American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Fall on Rock, Inadequate Protection, No Hard Hat, California, Joshua Tree National Monument

  • Accident Reports
  • Accident Year:
  • Publication Year: 1989

FALL ON ROCK, INADEQUATE PROTECTION, NO HARD HAT

California, Joshua Tree National Monument

On October 27, 1988, Francis Walters (age unknown) fell six meters to the ground while leading Orfan (5.9). He was three meters above his protection when he fell, sustaining major head injuries.

As of October 31, Walters was still in critical condition at the Desert Hospital in Palm Springs. (Source: Karl Pearson, Ranger, Joshua Tree National Monument)

(Editor’s Note: Of the 12 actual climbing accidents reported from Joshua Tree, a third involved head injury and inadequate protection. There were three injuries received as a result of falls while bouldering alone. As in gymnastics, “spotting” is recommended for boulderers.)

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