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Fall on Rock, Inadequate Equipment, Fatigue, Washington, Icicle Creek Canyon


Washington, Icicle Creek Canyon

This accident occurred on April 15 while I was participating in an Intermediate Rock 1 climbing course field trip with the Mountaineers. The subject of the class was the placement of protection and leading.

The morning and early afternoon was spent placing protection while top-roped on the three main cracks of Flake Slab. In the afternoon, while leading for the first time, I fell from near the top of the Middle Crack while attempting to move up. At the time of my fall, I was probably not more than two meters beyond my last piece of protection. However, the Middle Crack ascends diagonally, and I fell onto the rounded top of an adjacent flake below the Middle Crack. My protection held and the belay absorbed part of the force of the fall; my rib cage absorbed the rest. (Source: Jim Green—46)


Climb with good climbing shoes, and place protection effectively. Had I not been wearing a climbing helmet, I may have suffered a head injury as well. (Source: Jim Green)