American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Fall on Rock, Climbing Unroped, Colorado, Longs Peak

  • Accident Reports
  • Accident Year:
  • Publication Year: 1987


Colorado, Longs Peak

On June 16, 1986, at 1630, Ranger Jim Detterline at the Longs Peak Ranger Station received a report of a climbing accident which had occurred earlier in the day on Longs Peak. According to Joe Hollowell, his party of seven male climbers from Indianapolis, Indiana, was attempting to climb the Keyhole Route. Conditions on the route were mixed ice, snow, and bare rock, and the Park Service signing at the Longs Peak trailhead advised that the route was technical in nature. At 1130, Scott Fangman (30) slipped on iced, loose rock near the base of the Trough, and fell about 150 meters before coming to a stop. Fangman was using his ice ax, but was not using crampons and was not roped up.

Hollowell, who identified himself as a “multi-media first aider,” surveyed Fangman for injuries and wrapped Fangman’s injured ankle. The group abandoned their ascent and walked Fangman to the trailhead. Fangman declined to have his injuries examined by Ranger Detterline. Detterline advised him to visit the Estes Park Medical Center.

Estes Park Medical Center reported that he had sustained a tibial fracture posteriorly on the medial malleolus. (Source: Jim Detterline, Ranger, Rocky Mountain National Park)

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