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Chockstone Forum - Accidents & Injuries
Report Accidents and Injuries
The guidebook was prophetic (as a watching climber reminded me as I lay groaning) - "A bumptious devil which is ideal for deflating beginners".
My daughter and I had enjoyed a magic first day climbing together, and were finishing off with a few short climbs in the plaque area. Sarah led Camelot, and I tackled Minimus (14). My foot was well jammed into the crack when I unexpectedly fell. My full weight came down onto the stuck foot pushing the top of my foot too hard towards my shin and snapping the tendon that joins calf muscle with ankle (feel how thick it is on yourself!)
Luckily Sarah could lower me easily to the ground. People have asked was it painful - well a sort of gut churning, feeling fainty, going to be sick type of pain. I could easily make a diagnosis by noting the gap between ankle and calf. Apologies to the nearby climber with his two teenage kids who had to endure my swearing, and thanks to the guy who helped load me into my car.
Luckily I have an automatic and had snapped the left achilles, so could drive with L foot up on the dash (to minimise swelling). I drove to Ararat and then needed to stop at a motel. Rang an orthopaedic friend who offered to operate at Traralgon the next day at 1pm (I live in Gippsland). Left Ararat by 0700, picked up my wife in Foster at 1130 and she dropped me at the hospital just in time.
Tendon has been sewn up, plaster and no weight bearing for 2 weeks, but now I have a brace that I can walk on for another 4 weeks, then 3-6 months further recovery.
Any lessons? Well, falls/injuries are more likely when you're tired. Try to jump clear if you know you're going to fall. A lack of previous serious injury doesn't make you invincible.
I've watched many a climber stick a foot or leg into that crack and then get all a bit scetchy above it. I'm not suprised to hear the level of your injury. I wish you well and for a full recovery.
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