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Heaps canyon fatality July 11, 2015

Discussion in 'Accidents and Near Misses' started by hank moon, Jul 12, 2015.

  1. Cameron

    Cameron Long Tall Texan by birth

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    Saint George
    I wish there was a heart break emoji on here.
  2. GOAT

    GOAT

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    Hey guys,
    I was the leader on this trip (group size was 4). My other buddy decided to respond on Reddit while I will respond on here. Just as was described on Reddit, we had just finished the Iron Room corridor and popped out to face a ravine on our left and what appeared to be an upclimb on the right. As we approached the upclimb we saw boot prints going up. At this point we saw what looked like an opening behind us but for some reason we all thought it looked to be a dead end (it also had much fewer footprints) and a few guys thought the climb on the right matched the beta. I went up a fairly easy crack to check and didn't think it matched the description. Another member of our group came up to double check me before we came back down to find the correct path. I turned around to yell/talk to one of the guys below when I heard my buddy up top slip. After this we did what we could by reaching him and getting all the extra supplies to the buddy who would be staying with him. I grabbed the other buddy and we took off for help. To answer the inevitable questions: Yes we were prepared, equipped and ready for this canyon. Helmets were always worn, a fireman was always given and everyone was double checked. This was purely an accident. I hope this helps and i will try to keep up if anyone has any questions. Please keep his family and friends in your prayers. Also if anyone going through finds any personal items left in this area just let me know and we can arrange to get it back. Also we left our lines on the rappel down to the bird perch and from the bird perch to the ground (200' and 300'). If you happen to retrieve them please contact me and we will figure out what to do.
  3. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    Thanks Goat. A sad event.

    If folks leave your stuff at ZAC, I can pick it up and send to you.

    Tom
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  4. Austin Baird

    Austin Baird

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    I'm trying to picture what this place looks like. Anyone have a picture of this part of the canyon?

    And GOAT - I'm incredibly sorry that this happened. I can't imagine how it feels.
    Rapterman likes this.
  5. Canyons

    Canyons

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    My sincerest condolences to his family and friends.
    I myself have two sons about the same age and can't begin to imagine the pain these people are going through right now.
    I was one of the five in the group ahead of these guys. They met up to us on the first rap, then again a few raps into the water course. That's the last time we saw them. We were a bit concerned when we were finishing the last raps as we did not see or hear them. After talking to family members ,who were waiting for them at Emerald Pools, we concluded they were spending the night. From what I have read, I speculate they missed the keyhole and headed up the open canyon and scrambled around trying to find the route when tragedy struck. A very sad loss!
    Rapterman likes this.
  6. Deagol

    Deagol too many hobbies

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    sorry to hear about this....
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  7. knoubis

    knoubis

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    I'm the one posting to reddit. I found the following pictures on bluugnome. The first picture shows the keyhole to the left and up-canyon to the right (iron room and devils pit). The second photo is hard to interpret but the up-climb was against the right wall and the ravine was down the left. GOAT and I assessed and sorted gear and left our two friends about 200 yards down the left ravine at about 7:30 pm. We reached the final sequence as the sun went down and finished the last two raps in the dark.


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  8. Kevin

    Kevin

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    Sorry for your loss, I can't even imagine what you all went through.
    Rapterman likes this.
  9. Cameron

    Cameron Long Tall Texan by birth

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    Location:
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    Thank you for sharing your story. The entire canyoneering community sends our hearts and condolences to you guys.

    I just did Heaps for the first time a few weeks ago and the pics indicate that you guys were between the second and third narrows? I think that is what I am remembering.

    The sandy area pictured...we sat for a final snack and to warm up before entering the narrows.
    Kevin likes this.
  10. Mountaineer

    Mountaineer Is that an X slot?

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    Thanks Goat for posting. I'm so sorry. My prayers and thoughts are with you.
  11. Mike Zampino

    Mike Zampino Canyon season never ends.

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    I am so sorry for your loss and the unfortunate accident.
    I have a team going through on Saturday (if weather permits). It looks like permits were pulled for Tuesday, but if the ropes are still there this when we go, we will make sure we get them back to you.
    Chris Grove, Wes1 and Deagol like this.
  12. Stevee B

    Stevee B

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    How horrible. I am so sorry.
  13. Brian in SLC

    Brian in SLC Brian in SLC

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    Profound condolences. Sad and tragic day.
  14. AW~

    AW~

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    http://www.news3lv.com/mostpopular/...l-Park-kills-UNLV/xMz3EwM9L0Cs5LkjOg8ylQ.cspx
    "Family of 24 year old dental student and avid hiker Bryan Artmann, said he died in a hiking accident Sunday in Zion National Park....Hiking wasn't only Artmann's passion. His sister said he was a nationally recognized pole vaulter who excelled in high school and college.
    Artmann attended Green Valley High School and the University of Redlands, before studying dentistry at UNLV...."
  15. canyoncaper

    canyoncaper

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    My condolences - so very very sad.

    Sent from my SM-N900V using Tapatalk
  16. deathtointernet

    deathtointernet

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    My group was going through on Sunday afterwards. We kept hearing, and occasionally seeing, a helicopter flying over the canyon. At first we thought it was related to the fire on Cathedral Mountain, but eventually it became apparent that it was concentrating on Heaps. At one point we caught of a glimpse of it flying overhead with a basket, so then we knew for sure it had been a rescue operation. We passed the ravine and could hear voices up in it, and exchanged a hello with someone up there, but that was all. Of course by this point it was a recovery, but none of us in the group even considered how bad it might be, thinking that maybe a group had lost a rope or suffered a broken limb in one of the potholes or something. When we got to the final rappel sequence we ended up leaving one of the ropes left in place on a ledge at the second rappel station, but pulled the 300 footer left at the final rappel. We made it out just in time to reach the final sweeper shuttle and get our ride out of the park. We did ask our bus driver and he hadn't heard anything. It wasn't until we retrieved our car from Kolob that had our phones in it that we realized that there had been a fatality, mainly from people worried that it had been one of us.

    P7120234.JPG
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  17. CanyonSlayer

    CanyonSlayer

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    Please make sure to let Goat know about the ropes.

    Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk
  18. CanyonSlayer

    CanyonSlayer

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    User Deathtointernet mentioned that they came accross your ropes on Sunday. You may want to reachout to him if he has not made contact with you yet.

    Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk
  19. canyoncaper

    canyoncaper

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    A group just came out of Heaps - the ropes are still there sitting on the bird perch.

    Felicia

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  20. Chris Grove

    Chris Grove Yes, anytime.

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    We will get them on Saturday (weather permitting) and deliver to ZAC.
    Rapterman likes this.
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