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Chockstone Forum - Accidents & Injuries

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Topic Date User
worst near accidents I've seen 25-Sep-2010 At 11:03:41 PM rod
my near death experience: do the tough semi-expo descent into a nice little verdonesque perch, hop on a warm up route and link a couple of pitches with the intent of being lowered off then get into the real meat of the day. belayer is communicating ok but i can't see him, start being lowered and i'm thinking "this seems a bit sus". i've got my hand on the rope and it keeps paying out at about the right pace but...? reconfirm the command with my belayer after about 10m of this weird badness feeling, commit full body weight still with a hand on the rope then...freefall, face down looking at 35m of rock face and the subsequent 70m near vert couloir before the big cliff lower down...bad juju feeling goes into overdrive...

...then i slam into a tiny little pine tree which just happened to tuck itself under my right arm AND take the impact without ripping. dripping blood and with quite a few kinks i'm hanging mid face with my "belayer" tucked out of sight. it took a minute of his confused reaction gibberish for me to reach the conclusion that i'd be safest soloing out of there back to the chains and rapping down.

the weird feeling was spot on: he'd untied and wandered off for a snack instead of belaying then the rope having wedged itself into a crack offered up enough friction to make it seem like being lowered.

unfortunately, i then had to climb our way out of there with the wanker wanting to belay...i roped solo'd 'em instead and had him second each pitch with SO much penalty slack paid out in revenge that he was terrified.

never seen him since and hope to never see him again, just writing this induces a need for violence toward him...but i do appreciate trees a lot more.

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