Friends missing on Palcaraju

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TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Original Post - Jul 26, 2012 - 10:29am PT
From Ted at Skyline Adventure School
"Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Ben Horne and Gil Weis, two missing climbers who were attempting the South Face of Palcaraju and are overdue by 5 days. Our team of rescuers is up on the glacier this morning doing a preliminary search. At 7am this morning they found the climbers tent and are now searching the surrounding area."
Please send out your good thoughts and prayers to Gill, Ben and families and friends. I will up date when I get more news. Hoping against hope, this is sad news.
TY
The upper summit area of Palcaraju from the west.
The upper summit area of Palcaraju from the west.
Credit: TYeary
The Alpine

Big Wall climber
Jul 26, 2012 - 10:35am PT
Damn. Hoping this turns out ok.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Jul 26, 2012 - 10:35am PT
Rough news. I hope that they are still alive.
Hoots

climber
Toyota Tacoma
Jul 26, 2012 - 10:36am PT
Not good news, hoping for the best outcome though. Ted is the man down there when it comes to organizing rescues, they have that going for them.
Ryan
philo

Trad climber
Somewhere halfway over the rainbow
Jul 26, 2012 - 10:37am PT
Sending out all the best energy I can muster.
Hoping for a positive outcome.
Gary

climber
"My god - it's full of stars!"
Jul 26, 2012 - 10:39am PT
Damn. Wishing them Joe Simpson luck.
neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
Jul 26, 2012 - 10:59am PT
hey there say,.... i will surely be praying...

thanks for passing the word, for them, so we can...

Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Jul 26, 2012 - 12:48pm PT
Ben is a great strong guy. Hope they are hiking out from the other side and will be safe shortly.
skotturi

Trad climber
San Diego
Jul 26, 2012 - 02:17pm PT
im waiting to hear, "they were spotted running hill repeats on the far side of the mountain".
Chugach Man

climber
Anchorage / San Diego
Jul 26, 2012 - 03:08pm PT
All the best to Gil and Ben, and thank you Ted for going out looking for them.
Bowie

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
Jul 26, 2012 - 03:32pm PT
This can't be happening. Sending all of my thoughts, hope, and prayers your way fellas!!
LMo

climber
San Diego
Jul 26, 2012 - 03:36pm PT
Thank you for posting up. All my best thoughts for Ben and Gil.
Doug Tomczik

climber
Bishop
Jul 26, 2012 - 03:53pm PT
Thank you to those giving so much energy whether that's searching or sending positive thoughts.

Ben, you still didn't respond to my comment...when are we moving in? We have lots of evening sets waiting and alpine missions!
brat

climber
El Portal
Jul 26, 2012 - 04:06pm PT
"I sit here in a coffee shop in Huaraz, Peru, planning another foray into the Cordillera Blanca, where the sense that one’s life is in the hands of the mountains can be as blinding as the endless white glaciers, and a thirst for glory can darken our better judgment more than the blackness of night."

From Gil's most recent post on pullharder, regarding the death of Michael Ybarra.

My thoughts are with you, guys.
noriko nakagawa

Trad climber
eldorado springs co
Jul 26, 2012 - 04:50pm PT
Ugh, not 2 more. Hoping for your safe return, Ben and Gil.

-Michelle
cultureshock

Trad climber
Mountain View
Jul 26, 2012 - 04:57pm PT
Fight hard to get home guys. We all want you back!

 Luke
TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 26, 2012 - 05:38pm PT
As of right now, there isn't anything new to report. We are just hanging in there. It has been cold and a bit windy. The south faces were loose and slightly loaded from small but recent snow fall. keeping a light in the widow guys. TY
JSpencerV

Trad climber
Santa Monica, CA
Jul 26, 2012 - 05:50pm PT
Sitting in La Casa De Zarela right now in Huaraz Peru. Just heard the news from Tony. I talked with Gil the night before he left. We were wondering why they hadnt gotten back to town. Such terrible news. My hopes are with them.
Fletcher

Trad climber
Fumbling towards stone
Jul 26, 2012 - 05:53pm PT
Pullin' and prayin' for them. Stay strong.

Eric
Scott_Nelson

Trad climber
Merica
Jul 26, 2012 - 06:00pm PT
Credit: Scott_Nelson

Credit: Scott_Nelson

Credit: Scott_Nelson

SteveW

Trad climber
The state of confusion
Jul 26, 2012 - 06:12pm PT

Good vibes for these guys. Tony, good on you guys helpin' out
too--be careful!!!
Scott_Nelson

Trad climber
Merica
Jul 26, 2012 - 06:12pm PT
Credit: Scott_Nelson

Credit: Scott_Nelson

Credit: Scott_Nelson
tamberly

Trad climber
san diego
Jul 26, 2012 - 07:15pm PT
Ben and Gil....I'm praying you guys are ok..and just WAY off route..please come home to your family and friends!
Ben-Ho

Big Wall climber
Edwards, CO
Jul 26, 2012 - 09:17pm PT
Gil on Lost Arrow
Gil on Lost Arrow
Credit: Ben-Ho

Gil on Lost Arrow.
klk

Trad climber
cali
Jul 26, 2012 - 09:24pm PT
wow, sorry for the news.

best to them and everyone involved.



Dolomite

climber
Anchorage
Jul 26, 2012 - 10:38pm PT
Keeping my thoughts positive for these guys. Come on, dudes, stay strong, we're all rooting for you.
TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 26, 2012 - 11:10pm PT
Steps were seen leading to the summit and down a ridge. Then nothing more. Perhaps tomorrow will bring answers. TY
johntp

Trad climber
socal
Jul 26, 2012 - 11:30pm PT
Hope they are well.
Bowie

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
Jul 27, 2012 - 12:21am PT
My favorite of Gil's writings:
http://pullharder.org/2012/05/28/letter-to-my-dad/
Please find those wings Gil, and get yourself back home.
Buster Jesik

Gym climber
Estes Park, CO
Jul 27, 2012 - 01:27am PT
Credit: Buster Jesik
Alowe

Trad climber
Wy
Jul 27, 2012 - 01:59am PT
I sure hope we are worked up over nothing. Stay and strong and get yourselves out I this one Gil and Ben!
Ryan Day Thompson

Trad climber
Denver
Jul 27, 2012 - 02:50am PT
Though I only know Gil, thoughts and prayers to them both :-(

Credit: Ryan Day Thompson
Colin Simon

Social climber
Boulder
Jul 27, 2012 - 02:51am PT
Credit: Colin Simon

Gil Weiss raging up the last pitch of Brain Freeze in Rocky Mountain Nat'l Park.

Great weather, great conditions, great climbing, great partner.
Anastasia

climber
InLOVEwithAris.
Jul 27, 2012 - 03:03am PT
Hoping and praying for the best.
AFS
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Jul 27, 2012 - 03:29am PT
Ben on tyrolean traverse.
Ben on tyrolean traverse.
Credit: Vitaliy M.

Sun Ribbon next day after Dark Star. I know Ben is an animal that has enough in the tank to get himself out of anything. Hoping for the best. This one was one of the most life altering trips for me.
Gil's sister

climber
Jul 27, 2012 - 03:51am PT
We are trying to get the embassy to get a rescue mission, they are unable to do so for the second day. we need a light aircraft for the searching around the peak to help our own rescue team to be as our eyes from above. Please Help
philo

Trad climber
Somewhere halfway over the rainbow
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:44am PT
Hoping to hear good news for the tribe. Come on boys hang tough!
rsgutier

Trad climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 09:40am PT
Come home boys!!!
Godspeed! Good luck and have strength!
eKat

climber
Jul 27, 2012 - 09:45am PT
BigBIGBigSkyMagic to everybody involved!

OXOXOXO

Kath
Jim Hefner

climber
La Verne, CA
Jul 27, 2012 - 09:46am PT
Hoping and praying there is no heartbreak at the end of this.
Gil's sister

climber
Jul 27, 2012 - 09:50am PT
Securing Air Support:

In event that we need the plane for longer than today, and the funds we have are spent, I have setup a PayPal account so that we may have friends and family gather financial support---should we need it.

The PayPal user ID email address is

quacamole1@gmail.com

Galit Weiss
travelin_light

climber
Boulder, Colorado
Jul 27, 2012 - 11:15am PT
Any climbers in the Cordillera Blanca, we need your help in the Cojup Valley. Your assistance would be very useful in getting supplies up to a search team on the SW ridge of Palcaraju Oeste. Please ping me at charles.ince@gmail.com if you have ways to help with this effort.
Daphne

Trad climber
Black Rock City
Jul 27, 2012 - 11:16am PT
Love and light and prayers for all concerned.
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jul 27, 2012 - 11:20am PT
Praying for the best outcome here......
Mr_T

Trad climber
Northern California
Jul 27, 2012 - 12:11pm PT
Praying for their safety. Hoping they're dug into a snow cave and waiting for rescue team.

[Edit: had asked about contacts at US embassy to get Peruvian military to assist.]
travelin_light

climber
Boulder, Colorado
Jul 27, 2012 - 12:21pm PT
At this point we have not seen ANY meaningful collaboration beyond the civillian efforts. Unfortunately the US Embassy or Peruvian authorities/government are "waiting for more information" before they dedicate any real resources to this.

If anyone has a way to help us get better contacts into the Embassy they would be greatly appreciated. Contact me at charles.ince@gmail.com

At this point we are attempting to privately fund the aerial search on our own and use our own means to resupply the SAR effort that is being spearheaded by Ted's team.

Mr_T

Trad climber
Northern California
Jul 27, 2012 - 12:30pm PT
I agree that getting a civilian plane up in the air as fast as possible is the right thing to do.

See your re-edit.
cultureshock

Trad climber
Mountain View
Jul 27, 2012 - 12:35pm PT

Ben and the Zoroaster Temple


Ben on Denali

Sending you energy and support to get you on the path home!

 Luke
travelin_light

climber
Boulder, Colorado
Jul 27, 2012 - 12:53pm PT
Palcaraju Oeste, 7/2/12 satellite shot. Ben and Gil likely climbed the...
Palcaraju Oeste, 7/2/12 satellite shot. Ben and Gil likely climbed the south face, summited and then started down. Ground observations indicate their tracks seem to stop at the 5800 meter point.
Credit: travelin_light
Mr_T

Trad climber
Northern California
Jul 27, 2012 - 12:54pm PT
It may be worth contacting Dianne Feinstein's office in SF. Senator Feinstein's husband attempted Everest once. She may be sympathetic to this cause. She will have considerable influence on the embassy in Peru.
Fig's Lady

Social climber
Bishop, CA and Tucson Arizona
Jul 27, 2012 - 01:17pm PT
I sent an e-mail to Senator Feinstein and also left a message with her office in Los Angeles Phone: (310) 914-7300 Perhaps other calls to this office will bring this situation to the forefront of her agenda. My sincere thoughts and best wishes to to all who are affected by this.
Aerili

climber
Reno, NV
Jul 27, 2012 - 01:21pm PT
This is just terrible news in light of the fact that I am still recovering from my friend Mike Ybarra's death....even though I didn't know these men it feels more real to me now.

I, too, read the pullharder entry about Mike and it feels so disorienting after seeing this news.

Hoping for a happier outcome this time.
Fig's Lady

Social climber
Bishop, CA and Tucson Arizona
Jul 27, 2012 - 01:21pm PT
Sorry that I don't know who is who (other than user names) so I suggested she look at the forum post and contact Chris McNamara. Maybe someone can send her a more direct contact.
Ron Anderson

Trad climber
USA Moundhouse Nev. and land o da SLEDS!
Jul 27, 2012 - 01:22pm PT
I called as well, although ---i just talked with someone in the office.
Kevo

Mountain climber
Denver, CO
Jul 27, 2012 - 01:27pm PT
I utilized an ex-pat(Tim)years ago in Huaraz to coordinate logistical efforts for a trek around the Codillera Huayhuash. He may be able to help in your SAR efforts and be able to expedite services. He operates a local coffee shop here's his email: tibben@ocf.berkeley.edu

http://huaylas.com/californiacafe/#

I hope for a safe return of Gil and Ben.
GPSTravelMaps.com

climber
Jul 27, 2012 - 01:36pm PT
We have added it to our Facebook, blog, twitter and sent the post to a state department contact...
http://www.gpstm-blog.com/2012/07/missing-climbers-peru.html
Please let us know if we can add any other information to the post.
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
WA, & NC & Idaho
Jul 27, 2012 - 01:56pm PT
Hoping for a good outcome, looks like a couple of very strong dudes!!!!

Best wishes to all!
climbhigh befree

Mountain climber
boulder, colorado
Jul 27, 2012 - 02:05pm PT
..I met Gil and Ben in the Ishinca Valley on July 7th...They had just climbed Ishinca & Ranrapalca...were in very good spirits... they were headed to Huantsan and myself to the Santa Cruz Valley...very enthusiastic about being in the Blanca for the third straight season, Gil was very excited about getting back to Boulder with what he described as an "outstanding group of friends and a business waiting for him" ... I'm sorry to say that I am in lima now waiting to get back to the US and unavailable to assist with the search...I'm hoping for the best for these two... This really hits home- especially having just met them ... If anyone can help on the ground - certainly it's Ted... Hopes and prayers to Gil, Ben, family and friends...
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 02:27pm PT
Just so there's no confusion, they apparently decided NOT to go to Huantsan, and instead to attempt a line on Palcaraju Oeste.
jackholbrookiv

Trad climber
evergreen, co
Jul 27, 2012 - 02:40pm PT
I contacted Sara Peru (South American Rescue Association) www.saraperu.com. Karine said that she has contacts in the area that may be able to provide air support.

I was given these two cell phone numbers from the German consulate.
+51-974-796-354
+51-949-434-952

I only tried the first one and got through to Karine who speaks english.

Has anyone else had any luck with an airplane today?
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Jul 27, 2012 - 02:54pm PT
A friend found people in Peru with a plane and send the info to lioradanan@gmail.com

If there is anyone else here who needs their contact info here is the message:
Reply from Alberto:

Here we have what you need.
The company it’s called UNISTAR,
website http://www.unistar.peAsk directly with Mr. Silverio polo, Gerente de Operaciones
His private mobile phone is 990700094.Central Lima: 719-5777
Tell him that you are calling by reference of Mr. Haren Montes (from Caraz) who is a friend of Alberto Cafferata and is who gave me this reference.
javascript:doSave();
Although I hope there is a plane already involved. Every minute counts in these types of situations.
Silver

Gym climber
Jul 27, 2012 - 03:02pm PT
Sending out the good vibes for these men and praying for them and their families.

Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 03:06pm PT
If it is helpful to anybody else, we got recent satellite imagery from July 2 (a bit before they got there).

the link to view the imagery on google earth is:
https://s3.amazonaws.com/explorationlab/peru/kml/doc.kml

and to view on google maps is:
http://s3.amazonaws.com/explorationlab/peru/kml/googlemaps.html

A sat photo was taken yesterday too, it's a bit cloudy but as soon as it is done being processed I'll post that up too.
TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 27, 2012 - 03:30pm PT
From Huaraz, it has been cloudy all day today. bit windy as well. A fixed wing search would be problematic without a break in the clouds. Having said that I hope they are flying. I am still hoping for the best.
TY
JSpencerV

Trad climber
Santa Monica, CA
Jul 27, 2012 - 03:38pm PT
Adam (Travelin-Light) and I (Jared Vagy) will head to the valley for 2 days tomorrow morning as an independent climbing team to aid in the search. Hoping for the best.
JLP

Social climber
The internet
Jul 27, 2012 - 03:46pm PT
The Boulder Daily Camera is reporting an avalanche. I had not read this anywhere else. Were the tracks anywhere near the slide path?

http://www.dailycamera.com/news/boulder/ci_21173021/tracks-spotted-boulder-climbers-gil-weiss-ben-home
Gil's sister

climber
Jul 27, 2012 - 03:53pm PT
IMPORTANT UPDATE for Securing Air Support

Please use This PayPal account for securing funds for Air Support:

quacamole1@gmail.com
noriko nakagawa

Trad climber
eldorado springs co
Jul 27, 2012 - 04:15pm PT
Many thanks to Jared and all of those in Peru and beyond who are helping out with the SAR effort.

Michelle
Gil's sister

climber
Jul 27, 2012 - 04:21pm PT
IMPORTANT UPDATE for Securing Air Support

Please use This PayPal account for securing funds for Air Support:

quacamole1@gmail.com
Bowie

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
Jul 27, 2012 - 04:29pm PT
Response I got from the AAC, I hope they are right:

We contacted Global Rescue, the organization that provides rescue to all AAC members, yesterday and they've been providing us status updates. Last I heard, they've got a fixed wing aircraft doing fly-overs of the area (a few hours ago).
sharperblue

Mountain climber
oakland, california
Jul 27, 2012 - 04:32pm PT
Good Luck, Adam and Jared! Stay safe!
Scott, Andrew & Shane
cory_lamz

climber
Boulder, CO
Jul 27, 2012 - 04:42pm PT
Hi all,

My name is Cory Lamz. I'm a reporter for the Daily Camera in Boulder, Colorado. I'm doing a follow up story to the one that was written by the Associated Press earlier today about Gil and Ben going missing. If you have climbed with Gil or Ben or know them personally in any capacity, I'd love to talk to you. You can reach me at 303-473-1361 or lamzc@dailycamera.com.

Thank you.
Cory Lamz
neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
Jul 27, 2012 - 05:34pm PT
hey there say, tyeary, and gil's sister and all...

am still praying for them, and all concerned...

sure hope the avalanche note, will not be involved with them being missing, :(

god bless, as this hard time of waiting...
snowey

Trad climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 05:53pm PT
Cory and San Diego 10.
I have already contacted you directly via email to direct press energy. Please get in touch with me or with Galit (Gil's sister). Our goals are:

1) Put pressure to get an airplane or helicopter up in the air
2) Get donations for our privately funded search operation already underway
3) Get people to help us look through the large volumes of satellite imagery we are collecting.

nature

climber
SoSlo, CO
Jul 27, 2012 - 05:55pm PT
I can lend an eye for #3
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 06:01pm PT
Thanks Nature.

We're 85% done tiling and uploading the newest satellite image. When it's done (hopefully very soon, matter of minutes) i'll post links to a google earth file, a google maps link, and our crowdsourcing interface where people can tag things they they find.
climbski2

Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
Jul 27, 2012 - 06:04pm PT
I will gladly spend hours going over any satellite imagery you have. You can contact me via this forum just send an attachment. I will give updates on progress positive or negative
jayc

climber
Newark
Jul 27, 2012 - 06:04pm PT
Snowey - have you contacted the Rice Alumni association? They - and a lot of Rice people - have been sharing this and might be able to help.

https://www.facebook.com/ricealumni?ref=stream
G Fleishman

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
Jul 27, 2012 - 06:06pm PT
I'll contribute to image analysis as well.
Sakshama

Trad climber
NY, MAcedonia
Jul 27, 2012 - 06:15pm PT
I'm in Huaraz and spoke to Alfredo Quintana- a well respected member of the Casa De Guia. He says he is coordinating a rescue operation with the local guides today. He has 4 guides and he tries to find two more to go tomorrow. He said the terrain is very difficult, climbers attempted a new line on the mountain that is avalanche prone and the glacier under it is not easy to cross. They have been out so far for 16 days so it doesn't look too good.
Offered help but it seems he needs a tight team of locals.
Crimpergirl

Sport climber
Boulder, Colorado!
Jul 27, 2012 - 06:16pm PT
Finally made the Boulder paper today:

http://www.dailycamera.com/ci_21173021
GDavis

Social climber
SOL CAL
Jul 27, 2012 - 06:29pm PT
long story short.... I'm banned from paypal... i have money to send your way if anyone knows how I can... I'm good for it. call me 76o-84o-o765
Dallas

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 06:33pm PT
I will also help with satellite image analysis. Please send me the images as well. I owe Ben a lot!
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 06:45pm PT
----- see next post
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 06:57pm PT
The data is online, the crowd portal is set up and we're ready to go.

http://tomnod.com/gi/peru/

<<< please share this link far and wide! the page also includes a public chat doc.

For browsing only (no tagging), you can view in Google Earth:
http://s3.amazonaws.com/explorationlab/peru/07272012/doc.kml

And Google Maps:
http://s3.amazonaws.com/explorationlab/peru/07272012/googlemaps.html
noriko nakagawa

Trad climber
eldorado springs co
Jul 27, 2012 - 07:03pm PT
@GDavis: You can email Gil's sister, Galit, through Supertopo for an address.
climbski2

Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
Jul 27, 2012 - 07:42pm PT
Wow this is a wicked mountain. The most obvious descent line is really ugly. Vastly crevassed and steep. Am really working on these sat images ( took a bit to get oriented and identify some good landmarks for reference) but the best resolution still seems a bit weak to pick out what is needed. :(
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 07:51pm PT
It is a pretty gnarly place. I too wish the resolution were better, but this is the best & only current image we've got. The ones from today were too cloudy.

Does this look like tracks on the descent ridge?
Tracks???  July 26 imagery.
Tracks??? July 26 imagery.
Credit: Nate Ricklin

Same spot July 2... no tracks??
Same spot July 2... no tracks??
Credit: Nate Ricklin
climbski2

Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:02pm PT
Possibly some snowfall between photos. Also possible that that softening of the 26th photo is due to lighting difficult to say, perhaps angle and efforts of digital rendering

possible old debris pile in bottom slightly left of center seems to give some scale. Some fairly good sized crevasses unfortunatley.

Dosn't appear to be high enough resolution to pick out footprints.

Would be an unpleasant section to descend
cfirestone

climber
Chevy Chase, MD
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:12pm PT
This is a frontal picture that Asa Firestone took when with Gil earlie...
This is a frontal picture that Asa Firestone took when with Gil earlier in the month to scout the mountain. Asa marked where he thought they would climb and pitch the tent, for the search and rescue team.
Credit: cfirestone
cfirestone

climber
Chevy Chase, MD
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:18pm PT
More to the photo I just posted. Asa, who is only on a cellphone right now, thought they climbed to the top and tried to descend on the other side of the mountain, not where his line is drawn. (He had been with Gil earlier in the month, but bad weather prevented them from going up, and he had to leave for a prior commitment in the States -- and Ben then came and climbed with Gil.)
G Fleishman

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:21pm PT
Two shadows, shapes appear consistent with two people standing shoulde...
Two shadows, shapes appear consistent with two people standing shoulder to shoulder. Size appears to scale.
Credit: G Fleishman
AB3PO

climber
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:36pm PT
There is something about the object in the highlighted box that looks like it shouldn't be there. For instance, what is the white part on the right side when nothing else is white. Also, it is a slightly different color than everything else in the frame. Just seems out of place.

for reference, i have attached a more zoomed out image slice. This is just to the right of the ridge. Find the curved part on the left, and look to the right. The zoomed in image is just a closer version of the red square in the zoomed out image.

zoomed out image for frame reference
zoomed out image for frame reference
Credit: AB3PO

what is this?  it looks like it doesn't belong.
what is this? it looks like it doesn't belong.
Credit: AB3PO
aveman

Mountain climber
La Jolla
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:39pm PT
Looks like people to me, spaced as they might be walking up a snow slope. Three of them.
Credit: aveman
Andre

Trad climber
CA
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:43pm PT
Does anyone know where the tent was found?
snowey

Trad climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:43pm PT
Nice freaking work y'all! That definitely looks like the three rescuers and we are going to use that image as an example of what people might look like in the imagery.
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:48pm PT
aveman nice work, those must be the 3 guides sometime yesterday

3 rescuers, found by aveman and tagged by some others as well
3 rescuers, found by aveman and tagged by some others as well
Credit: Nate Ricklin
they're pretty low down, probably below basecamp. This is a good example of what a person would look like against the snow in this imagery.

G Fleischman found this:  two people?
G Fleischman found this: two people?
Credit: Nate Ricklin
Here are the coordinates of where those 2 "people" that G. Flleischman found... they're WAY west of the descent ridge, you couldn't end up there unless you traversed the main ridge really far then came down.. does that make sense to do that?
aveman

Mountain climber
La Jolla
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:48pm PT
2 people
2 people
Credit: aveman
same size dots, same 10m spacing.
jackholbrookiv

Trad climber
evergreen, co
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:52pm PT
There is something red in this picture

something red on the west side of the ridge. They could be here if the...
something red on the west side of the ridge. They could be here if they descended the west ridge.
Credit: jackholbrookiv
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:56pm PT
Two Dots.
Two Dots.
Credit: Nate Ricklin

Two dots found by aveman.

This is also pretty far down southwest of the face, not sure how many rescuers were on the way up or down yesterday.
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 08:56pm PT
hey jackholbrookiv what's the coords of the red thing?
jackholbrookiv

Trad climber
evergreen, co
Jul 27, 2012 - 09:03pm PT
having some issues with coordinates. Mine seem different from the others.

Your photo of the two shadows/peple is in between the two lakes. The red something is south of that.

Credit: jackholbrookiv
snowey

Trad climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 09:08pm PT
Friends,
Share capability is now enabled. share your findings on FB, Twitter, or here by grabbing the share link. Click on the ‘share’ link at the top left corner of the interface.

When posting images in this thread, it would be helpful to snag the link in addition to the screenshot.


You are freaking owning this. So many eyes looking for clues and stuff is coming up!
Misha

Trad climber
Woodside, CA
Jul 27, 2012 - 09:08pm PT
I have to say, it is very cool what you guys are doing! Hopefully it will lead to clues and help finding these guys.

I am heading to Peru tonight and will be in Huaraz on Sunday. Drop me a note if you need any help while I am there
TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 27, 2012 - 09:16pm PT
Adam Lawrance, Jared Vagy and I are headed up valley in the morning. Casa de Giua is indeed putting together a team to go up as well. We talked to their logistical coordinator this evening to confer and trade info. Ted's team got to high camp today. No sat phone contact yet with them. Thanks for all the sat image work. It may prove invaluable. Misha, I'm at Zarela's. Leave your contact info with her if I'm not back yet. Good news is we are most likely getting an fixed wing recon flight tomorrow. These guys are tough, Lets not let them down Keep your hopes up and send good thoughts to all involved; Gil,Ben family, Friends and those on the hill. Thanks.
TY
Andre

Trad climber
CA
Jul 27, 2012 - 09:24pm PT
Possible camp spot. With some sharpening it looks like a yellow tent and 3 dark objects around it (packs?). There was nothing in this spot on July 2nd.
Possible camp spot.
Possible camp spot.
Credit: Andre
No camp July 2nd
No camp July 2nd
Credit: Andre
This spot is located directly underneath the attempted route and matches with Asa's descriptions.
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 09:32pm PT
Andre good catch dude, here's a couple of screenshots both from google earth showing both:
July 26
July 26
Credit: Nate Ricklin
July 2
July 2
Credit: Nate Ricklin

the coordinates are -9.375059 -77.381387
jonathanb

climber
Jul 27, 2012 - 09:42pm PT
I'm an absolute amateur at scouring satellite photos ... would resolution be high enough to spot the climbers' paths? They're seems to be a trail of some sort in this photo (I moved the markers slightly to the left for clarity).

Possible trail?
Possible trail?
Credit: jonathanb

http://tomnod.com/gi/peru/?vid=2123
TheScott

Gym climber
Los Angeles, CA
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:01pm PT
Does this pair of dots look like people to anyone else?

Two dots to the right of the green circle
Two dots to the right of the green circle
Credit: TheScott
http://tomnod.com/gi/peru/?vid=261
SteveW

Trad climber
The state of confusion
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:15pm PT

Thanks to you guys doing the work on the photos!!!
kristen baskin

Boulder climber
athens
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:24pm PT
Hey

I found what looks like was a sleeping person surrounded by tracks. It's the same outline as those pictures of Gil and Ben on the mountain with one arm in the air.
body print.
body print.
Credit: kristen baskin
Have you guys seen this yet?

http://tomnod.com/gi/peru/?lat=-9.387789856152038&lng=-77.393639087677&zoom=17

-Kristen
Chugach Man

climber
Anchorage / Los Angeles
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:25pm PT
With respect to the footprints that they think were theirs beginning the decent, do we think there's any possibility they could have attempted to backtrack and go down the north side, or a different decent route if the objective hazards down the SW ridge were too gnarly?
PAUL SOUZA

Trad climber
Central Valley, CA
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:28pm PT
Kristen, Look at the scale bar on the screen and compare that to the picture.....unless they are giants at 200m tall, I don't think that's what you think it is. :)
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:31pm PT
I found a spot on the descent ridge where it looks like there are no tracks July 2, but tracks July 26.

July 2.  No tracks on ridge?
July 2. No tracks on ridge?
Credit: Nate Ricklin

July 26 image.  Tracks on ridge.
July 26 image. Tracks on ridge.
Credit: Nate Ricklin

This is at 5600m on the descent ridge.

Does it look this way to anybody else? Maybe it's the sun angle but it looks like there's nothing there July 2.
Chugach Man

climber
Anchorage / Los Angeles
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:34pm PT
Been looking at that as well Nate - it kind of looks more like tumbling debris/snowballs, but that stuff is pretty easy to mix up with footprints. Definitely worth checking out in my opinion if we can get a team up there.

Been trying to visualize where they would attempt to continue down from there as well...
AB3PO

climber
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:36pm PT
just found a photo of their tent on a news site...photo was released by peruvian police. might give hints about the location...

also the photo was taken on the 26th...same date as the sat images

http://ww3.hdnux.com/photos/14/30/76/3248002/3/628x471.jpg
valeraxy

Trad climber
L.A.
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:38pm PT
http://tomnod.com/gi/peru/?lat=-9.423428201689257&lng=-77.45397806167603&zoom=18

Could this be footprints? The rectangular shape looks unnatural.

Something rectangular-shaped around the marker. Footprints?
Something rectangular-shaped around the marker. Footprints?
Credit: valeraxy
Splitterday

climber
originally Morganton, NC
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:45pm PT
Come on homeys! I know you're digging deep, just keep hanging on, the SAR team is there! I saw you two in my dream two nights ago -- remember, start strong finish strong!
photo not found
Missing photo ID#256912
Chugach Man

climber
Anchorage / Los Angeles
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:49pm PT
Looks like Andre got the tent location right on.  Well done Andre!
Looks like Andre got the tent location right on. Well done Andre!
Credit: Chugach Man
Beth S

Gym climber
Charlottesville, VA
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:52pm PT
I have never looked at satellite photos before, but I'm giving it a go. Do these dots look like people? There's no tracks coming and going from them so I'm not sure...
Two small dots are people, possible gear nearby?
Two small dots are people, possible gear nearby?
Credit: Beth S
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2012 - 10:59pm PT
Beth S: Yes that's consistent with what a person would look like.

Chugach Man: I thought so too but what about the ridge in the foreground visible in the photograph?

edit: on second thought, you're probably right. Maybe the ridge is just not represented very well in google earth's elevation model
Ryan Day Thompson

Trad climber
Denver
Jul 27, 2012 - 11:00pm PT
I actually see what looks like a pretty convincing looking foot path below what Valeraxy points out. Anyone else see that?

Edit: That actually looks a bit like a WTF trail too. "Can we get down over here? Nope..."
Ryan Day Thompson

Trad climber
Denver
Jul 27, 2012 - 11:13pm PT
What Valeraxy pointed out.
What Valeraxy pointed out.
Credit: Ryan Day Thompson
Below &#40;above...confused on orientation&#41; what Valeraxy pointed out.
Below (above...confused on orientation) what Valeraxy pointed out.
Credit: Ryan Day Thompson
Even further down from that.
Even further down from that.
Credit: Ryan Day Thompson

Seems pretty discontinuous to me and looks like there are break points and diversions for routefinding maybe?

Seems a whole lot like a consistent footpath to me.
Ryan Day Thompson

Trad climber
Denver
Jul 27, 2012 - 11:20pm PT
Here's that whole thing stitched together.

Complete possible footpath stitched together.
Complete possible footpath stitched together.
Credit: Ryan Day Thompson
jackholbrookiv

Trad climber
evergreen, co
Jul 27, 2012 - 11:21pm PT
This is right above the tag that the previous person spotted of the two people "shoulder to shoulder". These definitely look like footprints
Credit: jackholbrookiv
AB3PO

climber
Jul 27, 2012 - 11:22pm PT
just found this...lots of footprints...kinda looking around for a place to go up top. the most interesting part is in the orange box.

zoomed way into my screen on my mac and inside the orange box, there is something (?) that looks like arms on top of the snow trying to climb up on the rock. anybody else see similar?

Credit: AB3PO

edit...

here's the zoomed out view
http://tomnod.com/gi/peru/?lat=-9.385235576074347&lng=-77.3593282699585&zoom=16
Credit: AB3PO
Andre

Trad climber
CA
Jul 28, 2012 - 12:15am PT
See below for potential descent tracks. After the last arrow it is hard to pick up any more tracks.
Potential Descent Tracks
Potential Descent Tracks
Credit: Andre
wcm

Trad climber
cardiff, ca
Jul 28, 2012 - 12:55am PT
2 ppl possibly
2 ppl possibly
Credit: wcm

blown up
blown up
Credit: wcm
climbski2

Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
Jul 28, 2012 - 01:04am PT
Amazing!!

TACO at work!

I love you all!

tslaks82

Boulder climber
Fort Collins
Jul 28, 2012 - 02:23am PT
does this look like a foot path to anyone?
does this look like a foot path to anyone?
does this look like a foot path to anyone?
Credit: tslaks82
AB3PO

climber
Jul 28, 2012 - 02:37am PT
hey tslaks82

if you follow that path south/southwest, you will find what was earlier identified as possibly 3 search and rescue crew (3 shadows even spaced on along the path)...

the lake in the left of your image is just west of Palcococha Lake in this google map view...for reference, Palcacocha lake is just south of the moutain.
ß Î Ø T Ç H

Boulder climber
bouldering
Jul 28, 2012 - 03:03am PT
Nice to hold out hope, but logic usually has the last word.
The two mountaineers had planned an excursion of between seven and 10 days. Their families contacted help after 13 days passed with no word from them.
The three-person search team found the climbers' bright yellow tent at 16,700 feet on Thursday and tracks coming off the summit as well as evidence of a nearby avalanche.
... the Cordillera Blanca ... (is) among the world's most dangerous (ranges) due to the instability of snow and ice caused by wide temperature fluctuations.

G Fleishman

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
Jul 28, 2012 - 03:10am PT
That's not particularly helpful at the moment. Keep those comments to yourself please.
Seamae

Social climber
San Diego
Jul 28, 2012 - 03:34am PT
He obviously doesn't know these guys.
Doug Tomczik

climber
Bishop
Jul 28, 2012 - 03:48am PT
This community is amazing...the hope is alive! Ryan Day Thompson's stitch looks pretty convincing.
G Fleishman

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
Jul 28, 2012 - 04:10am PT
The potential camp site identified by Aveman is directly beneath the potential footpath/tracks identified by Andre. Here is a view looking down from the peak/ridge along the potential tracks toward the potential camp.
Credit: G Fleishman

The coordinates indicated were the result of holding the cursor very near the potential camp site. This image was taken from the Google Earth rendering and coordinate of the data.
RLGordon

Boulder climber
Los Angeles
Jul 28, 2012 - 05:00am PT
The stitch of a footpath looks pretty convincing to me too... There also seems to be some other possible paths around it, and what looks to my completely untrained eye to be an avalanche. Maybe I'm just seeing things though...
Credit: RLGordon
climbers' mom

Social climber
Wilderness, VA
Jul 28, 2012 - 08:56am PT
RL--I am a novice at this but am trying my best--What I find intriguing in your photo is what appears to be a trail of prints going directly across to the right from the crevass, to what appears to be rocks/possibly cave? The path appears well used, with multiple tracks? Could they be hold-up there?
climbers' mom

Social climber
Wilderness, VA
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:10am PT
Just to clarify--so sorry if my nickname is misleading. I am the mother of two other climbers, not related to Ben and Gil. Son is friend of Ben's.
Norwegian

Trad climber
Placerville, California
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:31am PT
a heart-warming effort, folks.

this is an inspiring display of human spirit, and compassion.

highcamp

Trad climber
Boulder, CO
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:44am PT
My Google Earth images are super low rez, where are people getting high rez historicals?

Also, how are folks achieving perspective of where a given map/image is in relation to the mtn/route/bc?

Thx

[EDIT: figured out solution to question 1, still wondering on #2.]
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jul 28, 2012 - 10:45am PT
From my SAR background perspective, this is quite compelling. Good on all of you working these SAT pics.....hoping they will have some bearing.

Praying for a positive outcome....
noriko nakagawa

Trad climber
eldorado springs co
Jul 28, 2012 - 10:46am PT
Here's an update on the Tomnod crowdsourced image map from last night. Keep up the great work everyone.

-Michelle
guyman

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
Jul 28, 2012 - 11:02am PT
Wishing for a good outcome....

PullHarder

Ron Anderson

Trad climber
USA Moundhouse Nev. and land o da SLEDS!
Jul 28, 2012 - 11:10am PT
fingers stilol crossed. Amazing contibutions from you all on this!
Denali

Trad climber
Pleasant Hill
Jul 28, 2012 - 12:18pm PT
Hi,

I am reluctant to post this because I don't want to throw anyone off but what does this look like to you all. Right above the circle marker. I apologize in advance if this is not helpful.

Credit: Denali
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jul 28, 2012 - 12:20pm PT
Denali, that appears to be a portion of open crevasse.
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 28, 2012 - 12:21pm PT
Thanks for the effort everybody, last night we sent in before/after shots and coordinates of the most compelling stuff found by you guys, and I hope that and the imagery itself was of use to the ground/air teams.

Last I heard a ground team left to explore the ridge at 3am, and a plane into the air around 9am (i think central time).

HardyMatt

Trad climber
Boulder
Jul 28, 2012 - 12:22pm PT
Can someone please view these Lat and Longs for me? 9'22.30'2 South 77.22.53.57 West Elevation 5391 Meters? I layered the July 2nd photo and the new Sat photo and the object is not in the old photo. It could be the rescue party, but it doesn't appear to be crevasse. It's pretty close to being underneath the route or close to the descent.
noriko nakagawa

Trad climber
eldorado springs co
Jul 28, 2012 - 12:36pm PT
Nate, do you need people to keep labeling or do you have enough data? thanks

-Michelle
G Fleishman

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
Jul 28, 2012 - 12:50pm PT
Hey HardyMatt,

First of all there seems to be some discrepancy between coordinates in the google maps and google earth rendering of the images (am I the only one experiencing this?)

Anyway, when I locate those coordinates in the google earth rendering of the data, I am DIRECTLY over the potential campsite that has been previously identified by several other users (initially I believe by poster: aveman).

Other observations about this site:
1) It is NOT present in the July 2nd images but IS present in the July 26th images.
2) There appears to be little change to the crevasse located slightly south-east of the potential campsite between the two (historical and recent) images.
3) There is some, albeit rough, correspondance between the google earth rendering of the local topography surrounding this site and the image of the climber's campsite released by Peruvian authorities.
4) It is located at the southern end of the west peak at the base of a steep section that one might consider the summit push. This is completely consistent with the climbers' planned route.
5) Moving very slightly north west of this potential camp, there are pretty convincing tracks identified previously by Andre that seem to come up to (or down from) the ridge at the (considering the whole mountain) the south-west summit. (See my previous post for photo.)
6) These tracks are (according to google maps) approximately at the elevation 5,800 M (= 19,028.87 Ft.), which is the elevation previously discussed by SAR where they had identified tracks.

If this IS where the climbers were camped though, then SAR has already been through there. I'm sure the tomnod aggregation provided other locations where SAR has not yet been as high priority flyover and ground search sites.
climbers' mom

Social climber
Wilderness, VA
Jul 28, 2012 - 01:06pm PT
Danali--I tagged that, too. Looked like possibly a person or gear on a ledge, with possible avalanche debris above.

Am still searching photos. Nate, is that helpful at this point? Am glad to do it if it is.
Thanks!
wcm

Trad climber
cardiff, ca
Jul 28, 2012 - 01:16pm PT
Ben & Gil's bodies have been found.

RIP you two, you are missed greatly.

Amazing effort from the community
Clayton

Trad climber
Jul 28, 2012 - 01:16pm PT
Anyone else see this?... posted by TheScott on July 27 at 7:01pm

http://www.tomnod.com/gi/peru/?vid=261

Such a sad day. Two of our brothers will stay with the mountains.
Crimpergirl

Sport climber
Boulder, Colorado!
Jul 28, 2012 - 01:16pm PT
Simply terrible. I'm so sorry to friends and family.
Gary

climber
"My god - it's full of stars!"
Jul 28, 2012 - 01:18pm PT
RIP. Another pair lost. That sucks.
Ron Anderson

Trad climber
USA Moundhouse Nev. and land o da SLEDS!
Jul 28, 2012 - 01:19pm PT
damm..........
Jaybro

Social climber
Wolf City, Wyoming
Jul 28, 2012 - 01:20pm PT
Condolences
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jul 28, 2012 - 01:41pm PT
What absolute pain.....my heartfelt prayers and condolences to these men's family and friends.

These realities of our sport are often too much to bear.....
ydpl8s

Trad climber
Santa Monica, California
Jul 28, 2012 - 01:42pm PT
Ugghh!.....condolences to all!
apogee

climber
Technically expert, safe belayer, can lead if easy
Jul 28, 2012 - 01:43pm PT
Very, very sad, and a great loss for so many.
ClimbingOn

Trad climber
NY
Jul 28, 2012 - 02:01pm PT
Very, very sorry to hear this.
SteveW

Trad climber
The state of confusion
Jul 28, 2012 - 02:04pm PT

My condolences to their family and friends.
A sad day. . .
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jul 28, 2012 - 02:11pm PT
such a sad outcome
words are meaningless, but my sympathy to friends and family
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Jul 28, 2012 - 02:33pm PT
Well, we tried everything we could think of to help out. Those guys were so damn strong, I can't believe it. F*#kign twice as strong and fast as the rest of us.
Josh Higgins

Trad climber
San Diego
Jul 28, 2012 - 02:55pm PT
They're the first friends and climbing partners I've ever lost... It's a sad day to lose anyone so full of life, motivated, positive, and willing to share their energy with others. I'm blown away by the climbing community's response to the search effort. There were easily over 1000 people that helped. While I'm sad to have lost such amazing people from my life, I'm glad that I'm part of such a spectacular community.

Thanks to everyone who helped with the physical search, the online search at Tomnod, supplying information and contacts, and so much more.

If you still want to help, you can donate to help pay for the search and recovery effort:

http://www.tomnod.com/gi/peru/

Whatever is not used will be refunded.

Josh
westhegimp

Social climber
granada hills
Jul 28, 2012 - 03:02pm PT
Condolences to all who knew them. Sorry for your loss.

The short time you were here you guys tore it up.

RIP Gil Weiss and Ben Horne you earned it.

Respectfully

Wes


noriko nakagawa

Trad climber
eldorado springs co
Jul 28, 2012 - 03:04pm PT
+1 on Josh's sentiments

It was amazing to see so many friends, family, and members of the climbing community mobilize so quickly on a global scale. I only wish the outcome was more favorable. RIP Ben and Gil. You have inspired and will continue to inspire me to push my limits.

-Michelle
Doug Tomczik

climber
Bishop
Jul 28, 2012 - 03:30pm PT
Well said Norwegian and Michelle.

This has been the most beautiful display of supertopo I can think of.
Tami

Social climber
Canada
Jul 28, 2012 - 03:31pm PT
I'd been lurking on this thread & hoping for best possible outcomes. It was such a great effort on the part of friends and family & am terribly sorry to now read of your loss. RIP to your dear friends.
GDavis

Social climber
SOL CAL
Jul 28, 2012 - 03:41pm PT
I had just recently met Ben, there seriously couldn't be a nicer person, I know everyone says that all the time but its true. It was at his slideshow recently and talked to him a bit and was pretty wonked out on painkillers recovering from an injury and he sat there and let me talk at him incoherently for like 15 minutes... my mom won't even do that...

Never met Gil but all those guys, Josh, Shay, Scott... what makes people like Gil and Ben, to me, has almost nothing to do with how talented they are but how big their hearts are. Ben loved climbing, climbers, and above all a positive attitude. People don't get much better.
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Jul 28, 2012 - 03:52pm PT
Condolences to family and friends.
Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
Jul 28, 2012 - 04:00pm PT
I'm sorry to friends and family.

Remember: They died living out their dreams. Keep in your heart and celebrate the greatness of their spirit.
Ghost

climber
A long way from where I started
Jul 28, 2012 - 04:15pm PT
My sympathy to family and friends.
Fletcher

Trad climber
Fumbling towards stone
Jul 28, 2012 - 04:17pm PT
So sorry. My condolences.

Eric
Mike Bolte

Trad climber
Planet Earth
Jul 28, 2012 - 04:41pm PT
so very, very sorry to see this outcome.
climbski2

Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
Jul 28, 2012 - 05:14pm PT
Oh man.. I hate this.

So sorry but glad they have been found, that's good.

Thank-you for finding a way to let so many pitch in, in whatever small ways we could.

Sincerest of condolences.
Conrad

climber
Jul 28, 2012 - 05:15pm PT
With condolences and empathy to the family and friends.
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
WA, & NC & Idaho
Jul 28, 2012 - 05:16pm PT
Sorry for your loss.
My sincere condolences,

Here is to two lives well lived!!!!
QITNL

climber
Jul 28, 2012 - 05:52pm PT
I'd also like to offer my sympathy to Ben and Gil's families and friends.

If there's any silver lining, perhaps we can make better use of this tomnod app, Google earth, etc. to facilitate future searches. I'd never seen anything like this before. I spent some time on it but couldn't find anything that was worth posting; nonetheless, it represents a significant development.

There's room and now perhaps some demand for improvements: quicker updates on maps and improved resolution, enhancing the interface and overlays, training viewers how to read features, encouraging those who are lost to leave markers easily viewable with this technology.

While I share in the sadness of their loss, hopefully this may open doors to an opportunity where future lives will be saved.
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jul 28, 2012 - 05:56pm PT
QITNL, I share your sentiments.

Just for information, for those that do not know, the International Distress Signal is 3 of ANYTHING.....3 lines in the snow, logs laid next to each other, light flashes, whistle blasts.....

In over 25 years of SAR, I have been involved in 8 searches that resulted in a find based on spotting this signal in one of so many forms.
divad

Trad climber
wmass
Jul 28, 2012 - 06:04pm PT
To echo the thoughts of many others here, an amazing effort by family, friends and fellow climbers to locate these guys.
Although the outcome wasn't as we'd hope, a shining moment for ST.
Condolences to all.
can't say

Social climber
Pasadena CA
Jul 28, 2012 - 06:09pm PT
Sincere condolences to friends and family.
Jim Hefner

climber
La Verne, CA
Jul 28, 2012 - 06:34pm PT
To the friends and family left behind, may you find a way.

Peace & Love
looking sketchy there...

Social climber
Latitute 33
Jul 28, 2012 - 06:48pm PT
Very sorry to hear that it turned out this way. Condolences to families and friends
Chugach Man

climber
Anchorage / Los Angeles
Jul 28, 2012 - 06:56pm PT
"My candle burns at both ends, it will not last the night, but oh my friends, and oh my foes, it gives a lovely light."

FILES... You're two very inspirational guys, and we'll miss you both dearly. Thank you for the energy, drive and love you brought out in all of us. Do do doooo doo...

-Robbbbb
Sam R

climber
Mammoth Lakes, CA
Jul 28, 2012 - 07:13pm PT
My deepest condolences to family and friends. Thanks Gil and Ben for inspiring all of us to pullharder...
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Jul 28, 2012 - 07:27pm PT
I was hoping against hope that it wouldn't come to this.
Condolences to the friends and families.
StahlBro

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
Jul 28, 2012 - 07:40pm PT
Very sad news. Rest in peace Bro's.
10b4me

Ice climber
dingy room at the Happy boulders hotel
Jul 28, 2012 - 08:23pm PT
my sincere condolences to the family, and friends.
Mark Rodell

Trad climber
Bangkok
Jul 28, 2012 - 08:24pm PT
My heart goes out to all of thier family and friends. To see Supertopo pull as one was good and so wish the outcome had been one of joy.
Port

Trad climber
San Diego
Jul 28, 2012 - 08:51pm PT
It was great to of had the pleasure to know you Gil. RIP brother.
phylp

Trad climber
Millbrae, CA
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:06pm PT
I am so, so sorry for this loss. We always say Rest in Peace, but this does not seem quite right here, with these two. Climb on guys. Climb in light.
Rick A

climber
Boulder, Colorado
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:20pm PT
A terrible loss. Heartfelt condolences to their families and friends.
Rick
Peter Haan

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:23pm PT
Horrible. I didn't know the duo but they sure looked like great young men. Ever ever so sad. At times it is very hard being a climber; this is one of those times.
neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:26pm PT
hey there say, tyear, and family and friends of gil and ben...


my concolences to you at this sad time of your loss...
may new memories of remembered things of the past, be there
to help you through this hard time...
Beth S

Gym climber
Charlottesville, VA
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:29pm PT
My deepest condolences to all the friends and family of these two men. They are at peace now and can see by this amazing outpouring and effort from the climbing community how much they are loved.
manzanita man

Social climber
somerset, ca.
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:30pm PT
R.I.P.
treez

Trad climber
99827
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:32pm PT
I want to go with my boots on too.

Rest in Peace
o-man

Social climber
Paia,Maui,HI
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:35pm PT
Very sad news on SUPERTOPO today.
johnboy

Trad climber
Can't get here from there
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:37pm PT
My sincere condolences to their family and friends.
Footloose

Trad climber
Lake Tahoe
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:54pm PT
Robb,

"My candle burns at both ends;
It will not last the night;
But oh, my friends, and oh, my foes —
It gives a lovely light!"

I think your chosen poetry that reflects their spirit is perfect.


Very sorry for the loss of your friends.
aran

Trad climber
berkeley, ca
Jul 28, 2012 - 09:54pm PT
This is a true tragedy- may their spirits and hearts be remembered and spoke of often. Climb safe everyone.
wbw

Trad climber
'cross the great divide
Jul 28, 2012 - 10:08pm PT
I am so sorry for the loss of these two young, strong guys. From everything I've read they were standout climbers and human beings.

The Cordillera Blanca is a magnificent and amazing range, but with its glaciers that change so dramatically from season to season, it can be an exceptionally severe place to climb.
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jul 28, 2012 - 11:06pm PT
I wrote this a little while ago, in memory of my late father-in-law, and posted it on a thread I put up in his memory.

Reading through this thread, these words seem to fit these amazing young men...


A life well lived is to be treasured
From dawn's first light, nothing measured
In deft pursuit of heartfelt dreams
Achieving goals.....planning schemes
All with one intent in mind
Milk each day, rob it blind
Take what even failures bring
Sweeter then will victory sing
No stone unturned nor door left closed
End each day in content repose
Fully spent..completely sated
No matter what the path was rated
Give your best so others see
That glory lies not in the lee
But rather in pursuits so grand
A leader be, not also-ran
Let actions speak of who I am
Rather a lion, not a lamb
Other lives I choose to bless
Just one kind word, a warm caress
One day my daily quest may end
My years well gone around the bend
Some may say I did it wrong
Fear not, for I have finished strong.

Dean Rosnau
Kalimon

Trad climber
Ridgway, CO
Jul 28, 2012 - 11:23pm PT
"Shine on you crazy diamonds" . . .
Anastasia

climber
InLOVEwithAris.
Jul 28, 2012 - 11:35pm PT
I am so sorry Tony! My condolences to all their family and friends. This is hard news that no one is ever prepared for. Be kind to yourselves.

Anastasia
TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Jul 29, 2012 - 02:51am PT
so very sorry
roy

Social climber
NZ -> SB,CA -> Zurich
Jul 29, 2012 - 03:32am PT
Very sad news. My condolences to their many friends and loved ones. Roy
Matt

Trad climber
it's all turtles, all the way dooowwwwwnn!!!!!
Jul 29, 2012 - 03:45am PT
Sad news.
Condolences to family an friends.


But to be honest, I mean REALLY HONEST-








We are talking about mountaineering.
People die doing that all the time.
It's a known risk, and not an unlikely outcome.

I'm really sorry these guys will not be coming home, but I'd rather celebrate their passion for adventure than mourn their passing.
They knew the risk and they accepted it.


Nobody lives forever, and a mountaineer doesn't even come close.
locker

Gym climber
DUH!!!...
Jul 29, 2012 - 10:41am PT


Sincerest condoloences to the family and friends of Gil and Ben...

Ron Anderson

Trad climber
USA Moundhouse Nev. and land o da SLEDS!
Jul 29, 2012 - 10:51am PT



To Ben and Gil..and the rest of us..
jfailing

Trad climber
Lone Pine
Jul 29, 2012 - 11:09am PT
This is terrible news. I met Gil randomly at the Bachar boulders near Mammoth - the dude was super nice and we chatted about all sorts of climbs. Later on, I read his trip reports and saw his name in a few summit registers with ridiculous car-to-summit times.

This is a horrible loss. Condolences to the friends and family of both climbers.
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Jul 29, 2012 - 11:22am PT
It's unfortunate for climbers that passion for the experience sometimes brings death, especially in the mountaineering world. The rewards for commitment in climbing are so high, but sometimes the price paid is even higher.

Sad news - I feel like I knew them well - even though we never met.

RIP, and condolences to friends and family

LuckyPink

climber
the last bivy
Jul 29, 2012 - 12:18pm PT
Peace and the love of the world to their moms.
guyman

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
Jul 29, 2012 - 01:11pm PT
I was holding out hope, Ben and Gil have done so many hardcore climbs before, I figured they would surface,and have another terrific tale to share with us.

But that is not to be.

My sincere condolences to their family and many many friends.

Onward and upward.

GK

Gagner

climber
Boulder
Jul 29, 2012 - 04:36pm PT
Wow, just got back from a long weekend and had hoped to see positive news here - this sucks. While I never met Ben or Gil we are all part of the brotherhood of the rope, and it's really a sad day when we lose our brothers. Condolences and strength to the family, friends and community.

Paul

paranoid-android

climber
Jul 29, 2012 - 04:41pm PT
I read this news last night. And I felt knots in my stomach. I know neither of these two gentlemen.

From the thread it appears these two gentlemen were both strong and talented.

It is a grave loss to any family to lose someone as young as these two men.

I feel very sad.

pud

climber
Sportbikeville & Yucca brevifolia
Jul 29, 2012 - 05:09pm PT
More positive young people taken from us.
Very sad news.
Sincere condolences to family and friends.
Daphne

Trad climber
Black Rock City
Jul 29, 2012 - 08:24pm PT
So sad to hear this today. I was hoping as I left town on Friday that things would work out better. The way the community pitched in to find these inspiring young men was a sight to see.

To their families and loved ones, I send prayers of comfort for your loss.
namascar

Trad climber
Pasadena, CA
Jul 29, 2012 - 09:10pm PT
RIP Gil, we will miss you
RIP Gil, we will miss you
Credit: namascar
JOEY.F

Gym climber
It's not rocket surgery
Jul 29, 2012 - 09:15pm PT
The article in the morning paper about them was heart rendering.
My condolences to their family and friends.
gonzo chemist

climber
Fort Collins, CO
Jul 29, 2012 - 10:49pm PT
So sad to read this.

My heartfelt condolences to Ben and Gil's families and friends.
martygarrison

Trad climber
Washington DC
Jul 29, 2012 - 10:54pm PT
This article was in the Washington Post today. Ben was a local and his family was interviewed on the local TV today. They seemed at peace that he was living his life to the fullest when he passed.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/annandale-climber-ben-horne-killed-in-peru-accident-was-deeply-spiritual-friends-say/2012/07/29/gJQA4PNpIX_story.html
nick d

Trad climber
nm
Jul 30, 2012 - 12:28am PT
My blessings to your friends and their families. May they rest in peace.
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
the crowd MUST BE MOCKED...Mocked I tell you.
Jul 30, 2012 - 12:41am PT
just saw the news on msnbc and immediately knew it was related to this thread I had just read a day or so before. Good to hear one of the families has some context for it. Still not easy, but hate to hear of families in pain because of a loss.
yu-min

climber
San Diego, california
Jul 30, 2012 - 03:31am PT
Gil often said that climbing for him was where he found the balance between freedom and control. I don't have many words to describe the feeling of loss, but i know that he was doing what he loved the most... a motto he lived by.
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Jul 30, 2012 - 04:24am PT
This is especially hard to hear again just weeks after losing Mark Cartier on Mt. Hood. Such strong, vital climbers and all will be dearly missed. Condolences.
tarek

climber
berkeley
Jul 30, 2012 - 11:04am PT
Condolences to their friends and families.
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Jul 30, 2012 - 12:21pm PT
Very sad.

Peace to friends and family.
Port

Trad climber
San Diego
Jul 30, 2012 - 02:04pm PT
I met Gil back in 2005 or 2006 when he moved to San Diego after graduating from George Washington University. I can only remember climbing with him once, but he struck me as very ambitious. He had an eagerness and drive that put him on the fast track to some major climbing accomplishments. He seemed to make friends easily and was surrounded by very talented climbers within the San Diego community. After moving to Boulder, I lost contact with him. Sadly, I read his name on CNN.com and could't believe it...

I hear a lot of people taking comfort in that he died doing what he loved. For me, I can't imagine a worse place to pass on. The mountains are cold, harsh, and unforgiving. It seems he understood this, but it doesn't make his death any easier to understand. To his father, sister, and family, I wish the best in your time of grief. Gil was a great man who chose a life of extraordinary adventure. It was an honor to know him.

Please keep us informed on memorial services. Many of Gil's climbing friends, including myself, are now living in the North East and would like to attend, if you would have us.

-Colin Porter
TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 30, 2012 - 02:26pm PT
Adam, Jared and I just arrived back in Huaraz. This was a hard pill for me to swallow. I need a beer( or ten) and a shower. We spent the last two days accompanying our friends out of the mountains. Adam and I were there when the recovery team brought the bodies to high camp. We coordinated via sat phone with Ted of Skyline Adventures. This was a very difficult recovery. Many are to be thanked. I will post a complete report from my perspective, when I have recovered enough. Thanks everyone for your thoughts and prayers.
RIP Ben and Gil.
TY
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jul 30, 2012 - 02:29pm PT
Good on you guys for hanging tough, Tony....my prayers are with you all....

Peace,
DR
10b4me

Ice climber
dingy room at the Happy boulders hotel
Jul 30, 2012 - 02:39pm PT
good job Tony
Fluoride

Trad climber
West Los Angeles, CA
Jul 30, 2012 - 02:50pm PT
Tony, good job on a very hard job.

Condolences and prayers to their friends, family and other loved ones (partners).
michaeld

Sport climber
Sacramento
Jul 30, 2012 - 03:18pm PT
RIP :(
Gary

climber
"My god - it's full of stars!"
Jul 30, 2012 - 03:23pm PT
You're a good hand on a tough job, Tony. You get back here safe and sound, OK?
Ron Anderson

Trad climber
USA Moundhouse Nev. and land o da SLEDS!
Jul 30, 2012 - 03:33pm PT
a regretable undertaking. Have 11 beers sir...May the spirits of Ben and Gill move on, climbing better than ever. thank you for keeping us informed from start to finish. They had a great freind in you.
Sewellymon

climber
.....in a single wide......
Jul 30, 2012 - 03:44pm PT
Ditto what Gary said. Tony- make sure you get home OK.
Silver

Gym climber
Jul 30, 2012 - 04:08pm PT
TY

Its men like you that keep my faith in humanity. Give up your trip to do what is needed for our fellow climbers and their families.

I look forward to buying you a beer one day. Drink it up for our fallen friends and take care be safe.

Safe travels home.



Asa Firestone

Big Wall climber
Boulder, CO
Jul 30, 2012 - 05:25pm PT
I attempted this face with Gil in June, but we bailed due to bad weather. Here is the line that I believe they climbed before falling on the descent. It is a truly badass ascent. We had discussed calling the line "Live and let die" after a guns and roses song but that seems inappropriate. Maybe this line should just be known as the American Direct since it goes directly to the summit.
South face of Palcaraju Oeste, showing the ascent of the American Dire...
South face of Palcaraju Oeste, showing the ascent of the American Direct
Credit: Asa Firestone
labrat

Trad climber
Nevada City, CA
Jul 30, 2012 - 05:27pm PT
Good thoughts to family and friends. RIP guys.
Erik
Asa Firestone

Big Wall climber
Boulder, CO
Jul 30, 2012 - 05:29pm PT
Gil at high camp
Gil at high camp
Credit: Asa Firestone
Gil, looking like the badass he was!
Gil, looking like the badass he was!
Credit: Asa Firestone
BrassNuts

Trad climber
Save your a_s, reach for the brass...
Jul 30, 2012 - 07:29pm PT
Very sad story, a terrible loss to family and friends. Thanks to TY and all the rescue crew for their hard efforts.
neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
Jul 30, 2012 - 08:00pm PT
hey there say, asa.... man oh man, it sure is a whole other world, in a sense, up there...
edit (was said as to the picture of one of the climbers, up there, that loved that area)...


strong beauty, but dangerous is its name... :(
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Jul 30, 2012 - 09:11pm PT
Thanks so much to all the people who helped in the recovery. Such a difficult task which means so much to friends and family. We salute your courage and humanity.
Port

Trad climber
San Diego
Jul 31, 2012 - 12:36am PT
climbers' mom

Social climber
Wilderness, VA
Jul 31, 2012 - 08:27am PT
Some words from Pope John Paul II that Ben shared before the accident. God rest the souls of Ben and Gil, and let us thank God for the inspiration they gave us.

“If it is true that sports activity, in developing and perfecting the physical and psychological potential of the person, contributes to a more complete maturity of the character, this is especially true for those who practice mountain climbing and engage in it in respect for the ideals which this sport sustains and nourishes. I exhort you in the words of my predecessor, Pius XII, to be “docile to the lessons of the mountain: . . . it is a lesson in spiritual elevation, of an energy which is more moral than physical.” I congratulate you on your programs which aim at educating your members in respect for nature and in a deepened examination of the message which she imparts to the human spirit. Have special concern for the young, to train them to follow the type of life that the mountains demand of their devotes. It requires rigorous virtues in those who practice it: strict discipline and self-control, prudence, a spirit of sacrifice and dedication, care and solidarity for others.Thus we can say that mountain-climbing develops character. In fact, it would not be possible to face disinterestedly the difficulties of life on the mountains if the physical and muscular strength, which is very necessary, were not sustained by a strong will and an intelligent passion for beauty. Help your members also to be contemplatives, to enjoy ever more deeply in their mind the message of creation. In contact with the beauties of the mountains, in the face of the spectacular grandeur of the peaks, the fields of snow and the immense landscapes, man enters into himself and discovers that the beauty of the universe shines not only in the framework of the exterior heavens, but also that of the soul that allows itself to be enlightened, and seeks to give meaning to life. From the things that it contemplates, in fact, the spirit is lifting up to God on the breath of prayer and gratitude towards the Creator.”
TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 31, 2012 - 11:35am PT
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbYC5Cw08zg

I believe this is a video shot by member(s) of the Casa de Guia. In this video you hear Hector speak about this rescue and recovery, along with some details of the accident. Hector,who along with Ted Alexander, from Skyline and Eric Tomczak were the real heroes of this epic. I was not present when this was shot. We; Eric, Adam, and members of the Police High Mountain Rescue Group were taking Gil down from high camp @17,200' to the base camp @14, 700' at this moment. Please excuse any mistakes in memory, as I am still processing this event.
TY

"I am an Alpinist.

I am this before everything else. It is what has and will define me as long as I have breath in my lungs and a fire in my eyes. These mountains have forged friendships more steadfast than the slowest moving glaciers. Before this is all over I will have a laundry list of friends who have given their lives to conquer these massifs of rock and ice. This is okay with me as each one of them will have lived a life worth living.

I will never stop climbing. I am thankful each day for the lessons I have learned in the truthful cold and for the opportunities I have had to discover exactly who I am. If you identify with the words written here then raise your glass and celebrate the fact that you are one of the lucky ones.

I am an Alpinist. Chase your dreams and be somebody."

Adam Lawrence
climbski2

Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
Jul 31, 2012 - 11:40am PT
Embed? WARNING!! Respectfully presented body of one climber is shown wrapped and prepared for transport home. It will likely be a tough thing for loved ones and friends to see however.

TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 31, 2012 - 11:52am PT
Thanks, climbski2.Correction made. I'm still a little fuzzy.
TY
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Jul 31, 2012 - 11:55am PT
Could someone translate Hector's words, or at least the major points of his conversation. Thanks.
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jul 31, 2012 - 12:07pm PT
He was explaining that it appears that a cornice broke from under the pair while on the ridge, and they fell down the rock wall that the camera pans up.


RIP
TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 31, 2012 - 01:02pm PT
Here are some details, without being morbidly graphic , as best as we can determine. Ben and Gil left their tent about 3am. They climbed their new route to the summit of Pulcaraju Oest and reached the top at around 4pm. The last time stamp on for a summit photo was 4:01pm. Kind'a late in the day, but it was a new route and it takes time to figure things out. There are some photos of the descent, but only a few and the last time stamp is 6pm, near the top of the serac from which they fell. Few photos can be interpenetrated as the descent was problematic. Their tracks, going up, down and around obstacles attest to this theory. I imagine they were tired, dehydrated and just wanted to get down to their tent. Ben was leading down the ridge. Gil was following. They were moving together in classic alpine style without intermediate points of protection. It is a very complicated descent that cannot be fully appreciated from below. Their tracks show they made many detours and end-runs to get around crevasses and séracs. The tracks end abruptly at the edge of a sérac. It is supposed that Ben could not see where he was on the edge and as he walked to further out to investigate, the lip collapsed, falling away , taking Ben with it. He would have fallen about 10-15 feet down onto a sharp knife edge ridge. Then it was a coin toss as to which side he slid down. He slid down the southern side. He would have had about another 15 to 20 feet of steep, crappy snow to self arrest before he went over the edge of the rock band and into a tumbling fall down this rocky face. He did not arrest and the rope yanked Gil forward, face first, after Ben. Both went over the edge and fell, tumbling, down the rocky face to come to rest on the glacier a below. Estimates as to the length of the fall vary from about 150 to 300 meters. Gil had about 12 feet of rope tied to him, where at that point it was severed. Ben was wrapped in the remainder of their rope. Length of time would have been measured in seconds and death was mercifully quick. These are the details as I know them to be. There are facts that I have mentioned that cannot be explained without going into graphic detail. I reserve the right, out of respect to family and friends who were not their, not to be specific on this forum, as it relates to their deaths. I hope this is understood and respected.
TY
dirt claud

Social climber
san diego,ca
Jul 31, 2012 - 01:04pm PT
Translation:

"We are in the zone that is near the accident. The bodies were found about 20 meters behind me. It appears they followed the main coliuor to the high point where you see the sun shining. There it appears they were looking for a way down and had to backtrack and a chunk of ice fell from beneath them or a mistake of some type was made which caused them to fall.
How far did they fall?
About 200 meters. They had a single rope which indicates that they were not rappelling. They were observing for a way to get down and fell or a piece of ice fell off beneath them."


Wherever it is that our souls go once we pass this plain, I hope you are smiling and climbing Gil and Ben. Very sorry for your loss friends and family.
Ron Anderson

Trad climber
USA Moundhouse Nev. and land o da SLEDS!
Jul 31, 2012 - 01:39pm PT
was wondering about the program used for the satelite intel as we have a missing climber in the sierras. Could someone point out a site?

again, CONDLONECES to the legions of freinds and family ..
TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 31, 2012 - 01:53pm PT
Approximate route of ascent &#40; via Asa Firestone&#41;, descent, and...
Approximate route of ascent ( via Asa Firestone), descent, and accident site. X = is where Ben and Gil were found.
Credit: TYeary
TY
le_bruce

climber
Oakland, CA
Jul 31, 2012 - 03:45pm PT
For the sake of family and friends who have come to this thread and who may not be ready for it, it might be worth giving a warning that one of the climber's bodies appears in the YouTube clip that TYeary links above.

RIP
Double D

climber
Jul 31, 2012 - 06:21pm PT
My condolences go out to all of their family and friends. Thanks for all of your efforts and updates Tony.
westhegimp

Social climber
granada hills
Jul 31, 2012 - 06:55pm PT
Tony

Thanks again for your efforts in the mountains.

Be safe.

Wes
ms55401

Trad climber
minneapolis, mn
Jul 31, 2012 - 07:07pm PT
I guess the working hypothesis is that they were on that serac and it fractured, pitching them both.

Port

Trad climber
San Diego
Jul 31, 2012 - 09:02pm PT
Recone, the same thoughts went through my mind as well. I only knew Gil as a rock climber and not as an Alpinist. I'd be curious to know what level of formal training he had, or if his climbing experience was gained through his friends. Either way, it doesn't matter any more.


The youtube video is pretty hard to watch. Based on his look, Im pretty sure that's Gil. Might want to put a warning on that. Im sure his family will come here.
Chugach Man

climber
Anchorage / Los Angeles
Jul 31, 2012 - 10:52pm PT
Recone, those guys on Denali do deserve a thank you - ripping on these guys isn't gaining them one though. Gil and Ben were well known in multiple climbing circles, and therefore this story got a lot of publicity. It doesn't detract from anyone else's sad demise in the hills. As for the stake... it may have helped, it may not have. We weren't there, and therefore will never know what happened or what other considerations there were. I know somewhere you can put the stake though... and while you're doing so, let's let this thread be, and these guys rest in peace.

Colin, it wouldn't take you much digging to find out what kind of experience Gil had. He had multiple seasons in South America already, and other routes of similar magnitude. Unfortunately, sometimes you draw the wrong card - it could have been any of us. With respect to training, who knows. I've had both types though, and that gained by one-on-one experience with a friend has proved far more valuable than most "formal" trainings.

People, we go into the mountains accepting the risks. Some people push those limits more than others, but anyone can be unlucky, and anyone can be killed - whether it be pushing hard in the Andes, or on some 5.7 at your local crag. You've accepted that for yourselves by being climbers, I recommend you let the deceased rest, and realize they had to accept that to some level as well.

Ben and Gil, on second thought, screw the resting stuff, I hope you're still finding a way to push your limits and be the amazing souls we knew you as, albeit no longer with us, but rather in a better place.
Bowie

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
Jul 31, 2012 - 10:54pm PT
I second the motion to have Recone hammer a snow stake up his @ss.
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jul 31, 2012 - 10:57pm PT
Monday morning quarterbacking on a memorial thread is a travesty.

Those that do so should be banned from this site.

Shame on you.
wbw

Trad climber
'cross the great divide
Jul 31, 2012 - 11:10pm PT
Recone, I find your comments to be strange and inappropriate. Give it a rest, please.

I'll add something for those unfamiliar with climbing in the Blanca. TY explains to us that the last photo on the descent was taken at 6 pm. Remember that this is a range close to the Equator, and that it gets pitch dark around 6 pm, maybe just a bit later. They were most likely racing darkness.

Also, darkness falls very quickly there, again because of the latitude of the Blanca, without the drawn out sunset that many of us are used to milking when we complete a day of climbing in North America. These guys must have been exhausted, descending a complicated ridge with plenty of hazards along the way, with rapidly dwindling light, if not in complete darkness. The light of a headlamp shows close features, but not the major features that one would need to see in order to make challenging route finding decisions. Having a headlamp would not give me very much comfort, and might not be all that helpful in getting down in those conditions. These guys must have known this as they were making their descent.

Descending a glaciated ridge, everything looking down such a ridge looks about the same, which is to say it is very difficult to tell which is the safest way down; or for that matter if the next roll in the ridge is gentle or a huge drop off. It is impossible to belay every dangerous inch on a mountain of that scale with that kind of terrain, and in fact is not necessarily the safest approach. Gil and Ben must have been dealing with all of these factors as they were making their way down the ridge.

Tony, you and the others on the mountain after the accident did a very noble act. Much respect to you all, and my sincerest condolences to the families and friends of Ben and Gil.
JSpencerV

Trad climber
Santa Monica, CA
Aug 1, 2012 - 11:42am PT
Reflection:
Climbing is such a unique addiction. There is something to be said about sport where a single false move or misjudgment could lead to death. Everytime we go out to climb, we roll the dice. We assess the risk involved, draw upon our experiences but in the end life and death may be a simple matter of luck. Some climbers choose to embrace the modern ethics of climbing and rise up to the challenges of pushing limits and setting new routes. Some climbers embrace the social aspect of the sport and enjoy casual outings with friends on easy terrain. Some climbers lie in middle. The truth of the matter is this sport is dangerous and at whatever level you climb, there is always risk involved. Gil and Ben pushed the limits of climbing to the extreme. They embodied the mentality of fast and light and if something was too hard, you pulled harder. They served as an inspiration to all climbers at every ability level. When I climb now, they climb with me. Their memory will live on and inspire even as their time on this earth has passed. -Jared
TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 1, 2012 - 01:03pm PT
Thank you Cragman and WBW. Your comments and insights are welcomed and you spoke my thoughts eloquently. I have no desire to get into a pissing match with anyone here about climbing style or ones qualifications, visa-vi their climbing resume.

Recone, I have nothing to say to you.

Port, if you read my post up thread you would know.
" I was not present when this(video) was shot. We; Eric, Adam, and members of the Police High Mountain Rescue Group were taking Gil down from high camp @17,200' to the base camp @14, 700' at this moment."

I, along with Eric, Adam, Jared, and Gary Sorenson( who helped with all communications and the over flight) sat down with Mr. Horne and Liora Danan( a very good friend of Ben) and discussed the details of the climb and accident as we know them to be. Mr Horne was very appreciative. He asked pointed questions, which we answered with respect and candor. He was sometimes calm, sometimes emotional, sometimes in tears. He is a father who just lost his son. He is leaning heavily on his Faith to get him through this very difficult time. My good thoughts are with Ben and Gil's families and friends.
I have nothing but admiration for those who helped in bringing Ben and Gil home. Especially, Ted, Jared, Adam, Hector, and Eric.

Big thanks as well to the many friends, here on ST and FB and at home who have personally given their emotional support and good tidings to me; this eased my burden and bolstered those relationships.
I have been climbing in the Blanca for many seasons. I love this place; it's mountains, people, and culture. I will continue to return. As Jared says, "When I climb now, they climb with me. Their memory will live on and inspire even as their time on this earth has passed. -Jared "
Suerte, Peace.
Sunset from col camp, Alpamayo.
Sunset from col camp, Alpamayo.
Credit: TYeary
TY
wbw

Trad climber
'cross the great divide
Aug 1, 2012 - 01:54pm PT
One thing that struck me most about the video was the obvious strain and exhaustion on Hector's face. This accident must have taken a huge toll on him as well. I have a friend in the Casa de Guias who has done these types of recoveries before. Those guys are super strong, highly trained and very compassionate in my experience.

Tony, you and I apparently share a love of Peru, Peruvians and the Cordillera Blanca. I'm glad to read that you will return after this difficult season. I've lost three friends that I spent time with in Huaraz in climbing accidents in the Blanca, but I never felt that not returning was a good option. Un viaje seguro, amigo.
climbers' mom

Social climber
Wilderness, VA
Aug 1, 2012 - 09:23pm PT
Ron--did anyone answer your question about the company that gathered the data from the satellite photos? 'Sorry didn't see your question sooner--the company is Tomnod, and their site is:
tomnod.com
You can find info on their site about how to contact them. Phone: (858) 412-7693, email: info@tomnod.com

This article also has some names you might want of people in the company.
http://www.dailycamera.com/news/ci_21204690

I'll be watching Tomnod to see your search posted so I can assist in analyzing photos if needed. God be with the missing climber!
Spider Savage

Mountain climber
The shaggy fringe of Los Angeles
Aug 1, 2012 - 09:28pm PT
Thanks for that picture Tony. It really helps make sense of the whole thing.

Descents can be deadly.
sharperblue

Mountain climber
oakland, california
Aug 2, 2012 - 12:05am PT
Palcaraju from Ranralpaca-Ishinca Col 18 July 2012
Palcaraju from Ranralpaca-Ishinca Col 18 July 2012
Credit: sharperblue
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Aug 2, 2012 - 01:05am PT
That video made me sick. Did not really want to see the body. But I guess that's a good reality check and a reminder to stay alert out there.

May sound f*#ked up, but I really wish it wasn't these guys. Ben was such an interesting person with many talents, seems like his friend was an awesome guy too...very very sad.
Mr_T

Trad climber
Northern California
Aug 2, 2012 - 03:41pm PT
Before this thread degenerates with the vultures relishing the gory details of how a couple good men perished...

I only knew Gil briefly. I never had the pleasure of meeting Ben - I wish I had - he sounded like a warm individual who brightened the lives of many people here. Gil and I crossed paths for about a month or two - he had just hooked up with the pullharder circle down in SD. The one thing that struck me was what an incredibly motivated individual he was. Even after moving away, I kept following his awesome trip reports on Facebook - it was awesome route after awesome route. He was an inspiration for me to keep dreaming of amazing adventures in the mountains. Many things in life keep you from the mountains. Eventually the years pass by. But Gil and Ben (as a PhD graduate student!) made it happen - traveling to Andes. I was sad to see this tragic ending. It's heartbreaking. I realize this must be a tough time for the crew down in SD.

TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 3, 2012 - 08:16am PT
http://jspencerv.blogspot.com/
Jared's perspective and the last word. Good reading.
TY
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Aug 3, 2012 - 09:37am PT
Thanks for sharing that, Tony.

Proud of you all....

Peace,
DR
Alois

Trad climber
Idyllwild, California
Aug 3, 2012 - 05:25pm PT
My condolences to the family and friends. It's hard to lose young, vibrant and happy people.

Tony, so proud to know you. There are good people everywhere and you are the best example of goodnesss one can find. Awesome on all of you who helped to bring them back to their families.
Eric Tomczak

Mountain climber
Durango, CO
Aug 10, 2012 - 11:09am PT
All of you here on Supertopo are just absolutely incredible. I was on the original search & recovery team that found, and brought out Ben and Gil. I was in contact with Ted via sat phone and got the info you guys were giving about things spotted in sat photos. What ended up answering the question was just simple observation and a little luck, but your information was greatly appreciated.

I just returned to the US and am blown away by how many people cared about, and invested their time into looking for, Ben and Gil. Even from thousands of miles away. All of you guys are awesome, thank you so much for your help in finding our friends.

Keep it up, this is a beautiful show of community from the climbing world.
Asa Firestone

Big Wall climber
Boulder, CO
Aug 13, 2012 - 07:39pm PT
If you are in Boulder, you may consider taking part in these gatherings:

http://www.facebook.com/events/215393931920590/

http://www.facebook.com/events/213868018740649/
noriko nakagawa

Trad climber
eldorado springs co
Aug 13, 2012 - 08:34pm PT
Eric, I just read your letter to pullharder. I am grateful for the assistance that you, Asa, Ted, Hector, Henry and the other members of the ground search crew provided. You put your own lives at risk to bring closure to the family and friends of Ben and Gil.
Fletcher

Trad climber
Fumbling towards stone
Aug 14, 2012 - 12:47pm PT
This continues to be such a wrenching tragedy on many levels. My heart and prayers are still going out to Ben and Gil's families, friends, acquaintances and beyond.

In particular, I'm feeling with you Tony. I know this is not the first time you've been down this road. Your efforts here... well, I'm sure we all are very grateful for them. Glad you were there to help out as best you could. Do take care of yourself and reach out if needed. This is a lot to handle and we want you healthy and coming home safe and sound too.

Peace,
Eric
Nate Ricklin

climber
San Diego
Aug 15, 2012 - 06:39pm PT
still can't believe this shit
cultureshock

Trad climber
Mountain View
Nov 7, 2012 - 05:20pm PT
A good story from Scotty:

Tragedy
The call came the way we always imagine it will, but never expect. It’s Asa. He’s concerned about Gil, he hasn’t heard from him in awhile. He lays the cold hard facts out, one by one. Gil and Ben are several days overdue in Peru. Gil’s flight is scheduled to leave in a few days, but no one has heard from them. They are probably fine, he emphasizes, but just in case he’s working to organize a search team. We’ll all have a good laugh when we get to the bottom of this, he assures me. I listen, and speak some words, but we both know he’s dealing from a stacked deck. I hang up, and collapse into tears.

http://pullharder.org/2012/11/01/the-first-ascent-of-astro-gil-tehipite-dome/

A route climbed in honor of Gil and Ben.

 Luke
TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 7, 2012 - 05:35pm PT
Outstanding guys!
It's almost been four months and I am still processing my small role in this tragedy.
Cheers,
TY
climbski2

Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
Nov 7, 2012 - 05:41pm PT
What a great tribute. Perfect idea,
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Nov 7, 2012 - 06:27pm PT
Beautiful TR.
Kalimon

Social climber
Ridgway, CO
May 29, 2013 - 12:38am PT
BUMP.
Port

Trad climber
San Diego
Jul 27, 2013 - 09:53pm PT
Still can't believe it's been a year. It feels much longer.
GDavis

Social climber
SOL CAL
Jul 28, 2013 - 10:26am PT
Bump. Love your friends today more than yesterday.
TYeary

Social climber
State of decay
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 13, 2014 - 05:18pm PT
Two years gone today, but I remember.
Love your friends today more than yesterday.
Couldn't be more appropriate Greg.
Ben and Gil
Ben and Gil
Credit: TYeary
Palcaraju Oest
Palcaraju Oest
Credit: TYeary
TY

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