration in Mountaineering Freedom-of-the Hills!

We sat on my insulation pad and covered up in the rain-now scared shit-less.

Eventually it chilled the hell out, and we pushed on to the summit-


rather quickly.


Low barely stopped for a summit shot in the dark skies.




It was to be an interesting time getting over the peak we call-Forbidden. It almost felt like it was just that.



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Holy sh*t you got hit by lightning? That's a major notch in the 'mountain hardman' category.


Great pics! It'd be fun to get out on another climb with ya.

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Now , If I recall the "Red Sky at Night/Morning" Lore of Yore ---We should have been ..delighted..?


Red Sky in the morning sailors warning


Have you tried to do stuff like bend a spoon with your mind or something..maybe you got zapped with special powers..? maybe try "X-Ray vision ON!"

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If you actually get hit by lightning it boils your blood and your heart explodes from the pressure change.


It sounds like what you experienced was ground current. These can precede a lightning strike and be quite painful, but are generally not in themselves fatal. Peter Croft gave a slideshow once where he was describing down-soloing a 5.10 ridge in the Karaoram (I think) as quickly as possible trying to get below the elevation where the ground currents were before a lightning strike occurred

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It was Lowlander that noticed the crackling first.


Eventually the crackling and humming of the ice axes was deafening.



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Interesting trip. Most of it looks like a lot of fun. :tup:


I've had the experience of suddenly having my hair stand on end and feeling current flowing through my body, but I've never suffered the full on strike. On experiencing that kind of electricity getting the fuck off the mountain became the high priority activity.

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Yeah we saw you guys up there. Glad to see you guys made it. Your bivy site was much cooler then ours was but it sounds like you might have traded. We summit a couple of hours after you. Just curious did you guys stick to the ridge or did you do the snow traverse?

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