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Author Topic: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced  (Read 4267 times)

old_school

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #75 on: February 19, 2013, 01:37:04 PM »

I flip over, hanging up side down, the wind slamming me from side to side, and I remember thinking, 'you just don't f$cking learn do you,' and, 'I'll bet it would be cool to have some sort of back up right about now.'

Lol....Epic Pappy!  ;)
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"Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes. That way when you criticize them, you will be a mile away from them and you will have their shoes."

SA

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #76 on: February 19, 2013, 02:57:15 PM »

Looks like I started a record breaking thread, for the number of post already submitted.

I'm saving a few stories for later.
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DGoguen

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #77 on: February 19, 2013, 03:05:29 PM »

Ha, Nice one Pappy,  That's a wild place to be upside down and swinging in the breeze. Yikes

C'mon Steve, It's like confession.
« Last Edit: February 19, 2013, 03:08:03 PM by DGoguen »
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strandman

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #78 on: February 19, 2013, 05:45:36 PM »

Looks like I started a record breaking thread, for the number of post already submitted.

I'm saving a few stories for later.

Come on SA-- i hate waiting
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SA

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #79 on: February 19, 2013, 07:46:08 PM »

O.K. John,

Having gotten wounded in Vietnam, I was able to take military hops, out of Dover,N.H., almost any week I wanted. I would fly usually to Spain and connect to England or Germany.

I decided to go to Chamonix, and take a look around. It was 1970, in mid-February, and hardly a time to find a climbing partner. In frustration, I made the dumb decision to climb Mt.Blanc, starting from the valley floor.

I really didn't know the area, but somehow made it to the trailhead, where the easy route started, except in places I was up to my waist in snow. I made it to the Gouter Hut, and found it unlocked.

I slept in the caretakers bed, and struck out next morning for the summit, wearing crampons, as there was this vast sheet of ice in places, and super cold. I made it back to the hut in one piece, and decided to do a little search of the place.

There was a huge selection of liquor in a cabinet, and  wooden cask of wine, in a lower basement area.

Since it was getting late, I decided to stay over another day, which turned into a 2 day layover. The next day proved really beautiful, with no wind and bright sun. I decided to sample the wine and hung out on the tin roof, basking in the sun, and with the altitude and all, in a great mood, the day went by.

The next morning I started down, plunging down the slope, when I broke thru a hidden crevasse. I reacted instantly, and since I had quite a bit of forward momentum, I managed to spread eagle my arms and save myself from a permanent tomb.

I remember the blue ice underneath, which looked like it was a hundred feet deep.

The dumb things you do when your young and inexperienced.
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DLottmann

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #80 on: February 19, 2013, 08:17:10 PM »

God, you guys are SO good at ignoring his posts... I think I am learning...
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kenreville

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #81 on: February 19, 2013, 08:52:53 PM »

O.K. John,

Having gotten wounded in Vietnam, I was able to take military hops, out of Dover,N.H., almost any week I wanted. I would fly usually to Spain and connect to England or Germany.

I decided to go to Chamonix, and take a look around. It was 1970, in mid-February, and hardly a time to find a climbing partner. In frustration, I made the dumb decision to climb Mt.Blanc, starting from the valley floor.

I really didn't know the area, but somehow made it to the trailhead, where the easy route started, except in places I was up to my waist in snow. I made it to the Gouter Hut, and found it unlocked.

I slept in the caretakers bed, and struck out next morning for the summit, wearing crampons, as there was this vast sheet of ice in places, and super cold. I made it back to the hut in one piece, and decided to do a little search of the place.

There was a huge selection of liquor in a cabinet, and  wooden cask of wine, in a lower basement area.

Since it was getting late, I decided to stay over another day, which turned into a 2 day layover. The next day proved really beautiful, with no wind and bright sun. I decided to sample the wine and hung out on the tin roof, basking in the sun, and with the altitude and all, in a great mood, the day went by.

The next morning I started down, plunging down the slope, when I broke thru a hidden crevasse. I reacted instantly, and since I had quite a bit of forward momentum, I managed to spread eagle my arms and save myself from a permanent tomb.

I remember the blue ice underneath, which looked like it was a hundred feet deep.

The dumb things you do when your young and inexperienced.

So the QUESTION is: What would you different today? And don't say you'd be more cautious- I attribute "caution" to older age. Meaning you're going slower cause your an old ****er. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Sounds like you did everything right that day.
Proof being you lived to tell us all about it.

Looking back, I've had several days like that SA. Where the reaper swings, but misses. Ha-ha mother****er.
Many of my most memorable moments. Not my finest. Most memorable though. Lightening strikes, avalanches, slides for life, lost solo at 20,000ft, etc.....

As John Bouchard once told me- "ya gotta get that 6th sense".

I wouldn't trade those memories for ANYTHING!

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strandman

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #82 on: February 19, 2013, 09:24:33 PM »

the 6th sense---  good thing 'cause i had some times with JB and we weren't young or inexperinced
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kenreville

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #83 on: February 19, 2013, 09:28:48 PM »

Did you get into explosives with JB? He was all over that shit.
My experience with John was some climbing but mostly paragliding.
We sure had some fun.
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strandman

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #84 on: February 19, 2013, 09:35:01 PM »

I will not mention any explosives on this site  :) Shit happens, motorcycles, ropes,  half Dome  etc

Who holds the west side road speed record ?? NOT  ME  oh that's right, that never happened.
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kenreville

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #85 on: February 19, 2013, 09:48:49 PM »

West side road? I can only imagine.
Heard from the horses mouth about maxxing out in Crawford Notch. And the subsequent jonny law run in.
Good times for sure.
JB- one intense human.
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pappy

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #86 on: February 19, 2013, 10:22:34 PM »

It isn’t climbing and I wasn’t young, though inexperience certainly played a part: The one that gets me screaming all over again was in a cave. It was July and way too damn hot to go climbing, so Mark and Sporty decided we should go caving, especially as I had never been in one. But with these guys it’s always go big or go home, so for my first cave we were going to do the Incredible Pit drop in Ellison’s. This involves a 520’ free hanging rappel down a vertical shaft that you’ve reached after squirming a mile or two into the mountain (toting this ridiculous 520’ static line), with a 120’ drop and some thought provoking down climbing on mud along the way.

It’s kind of nice that you can’t actually see the 500’ to the bottom, there’s just a black void above and below and rippled limestone walls all around you. I tried to concentrate on my descending rack and ignore all of it, because I was freaking the f#$k out. And then when I got to the bottom I was faced with the next part, which is now you have to climb 520’ back up the damn rope.

Cavers are jumar pros. In comparison, virtually every climber I’ve ever seen jumar looks like he’s having a seizure. None of that Yosemite bullshit for cavers. Sporty had a racing rig—because one of the things these nut jobs do is have jumar races—which is where you have an ascender on each foot and one on your chest to keep you upright and you go as fast as you can do a few hundred knee bends. This is considered too complex and foreign for me, so I’m rigged up with a chest box system. Not to go into too much detail, but you don’t actually clip your harness into your jumars. The rope and the sling from the top jug go through a box on your chest to keep you upright, and besides, Mark informed me calmly, the foot slings are attached to your ankles by chicken loops so that they can’t come off your foot, so if disaster strikes, that will catch you.

Since I find myself at the bottom of a hole way underground with a pair of lunatics, I’m not happy, especially since as the newbie I left myself in their hands and don’t have any extra gear, not even a spare sling. Sporty starts zipping up the rope, and when he’s about half way up I start climbing. I am soon acutely aware that I’m hundreds of feet off the deck and not actually clipped to anything. And then there’s this loud ‘swooosh’ like I’ve been buzzed by a pterodactyl and I’m cowering on the rope but I can’t hang off anything and from down at the bottom I hear mark yell something like ‘Bat!’ and all I can think of is that must have been one f#$king big bat.

It turns out he yelled “Rack!” because when Sporty pulled over the lip at the top unbeknownst to him his descending rack fell out of his pack. Those things are ginormous, several pounds of metal, and by the time it passed me it had already free fallen 250’. I have no idea how close it came, but Mark said at the bottom it spun down hooked on the rope. All I can think of is if it had hit me, and I came to hanging upside down by my chicken loops in a black hole in the ground 250’ off the deck. That’s the ‘what if’ that gets me screaming.
Well, it’s in the top three.
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If you're gonna be stupid, you gotta be tough.

kenreville

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #87 on: February 19, 2013, 10:35:39 PM »

Caves. I don't go in caves.

I'm hoping Pappy that you've learned your lesson and don't go in caves. Anymore.

Great story.
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SA

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #88 on: February 20, 2013, 07:18:36 AM »

Great story Pappy.

Similar thing happened to me in Yosemite, but it was a rock, about the size of a grapefruit. I was jumaring up a fixed line and felt like I got hit by a baseball bat. The rock just grazed my head, cutting me pretty good. We retreated. I was pretty lucky
that day, back in 1971.

I just started wearing headgear, after seeing this guy, about my age take a leader fall. he was definitely saved by the helmet.

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DGoguen

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Re: Dumb things you do when you're young and inexperienced
« Reply #89 on: February 20, 2013, 08:38:02 AM »

This ones local. Thought of it the other day as it's 30th anniversary passed.

I had a pretty steep learning curve starting out, like most climbers back then. Second day of ice climbing, the first being one pitch of toprope and having never led a pitch of rock, decided to lead the Waterfall route over at Frankenstein. Stopped off at IME real quick to pick up 2 new Desmaison axes, half dozen Chouinard screws and some webbing for runners.

Clawed my way up the route, occasionally using a knee on the awkward humpfest that is that route. Brought up my brother in law and poor Roger from the other story. We rapped back down to the base of the climb and coiled the rope, feeling pretty good about my new status as alpinist. Then immediately stuck my crampon in my aforementioned knickers at calf hieght pulling myself into a forward roll off the snowy platform. The approach gully was mostly ice and I did an Evil Kneival at Caesars palace style descent all the way to the tracks. I had a tib/fib high, a tib/fib low as well as a spiral into the knee and a spiral into the ankle on my left leg. I'm not a doctor but I knew it was broken because my foot was pointing the other way. I landed literally at the feet of a wonderful gentleman named Marvin that I still see at the Moat regularly. Marvin splinted the leg with webbing and my two new Desmaison medical devices, and they dragged me down the tracks to the car. The freight train was still running regularly in those days, making the trestle crossing a bit anxious. Off to memorial for a week of rest and relaxation.
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