5 open books is a death trap


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vic ticious

Advanced climber
yosemite, ca
Topic Author's Original Post - Apr 15, 2002 - 12:37am PT
Over the weekend there were 4 injuries due to rock fall in the 5 open books. On Saturday 04/13/02 three climbers were injured when a bowling ball size block struck a belayer on the last pitch of Selaginella, then continued to pummel both the leader and belayer of a party on the 2nd pitch.

On Sunday 04/14/02 a block was dislodge from the top of Commitment and struck a climber leading the first pitch.

The good news is that every one involved was wearing a helmet. The bad news is that even wearing doesn't guarantee your safety.

Climb under other parties at your own risk!!!

Novice climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 15, 2002 - 07:08am PT
5 open books is nothing compared to the loose choss you will see in the Rockies. On Raptor, for example you could kill people on the last pitch(or any pitch) very easy. Everything is loose and tettering on it's end.
The difference is most people know this and are carefull!!!!!!!
So I say: tell the f*#ken idiots, who arn't watching what there doing, to be more f*#ken carful with loose rocks.
Any climb is a death trap if you have ignorent as#@&%es climbing above you...

Novice climber
Bay Area
Apr 15, 2002 - 03:13pm PT
There's tons of mellon sized boulders lieing on a steep angled bed of loose dirt and scrub at the top of the 5 open books. Even for the experienced traveler it's easy to send one of those potential killers screaming down at the helpless climbers below.

The rule of thumb is: be first in line. I don't climb there unless I'm absolutely certain no one is above me. I've had 20 lb rocks whiz by at terminal velicity when on Commitment and Munginella. And I haven't been back since.

Novice climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 15, 2002 - 05:42pm PT
that's bullshit Jason....people can watch where they step and what they grab hold of...It is insane to say you can't help knocking rocks off on people below you.....you can definitly concentrate more and focus more...some people just don't care or are oblivious...the beginner rating and lazy approuch.....now accidents do happen to even the most carful climber..but....
I say again..If you see as#@&%es wandering around carelessly.. educate them.......
Vic Rattlehead

Novice climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 15, 2002 - 08:35pm PT
Sounds like climbing to me... always gotta worry about the death thing... 'aint it fun!!

Novice climber
Apr 15, 2002 - 09:24pm PT
Hey radical, have you been up there? If so then you'd agree that this is an extreme example of a situation where it's far too easy to dislodge a killer sized rock. Baring the rare scrambler, only climbers actually traverse the ledges above this area. And I think that the climbers in Yosemite (for the most part, and myself included) are very conscious of rock fall hazards, and they avoid unnecessary exposure to climbers below them. But, even when being careful, it’s not assurance for the climbers standing in the rock fall alley. So when my ass is on the line, I just don't take chances. You can if you want.

Furthermore it's not bowlshit to ignore reality; the reality is that rock fall happens at the 5OB area routinely. It's bowlshit to think that you can keep it from happening by screaming at the people who read this website. Actually I wish it were that easy, and I would incline to agree with you, but the truth is rock fall is so common to the 5 open books it's beyond this debate. I mean the only way to "educate" people and prevent a would-be sinner so as to prevent a dislodged rock would be to stand there at the base of the routes and warn each and every climber of the hazard associated with these climbs (and you’d still get plenty of accidental dislodgings). Are you (radical) willing to spend your precious time doing that? If so, then you’ve got more time on your hands than me, and I would applaud your efforts. However I just don’t that that’s a good solution.

So, now that we’ve pissed a little, lets get real. What do you think of these ideas?

1. Post signs at the base warning the high potential for rock fall in this area, as well encourage care when topping out and walking off.
2. Hold a “Let the Rocks Fall” event, where the base is closed off and volunteers clean off all the millions of rocks. (I don’t advocate this by the way, and it’s probably a bad idea, but I want to see the responses)
3. Make beta postings to all the routes in the 5 OB area on this (and other) website(s) and encourage Chris Mac (and other guidebook authors) to add more specific rock fall info to the route descriptions.

Please add to this list of ideas if you have a good one.


Intermediate climber
The Underworld
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 15, 2002 - 09:39pm PT
Dude, you can't send all of the loose rock and destroy the habitat of many organisms (that's the tree hugger part). What is this, sponsored by the ASCA??? I recomend posting a sniper (I believe Wesley Sniper is for hire...) in the woods near the base to take out any "would be trundlers" that may happen to enter your specific climbing area. If you can't afford Wesley then I suggest sucking up the death (or crippled) potential or finding a vacant crag.

Advanced climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 15, 2002 - 10:46pm PT

This was the second place I climbed in yosemite. I remember it fondly because I walked to the top of Yosemite fall's the first time I tried to find it..What an idiot...
It is a beginner place and there are beginners there. Because of this there are stupid people knocking rocks off on people.......period...If you think knocking a rock off while coiling the rope is excusable, than you are wrong...THis is the achytypical example of why rocks fall...Some jerk who is to lazy to coil his rope properly, sit's down on his lazy but and pulls it toward him, pulling rocks and what not out and , sending them down onto people heads...
I say again, watch what you are doing....save the spewing about your proud 5.8 lead untill after you have coiled the rope. That way you will see if it is caught, rapped, or near a rock.
And if you have a hard time with this, or this is too challenging in the 5 open book's area, then don't come to the Canadain Rockies. 5 open books is a gloosy polish compared to anything you will climb in the Rockies,(there are more loose rocks by a factor of 100) or most Alpine enviroments for that matter.. There are litteraly thousands of big and little boulders perched in all kinds of insane places on routes in the rockies, and there are sometimes 10 partys on a 10 pitch route..The occasional rock is knocked off, I have knocked them off a few times...But it was allways because I wasn't paying attention.....I have had to tiptoe off more than a few routes for fear of killing somebody...crazy
Concerning death and danger...Well, i like death and danger...But I have been around my fair share of gommers, who can do nothing more than slobber and sh#t on themselves because of a head injury....It ain't pretty...
Besides, if you are any type of human at all it will destroy your climbing carrer if you are unlucky enough to kill somebody with a rock that you knocked off...
So, the same way you are focused on your lead and gear placement during the climb, be focused on loose rocks during and after the climb.
Peace out and I look forward to seeing anybody in this area in a few days.I want to go back there and climb all the sweet hand cracks I missed the first time.....radical

Advanced climber
colorado springs, colorado
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 15, 2002 - 11:05pm PT
radical...has some issues

Advanced climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 16, 2002 - 12:25am PT
Hey Radical,

If you expect to get a pulitzer, I think you should learn how to edit, spell-checker or not.

--- Satan's advocate and proud supporter...

Novice climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 16, 2002 - 08:23am PT
I know how to speel chack and edit....when I have tooooooooooo, but it is funer to write rough and fast......espeshially since it piss's off anal retentive dumb ass's like you so much.........
clean you ass now little SAtan, mommy is checking it later to see what a good job you have done.....

Novice climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 16, 2002 - 08:43am PT
Ummm, on second thought maybe that was a bit harsh. Sorry it has been a long day.
But what's this issue thing? Do you mean issues of Climbing Magazine? Cause I love that rag.I can't wait to recieve it every month. Except for the times they publish it every other month. In which case, I can't wait even more than I couldn't on the monthy issues. (:
tree hugger

Novice climber
the woods
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 16, 2002 - 03:44pm PT
I beleive most guide books do warn about rock fall. I know that CM's Supertopo does warn about "climber caused rock fall" in this area.

The simple matter is, you should expect to have something dropped on your head if your going to climb behind another party. It's like if you drive to work; you should expect to encounter at least one moron on the road.

Cleaning the ledges off in order to reduce the risk is ludicrous. If you want sanitized climbing stay in the gym, only tell me where you are so I can throw rocks at you while you climb ;-)
Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
Apr 17, 2002 - 12:45am PT
i posted alerts to the beta pages for:

laughing hysterically

Novice climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 17, 2002 - 05:23pm PT
You guys are hilarious, I f*#king love this site, Chris please dont change the forum format!

Novice climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 20, 2002 - 01:53am PT
Hey!!! I thought we weren't goin to call each other ass----etc... anymore...

So radical has climbed too many finger cracks and he can't type anymore... so what... I already gave him sh-t about it earlier... he's working on his Pulitzer ya know...

Novice climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 20, 2002 - 03:02am PT
Ah, English teacher under yet another pseudonym. Actually that was wade icy ya corrected. I just helped him rip ya a new one. I wouldn't mind the dig's so much, although the finger crack crack was pretty good. But there is something down right mean and arrogant about your corrective tone. Reminds me of something I can't quite put my finger on.....hmmmmmmmm...... Let me see- lack of humor-lack of wit-and a certain edge to your writing that reminds me of an angry, evil old .......I got it.......You remind me of my old, nasty English teacher...hahahahaHA........Be careful English teacher, you know what happened to her now don't you........
PS. please spare me the multiple negative post's from your varied personality's.........radical


Novice climber
Satan's Kitchen
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 20, 2002 - 12:58pm PT
radical, radical, radical...,

So you think I am English Teacher do you??


Mean and arrogant, maybe but no sense of humor...??

I'm the BASTARD that has forced humor into the sorry-ass, tea-drinking, bored-sick lives of our respected fellow viewers.

I liked your story about your old E Teach!! Anything with DEATH or DEAD BODIES is WAY COOL!!! Just ask Satan!!

So pull your finger out of that damn crack and fire us another piss drool or death story!!!!!

I promise I won't correct your anti-dextrous typing...



Intermediate climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 22, 2002 - 06:36pm PT
I personally think that it's time to get moderators for this site. I would prefer no one reading/using this forum then having non-climbers read it and think we are all a bunch of morons. Hell, I'm thinking about tracing all of your IP's so I can hunt you down and trash your computer so you can never post again.

Advanced climber
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 22, 2002 - 09:25pm PT
Now, now dirt, no need to get hostile. You seem to want to become moderator so that that this forum is acceptable to what YOU think is right. Pipe down and let it be. Are you too concerned for your "climber image" and what the general public thinks? Morons??? Speak for yourself.
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