American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Fall on Snow, Weather, Geology, Colorado, Maroon Bells, Bell Cord Couloir

  • Accident Reports
  • Accident Year:
  • Publication Year: 2006

FALL ON ROCK, INADEQUATE BELAY–ROPE RAN OUT

Colorado, Boulder Canyon, Animation

On May 24, Eric Gurvin (19) sustained injuries to his back, ankles, and wrist when he fell 20 to 30 feet when the person lowering him ran out of rope and dropped him.

He had finished climbing a 5.9 route in Boulder Canyon known as Animation and was being lowered to the ground from a top rope about 4:00 p.m. There was another climber with them.

Analysis

As he was being lowered, Gurvin’s belayer was unaware that the end of the rope was approaching and allowed it to slip through the belay device used to slow the descent.

This cliff has a number of routes longer than 30 meters per pitch. Thus, it sets up folks who climb with 60-meter ropes to need a second rope. Many sport climbers these days do not bring a second rope. (Source: Edited from an article in the Boulder Daily Camera, with added comment by Leo Paik)

This ANAM article has been reformatted into HTML. Please contact us if you spot an error.