American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

California, Yosemite (1)

  • Accident Reports
  • Accident Year:
  • Publication Year: 1957

California, Yosemite (1)—On May 27, 1956 Dr. Robert Franklin Johnson (28) was killed instantly in a sheer fall from Castle Cliff east of the Lost Arrow. He had climbed up Indian Canyon where there is no trail to the rim of the canyon. He was alone and had not registered for the climb nor had he left word with anyone specifically of his plans. He apparently attempted to make a short-cut back to the Valley down a crevasse in the cliff and slipped or lost his footing and fell about 80 feet to a ledge. An extensive search was made for him from May 28 to June 2 by rangers and members of the Sierra Club rock climbing section. The body was seen from a helicopter on the morning of June 2. Rangers and a rescue crew of volunteers descended the cliff with ropes and recovered the body which was then buried in a suitable place nearby on the cliff, as it was considered too dangerous a task to remove it from the cliff.

Source: John C. Preston, Superintendent, Yosemite National Park.

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