Chockstone Forum - General Discussion
General Climbing Discussion
||29-Sep-2009 At 10:59:43 AM
|On 14/11/2005 prb wrote:
>I've usually worn a helmet, almost always when leading and other times when there's a reasonable
>chance of rock coming down.
>Chose not to one warm day, deciding on head gear which would keep more sun off instead. Wouldn't you
>know it, had a 10m head-first grounder. Got multiple skull fractures. Twelve months later I was still
>undergoing tedious psychological assessment, but I know I was lucky.
>These days I wear a helmet over any sun visor-type hat.
I would say I've grown more pro-helmet over the years. You only need a helmet when your head comes
into contact with rock (or a #3 cam), but picking exactly when that's going to happen can be tricky. I still
don't bother with one all the time, but I have respect for people who do, even when belaying or toproping.
You occasionally see kids wandering around the bottom of busy crags without a helmet - that sends a
shiver up my spine.
Unlike Wendy, I had my helmet with me in Chamonix last month and was glad of it. The Alps are
particularly dangerous these days; with the permafrost melting, many of the mountains are literally falling
apart. We were on the lower slopes of the Dent du Geant when a (big) rolling boulder went through my legs
and sent me spinning. I was hurt but at least had no head injury and was able to get down with assistance.
So I'll be limping around the Pines this long (SA) weekend, but I shouldn't be any more vague than normal.
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