Author Topic: Accident on Willeys?  (Read 4327 times)

Offline Admin Al

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Accident on Willeys?
« on: February 15, 2006, 09:22:48 PM »
anyone have any information about an accident on Willeys over the last day or 2? I heard that 2 climbers fell the entire length of the left side of the route & walked away!

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Offline SCUD

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2006, 10:26:30 PM »
Speaking with one of the local climbers, I was told that a guide & his client fell approximately 300 feet but were able to walk away. Thank God !! I can't remember the specifics of the protection the guide was using, however it appeared that was a contributing factor.
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Offline Admin Al

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2006, 10:58:04 PM »
what I'd heard was that the client was being short roped...

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climbhigh

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2006, 07:40:10 AM »
Heard from a guide who was there and saw the whole thing unfold that the other guide was short roping a client and the client fell. The guide tried to self arrest but was unable to and both ended up at the bottom 400' down. They were both fine and the guide reclimbed the route placing pro. Talk about using one of your lives...at least they were alright and an inexpensive lesson learned. I guess it is also not the first time that well known guides have ended up at the bottom of Willey's practicing short roping, from what I was told.

Offline tradmanclimbz

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2006, 08:54:02 AM »
Do they put that on the brochure? It might add to the clients experience if they know that the guides ocasionaly drop clients the full length of the climb :D

fbs

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #5 on: February 16, 2006, 09:12:08 AM »
As I understand short-roping, it's safety is based on the ability of the leader to self-arrest to stop a fall. I assumed then it is used on snow climbs, not on ice climbs. I know Willeys is mixed snow and ice but there are long sections of ice.

Is it considered proper for use on ice?

Tomcat

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2006, 09:44:34 AM »
Be fun to see if this shows up in AINAM.

Offline tradmanclimbz

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2006, 09:57:34 AM »
I allways thought that short ropeing was used to pull weak clients up big snow slogs, Didn't think it was used on ice? I know thet the few times that I have been out a full pitch with no gear on easy slab and had to have an innexperienced second simo climb for a ways before I could find ice thick enough to take screws that I was terrified!!!  Now I see that my fears were justifyed ;)

rustyrat

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2006, 11:22:38 AM »
Short roping can be very appropriate on the lower section of Willeys. Good short roping technique means that the guide has the client on a very short and tight leash. The idea being that the client never has the opportunity to fall, the tight leash is constantly keeping the client in check and over his feet. If it gets to a stage where the client actually falls, it generally means that too much slack is in the system and the technique wasn't being used correctly. As neither person is achored any slack can quickly pull a person off. On neither snow or ice does self arresting come it to play. The guide maintains control by well placed feet and up hill axe. The short rope on steeper terrain is generally no longer than 5-7 feet. Many people often at least double this length which greatly reduces the guides control over the client. The closer the guide to the client the more direct control he has.

Though it looks simple to do, short roping is a relativily advanced technique to do well and fast. Just like climbing ice it needs the guide to be confident and aggressive in his actions and thoughts, wishy, washy actions and uncertainty can lead to problems of a downward kind. 
It's interseting that more guides (some very good ones) have fallen on Willeys than l think all  the other climbs in the White Mtns combined (pitching and short roping)!
« Last Edit: February 16, 2006, 11:35:20 AM by rustyrat »

fbs

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2006, 01:30:23 PM »
I see, so the point of short-roping is to keep the client from falling in the first place? If the client falls and and the force of the fall forces you to self arrest then the technique was being performed incorrctly?

It sounds as if a client is being literally "hauled" up the mountain. Always thought that was just a figure of speech.

Sounds pretty tricky to me.

rustyrat

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #10 on: February 16, 2006, 01:45:00 PM »
Correct, the client is in some ways being hauled.  A guide good at short roping, is continually keeping the rope snug on the client, always better to tight than to loose. If the client does fall and pull the guide off his feet, the guide will be unable to self arrest as his lower hand is occupied with tied off coils to the client. Done correctly this is a very effiecient technique for moving up or down semi technical terrain at a good clip.

Offline tradmanclimbz

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #11 on: February 16, 2006, 02:51:48 PM »
Standing up and walking / french technique works great on neve but it really is not that good of an idea on hard NE water ice in cold temps.  This coment has little bearing on the incident discussed here as we dont' know what surface they were on. It is just my observation that while standing up and useing the tool as a walking stick on grade 2 ice is  way more comfortable and looks a lot cooler then front pointing,  the possibility of your crampons scateing off hard waterice is there.  You may doubt me and call me a wanker for bending over  and placeing one tool in the ice, front pointing with one foot and flat foot with the other but I have NOT fallen off any easy ice yet and I know and know of many people who have. Fact is on easy ice if you are placeing gear you run it out 100 or so feet or you are soloing. falling in either situation is not an option. Just My op 8)

Offline punxnotdead

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #12 on: February 16, 2006, 03:14:27 PM »
What guide and what company did this......Seems pretty negligent.
someone dropped a steamer in the gene pool

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rustyrat

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #13 on: February 16, 2006, 03:24:16 PM »
Standing up and walking / french technique works great on neve but it really is not that good of an idea on hard NE water ice in cold temps

Hi Tradmanclimbz, I'm not sure why you think short roping is only done when using french technique, it works just fine when ascending with one axe in, front pointing with one crampon and flat footing with the other. Certainly short roping has it's limits and these are based on competence, angle and type of terrain. Certainly it works great on low angle hard ice - you just have to know when it's no longer low angle!


Offline tradmanclimbz

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Re: Accident on Willeys?
« Reply #14 on: February 16, 2006, 03:45:43 PM »
Probobly should have started a new thread about low angle ice technique in NE. The topic made me think about it and so I comented. Back on topic I have however only heard about short ropeing in high altitude situations where the guide is pulling the client up snow climbs because the client is out of gas. i did not realize that the technique was also used to hoist clients up technicle terrain. One of my guide friends uses a foot loop pully system on his reverso to hoist his clients past pesky cruxes.