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Rumney Rockfall?
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By Travis Dustin
From Hollis, NH
Feb 23, 2014
Lost in the Sun pitch 2
Looks like some new blocks fell off the Iron Man wall. It must have been recent the blocks were completely dry on topwhere everything else is stillcovered in snow and the ground was torn up quite a bit. A few small rocks came down while we were checking it out so we moved on.
Rockfall
Rockfall

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By Jay Knower
Administrator
From Campton, NH
Feb 23, 2014
Technosurfing, Rumney. Photo by Seth Hamel.
Where exactly is that?

I was out at Main Cliff yesterday, and didn't notice anything out of the ordinary, so it must have happened Saturday night. There was a lot of water coming off the top of the cliff during the day on Saturday.

Spring is definitely the time for it. Actually, looking back through the forums, I see that the massive rockfall happened in March of 2010.

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By M Sprague
Administrator
From New England
Feb 23, 2014
Lichen head. Me, with my usual weatherbeaten, lichen covered look from scrubbing a new route.
It sure looks like something new. Did you happen to take a picture of the cliff? There is a big roof block right near the top, just above where the huge rockfall of 2010 came out that is highly suspect. It is at the top between Ironman and Rock du Jours. I was checking out a potential new route up there years back and couldn't get it off with a big bar, but it looked like it would only be a matter of time.

People shouldn't take their safety for granted hanging out below the Main Cliff. Don't let all those nice bolts fool you. It is still an evolving cliff. Per square foot it may be as bad or worse than Cannon. I have personally trundled car sized stuff from it that came off scarily easily.

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By Travis Dustin
From Hollis, NH
Feb 23, 2014
Lost in the Sun pitch 2
If looking at the wall these are sitting to the right of underdog. I figure it must have come down over night or that morning since they were completely dry.
face <br />
face


another shot
another shot

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By S. Neoh
Feb 23, 2014
Seems like right of Rock du Jours even. I do not think I see High Roller either. But left of Get It On?

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By M Sprague
Administrator
From New England
Feb 24, 2014
Lichen head. Me, with my usual weatherbeaten, lichen covered look from scrubbing a new route.
Hmmm, it could have come down the Rock du Jour gully. There was some potentially loose stuff up on the ledge. The roof block I mentioned is still there in your picture. People should be aware that there is stuff up high where the third pitch of Ironman used to top out that could be getting more loose with the freeze/thawing too.

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By J Meagher
Feb 24, 2014
Wow... scary. I was up there on Saturday the 15th and I didn't notice any rockfall, so yeah it must've been pretty recent. I admit, I have taken the safety of Main Cliff for granted, its easy to get lulled into a false sense of security by all that solid-looking quartzite. Did this block land to the left or to the right of Magic Helmet?

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By Nick Goldsmith
Feb 24, 2014
No much you can do if something that big comes down.....

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By Nick Grant
From Natick, MA & Tamworth, NH
Feb 24, 2014
A photo of me on Across the Universe taken by the Strandman back in '83.
The Main Wall is as "active" a cliff in terms of rockfall as Cannon? Gee whiz . . . Back when I was climbing on Cannon, it was a relatively common occurrence to see new seasonal detritus at the base of the cliff. ("I love the smell of sulphur in the morning.")

I'm relatively new to climbing at Rumney. How common is this sort of substantial rockfall that we see in the picture? And is there a season that is particularly active? I'd guess late winter/early spring for sure with our New England freeze and thaw cycles. Thanks for any info.

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By J Meagher
Feb 24, 2014
Nick, as with anywhere, the most active time for rockfall is late winter and early spring when everything thaws. Im relatively new to outdoor climbing, ive been climbing at Rumney for maybe 18 months and this is the first big rockfall ive heard of in that time (other than the collapse of Jolt). Main Cliff does seem to be much more active than the rest of Rumney, but I have always reasonably felt safe there until now. Big rockfall does happen at Rumney, such as the fall of the big flake on Slick and the March 2010 incident, so im starting to consider avoiding Main Cliff until early April just to be safe

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By S. Neoh
Feb 24, 2014
Mark and the rest of Team Tough would know for sure .... to me, Main Cliff is pretty "active". I would think crags like Meadows, 5.8, Bonsai, New Wave are "safer" in terms of large rock falls. OC looks scary but I think Ward and company did such a stellar job trundling and cleaning that I think it is "less active" than Main Cliff. The big crash of 2010 is the largest I can remember going back to '95 or so but I have to admit my memory is not what it used to be ....

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By J Meagher
Feb 25, 2014
Darth Vadar is also pretty bad... you can find loose rocks on just about every route there

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By J Meagher
Mar 1, 2014
Does anybody know exactly where the rock fall originated from?

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By M Sprague
Administrator
From New England
Mar 1, 2014
Lichen head. Me, with my usual weatherbeaten, lichen covered look from scrubbing a new route.
Nope. We were going to go up tomorrow to see if we could do some clean up of obvious loose stuff, but postponed for possibly next week due to the frigid temps. Hopefully it will be a little more reasonable temps for rapping off the top with bars. If so, we will have to close the cliff and the hillside below for a while while we do it.

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By S. Neoh
Mar 1, 2014
You and your teammate(s) are good people, Mark. THANKS a bunch.
Hope to catch up with you some time this Spring.

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By Tzilla Rapdrilla
Mar 2, 2014
Looks like an FA opportunity.

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By Rose Kenny
Mar 3, 2014
The RCA will help advertise this effort online. The forest service will likely have signs that we can utilize to warn people on foot. I'll check in with them and get back to you.

Thanks,

Rose

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By Rose Kenny
Mar 3, 2014
Mark and All,

We can post a few signs to forewarn the community about a volunteer based effort to trundle loose blocks at Main Cliff. When we set a date to do this we also need to have two people serving as lookouts because we can't rely solely on signs to warn folks. Once the activity is over we will remove the signs. Let me know how I can help.

Thanks in advance!

Rose

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By M Sprague
Administrator
From New England
Mar 3, 2014
Lichen head. Me, with my usual weatherbeaten, lichen covered look from scrubbing a new route.
Thanks, Rose.

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By Nick Grant
From Natick, MA & Tamworth, NH
Mar 3, 2014
A photo of me on Across the Universe taken by the Strandman back in '83.
Rose, "trundle" has got to be one of the greatest words. (+1)

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By stephane
May 18, 2014
Someone knows if it's safe to climb at Main Cliff ?

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By Ladd Raine
Administrator
From Plymouth, NH
May 20, 2014
Waiting for lift-off, Thin Air(5.6) Cathedral Ledge, NH
stephane wrote:
Someone knows if it's safe to climb at Main Cliff ?


Safety at any climbing area is never certain. That said, Main Cliff does not experience regular rockfall. The two rockfall events over the past 3 years have been outliers, although significant ones.

Practice caution.

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By Jay Knower
Administrator
From Campton, NH
May 20, 2014
Technosurfing, Rumney. Photo by Seth Hamel.
Ladd Raine wrote:
Safety at any climbing area is never certain. That said, Main Cliff does not experience regular rockfall. The two rockfall events over the past 3 years have been outliers, although significant ones. Practice caution.


At what point do the outliers become the trend? There's definitely been an uptick in rockfall reports from Main Cliff lately.

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By Kevin Heckeler
From Upstate New York
May 20, 2014
Rumney
Natural selection will weed out those who refuse to wear helmets.

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By M Sprague
Administrator
From New England
May 20, 2014
Lichen head. Me, with my usual weatherbeaten, lichen covered look from scrubbing a new route.
More important is being aware of your surroundings and knowing where to keep your hang out time to a minimum. A helmet is not going to do anything if a two ton block lands on your head. You want to limit the odds of a falling rock hitting your head in the first place. They are not a bad idea for the small stuff though, like gravel and dropped quickdraws.

Before you drop your pack and sprawl out with your back to the wall, observe what is above you and possible trajectories of stuff bouncing its way down. Are you in a protected spot?

I would rather see a person with no helmet who is aware of their surroundings than a helmet clad one who seems to think wearing one will protect them from being out of it.

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By Kevin Heckeler
From Upstate New York
May 20, 2014
Rumney
M Sprague wrote:
I would rather see a person with no helmet who is aware of their surroundings than a helmet clad one who seems to think wearing one will protect them from being out of it.


Good point(s).

I was thinking about some of the invincible sport climbers that visit Rumney and who seem kinda fanatical about not wearing helmets.

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