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Chockstone Forum - Accidents & Injuries

Report Accidents and Injuries

 Page 1 of 3. Messages 1 to 20 | 21 to 40 | 41 to 57
Author
Rescue - Bunny Bucket

BlankSlab
26/05/2014
9:28:05 AM
Notice on the Blue Mountains Police Rescue facebook yesterday.

"Police Rescue and Ambulance officers managed to retrieve both climbers from a climb known as Bunny Bucket Buttress about 3:00am this morning. Both were assessed by Ambulance but had suffered no injuries."

Seems like a busy weekend for the rescue teams up there.

nmonteith
26/05/2014
10:15:05 AM
On 26/05/2014 BlankSlab wrote:
>Both were assessed by Ambulance but had suffered no injuries."

I have no idea on the details of this accident, but I think everyone should remember that your rescuers are people too. So if you call out for a rescue you are putting the ambulance and police in very real physical danger, usually in trying conditions and at night. Although they are very cautious in a rescue situation, taking many hours to setup rigs etc, they are still in a position of danger. For example the death of ambo Michael Wilson a few years ago whilst being winched out by helicopter.

I bailed off a multi-pitch route in the Grose yesterday due to darkness approaching. We have lovely unseasonal weather right now in NSW but it still gets dark at 5pm. Know your limits and be prepared.

nmonteith
26/05/2014
10:25:10 AM
Some photos and more info from Police Rescue facebook page.

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.756633947690058.1073741872.249010061785785&type=1
radson
26/05/2014
10:34:37 AM
We were there yesterday with no clue of the rescue the day before. We did saw a large helicopter on the other side of the valley for quite some time. Made voice signals, really hard to hear for a while.

sbm
26/05/2014
11:11:06 AM
Easy to say "harden up and rap in the dark or start spooning" while sitting at home and you don't know any of the circumstances.

It said they were hauled up 80m to the top, so it sounds like they were benighted at the big halfway ledge, or at the first incut horizontal belay ledge on the headwall.

My friend was actually talking about how he'd like to have a bivvy party on that ledge just I was reading the police rescue Facebook page - "Uhhh, I think this party just beat you to it last night!"

nmonteith
26/05/2014
11:22:50 AM
On 26/05/2014 sbm wrote:
>Easy to say "harden up and rap in the dark or start spooning" while sitting
>at home and you don't know any of the circumstances.

We started rapping at 3pm, as we had 3.5 pitches to go and I really wasn't 100% sure we would make it out by dark. Some would call that overly cautious... but it really is pitch black at 5pm now.
radson
26/05/2014
11:33:24 AM
Yeah I agree. We had headlamps on to get to the car at 5:30 pm

sbm
26/05/2014
11:42:05 AM
>rapping at 3pm, as we had 3.5 pitches to go and I really wasn't
>100% sure we would make it out by dark. Some would call that overly cautious...
>but it really is pitch black at 5pm now.

Yep we finished in the dark at Piddo yesterday. I see what you're saying Neil, but you were attemptig Disco Biscuit, the gulf in experience is kinda huge there! Someone attempting Bunny Bucket, likely their first time in the Grose or on a route that big, just misses those decisions, they've likely never had to estimate their climbing speed like that.

PThomson
26/05/2014
11:45:44 AM
Regarding the chopper at hanging rock yesterday: http://www.chockstone.org/Forum/Forum.asp?Action=DisplayTopic&ForumID=5&MessageID=11691&Replies=4&PagePos=0&Sort=#NewPost

We saw it too and had speculated an accident on the rope swing.

I've never backed off from any trad or multipitch before, and at the time both Neil and I were uncertain we made the right decision (because we MIGHT have JUST made it before dark... Though 3 pitches of obscure trad 23 encompassing some 130-odd-metres of climbing is hardly a speedy proposition) and we're both pretty tenacious (read: stubborn/pigheaded), but when I look at this "busy" weekend as a public perception disaster for adventuresport in hte Blueys, I'm glad we didn't risk becoming one more statistic to contribute.

Regards,

-Paul

nmonteith
26/05/2014
12:29:04 PM
On 26/05/2014 PThomson wrote:
>but when I look at this
>"busy" weekend as a public perception disaster for adventuresport in hte
>Blueys, I'm glad we didn't risk becoming one more statistic to contribute.

Yep!
martym
26/05/2014
12:35:29 PM
On 26/05/2014 nmonteith wrote:
>I bailed off a multi-pitch route in the Grose yesterday due to darkness
>approaching. We have lovely unseasonal weather right now in NSW but it
>still gets dark at 5pm. Know your limits and be prepared.

Hi Neil/Paul, can you elaborate on what happened next?
I've never bailed in the Grose before, and to be honest, I'd be very nervous doing so... Whenever we've been there and uncertain about timing - I've gone with the easy option rather than pushing it (eg. doing BBB or Mirrorball instead of Hotel Cal for example)
While I totally agree being stuck in the dark is your own problem and not worth risking other's safety - I imagine trying to find the walking track in the dark with no compass* could be as bad as trying to finish the last pitch of a climb in twilight... that is if it's anything like the approach to the climbs?
Solution would be wait till morning, though then fatigue could become a safety issue as well.

(*note to self: put compass in first aid kit)

nmonteith
26/05/2014
12:42:30 PM
Firstly, set yourself a turn-around time and place BEFORE you set off. If you haven't made it to x point by x time then it's time to rap off. Make sure this time is at least 2 hours before dark! Make sure you have double ropes so you can rap off, and be willing to abandon gear to do so. A $10 biner is nothing compared to your life. We had a solid hour of daylight left when we reached the ground, so plenty of time to make our way along the cliff base and up the tourist track. Obviously knowing WHERE the escape route-tourist track is prior to starting a route is very important knowledge!
PThomson
26/05/2014
12:48:07 PM
Hey mate,

For us it was easy, because we were over on the "east side" of Pierces Pass (which is, strangely, at the western end of the pass) we basically emerged almost on the walking track down to Accacia Flat, and just had to follow it back up the hill (leaving a moderate amount of gear behind to facilitate the 3 abseils back to the ground).

If you bail off Bunny Buckets or anything over that side, you have to parallel the cliffline (trending vaguely down into the grose) back past mirrorball, below lunch ledge, the rap-in routes, and so-on until you eventually arrrive at the main walking track. You can't just parallel the cliffline the whole way as there are some difficult steep sections of rock around the Yogaphobic area. There are actually a few footpads (the guide describes them as "base jumpers tracks" from memory) but they weren't super-obvious 3 (or so) years ago. When you get to the main walking track its a doddle back to the car. Without a headlamp it would be a nightmare.

I think Neil's point is: recognise when you aren't going to achieve your goal, and back out while its still possible. On BBB you could back out of the route relatively easily up until the end of the roof-traverse thing. On Hotel C, up until the main traverse on it.

We looked at 2.5 hours of daylight, for 3 long pitches of obscure trad (22, 23, 22, respectively), and knew that much higher we wouldn't be able to back out. So we got back to the ground with a reasonable amount of daylight left, and Neil still had time to do the only repeat of my mini-multipitch route next to grasshopper wall before hightailing it to the car on dark.

nmonteith
26/05/2014
12:51:55 PM
I actually think Mirrorball is a good 'escape plan B' for the right part of Pierces Pass. Obv you need to leave yourself 2 or so hours to get up it. I've done the mega walk-out of shame many years ago along the entire base of the cliff and it was pretty epic.
PThomson
26/05/2014
12:52:56 PM
Good point, Neil.

The only challenge with bailing onto Mirrorball is you need 10 bolt plates to get up it, and I doubt Hotel C or BBB climbers would bring 10 Bolt plates.

nmonteith
26/05/2014
12:58:53 PM
On 26/05/2014 PThomson wrote:
>The only challenge with bailing onto Mirrorball is you need 10 bolt plates
>to get up it, and I doubt Hotel C or BBB climbers would bring 10 Bolt plates.

Funny you say that. I had that exact problem on one of my bail off attempts on doing Slack Bladder. Decided to go up Mirrorball - had 4 bolt plates! A little scary. Tied off a few carrots with prussics and slings. Not ideal.
martym
26/05/2014
1:00:50 PM
On 26/05/2014 PThomson wrote:
>Hey mate,
>
>For us it was easy, because we were over on the "east side" of Pierces
>Pass (which is, strangely, at the western end of the pass) we basically
>emerged almost on the walking track down to Accacia Flat, and just had
>to follow it back up the hill (leaving a moderate amount of gear behind
>to facilitate the 3 abseils back to the ground).
>
>If you bail off Bunny Buckets or anything over that side, you have to
>parallel the cliffline (trending vaguely down into the grose) back past
>mirrorball, below lunch ledge, the rap-in routes, and so-on until you eventually
>arrrive at the main walking track. You can't just parallel the cliffline
>the whole way as there are some difficult steep sections of rock around
>the Yogaphobic area. There are actually a few footpads (the guide describes
>them as "base jumpers tracks" from memory) but they weren't super-obvious
>3 (or so) years ago. When you get to the main walking track its a doddle
>back to the car. Without a headlamp it would be a nightmare.
>
>I think Neil's point is: recognise when you aren't going to achieve your
>goal, and back out while its still possible. On BBB you could back out
>of the route relatively easily up until the end of the roof-traverse thing.
>On Hotel C, up until the main traverse on it.
>

Thanks for very much for the reply.
As I said, I know it's there - but I have never actually been on the walking track - and as you say, the cliffline walk is not super obvious (it's a jungle out there) so at night it would be very difficult. Of course - getting to the edge of BBB at 3am would be no less trying, so I hope that the party had a very good reason for calling the authorities.
I've done many a retreat in the dark - just not in the Grose, which is because I haven't take that time risk.
A few years ago, my friend and I were at the base of Hotel Cal a full 2 hours after our agreed ETA (we aimed for 8am, then agreed we could still do it if we got there by 9am; it was 10.15) - we even had the ropes uncoiled! We then packed up and went to BBB because - it's just not worth the risk!

>So we got back to the ground with a reasonable amount of daylight
>left, and Neil still had time to do the only repeat of my mini-multipitch
>route next to grasshopper wall before hightailing it to the car on dark

Now that's impressive "bailing"!

nmonteith
26/05/2014
1:04:21 PM
On 26/05/2014 martym wrote:
>A few years ago, my friend and I were at the base of Hotel Cal a full
>2 hours after our agreed ETA (we aimed for 8am, then agreed we could still
>do it if we got there by 9am; it was 10.15) - we even had the ropes uncoiled!
>We then packed up and went to BBB because - it's just not worth the risk!

You did the right thing!
martym
26/05/2014
1:26:58 PM
On 26/05/2014 nmonteith wrote:
>Some photos and more info from Police Rescue facebook page.
>
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.756633947690058.1073741872.249010061785785&type1

"Akin Ceylan Chris McBubbles the issue was an unusual situation. A lack of nutrients in my body sized up the muscles and I was Un able to climb hence the rescue. Ensure you get there before sun up as we got to the second last pitch with only a bit over an hour left of light and we where at the walk in by sunrise. Given we did have some issues with the rap in which meant we didn't get climbing till 10. With the rap in make sure the last person double checks the rope to ensure it does not get stuck on anything. Make sure you have ascending gear incase something goes wrong and take head torches and a whistle. It would of made the rescue a lot easier if we had them"
From the comments.

Superstu
Online Now
26/05/2014
1:42:06 PM
Was there an accident on BBB or was this just benightment?
If its the latter, then surely if you're willing to head out to do BBB in Da Grose then you can just suck it up for a benightment if you screw up. Unnecessary rescues endangers the lives of the rescuers and gives the authorities good reasons to control or limit the climbing game.

 Page 1 of 3. Messages 1 to 20 | 21 to 40 | 41 to 57
There are 57 messages in this topic.

 

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