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xxclimber


Apr 2, 2012, 3:32 PM
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to chop or not?
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leader:

Life is good. Another day in paradise with the woman I love.
I look up. A beautiful line is waiting for me.
I start up the third pitch passing a chopped bolt. Not good! I reach the offwidth. It's damp. No placement will help. I'm runout. Terror! I try to move..but slip. Falling, decking, screaming in pain. I don't know what the hell is going on. I can't feel my legs. I say 'sorry' to my partner. Amazing people lower from above and others climb up to help. The climbing community is full of such people.
My life is now confined to a wheelchair. My partner is emotionally broken. Why? Because someone decided that bolt wasn't necessary.

belayer:

We are so lucky! I'm so happy we're here! It's absolutely beautiful! I'm so glad we truly live this sport!
We were trad climbing. Always the same words before starting a route; "Be safe."
On the 3rd pitch my partner shakes his head as he must move beyond a bolt that has been cut off. He is fully aware that the safety measure had been set up because there's a ledge and a nasty fall could be avoided. He also knows that a trad purist has gone out of his way to remove this life-altering bolt.
I am watching him. I am watching the rope. At any moment he will place the protection and will need to feel that the proper rope length is immediately available. I have to determine this moment by watching his every move. He must quickly choose the right piece. Finding his balance is tricky as spring rains have made this crack slimy. In a split second, we go from loving everything about our lives to the most intense feeling of fear and absolute loss of control. PAIN! Extreme pain! He has fallen 20 feet and screams out his pain. He can't feel his legs. My arms reach for him as my heart splits open. Breathe my love. Breathe. I turn towards another climber. Please help.
Angels surround us. They generously offer all their physical and emotional energy to get us out of this mess. Four hours later a rescue team has taken him to a helicopter. He is rushed to the hospital. It's bad. It's really bad. He can't walk. He may never walk.
He decides, every day, to live a happy life regardless of the draining levels of pain and the endless complications. I decide, every day, to only be happy around him.
Guilt is my constant companion. One bolt would have saved his legs. The absence of this bolt has caused me to constantly live in doubt. Could I have changed that moment? Was I blindly trusting our sense of safety.....our regularly renewed agreement that safety always came first? Slicing off a bolt where only a disastrous fall awaits??? It doesn't make any sense! We have paid an unthinkable price. My partner is a paraplegic. I witness and help him through his inspiring struggle for "normalcy". My emotions can't find peace.


gmggg


Apr 2, 2012, 3:37 PM
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Re: [xxclimber] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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I'm torn.

On one hand I never want anything like this to happen to anyone.

On the other I kind of hope it's a true story because it'd be a pretty fucked up way to frame the argument if it weren't true.


johnwesely


Apr 2, 2012, 4:15 PM
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Re: [xxclimber] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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If you don't forward this to ten other people, a lifesaving bolt will be chopped on your next climb.


robx


Apr 2, 2012, 5:14 PM
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Re: [xxclimber] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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other ways this could have been avoided:

not climbing
not falling
downclimbing if unsure


csproul


Apr 2, 2012, 5:25 PM
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Re: [xxclimber] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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Yawn.


mojomonkey


Apr 2, 2012, 6:03 PM
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Re: [csproul] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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I just had some lemon cream pie - delicious!


iknowfear


Apr 2, 2012, 6:23 PM
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Re: [xxclimber] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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xxclimber wrote:
leader:

Life is good. Another day in paradise with the woman I love.
I look up. A beautiful line is waiting for me.
I start up the third pitch passing a chopped bolt. Not good! I reach the offwidth. It's damp. No placement will help. I'm runout. Terror! I try to move..but slip. Falling, decking, screaming in pain. I don't know what the hell is going on. I can't feel my legs. I say 'sorry' to my partner. Amazing people lower from above and others climb up to help. The climbing community is full of such people.
My life is now confined to a wheelchair. My partner is emotionally broken. Why? Because someone decided that bolt wasn't necessary.

belayer:

We are so lucky! I'm so happy we're here! It's absolutely beautiful! I'm so glad we truly live this sport!
We were trad climbing. Always the same words before starting a route; "Be safe."
On the 3rd pitch my partner shakes his head as he must move beyond a bolt that has been cut off. He is fully aware that the safety measure had been set up because there's a ledge and a nasty fall could be avoided. He also knows that a trad purist has gone out of his way to remove this life-altering bolt.
I am watching him. I am watching the rope. At any moment he will place the protection and will need to feel that the proper rope length is immediately available. I have to determine this moment by watching his every move. He must quickly choose the right piece. Finding his balance is tricky as spring rains have made this crack slimy. In a split second, we go from loving everything about our lives to the most intense feeling of fear and absolute loss of control. PAIN! Extreme pain! He has fallen 20 feet and screams out his pain. He can't feel his legs. My arms reach for him as my heart splits open. Breathe my love. Breathe. I turn towards another climber. Please help.
Angels surround us. They generously offer all their physical and emotional energy to get us out of this mess. Four hours later a rescue team has taken him to a helicopter. He is rushed to the hospital. It's bad. It's really bad. He can't walk. He may never walk.
He decides, every day, to live a happy life regardless of the draining levels of pain and the endless complications. I decide, every day, to only be happy around him.
Guilt is my constant companion. One bolt would have saved his legs. The absence of this bolt has caused me to constantly live in doubt. Could I have changed that moment? Was I blindly trusting our sense of safety.....our regularly renewed agreement that safety always came first? Slicing off a bolt where only a disastrous fall awaits??? It doesn't make any sense! We have paid an unthinkable price. My partner is a paraplegic. I witness and help him through his inspiring struggle for "normalcy". My emotions can't find peace.

while the writing is inspriational and somewhat touching (you will get hell for this, as people here don't like to be touched...) I think it presents a false false dichotomy.

Let me rephrase the question:
Should an adult be allowed to do foolish things and endager him/herself?


Gmburns2000


Apr 2, 2012, 6:24 PM
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Re: [xxclimber] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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xxclimber wrote:
leader:

Life is good. Another day in paradise with the woman I love.
I look up. A beautiful line is waiting for me.
I start up the third pitch passing a chopped bolt. Not good! I reach the offwidth. It's damp. No placement will help. I'm runout. Terror! I try to move..but slip. Falling, decking, screaming in pain. I don't know what the hell is going on. I can't feel my legs. I say 'sorry' to my partner. Amazing people lower from above and others climb up to help. The climbing community is full of such people.
My life is now confined to a wheelchair. My partner is emotionally broken. Why? Because someone decided that bolt wasn't necessary.

belayer:

We are so lucky! I'm so happy we're here! It's absolutely beautiful! I'm so glad we truly live this sport!
We were trad climbing. Always the same words before starting a route; "Be safe."
On the 3rd pitch my partner shakes his head as he must move beyond a bolt that has been cut off. He is fully aware that the safety measure had been set up because there's a ledge and a nasty fall could be avoided. He also knows that a trad purist has gone out of his way to remove this life-altering bolt.
I am watching him. I am watching the rope. At any moment he will place the protection and will need to feel that the proper rope length is immediately available. I have to determine this moment by watching his every move. He must quickly choose the right piece. Finding his balance is tricky as spring rains have made this crack slimy. In a split second, we go from loving everything about our lives to the most intense feeling of fear and absolute loss of control. PAIN! Extreme pain! He has fallen 20 feet and screams out his pain. He can't feel his legs. My arms reach for him as my heart splits open. Breathe my love. Breathe. I turn towards another climber. Please help.
Angels surround us. They generously offer all their physical and emotional energy to get us out of this mess. Four hours later a rescue team has taken him to a helicopter. He is rushed to the hospital. It's bad. It's really bad. He can't walk. He may never walk.
He decides, every day, to live a happy life regardless of the draining levels of pain and the endless complications. I decide, every day, to only be happy around him.
Guilt is my constant companion. One bolt would have saved his legs. The absence of this bolt has caused me to constantly live in doubt. Could I have changed that moment? Was I blindly trusting our sense of safety.....our regularly renewed agreement that safety always came first? Slicing off a bolt where only a disastrous fall awaits??? It doesn't make any sense! We have paid an unthinkable price. My partner is a paraplegic. I witness and help him through his inspiring struggle for "normalcy". My emotions can't find peace.

quote people, QUOTE!

No clue what I'd do. People say try to down-climb, but in your example one movement caused you to slip, so obviously that doesn't help. Place whatever you can first? Dunno. It would have to depend.


olderic


Apr 2, 2012, 6:35 PM
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Re: [iknowfear] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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iknowfear wrote:
while the writing is inspriational and somewhat touching

Oh?


iknowfear


Apr 2, 2012, 8:08 PM
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Re: [olderic] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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olderic wrote:
iknowfear wrote:
while the writing is inspriational and somewhat touching

Oh?

well, it made me think more than 90% of the "rate my anchor", "what shoes/rope/harness to buy" "lets assume ..." threads.

so yeah. (admittedly, not a high bar.)


styndall


Apr 2, 2012, 8:46 PM
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Re: [xxclimber] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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xxclimber wrote:
leader:

Life is good. Another day in paradise with the woman I love.
I look up. A beautiful line is waiting for me.
I start up the third pitch passing a chopped bolt. Not good! I reach the offwidth. It's damp. No placement will help. I'm runout. Terror! I try to move..but slip. Falling, decking, screaming in pain. I don't know what the hell is going on. I can't feel my legs. I say 'sorry' to my partner. Amazing people lower from above and others climb up to help. The climbing community is full of such people.
My life is now confined to a wheelchair. My partner is emotionally broken. Why? Because someone decided that bolt wasn't necessary.

belayer:

We are so lucky! I'm so happy we're here! It's absolutely beautiful! I'm so glad we truly live this sport!
We were trad climbing. Always the same words before starting a route; "Be safe."
On the 3rd pitch my partner shakes his head as he must move beyond a bolt that has been cut off. He is fully aware that the safety measure had been set up because there's a ledge and a nasty fall could be avoided. He also knows that a trad purist has gone out of his way to remove this life-altering bolt.
I am watching him. I am watching the rope. At any moment he will place the protection and will need to feel that the proper rope length is immediately available. I have to determine this moment by watching his every move. He must quickly choose the right piece. Finding his balance is tricky as spring rains have made this crack slimy. In a split second, we go from loving everything about our lives to the most intense feeling of fear and absolute loss of control. PAIN! Extreme pain! He has fallen 20 feet and screams out his pain. He can't feel his legs. My arms reach for him as my heart splits open. Breathe my love. Breathe. I turn towards another climber. Please help.
Angels surround us. They generously offer all their physical and emotional energy to get us out of this mess. Four hours later a rescue team has taken him to a helicopter. He is rushed to the hospital. It's bad. It's really bad. He can't walk. He may never walk.
He decides, every day, to live a happy life regardless of the draining levels of pain and the endless complications. I decide, every day, to only be happy around him.
Guilt is my constant companion. One bolt would have saved his legs. The absence of this bolt has caused me to constantly live in doubt. Could I have changed that moment? Was I blindly trusting our sense of safety.....our regularly renewed agreement that safety always came first? Slicing off a bolt where only a disastrous fall awaits??? It doesn't make any sense! We have paid an unthinkable price. My partner is a paraplegic. I witness and help him through his inspiring struggle for "normalcy". My emotions can't find peace.


I just read this aloud over the karaoke version of Piano Man, and now my life will never be the same.


billcoe_


Apr 2, 2012, 9:00 PM
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Re: [xxclimber] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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I'm calling bullshit. What's your name, the route, and the date of this alleged accident? Put it all out there, otherwise, it all sounds like a fake fairy tale.

..that's my thoughts. BTW, I was runout further than that 4 days ago, and might have died (or worse) right in front of my son belaying if I'd slipped. It was a gear route and I needed a large piece. Who's fault would that have been? There were never any bolts on that route and folks have been climbing it pure since the 60's. A long time before cams....

Jus sayin'....


uni_jim


Apr 2, 2012, 9:04 PM
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Re: [xxclimber] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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While I am sorry for the outcome of your story, I don't necessarily agree that the bolt shouldn't have been chopped.

When you go climbing you have to assess risk, chose to take the risk or not and accept responsibility for your decision at the end of the day. The leader in your story made a concious decision to climb unprotected when the route was wet. He was aware of the posibility of a ground fall and chose to continue. Now, unfortunately, he has to live with the consequence.

I'm glad I get to make my own decisions when I go climbing and I'm glad I can top rope one day and lead runout 5.hard the next if that's what I want to do.


(This post was edited by uni_jim on Apr 2, 2012, 9:07 PM)


moose_droppings


Apr 2, 2012, 9:40 PM
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jt512


Apr 2, 2012, 10:13 PM
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Re: [xxclimber] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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xxclimber wrote:
leader:

Life is good. Another day in paradise with the woman I love.
I look up. A beautiful line is waiting for me.
I start up the third pitch passing a chopped bolt. Not good! I reach the offwidth. It's damp. No placement will help. I'm runout. Terror! I try to move..but slip. Falling, decking, screaming in pain. I don't know what the hell is going on. I can't feel my legs. I say 'sorry' to my partner. Amazing people lower from above and others climb up to help. The climbing community is full of such people.
My life is now confined to a wheelchair. My partner is emotionally broken. Why? Because someone decided that bolt wasn't necessary.

belayer:

We are so lucky! I'm so happy we're here! It's absolutely beautiful! I'm so glad we truly live this sport!
We were trad climbing. Always the same words before starting a route; "Be safe."
On the 3rd pitch my partner shakes his head as he must move beyond a bolt that has been cut off. He is fully aware that the safety measure had been set up because there's a ledge and a nasty fall could be avoided. He also knows that a trad purist has gone out of his way to remove this life-altering bolt.
I am watching him. I am watching the rope. At any moment he will place the protection and will need to feel that the proper rope length is immediately available. I have to determine this moment by watching his every move. He must quickly choose the right piece. Finding his balance is tricky as spring rains have made this crack slimy. In a split second, we go from loving everything about our lives to the most intense feeling of fear and absolute loss of control. PAIN! Extreme pain! He has fallen 20 feet and screams out his pain. He can't feel his legs. My arms reach for him as my heart splits open. Breathe my love. Breathe. I turn towards another climber. Please help.
Angels surround us. They generously offer all their physical and emotional energy to get us out of this mess. Four hours later a rescue team has taken him to a helicopter. He is rushed to the hospital. It's bad. It's really bad. He can't walk. He may never walk.
He decides, every day, to live a happy life regardless of the draining levels of pain and the endless complications. I decide, every day, to only be happy around him.
Guilt is my constant companion. One bolt would have saved his legs. The absence of this bolt has caused me to constantly live in doubt. Could I have changed that moment? Was I blindly trusting our sense of safety.....our regularly renewed agreement that safety always came first? Slicing off a bolt where only a disastrous fall awaits??? It doesn't make any sense! We have paid an unthinkable price. My partner is a paraplegic. I witness and help him through his inspiring struggle for "normalcy". My emotions can't find peace.

You've entered The Twilight Zone.


Partner cracklover


Apr 3, 2012, 8:50 AM
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Re: [xxclimber] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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xxclimber wrote:
No placement will help.

Why the hell not? Did that mean trad purist also change the pitch to add the offwidth? Did some terrible trad meanie sneak into your house and steal your #5 Camalot?

The crux was too hard for you, you could not adequately protect it, and you fell. Sorry, but you failed.

It matters not a whit who may have done what before that day. On the day of your climb, you are responsible for your actions, and you bear the consequence.

GO


6pacfershur


Apr 3, 2012, 9:29 AM
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Re: [billcoe_] to chop or not? [In reply to]
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billcoe_ wrote:
....it all sounds like a fake fairy tale....
in the future, please only post real fairy tales, the fake ones upset everyone....


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