I hate to post this... Chris Chan killed


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Big Wall climber
Crestline CA
Topic Author's Original Post - Jul 11, 2010 - 04:10pm PT
I heard from Erik Sloan last night that Chris Chan was killed yesterday in the Meadows, traversing off a climb. I don't know the details, just what Erik posted to me.... I am sick about it.... Chris was a special woman with many talents and a wonderful personality. We followed her on her solo's of the Shield last fall and the Trip this spring.... I still can't grasp it... any details would be appreciated. I am broken hearted.... I hate this so much....
Click the link below leading to a short Memorial ElCap Report about Chris, with photos.


Big Wall climber
A Token of My Extreme
Jul 11, 2010 - 04:14pm PT
Very sorry to hear this Tom.

My condolences to Chris's friends and family.

I have "walked" off a few things in the meadows that were pretty steep.
It's totally possible when there are tiny loose bits of debris on that steep stuff.

What a great smile.

Lynne Leichtfuss

Trad climber
Will know soon
Jul 11, 2010 - 04:25pm PT
Don't even know what to say......Life is like quicksilver and no one is exempt from the outcomes of the day, whether triumphant or tragic. Of course my heart breaks for Chris's family, loved ones and friends. I hope they will be comforted a small bit by the fact that Chris was obviously a talented person following/living out a life she loved. A remarkable feat in itself. I will keep all in my thoughts and prayers. lynne

Sportbikeville & Yucca brevifolia
Jul 11, 2010 - 04:34pm PT
My sincere condolences to her loved ones.
No words can discribe this huge loss to our climbing community and her many loved ones.
Terrible news.

Big Wall climber
A Token of My Extreme
Jul 11, 2010 - 04:43pm PT
I borrowed it from somewhere.

I hope someone won't take offense. I'll remove it if necessary.

Jul 11, 2010 - 04:43pm PT
The family is still waiting for the coroner's report but I'm afraid it's true.

Please post your condolences on http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=136210793068504

Trad climber
Jul 11, 2010 - 04:44pm PT
Very sad news.


Trad climber
Jul 11, 2010 - 04:45pm PT
Terrible news. My deepest condolences to family and friends.

Sport climber
Boulder, Colorado!
Jul 11, 2010 - 04:46pm PT
Terrible news. Very sad indeed.

Trad climber
Clovis, CA
Jul 11, 2010 - 04:53pm PT
HOLY SH#T!! I just saw her soloing with Erik this past Thursday as they passed us on the Royal Arches!

My sincere condolences

Trad climber
Merced CA
Jul 11, 2010 - 05:24pm PT
Wow I can't believe what I'm hearing. She was the one that taught me about trad climbing. Deepest condolences to family and friends.

Arkansas, I suppose
Jul 11, 2010 - 05:25pm PT
Feck... just feck.
My deepest sympathy to friends and family

Big Wall climber
From Back to Big Wall Baby
Jul 11, 2010 - 05:49pm PT
Hard to Believe

My deepest condolences

Social climber
Bouncy Tiggerville
Jul 11, 2010 - 05:51pm PT
Deepest sympathy and condolences to family and friends - it sucks to lose such a young and vibrant member of the climbing community.
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Jul 11, 2010 - 05:56pm PT
Here are the details, from the email I sent out last night:

On Friday, Chris and Jim (Castelaz) had climbed Eichorn Pinnacle and were
descending to the notch between that and Cathedral Peak. Chris slipped
(unroped) from the [edit:] downclimb before the traverse, and apparently the drop is 30 feet on one side
and 300 feet on the other - she fell on the 300' side. It was a body
recovery, so she probably died immediately in the fall.

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Jul 11, 2010 - 06:08pm PT
I never met Chris but was very impressed after following her Shield solo last Fall. What an amazing lady. I can't even begin to imagine how much she will be missed by friends and family.
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
WA, & NC & Idaho
Jul 11, 2010 - 06:12pm PT
So sorry to her friends and family.
She had a very beautiful smile.
Be careful y'all.

San Francisco
Jul 11, 2010 - 06:24pm PT
I'm so incredibly sad about this. Chris was at the center of the Stanford climbing community for so long. Her stories and the way she lived her life were incredibly inspiring to me, especially since I could never have the guts to follow my dreams and passions like she did.

I remember driving up with Eujin to the meadows one summer and meeting Chris at Crane Flat to deliver some gear that she had ordered. She was in the midst of her summer-in-the-valley, soloing awesome walls and living life to the fullest. She looked incredibly fit, strong, and happy. That's what I'll remember.


Social climber
Wolf City, Wyoming
Jul 11, 2010 - 06:42pm PT
Hoh man! I hate this part. Sincerest condolences to all of her people.

Trad climber
Can't get here from there
Jul 11, 2010 - 06:59pm PT
Terrible sorry to hear of this.

Condolences go out to all of her family and many friends.

Jul 11, 2010 - 07:00pm PT
Peace to family, friends, and partners.

Trad climber
Jul 11, 2010 - 07:07pm PT
My heart goes out to Jim as well.

In God We Trust
Jul 11, 2010 - 07:17pm PT
A sad loss!

Trad climber
Yosemite, CA
Jul 11, 2010 - 07:17pm PT
I am completely at a loss for words right now. I got to meet Chris last year during her time that she bummed with me and my friends in employee housing. She was an inspiration to many of us "wanna be" big wall climbers, a very kind person, always upbeat. Even though my time with her was short she touched my life and many others.

Trad climber
Mill Valley, CA
Jul 11, 2010 - 07:18pm PT
So very sad to hear this.
Condolences and prayers to her family and friends.
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jul 11, 2010 - 07:26pm PT
I didn't get to meet Chris, at least I don't remember as it would have been some fleeting "hello" at a parking pullout while they were waiting for friends to show up for their Stanford group outings in the Valley. Of course it seems like there is no rush to meet someone as young and alive with the joy of being in the Valley, and extracting that energy produced by being in the landscape, by feeling the gravity that defines the vertical wilderness, a wilderness that Chris knew so well. The meeting of such a person takes on an inevitability.

We all know where we are, when we're adventuring in that wilderness, and we all know the stakes, the risks we undertake that define the uncertain ending of our adventure. We, also expect that we'll end those adventures having succeeded, to get back to the car, to share that beer with our friends and swap stories of the day's activities. But we know that sometimes those uncertainties determine the outcome, that some small, seemingly inconsequential characteristic of our surroundings can lead to a tragic outcome.

And tragic it is when one of ours does not return from a day's adventure. Their time has ended as ours go on, and we are left wondering how this all could have been different. We'll analyze and speculate and educate, and hope to learn from what ever it is that transformed the simple act of traversing off a climb, an act we've all done countless times, into that fatal end.

It probably won't stop us from going out and having the same adventures, we sometimes get spooked with the memory of the fallen, as we tread the same routes, the same grounds and wonder how it could have happened.

And it is an unconsolable time for the family and friends. My deep sympathy goes out to you. As I get older I understand my father's unhappiness with my continued climbing activities, "why put yourself in that position, why take that risk?" and while I understand the question I still don't have an answer, nor do I think I ever will. I know I will continue climbing as long as I can as it seems to be a way I define myself, so much a part of me that the risk seems worth taking.

And while there is no doubt that life is an adventure, the end of our lives is certain. Still, for one so young, for all of the young, one wishes that they had more time to be with us, to adventure with us, and time to be wise when we need that wisdom.

Trad climber
Ridgway, CO
Jul 11, 2010 - 07:27pm PT
Very sad and tragic news . . . climbing is a dangerous pursuit with extreme consequences both positive and potentially negative. Gravity defines the rules and is the master. Be careful out there!

Social climber
Jul 11, 2010 - 07:29pm PT
hey there say, dear elcap-pics..... oh my.... my heart feels so broken... as you said, it is hard to believe.... i had sent my family happy birthday wishes and NOW i see that someone else's family, a family, here has had a tragedy and awful news...

i am so very very sorry to hear this...
please, dear family, i dont know any of you, but i send my deep
condolences... so very sad to hear this...

after her hard work, and a happy climb, and no hugs to take home to her family.... :(

may the good lord be your "stay and anchor" as you get through this very very hard, sad time...
i never knew chris... i am thankful to now the bits that other share here...

i will be praying for you all...

Social climber
Jul 11, 2010 - 07:36pm PT
So sad. Condolences to her family and friends.

Trad climber
Jul 11, 2010 - 07:39pm PT
I don't know if Chris' family reads this forum, but if you do...my very deepest condolences to you for what must certainly be a very devastating loss.

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Jul 11, 2010 - 07:42pm PT
Very sad, very tragic. There has been far too much of this in the past year.

Boulder climber
The End Is Near Retirement Home
Jul 11, 2010 - 07:49pm PT
even though I didn't know her, I am very sorry to hear of this.
my best wishes to her friends and family.

Big Wall climber
Yosemite, CA
Jul 11, 2010 - 08:13pm PT
She was an amazing person - strong and determined. I was looking forward to roping up with her this week.

Its a very sad week in Yosemite.

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Jul 11, 2010 - 08:25pm PT
Link to Chris's webpage (from hollyclimber)


Condolences to all who knew her.

Trad climber
Jul 11, 2010 - 08:46pm PT
Blessings to her and her family.

Trad climber
Bay Area
Jul 11, 2010 - 09:04pm PT
I've been thinking of Chris all afternoon while I've been out. I never met Chris but have felt the same sense of loss as when any climber fails to return.
rgold: thanks for posting her website. What a dynamic and accomplished young woman!
My deepest condolences to Chris' family and friends, and to the climbers here who had the great fortune to rope up with her.

It's so easy to let our guard down when we think the climbing's over. We've had the thrill of the climb, the euphoria of the summit. Our minds are now wrapped in tiredness of body, thoughts of beer or dinner or loved ones at home. Even then one overlooked detail in the anchor, a careless move or loose boulder can end it.

Fred Glover

Trad climber
Millbrae, CA
Jul 11, 2010 - 09:22pm PT
I am so very upset about this. I can hardly believe it. She was such a smart, sweet person... so young, so much potential in her academic path, so full of such a fierce desire to climb. Oh Chris.


Social climber
El Portal Ca.
Jul 11, 2010 - 09:30pm PT
My sincere condolences to Chris's family, friends, and to the climbing community.
My heart goes out to you.


Mountain climber
Somewhere Up There
Jul 11, 2010 - 09:34pm PT
"the light that burns twice as bright burns for half as long - and you have burned so very, very brightly..."

with great sadness and sincere condolences
Captain...or Skully

Big Wall climber
Transporter Room 2
Jul 11, 2010 - 09:44pm PT
The Tribe is surely lessened by such a loss.
We'll miss you, Chris. Truly a magic gal.

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
Jul 11, 2010 - 09:56pm PT
devastating...I remember watching her through Tom's lens' and thinking what a beautiful, strong and inspirational climber. This another heartbreak in a string of many...to have touched so many in such a short life...our difficult job to continue on to keep her spirit alive through all of us. Very sad.
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Ontario, Canada, eh?
Jul 11, 2010 - 10:06pm PT
Aw man, she just emailed me last week. How very sad. She was a very talented and motivated climber. I'm so sorry I didn't have much opportunity to get to know her well or to climb with her.

My condolences to her friends and family.

Ice climber
Ashland, Or
Jul 11, 2010 - 10:08pm PT
oh man... :(

It hurts to hear of an El Cap soloist going down on 3rd class terrain. Really sorry to hear about this. Take care friends and family.
Rick A

Boulder, Colorado
Jul 11, 2010 - 10:37pm PT
My sincere condolences to her family and friends. I have a daughter her age and I can imagine the pain her parents must feel.

Rick Accomazzo

Denise Umstot

Princess of the El Cap Bridge!
Jul 11, 2010 - 10:39pm PT
So very sad...Condolences to her friends and family.

Social climber
chica from chico, I don't claim to be a daisy
Jul 11, 2010 - 10:45pm PT
Incredibly sad news...heartbreaking..

Sincere condolences to all of her friends and family....

thinking about Jim Castelaz ...sending prayers and thoughts of comfort..


Gym climber
Wild Omar, CA
Jul 11, 2010 - 10:47pm PT
Another young and vibrant lady leaves the scene way too soon. My condolences to her friends and family. RIP Chris.

hanging from a crimp and crying for my mama.
Jul 11, 2010 - 10:58pm PT
I am so sorry.

Jul 11, 2010 - 11:07pm PT

Trad climber
It ain't El Cap, Oregon
Jul 11, 2010 - 11:11pm PT
Werner... Always a nice image that somehow brings peace to this sadness.

With all that has happened in the past two years with friends and acquaintances in the climbing world I am beginning to wonder...

It was oh so clear that Chris was a girl who got things done!

Trad climber
Jul 11, 2010 - 11:19pm PT
She looks like the kind of gal anyone would want to know. Very sad.

Mountain climber
San Diego
Jul 11, 2010 - 11:26pm PT
I am so sad that this has happened. :_(

May GOD give us all peace and comfort.

Peace and comfort to her family and friends especially.

This Earthly life is so short. It saddens me always.

Trad climber
Hollywood, CA
Jul 11, 2010 - 11:26pm PT
Didn't have the pleasure of knowing her but it still hurts one of us is gone. RIP Chris.

grass pass
Jul 11, 2010 - 11:49pm PT
Blessings to all who knew Chris Chan...family, friends, partners, colleagues.

Trad climber
e350 / Bishop
Jul 11, 2010 - 11:59pm PT
Just got back from a great weekend of climbing in Tuolumne, only to find this sad news,

My sincere condolences to friends and family,

Social climber
san joser
Jul 12, 2010 - 12:16am PT
Such a wonderful and inspirational woman!


Trad climber
Looking for love in all the right places...
Jul 12, 2010 - 12:35am PT
Oh dear. I am so sorry. Prayers and blessing to Chris' family and friends.

The vibrancy that many have described certain shines out in these photos.


Trad climber
Nevada City, CA
Jul 12, 2010 - 01:52am PT
Good thoughts to family and friends.

Social climber
"close to everything = not at anything", ca
Jul 12, 2010 - 02:23am PT
condolences to those who knew her (including several friends)
Erik Sloan

Jul 12, 2010 - 02:31am PT
Thanks Tom for posting this.

So great that we can come together here to celebrate a true inspiration in Chris(tina) Chan.

Condolences to the Chan family. Chris loved everyone in her life so much.

much much love,

Ottawa Doug

Social climber
Ottawa, Canada
Jul 12, 2010 - 03:11am PT
Oh No! I had exchanged emails with her just a week ago, although I rarely do with anyone on the taco stand. Chris had such a zest for life and now this. I have not a clue what I should say. Condolences to family and friends. (this seems inadequate). Thanks Tom for posting this, painful though it is, we needed to know about this. Chris Chan was very special.


Doug Pratt-Johnson

Big Wall climber
Jul 12, 2010 - 03:20am PT
Condolences to family and friends.
Rest in peace, Chris...

Chris Chan - undying flame

Trad climber
Jul 12, 2010 - 03:23am PT
Any details on exactly what happened?
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Jul 12, 2010 - 03:30am PT
For details, see bottom of first page of this thread.

Social climber
New Zealand -> Santa Barbara
Jul 12, 2010 - 03:48am PT
This is tragic. My condolences to all her family and friends.

Jul 12, 2010 - 08:18am PT
My heart goes out to the family and friends of Chris. Having never had the luck of meeting Chris I can only imagine of the qualities she exuded from the photos posted above. Honest, determined, balanced, optimistic, energetic, compassionate and happy are the words that come to mind seeing images of your daughter / friend.

With empathy,



Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Jul 12, 2010 - 09:21am PT
My condolences to family and friends.
I also did not know Chris except through this thread.
Clearly she was an exceptional and much loved person.

Trad climber
Placerville, California
Jul 12, 2010 - 10:05am PT
that is rough. im sorry to see a good girl depart.
sympathy to all of those whom are struggling with this.

...chasing the sky.

Trad climber
Somewhere halfway over the rainbow
Jul 12, 2010 - 10:43am PT
When I first saw this thread I didn't want to open it. We have all lost so many wonderful people in the last few years that it was hard to go there again. I never knew or even met Chris but reading through this thread I realize that she was a dynamic and delightful person. Such a tragic loss. My deepest condolences to family and friends.

Trad climber
Top of the Mountain Mun
Jul 12, 2010 - 11:26am PT
Oh boy, this is very sad indeed. My condolences to Chris's family friends and many climbing partners.

Jul 12, 2010 - 11:30am PT
Sad news. I don't like descents.

Condolences to her friends and family.

Todd Gordon

Trad climber
Joshua Tree, Cal
Jul 12, 2010 - 11:52am PT
So sorry to hear this.....condolences to loved ones and family...

Trad climber
The Great North these days......
Jul 12, 2010 - 12:07pm PT
I never met Chris but did follow her on Clints and Toms posts over the last couple of years. So sad.


Social climber
State of decay
Jul 12, 2010 - 12:08pm PT
Sad, sad , sad. My good thoughts go out to family and friends.Seems I have been repeating this mantra all to often in the last few years. Is this just a function of the gift of growing older? Bittersweet indeed.
Climb on Chris...

Trad climber
Lake Tahoe
Jul 12, 2010 - 12:21pm PT
Very sad. A true adventurer.

Toyota Tacoma
Jul 12, 2010 - 12:24pm PT
I am at a loss. Chris's tenacity and spirit were something that gave us all something to look up to, and if you were lucky enough to have met her, the energy she gave off was infectious. How could you NOT want to get right out of your well warmed seat at the bridge and start packing your haulbags?
Chris, you had quite the ride, and thanks for sharing it with us.


Jul 12, 2010 - 01:02pm PT
Her memorial page is public at:


Her friends and family are following the memorial page and it would be nice to consolidate everything in one place, it would be a great help if you posted to the page in addition to this thread. In addition, all information about memorials and gatherings will be posted there as well. Chris touched so many people in her life and I can't believe she is gone.

Trad climber
Mountain View
Jul 12, 2010 - 01:35pm PT
man, this is the worst part of the sport we love and the one we never think about until we are forced to. A true loss to the friends, family and community left behind. My condolences to all those that loved her, knew her, met her or admired her.

Trad climber
cesspool central
Jul 12, 2010 - 02:11pm PT
I remember meeting her on the third pitch on Third Pillar of Dana last year, fast, agile, and full of life! The energy she beamed was unbelievable, she and her partner ran in and ran back out, just absolutley amazing! Condolesences to her family...will be catching a drink.

Trad climber
Clovis, CA
Jul 12, 2010 - 02:54pm PT
I was on the same traverse a month ago, unroped, and carrying a pack. I'm nowhere near the climber that Chris was. Makes me think twice about exposed terrain while unroped....especially with a pack on. I can't imagine what her partner was and is going through.

Social climber
Newport, OR
Jul 12, 2010 - 03:06pm PT
God Bless...

Trad climber
Behind the Zion Curtain
Jul 12, 2010 - 05:14pm PT
So sad. My heart goes out to all who were close to her.

SF Bay Area
Jul 12, 2010 - 06:15pm PT
I managed to reach Torsten Treufeld, Chris's climbing partner in China. He wanted me to share their post here:
They will have a memorial service this weekend in Beijing.

Social climber
Bouncy Tiggerville
Jul 12, 2010 - 06:28pm PT
Thanks for the link, way.

I borrowed this from the link, it shows such spirit - breaks my heart:


Jul 12, 2010 - 06:36pm PT
What a spirit

Rest In Peace

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
Jul 12, 2010 - 06:53pm PT
Chris, you inspire me. Thank you for our day together.

For those of you who knew Chris and would find comfort in learning about her last day, I put a summary on the facebook page discussion board, linked above but I'll link it again.


Thank you to everyone for your thoughts.


Trad climber
san diego
Jul 12, 2010 - 07:04pm PT
So sad, so sorry...

R.I.P. Chris!

Social climber
Jul 12, 2010 - 07:04pm PT
Stay strong, Jim. My thoughts are with you.


Jul 12, 2010 - 07:11pm PT
my heartfelt sympathy and condolences to her family and friends -- from the pictures and other posts, it is clear that they have suffered a terrible loss. very sad.

Trad climber
Santa Clara, Ca.
Jul 12, 2010 - 07:22pm PT
God bless and may she rest now.

me and some friends were staring at Eichorn over beers on the Bunny Slopes ledge Saturday evening. It was so beautiful. We had no idea a beautiful spirit had just been lost.


Trad climber
Hollywood, CA
Jul 12, 2010 - 08:57pm PT
I don't know why but this loss upsets me a great deal. RIP Chris.

Wish I'd known her.

Any woman who solos the Captain.....MAD props.

Social climber
Martinez, CA
Jul 12, 2010 - 11:27pm PT
Very sorry to hear of this loss. Sending love to all of her family and friends.

A fellow climber,

Social climber
the other Disney in...CA
Jul 13, 2010 - 12:10am PT
Terrible shock to hear this news. Followed her accomplishments in the valley with awe and amazement. Humbled by her will and determination. From what people that knew her well have said about her, she was a beautiful person that sent sunshine into people's lives with her gentle and kind spirit.


Big Wall climber
Jul 13, 2010 - 04:31am PT
No - No -Noooo!


I just found out - tears streaming down my face,


Chris - my dear Christina - I can't bear this again, please come back...


Social climber
Jul 13, 2010 - 07:24am PT
hey there say, pierre... oh my... :( i am very sorry for your loss, that you just now learned of... :(

prayers for you, today, along with for her family...

Trad climber
southampton ny
Jul 13, 2010 - 12:58pm PT
It is with overwhelming sadness that I write this. I had the brief pleasure of meeting Chris on the summit of Cathedral Peak that tragic day. My climbing partner Patrick and I chatted with Chris and Jim for about 20 minutes on the summit of Cathedral, and in that brief time, you could tell the kind of bright spirit Chris had.
As Patrick and I descended Cathedral, we spotted Chris and Jim on the summit of Eichorn and took a few pictures of them. A few minutes later we heard Jim's shouts and realized what had happened. We let Jim know we were helping, and reminded him to stay safe. Then Patrick, who is an EMT, and another helpful climber, Ryan from Montana, andJim went to search for Chris, while I climbed to the ridge on Cathedral and called 911. Unfortunately, we were to learn it was a recovery, not a rescue.
A couple of thoughts, first, I have to commend the YOSAR team for their quick response and professionalism. Dave and Kevin in particular demonstrated great compassion as we hiked out with Jim.
Second, needless to say Jim was (and I'm sure, still is) devastated. To those of you who know him, he can use your love and support.
My sympathies go out to all those who knew and loved Chris.

Ideeho-dee-do-dah-day boom-chicka-boom-chicka-boom
Jul 13, 2010 - 01:06pm PT
This news is like a sucker punch to the gut.

I'm so sorry for Chris and everyone who knew her and all of us that didn't but wish we had.

Trad climber
Jul 13, 2010 - 03:15pm PT
I'm so sorry to hear this news! I didn't know Chris but can tell through this thread how amazing she was as a person. I can imagine the joy she felt on top of Cathedral--for those of us who climb that mountain repeatedly, it is such a special place. This is such a tragic loss and my heart goes out to those of her friends and family who are hurting right now.

Jul 13, 2010 - 06:08pm PT
In Memory of Chris Chan Memorial Service for Chris Chan
Sunday July 18, 2010, 1-3 pm
Stanford Memorial Church
Stanford, CA 94305

Reception to follow.

El Portal
Jul 13, 2010 - 06:10pm PT
The world lost a beautiful and talented woman. I'm sorry we never got to do our wall, Chris.

State of Mine
Jul 13, 2010 - 06:41pm PT
i hope she is continuing her journeys in another place, and love to her friends and family....

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Jul 13, 2010 - 11:04pm PT
My condolences, sounds like a hell of a woman. It's turning out to be another tough year.

Trad climber
Santa Clara, Ca.
Jul 13, 2010 - 11:24pm PT
In Memory of Chris Chan Memorial Service for Chris Chan
Sunday July 18, 2010, 1-3 pm
Stanford Memorial Church
Stanford, CA 94305

Reception to follow.

I may be able to make that. I may have to tell my current pastor why I miss his service. He'll undoubtedly understand though...sh#t, he may actually come.

Good time though. Most people can pull both prayer sessions off.

I'll try to make it. God has already blessed her. He knows she was loved here, and she was inspired by a Godly quest for peaks.

I broke down at my buddies ceremony a year ago...tough stuff. You think you have your sh#t together, know what praise you will reign on them, and then BAM, it hits you.....

All you can do is weep through your words and try to finish your praise.

Word up to all other climbers. Be safe. You are not invincible. Be safe, guys and gals. It's hurts really bad when you're gone.

Sorry for the rant. I love you guys though...

Social climber
El Portal Ca.
Jul 14, 2010 - 12:00am PT

Social climber
chica from chico, I don't claim to be a daisy
Jul 14, 2010 - 01:58am PT


Social climber
Martinez, CA
Jul 14, 2010 - 03:21am PT
Even though I never met her, she has touched my life in a profound way. The stories and pictures posted here on ST and on her FB memory page reveal this person's outstanding character and spirit. And she was beautiful. I know of sadness when someone close to you dies (it sucks), but I choose to celebrate this inspiring woman's life. Here's to you Chris and that gorgeous smile! :)

When someone smiled at me today,
l started smiling too.
I passed around the corner,
and someone saw my grin,
When he smiled l realized,
l'd passed it on to him.
l thought about that smile,
then l realized it's worth.
A single smile, just like mine
could travel round the earth.
So, if you feel a smile begin,
don't leave it undetected,
let's start an epidemic quick,
and get the world infected!

-from Raja Yoga Philosophy


Social climber
Jul 14, 2010 - 04:48am PT
hey there say, gobirdgo...

thanks for lifting up jim's name to us, once again...
jim---i am praying for you at this hard time, once again...

Big Wall climber
A Token of My Extreme
Jul 14, 2010 - 11:15am PT

Social climber
Jul 14, 2010 - 06:08pm PT
Wow. Looking at the photographs on the Facebook page; what a bright light in the time she was here: My condolences to family, friends and loved ones.

Trad climber
The state of confusion
Jul 14, 2010 - 09:36pm PT

My condolences to her family and friends.

GoBirdGo, you must be devestated, but thank you for your

So sad.
Hug your loved ones.

Trad climber
Bay area
Jul 14, 2010 - 10:24pm PT

(video news report)

Trad climber
Jul 15, 2010 - 12:38am PT
What a smile! What a sad loss to family, friends, partners and those of us that have yet to meet her.

Trad climber
Jul 15, 2010 - 12:51am PT
I just realized, Chris Chan introduced me to ST by sending the below link.

I'll have to blame her the next time I waste hours here---might as well, since I can't think of anything else (except free-soloing) anyone could hold against that wonderful soul.

Here's the email exchange that began countless wasted hours on ST for me. Chris, after leading every pitch of Leaning Tower, had wrenched her knee on literally the very last move, and had to sit out a trip up Half Dome. She was there in spirit (and in borrowed gear) and so supportive of us, anyway, though.

God, she's gone too soon.

---------- Forwarded message --

From: Chris Chan <cgchan@stanford.edu>
Date: Jun 17, 2006 10:22 AM
Subject: Re: TR!
To: emonahan@stanford.edu

So glad to hear!!!! Can't wait to talk to you about it.
And can't wait to do it in August... :)

By the way, since I can't climb I just read about it now. You are
mentioned in this guy's TR on supertopo on Steck-Salathe at
Way to go :)


At 09:26 AM 6/17/2006, you wrote:

Hi Chris,
We're back safely...and tired! It went well! We fixed pitches Wed,
slept at base, had a very long day Thrs, and topped out, all of us by
5:45pm on Friday. Jared and Sam put in some stellar leads!
We will have to meet and tell you all about it!
On 6/17/06, Chris Chan <cgchan@stanford.edu> wrote:

Hope you're safe and well!
I'm eager to hear news.
Write and say how it was when you can!
Karl Baba

Trad climber
Yosemite, Ca
Jul 15, 2010 - 12:58am PT
She was obviously a bright light and her friends and family are bound to miss her.

They named Cathedral Peak that for a reason. I've climbed it many times and often felt a unique sense of the sacred there unparalleled elsewhere in the park. It's also the very heart of yosemite, as snowmelt from there flows down to cathedral lakes, tenaya lake and down through yosemite valley. If you time is, for reasons known to spirit alone, up, then Cathedral is a blessed location to make your last stand.

May she flourish on her next journey and may those who loved her feel the love in the grief of missing her


Tony Bird

Northridge, CA
Jul 15, 2010 - 04:49pm PT
losing someone like this always feels like a terrible robbery. as i posted only a month ago when a promising ucla grad student died in yosemite, there is no easy way out of the grief, but franz schubert explored the territory once:


listen to the whole quartet. the third movement is the heart of it. i think it's the best piece of chamber music ever written, and it will take you to a slightly better place.

i notice that chris was pursuing an idealistic and eclectic career course, and i hope she might inspire others to do the same. her curriculum vitae includes both technical and cultural studies and was recently focused on environmental issues in china. i don't know the specifics of her work or interests, but i know from my own experience and that of my family that eclecticism and academics are often at loggerheads. it takes unique resolve and resourcefulness to resist the pressure to specialize and instead pursue an integrated course which will have some real long-term benefit. chris's career was cut short, but i suggest others follow her lead. if it was anything like her climbing, it would surely have succeeded.

i'm afraid we've lost many great climbers in those vulnerable moments after the main climb is over and we let our guard down too soon. giusto gervasutti and tom patey come to mind, and there are many others. let's all be mindful of that when we climb, and remember this fine young woman.

Big Wall climber
33 45' N 117 52' W
Jul 15, 2010 - 07:53pm PT
It hurts to hear this.

Trad climber
Santa Clara, Ca.
Jul 15, 2010 - 08:10pm PT
Nice Schubert piece, Tony....

May God bless Chris....

Trad climber
southampton ny
Jul 15, 2010 - 10:28pm PT
Thanks Steve W.
The amazing support of the climbing community is a blessing.

Gym climber
Green Cove slabbage BITD!
Jul 16, 2010 - 10:32pm PT
Wow kiddo, we hardly knew ya.

Thanks for that day.


Trad climber
Jul 17, 2010 - 12:41am PT
Such a bright star. This hurts.

Trad climber
Santa Clara, Ca.
Jul 17, 2010 - 10:33am PT
The memorial is tomorrow at Stanford.

Trad climber
Jul 18, 2010 - 04:31pm PT

sad, sadder, and saddest.

I usually avoid commenting on these "climber dies" threads. I sort of feel words can't do justice and I'm left speachless. But for Chris I feel somehow even more sad.

I didn't even know her but I miss her already. The photo posted up-thread by MisterE totally captured me.

May grace rain on her, her family members, on all her loved ones, and on all climbers seeking the fulfillment of being.


Trad climber
El Portal, CA
Jul 19, 2010 - 12:53am PT
I met Chris in El Portal at a friend's last fall. I was getting ready to climb El Cap for my first time, Chris told us that she was going to be soloing the Shield at the same time. It was so inspiring to watch her lights go up and down above us at night. Whenever I got scared on lead, I thought of her above, climbing much harder and doing it alone, and it gave me the courage to go for it.

Chris was so full of life, so passionate, so modest, and just WENT for it. She will inspire me for the rest of my life, along with I'm sure countless others. Her spirit will live on in all she has touched. Thinking of you, Chris.

Trad climber
new paltz, ny
Aug 4, 2010 - 07:07pm PT
sorry to hear about a talanted climber dying, but hey climbing is a dangerous sport

rip chris chan

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
Jul 6, 2012 - 09:23pm PT
Pre-two-year anniversary bump.

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Jul 6, 2012 - 10:02pm PT
The last few years: Chris Chan, JB, Craig Luebben, Jonny Copp, Micah Dash, Jack Roberts, Michael Ybarra.........so sad.

Gym climber
the secret topout on the Chockstone Chimney
Jul 6, 2012 - 10:07pm PT

That makes it two years since we had that fun day getting rained off all by ourselves up by the slab happy. What a great attitude she had.
Karl Baba

Trad climber
Yosemite, Ca
Jul 6, 2012 - 10:27pm PT
Wishing her well

Love and condonlences to her loved ones ~


Trad climber
El Dorado Hills, CA
Jul 6, 2012 - 10:43pm PT
Deepest condolences.
Jay Renneberg

Jul 8, 2012 - 01:03am PT
I am so sorry to hear about Chris. A death, as all of you know, is never easy. I will be visiting Yosemite from August 8 to the 12. i thought of placing the last of his ashes in Camp 4? Anyone else have an idea? Thanks everyone for your support and love for both myself and Pam.

Jul 8, 2012 - 11:57am PT

Scattering Cremated Remains

The National Park Service normally grants permission to those wishing to scatter cremated remains within the borders of Yosemite National Park.

To receive permission, please send a letter to Attn: Cremated Remains Permits, National Park Service, PO Box 577, Yosemite National Park, CA 95389. Include in your letter your name, address, and daytime phone number. Also include the name of the deceased and his/her relationship to you (e.g., sister, husband, mother, friend, etc.).

With a letter of permission, you may scatter cremated remains with the following conditions:

All such activity must be done out of sight of any public access, such as roads, trails, parking areas, etc.;
All such activity must be at least 100 yards from any watercourse;
Cremains must be spread over an area large enough that no single portion is accumulated in one place.
No markers of any kind may be left to commemorate the event. However, the Yosemite Chapel keeps a Book of Memories and the deceased's name could be entered in that book. Please call the chapel at 209/372-4831 for more information.

Yosemite National Park is under federal jurisdiction and is, therefore, sovereign in its lands and not subject to the limitations regarding land use by the State of California. Permission by the National Park Service to scatter cremated remains assumes that necessary permission from the state has been secured for the disposition of cremated remains.

Two years ago or more I took part in a similar memorial in Yosemite. Yosemite is very like home.

The loss felt by yourself and Pam is shared by us all.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Jul 8, 2012 - 12:07pm PT
Ask Jack's friends which Yosemite climb was his favorite and I would be happy and honored to help get his cremains placed or spread at the location of your choice. Contact me about it.

Chris had my respect right away for her commitment to clean climbing on walls. She took a long fall on the Dihedral Wall and stuck to her guns and finished the lead clean.

Taking long falls, gathering yourself and getting right back up there to stare down another one and move through the fear and uncertainty without reaching for the hammer, chisel or drill, THAT'S THE REAL DEAL!

Chris was a cut above most of the Monkeys in that regard from the outset and EARNED my respect.

I eagerly looked forward to watching her career unfold before tragedy cut it short.

Rest In Peace Chris but I sure wish you were still here making big noise quietly.

Jul 10, 2012 - 12:23pm PT
Thanks so much for all your info and offers. I have contacted Pam in Spain, she's completed the Camino by the by, and have asked for her thoughts on it. Jack and I did a three week stay in Yosemite and started off at Glacier Point and ended in Tuolumne. Thinking maybe the meadows, unless Pam or some friends have a different thoughts. I will send off a request to scatter his remains,but if I don't hear by the time we leave, will scatter him regardless. Then I will take him home to Santa Monica and that will be his last stop. Again thank you all so much for your love and support. Though I am not a climber, I can understand the draw of the beauty of the sport and the special relationship Jack had with all of you. Blessings to everyone.

Chris (Roberts) Legerski

Trad climber
Save your a_s, reach for the brass...
Jul 10, 2012 - 12:50pm PT
A few Yo summits/spots that I know Jack would approve of: Top of El Cap, top of Half Dome, top of Astroman/Washington Column, top of Fairview Dome.

Big Wall climber
Crestline CA
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 10, 2012 - 06:47pm PT
I think about her from time to time and it still hurts a lot. She was a rare one and we were fortunate to have had her with us, albeit for such a short time. Through our memories she lives on... thinking about her this week.

Trad climber
El Portal, CA
Jul 11, 2012 - 11:22am PT
Missing you Chris. Her infectious spirit always lifted those around her.
When you were with her, she made you feel worthy, no matter what you were doing.
RIP Chris

Ice climber
Jul 13, 2012 - 10:53pm PT
I think Jack would feel it wherever you choose. It might be hard to get to the tops of some things, others you can just drive to. I think El Cap meadows, or even on the river bed to the side of El Cap, would work also. I think Jack would just be sooo happy to know that YOU were in Yosemite, thinking of him. He always spoke of great affection a time long ago when your folks (maybe you were there too?) visited him there.
Big love to you,

Gym climber
overchalking on Grant's Crack
Oct 30, 2012 - 06:14pm PT
"This is awesome!!!!!" (huge smile)

--CC, climbing. Thanks for bringing the stoke Chris.

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
May 27, 2013 - 12:15pm PT
Bump for Memorial Day

Ottawa Doug

Social climber
Ottawa, Canada
May 27, 2013 - 02:03pm PT
A rare sweetie she was indeed!

May 27, 2013 - 02:12pm PT
There are some really good people on the other side. I'm sad she's not with us but at least... Well at least she has some really good company.

I bet my parents are feeding her Baklava while my best friend Ron is making her laugh so hard she can't breath while they are all watching Reardon and Bachar make funny moves on the rock.

Hugs to All who've lost someone these past few years,


Boulder climber
Nov 6, 2015 - 10:51pm PT

Social climber
Nov 6, 2015 - 11:56pm PT
hey there say, biotch... say, thank you for sharing this story, of her life,
that you found...

she is inspiring, someone now... i just read the
article to a friend, on the phone...

you can always fit your duty, and fun, into the day,
if you really want to... we were admiring how she
was so diligent that way... and how she loved her friends...

thank you...

very sad, though... :(
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