American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

California, Mt. Baden-Powell

  • Accident Reports
  • Accident Year:
  • Publication Year: 1958

California, Mt. Baden-Powell—On Jan. 9, Richard Skultin (29) and Alice Kuhn (27) were descending Mt. Baden-Powell after completing the ascent. The wind was strong and icy. On the descent they started across a steep slope—the footing was bad and tricky. Skultin was ahead when suddenly

Kuhn slid past him without crying out for help. She was too far away to grab. He watched her as she tumbled and slid for about 400 feet when he lost sight of her. Her body was found some 1200 feet below the slip.

Source: Richard C. Houston—newspaper clipping.

Analysis: Apparently lack of proper equipment and technique played an important part in this incident. Had they been roped and properly belayed this slip would have only been a slip and not a serious accident. Furthermore winter conditions can convert what in summer is an easy path to an impossible climb.

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