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David Yount

04.07.12 Accident at Exit 38

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A brief synopsis now. Perhaps a full report from the climbing team in a day or more. As always, it would be noble and well to keep the second-guessing to ourselves. There were perhaps near a 100 total people attending in response for this incident, and plenty of misinformation is already being spread.

 

I know the climbing team, I was not at the climb when the accident occurred, I was in the first 6 people to respond (though I am not associated with any SAR or similar), I talked with the belayer, I spoke with the medics.

 

A female climber, at Exit 38 on the Gun Show crag with the celebrated route Endless Bliss, she was likely on a route named GS-9 5.10C 11 bolts (I will update this if it is not correct), fell from the anchor bolts. She fell to the ground, there may have been a large ledge she struck first, this ledge may be about 7-feet off the ground. The total fall may have been 50-feet or somewhat more (but with 11 bolts maybe it was much more?)

 

I think she never lost consciousness. She had no open fractured bones. I think she had no serious bleeding. There didn't seem to be any obviously broken bones. She seemed aware and voice responsive the entire time. Left hip and gluteals seemed to be the chief complaints. She was in significant pain. (I will update this if any is incorrect).

 

Maybe 4 hours after the accident she was helicopter lifted in a Stokes Litter from a site very near the climbing route.

 

That's all I got, if I had more, I'd tell you. I'm sure the climbing team will provide a full report in a day or more. Patience, and keep your words caring and compassionate - family of the fallen climber will likely be reading this thread.

 

 

Edited by Idea_Guy

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stay safe in the early season, make sure you remember how to clean anchors and not do what this woman did. Best wishes for the injured.

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......She fell to the ground, there may have been a large ledge she struck first, this ledge may be about 7-feet off the ground. The total fall may have been 50-feet or somewhat more (but with 11 bolts maybe it was much more?)

 

I think she never lost consciousness. She had no open fractured bones. I think she had no serious bleeding. There didn't seem to be any obviously broken bones. She seemed aware and voice responsive the entire time. ....

 

Holy smokes! Must have been wearing her lucky socks that day....wow. I'd be interested in knowing what caused the fall once it gets figured out. Anyway, congrats on the amazingly fast time getting to care facility and best to her on healing up fast.

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Partner and I were over near Deception for our first time out this season. My brother heard of a SAR call at 38 and was calling/texting me trying to make sure it wasn't us.

 

Didn't see/hear anything, so I figured it was off near Far Side area.

 

Hope she gets better soon.

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50 feet total is a long way down. Amazing luck and tough lady to not be injured more than she already is.

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Idea Guy - a good report, I know many details will follow. Thank the Almighty she is alive - a clean fall, ( with no belay/rope issues) from that distance is usually pretty damaging, with internal injuries, etc.

Get well soon and stay strong.

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Some SAR guys rolled up as we got back to the parking lot at deception around 6pm asking about an accident that occured somewhere at exit 38. This must have been it. Saw lots of sketchy stuff for the first real sunny weekend of spring at 38. Let's hope we don't hear too many more of these stories.

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Very sad. I hope she gets back on her feet soon.

 

 

Edited by chris54

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Has anyone heard more about this accident? How is the climber doing, possible causes, etc?

 

We were also there when the runners were describing the accident to the sheriff, where the trail hits the pavement. There must have been 15 aid cars there, including firetrucks, ambulances, sheriff vehicles, search and rescue, incident command, etc.

 

Kudos to the first responders for coming to help one of our own so quickly. It was very impressive.

 

I wondered about a fall from the anchors. There are only a few things that can go wrong at anchors...

 

I agree, there was some sketchy stuff going on up there. Saw a guy texting and belaying. One hand for the phone, one hand on the rope. He was actually one of the better belayers.

 

I've been seeing a lot of people with sloppy belay hands lately, especially long time climbers, who learned the "pinch and slide" method. When you are taking up rope, please, please, don't open your brake hand!

 

Good belay illustration here:

http://www.climbing.com/print/techtips/ttsport225/

 

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Sad to hear. Hope all is well and that she heals quickly. Kudos to the response teams.

 

Many far side crags have significant belayer/climber communication challenges due to wind and noise from the freeway. If it's the 10c I'm thinking of, you can't see your belayer either. Always agree on a plan before you leave the ground.

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Here's a pretty good summation.

 

Although, no real info about what happened. Gawd some of the folks that post comments on the news sites make me want to vomit.

 

We really need to stop all this climbing business... far too dangerous. Either that or wear those sumo suits so we bounce when we fall... it'll save taxpayer money! It's the best way really. We need more money for the military anyway.

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Hoping for the best for her. The only reason to want to know the cause is so that others might learn from it and possibly prevent a similar accident. I think we become accustom to the exposure and it is easy to get careless. Watch your partner and keep him/her alert.

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KOMO's website always attracts the worst trolls. That SolomonUW guy should really get a life.

 

Looks like the injuries were definitely significant. Good luck on the recovery!

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At first blush, it sounds like a rappel malfunction. Maybe she pulled a Yabo and aimed for the tree...

 

Hope she heals up quickly!

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Is this on one of the routes downhill from Endless? Any word on whether it was climber error or equipment failure? Hope she recovers quickly and back to 100%.

 

 

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Wishing the best for the injured climber. Anyone have further information on the incident?

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Been a little while. Any update on the climber or cause? Hope to her she's recovering well. Sending god vibes!

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