Date of Incident

21/04/2019

Country

Wales

Route

Incident

I knew the route was long and pumpy before starting and that this was my weakness, but I wanted to push myself. At about the 30m mark I was at the end of my endurance and a little way above my last gear. I noticed as I was trying to shake-out that the ropes (doubles) had slipped behind my heel. This caused me to lose all composure and I began to peel off. I managed to shake one of the ropes free before falling and I don't recall the other rope snagging on my leg as I attempted to fall in such a way as to free it; however, in the process of trying to free the other rope I pivoted over backwards and inverted anyway. As I was falling I heard my latest gear (a 00 cam) pop but was caught on my next two bomber nuts. When the ropes caught I struck the wall back first with my head snapping back into the rock. When I hit the rock I sustained two injured ribs (not broken), a concussion, and whiplash. The helmet I was wearing is cracked but still in one piece. I lowered off and was helped back to the top of the crag as the concussion was making me dizzy and I had difficulty focusing on the scramble out. I rested for an hour before walking out whilst my friends retrieved the gear from the route.

Lessons

It goes without saying, always wear a helmet. Always be aware of how the ropes are moving around your feet, most climbers are typically careful not to step through their ropes, however in this case I believe they snagged behind my heel as I leaned rightwards over the foot to inspect the next few moves. I will be adding "check your ropes" to my list of things to do when in a stable position.

Activity

Trad rock climbing

When

Ascending

Injury

Minor injury

Causes

Slip, trip or fall

Anonymous?

Yes

Reported By

Participant

Wearing Helmets?

Yes

Rescue Services Involved?

For more advice and guidance on good practices visit BMC skills

All reports are self-submitted and have not been edited by the BMC in any way, so please keep an open mind regarding the lessons and causes of each incident or near-miss.