Accidents in North American Mountaineering, Sixty-fifth Annual Report of The American Alpine Club

Publication Year: 2012.

Canada: Data and narratives not available from 2011. Visit for information on the Alpine Club of Canada’s safety program.

United States: We have created a new section in ANAM called “Know the Ropes: Fundamentals to Save Your Life” that will target common causes of many of the incidents analyzed herein. We hope this will increase awareness and education and thus help prevent incidents. The topic for this year is rappelling, which seems especially appropriate given that since 2000, there have been 74 reported errors in this category. This year alone there were 12 incidents, nearly double the average.

We are grateful to Rob Hess for writing this section and to Rick Weber for turning Rob’s images into the illustrations.

We have not included Mountain Rescue Units in the U.S., primarily because their Web site contains this and much more information. We encourage you to visit their Web site:

Aram Attarian has become associate editor as a result of his narratives and data collection from the Southeast and Colorado. In addition to the AAC professional staff, Erik Hansen and Joe Forrester continue their volunteer contributions as copy editors.

Along with the dedicated individuals on the Safety Advisory Council, we are grateful to the NPS rangers who forward their incident reports and to all individuals who send in or post their personal stories.

We lost George Sainsbury, our loyal and faithful reporter from the Northwest for many decades. A special thanks to his wife, Mary Lou, who is continuing the tradition by sending along clippings from that region.

John E. (Jed) Williamson

Managing Editor

7 River Ridge Road