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A Word for Beginners at King's Bluff...
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TKHouse


Apr 21, 2010, 12:55 PM
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A Word for Beginners at King's Bluff...  (North_America: United_States: Tennessee: Central: Kings_Bluff)
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This message is in response to an incident at the Bluff last weekend in which a climber decked from about 25 feet up, rolled down the river bank, and had to be carried and taken out by boat. More details at the end of this post.

King's Bluff has the highest concentration of low-grade sport in Tennessee. This provides an outstanding opportunity for new leaders to learn the basic skills of leading sport climbs. Because of this, King's Bluff attracts a lot of new climbers who may or may not have the necessary gear or understanding of cleaning sport routes.

I encourage any new climbers coming to climb at the Bluff to seek out proper instruction and/or ask any of the friendly climbers at the Bluff. Sport climbing can be done in a relatively safe manner, where most of the risk of injury can be mitigated by accepted practices and safety standards.

Accidents like the one last weekend put at risk the outstanding opportunity that the SCC and several Clarksville locals have made at King's Bluff. If someone suggests you are doing something unsafe, humble yourself and at least listen to their point of view. People aren't trying to put you down or act arrogant, but by doing something unsafe you are endangering the climbing for the other climbers who regularly visit King's Bluff. The climber injured last weekend repeatedly denied help from climbers in my group several times before he decked.

If you are unsure about something you have previously had explained to you, or simply in need of assistance, ask other climbers. Everyone I have met at King's Bluff has always been friendly and willing to help.


The accident was so ridiculous that I didn't think it was necessary to post over in the accidents / incidents area, but for the curious...

The climber apparently was down-climbing a moderate route, in which he had used a single quickdraw for protection. He was attempting to bounce the draw from bolt to bolt and get down to the ground. His hand slipped after removing the draw from the third bolt, at which point he quickly landed and the ground and proceeded to tumble down the river bank.

For the record I was not present at the accident, but four of my regular climbing partners were taking friends / new climbers to the Bluff for the day and informed me of the incident. I have few other details about the accident.


ebag17


Apr 21, 2010, 3:53 PM
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Re: [TKHouse] A Word for Beginners at King's Bluff... [In reply to]
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Probably the nicest people I've met while climbing were at Kings Bluff. Always friendly and helpful.

People seem to be falling in all the places I climb... No ones fell in Jackson, so i guess that's were I'll have to climb for awhile.


johnwesely


Apr 21, 2010, 4:13 PM
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Re: [TKHouse] A Word for Beginners at King's Bluff... [In reply to]
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Wow, that may be the strangest accident I have ever heard of.


majid_sabet


Apr 21, 2010, 4:32 PM
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Re: [TKHouse] A Word for Beginners at King's Bluff... [In reply to]
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which he had used a single quickdraw for protection. He was attempting to bounce the draw from bolt to bolt and get down to the ground


can some explain me what he was doing. I can't seems to picture this thing.


(This post was edited by majid_sabet on Apr 21, 2010, 4:32 PM)


johnwesely


Apr 21, 2010, 4:50 PM
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Re: [majid_sabet] A Word for Beginners at King's Bluff... [In reply to]
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majid_sabet wrote:
which he had used a single quickdraw for protection. He was attempting to bounce the draw from bolt to bolt and get down to the ground


can some explain me what he was doing. I can't seems to picture this thing.

I may be wrong, but it sounds like they had a toprope set up with no draws on the route and instead of cleaning the route the guy was downleading by moving the draw they were top roping through down the bolts.


TheBishop


Oct 25, 2010, 4:02 PM
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Re: [johnwesely] A Word for Beginners at King's Bluff... [In reply to]
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I was present at the time of the accident. I had just gone off belay for my partner comlpleteing a climb two routes over.

The climber who fell was with his girlfriend. She had attempted to lead the climb, but could not complete it. So he lowered her from the 3rd bolt and she removed the other two draws on her way down. The man then climbed the route, toproped from the 3rd. When he reached the 3rd bolt he realized he had no gear to finish and clean the route with. He did not take extra draws or an ATC or anything else with him.

After yelling down to his belayer that he was just going to top out the route from the 3rd bolt, my friends and I told him not to. We volunteered to finish and clean the route for him. He did not accept our offer and attempted to finish the route anyways. But after realized it was too hard for him, he started to down climb from above the 3rd bolt. When the 3rd bolt was just above his head, and the 2nd was near his knees he unclipped his only line of protection and attempted to move the draw and rope from the 3rd to the 2nd bolt. Again we yelled at him not to do this, but he would not listen. While unclipped and 30+ feet off the ground, he slipped and fell.

One of my friends, who is a wilderness first responder, did an initial check on him, while we called 911. We stayed until the paramedics arrived and he was in good hands.


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