American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Fall on Scree Slope, Inexperience, Alberta, Rocky Mountains, Tower of Babel

  • Accident Reports
  • Accident Year:
  • Publication Year: 1986

FALL ON SCREE SLOPE, INEXPERIENCE Alberta, Rocky Mountains, Tower of Babel

On June 8, 1985, three scramblers had ascended the Tower of Babel at Moraine Lake by the trail up the back side. They decided to return by the normal descent route, the scree gully down the front. The least experienced member of the group got carried away with enthusiasm and started running down the slope. This resulted in a nasty tumbling fall which caused a depressed skull fracture, a broken jaw, and a punctured liver. He was evacuated by helicopter. (Source: Warden Service, Banff National Park)

Analysis

Scree slopes are inviting, and often a quick way down, but one should be aware of the hazards. Thinly covered hard spots and boulders often lie just under the scree surface. (Source: Warden Service, Banff National Park)

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