American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Stranded, Inadequate Equipment, Alberta, Kananaskis Provincial Park, Mount Sir Douglas

  • Accident Reports
  • Accident Year:
  • Publication Year: 2002

STRANDED, INADEQUATE EQUIPMENT

Alberta, Kananaskis Provincial Park, Mount Sir Douglas

On August 29, two climbers ascended Mount Sir Douglas via the East Ridge, alpine grade III, 5.6. Before beginning the route, they had decided they would descend the same way, instead of taking the longer but easier west ridge descent route. The climbers summited at a late hour, and decided to descend the west ridge after all. They bivouacked at a notch between the ridge and the glacier below and then attempted to descend the glacier the following day. The glacier was bare ice and steep enough to demand crampons, which the climbers did not have. They used their radio to call for a rescue. (Source: Kananaskis Country Alpine Specialists)

Analysis

It is important to minimize one’s pack weight when attempting a big alpine route. However, one must not leave any essential items behind. These climbers took a big risk by leaving their crampons at home. (Source: Nancy Hansen)

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