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Falling Ice, Poor Position, Alberta, Banff National Park, Louise Falls

CANADA

FALLING ICE, POOR POSITION

Alberta, Banff National Park, Louise Falls

On January 20, a number of parties were climbing on this popular multi-pitch water ice Grade 4+ climb near Lake Louise. One of the parties high on the route dislodged a large piece of ice which hit S.G. He sustained crushing injuries to his left foot. He was able to rappel, but unable to walk back to the trailhead. He was evacuated by snowmobile by the Park Warden Service.

Analysis

As ice climbing continues to grow in popularity, certain routes are becoming more crowded and this type of accident is becoming more common. Parties should take note of their position in relation to others above them. Choosing a different line or abandoning the climb may be the most appropriate actions. (Source: Parks Canada Warden Service)