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Discussion in 'Accidents and Near Misses' started by ratagonia, Jan 3, 2018.
Yes lots of beta on this route...
Uh, yeah... but, c'mon. It is also essential that people descending canyons know where to thread their rope, and that also threading it through a non-ringed loop of webbing does not work.
But yes, when we experienced canyoneers run canyons, we should leave the anchors well-rigged, so that the many low-skill canyoneers who follow are less likely to get in trouble.
Thanks for the update on how they got their rope stuck; the beginner mistake they made that led to the rope being completely stuck.
As the originator of the "blowing smoke" comment, let me qualify the statement.
*SAR guy said: "You guys obviously know what you're doing, you're experienced, we saw your gear, your anchors. You just caught some bad luck. It happens to us all. One of the guys up top right now had to get rescued and then he joined the team. What we hate is people that do 1 rappel on an excursion in Mexico and think they can tackle this."*
This is what the OP HEARD, not necessarily what the SAR guy said. But even if accurate, let me say there is a matter of standards. Yes, these guys did some things right. But no. They are not experienced. They created the problem, it was not 'bad luck'. These are not people who should be out doing canyons on their own.
I realize your folks's clients are often on the Darwin Award honorable mention list. As responsible canyoneers, we (or perhaps only me) suggest that these clients should be encouraged to acquire more training, rather than "you just had bad luck". They do not meet the skill standard of the canyoneering community (I claim) for people who are adequately skilled to be descending canyons on their own, even canyons that are popular, bolted and likely well-rigged.
Lotta gold in this post, Hank. Thanks. But this... this is the Platinum!
Certainly these are words one should never use in a technical discussion.
The party is question was the kind of party that would not inspect the slings, nor have the wherewithal to replace them if necessary. I am sure that in Australia there are many parties with minimal skills, as there are here in The States.
The words NEVER and ONLY are used to indicate that this is a rule, at least, a rule among canyoneers here in the USA. Those who have competence and understanding are welcome to break the rules as appropriate, but we have rules so that canyoneers without competence and understanding will continue to be non-broken.
Certainly the OPs would have been better off if they had known and followed other canyoneering rules, including Tom's Rule number one: Don't be a beginner being led by a beginner. (and its corollary: don't be a beginner leading other beginners.)
This is a technical discussion
NEVER use NEVER in a technical discussion...
I use never because I am an 'absolutist'....and really good at NOT sticking ropes.
If you regularly set anchors with rope on bare sling in Southwest canyons, and throw in some fuzzy rope,
and get it wet, maybe add a little sand, a little rope twist ..........
it is a CERTAINTY that you will stick ropes.
And always start an answer with "It depends..."