American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Loss of Control—Voluntary Glissade, Alberta, Rocky Mountains, Mount Lefroy

  • Accident Reports
  • Accident Year:
  • Publication Year: 1988


Alberta, Rocky Mountains, Mount Lefroy

At 0745 on July 12, 1987, a climber (28) was descending Mount Lefroy solo; the route was the West Col via Abbot’s Pass. At 3100 meters, halfway between the first and second rock bands, he began to glissade and quickly gained speed. In an attempt to self-arrest, he lost his ice ax and was forced to use his forearms, elbows and feet as brakes. He finally stopped below the first rock band, after a fall of about 100 meters. He suffered facial abrasions, severe forearm abrasions, bruised ribs, and stretched knee ligaments.

Another climber cleaned and dressed his abrasions, so he was able to descend to Lake O’Hara. (Source: A1 Chorney, Calgary)

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