John Long decks at gym?


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Trad climber
Nor Cal
Dec 11, 2012 - 12:10am PT
Oh, how the mighty have fallen...

Social climber
Dec 11, 2012 - 12:15am PT
I decked from the last clip up under the roof at Solid Rock San Marcos. Went for the full on rope-in-mouth-double-grab-lunge-oh-shit and landed flat ass on my back.

Luckily I was 19 at the time, and bouncy. Those annoying as f*#k pebbles they have there really do disperse energy.
Jim Pettigrew

Social climber
Crowley Lake, CA
Dec 11, 2012 - 12:30am PT
Get well John!
Compound fracture? Yikes!
Get well my friend!

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Dec 11, 2012 - 01:00am PT
Forget about unfinished knot, I left the ground without any knot, the rope just draped through my swami belt. Fortunately, the rope slipped away before I had any occasion to weight it. Unfortunately, I had to solo the rest of the route. Fortunately, I was able to do that.

I started leaning back on an anchor and realized, in the nick of time, that I wasn't clipped to it.

I once slipped on a pebble near the edge of No Escape Buttress on Mt. Moran and ended up on the edge with one leg hanging over.

On an extremely run-out climb, I arrived at easier ground although with a groundfall prospect. There was protection available, but the terrain was easy and I so no reason to bother, considering what I had just managed. But then at the last minute I decided to place a piece anyway. I took a step up from there, a foothold broke, and I fell two feet onto the piece I almost hadn't placed.

That's four death/dismemberment/paraplegia episodes avoided by dumb luck in going on 56 years, or an average of one every fourteen years. I've never repeated any of those dumb mistakes, which qualifies me for the title of "very experienced." Ha! I prefer that honorific to the rather less dignified "very lucky."

Climbing can be reasonably safe as long as you manage to pay attention to all the details. However, gravity never sleeps, and most of us do nod off from time to time.

Be careful, don't ever get into the superior frame of mind that it can't happen to you, and help out if you can when a comrade falls, remembering that it might well have been you.

Trad climber
Elk Creek, Idaho
Dec 11, 2012 - 01:46am PT
Hey Miss Jennie, if you Married -John Long, you would be ...
Jennie Long Long. or..Jennie Two Long...

Jennie Two Long might have more euphony with my wee bit of Indian Ancestry, Nita… ha-ha-ha.

Sorry I didn’t see your post until now. I don’t think Largo and I are related…I think all Longs descendent via Great Britain are posterity of a Norman knight named John DeLong who came with William the Conqueror in the eleventh century.

I read somewhere than John’s ancestry was primarily from Ireland, though.

Trad climber
Sun Coast B.C.
Dec 11, 2012 - 01:56am PT
Just asked my wife...

"Hey, do you know who John Long is?"

She says:

"Porn Star??"


"Oh, the guy who wrote those climbing books?"

Positive energy to you Largo.

From us.


Social climber
state of Kumbaya...
Dec 11, 2012 - 10:21am PT

Well to be totally honest...

I've done it at least TWICE that I can recall...(Not tie in completely, lead, then realize, "WTF???")...

I also recently caught a partner of mine making the same mistake...

It does indeed happen...
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Dec 11, 2012 - 11:21am PT
probably worth while to take the "unfinished knot" topic to another thread... eh?

Social climber
Los Angeles currently St. Antonin, France
Dec 11, 2012 - 12:50pm PT
I used to work at Rockreation and I recall Largo was always getting busted for tying in with a bowline. Wonder what knot he was using at the time?

Dec 11, 2012 - 01:06pm PT
I recall Largo was always getting busted for tying in with a bowline.

WTF man.

I've used the bowline to tie in for over 30 years.

I'd tell that Jim Jones owner he's a stupid American ..... :-)

Social climber
Los Angeles currently St. Antonin, France
Dec 11, 2012 - 01:12pm PT
For the record I have no problem with the bowline (when it's finished and backed up) and I sure as hell never told John what he should or should not tie in with. Obviously if you were distracted (by a pretty girl or a moment of deep insight for instance) you could forget to finish any it easier to unfinish a bowline?
Regardless- John I hope you get the best care possilble and heal back stronger than ever,

Social climber
The internet
Dec 11, 2012 - 01:17pm PT
I guess "unfinished" could mean 2 things:

1) The knot was not fully tied. It was an incomplete knot.

2) The last few inches of the rope were not terminated to a fisherman's knot or similar. This is probably more important for a bowline than a figure 8.

I was assuming 1) was the case here, though I could see a "loose" bowline that was "unfinished" causing a problem as well.

I use bowline for single pitch sport, basically so I can untie after repeated falls. I use a figure 8 for multipitch climbing, where I don't want the knot coming loose over time. Most of my partners do the same.


Dec 11, 2012 - 03:43pm PT
I prefer the bowline tie-in to the eight for most climbing, but I've noticed a tendency for bowline users (myself included) to pull the line through the harness while chatting pre-climb and not tie the knot immediately. I don't see this as often with figure eights, perhaps because the pass through the harness occurs in between the tying of the two eights and stopping feels like more of an interruption. Once through the harness it's easy to think you are tied in.

Mountain climber
there and back again
Dec 12, 2012 - 07:24pm PT
Sorry, to hear about your predicament, Largo. I try never to interrupt someone who is tying in. And typically check the climber I am belaying before they leave the ground.

Once you get the bill from the hospital, even with insurance, its going to be pricey.

I think this is a good reason for the annual bash at Todd Gordons; Todd willing. If not for a fundraiser but a celebration of us all making it this far.

I too have found myself at the top of a climb, leaning back to be lowered only to find my knot was only stuffed though my harness not even tied. Some lessons are cheaper than others!

Falls Church, VA
Dec 12, 2012 - 08:22pm PT
I guess "unfinished" could mean 2 things:

But, for crying out loud, WHY ARE WE GUESSING?!

The conveyance of "information" via the Net is so
damn fast when unweighted by care in checking facts ... .

Already, there is another "bowline came untied" article fueling
lines of R&I, no doubt building some preponderance of evidence
after the fatal UK case, about which RGold & I tried to point
out that certain key bits of information --i.p., whether in fact
any actual >>knot<< was tied-- were unknown.

HERE, we have connection to the (thankfully, surviving) user;
how about actual-factual details,
vs. the usual this-appears-to-support-my-agenda spewing?


Big Wall climber
Dec 12, 2012 - 08:40pm PT
so John pulled a "lynn hill" accident. lynn hill famously wrote about her accicent on buffet froid at buoux, another unfinished knot. i've seen the results in a gym first hand, women lowering from forty five feet up, and at 30 feet the knot pulls through and she decks on the peat gravel. nothing broken, but bruised along the entire side on her body.

I teach, practice, and preach that knot tying should be a ritual where we disregard distractions and tie our knot from start to finish. get out the candles and incense here. do it from start to finish, every time, or untie your knot completely and deal with the distractions before tying the knot. ss


Boulder climber
Somewhere on 395
Dec 13, 2012 - 01:20am PT
i've been ready to rap, only to notice that I only have one strand of cord through the atc. have been fortunate to correct that

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Dec 13, 2012 - 01:39am PT
If climbers had any brains they would adopt aviation protocols -
maintain a sterile cockpit during critical flight phases and
The user formerly known as stzzo

Sneaking up behind you
Dec 13, 2012 - 01:50am PT
If climbers had any brains they would adopt aviation protocols -
maintain a sterile cockpit during critical flight phases and

Some climbers do.
Jebus H Bomz

Reno, Nuh VAAAA duh
Dec 13, 2012 - 01:53am PT
so John pulled a "lynn hill" accident.

I don't think that was lost on many of us, but it bears note. That is an amazing account on her part too.
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