American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Fall on Rock, Texas, Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

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

FALL ON ROCK

Texas, Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

On November 30, 1985, Scott Hall (22) was leading Eat, a single pitch 5.9+ route on the Buzzard’s Roost formation at Enchanted Rock when he fell at the crux, located approximately one and a half meters from the top of the route. His last piece of protection, a medium-sized Chouinard stopper, held in the six to nine meter fall against a flat vertical face free of projections. Hall sustained two minor fractures on the distal end of his left tibia. He was able to hike five kilometers to the trailhead unassisted. (Source: Jim Detterline)

Analysis

Hall and both of his partners felt that the protection placed was secure and adequate. Hall believed that an uneven landing against the face may have created sufficient impact to fracture his ankle on this relatively short fall. This type of accident, by no means uncommon, illustrates some interesting points. First, even a short fall may have serious consequences. Second, the human ankle is apparently a weak point if impacted at certain angles. The successful efforts of Hall to walk out without assistance are also noteworthy. (Source: Jim Detterline)

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