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LOST: Rack @ Echo Cliffs, Nov. 27th - Found


Original Post
transattic · · Los Angeles, CA · Joined Nov 2010 · Points: 5

Update:

Found. Thanks for the support.

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On Saturday night Nov. 27, I along with 2 friends were climbing in Echo Cliffs. Due to loss of daylight/visibility mixed in with the heavy rain we were unable to hike back to the lot (Sandstone Peak) getting horribly lost. We had to leave gear behind in a last ditch effort for survival in search for any kind of shelter. By 3am Sunday morning, we were rescued by getting airlifted by the Ventura Sheriff helicopter. We had left the gear along the riverbed down there somewhere. Wish I can be more specific but left a trail of neon orange tape around in the case we were able to get back to it. The rack included:

1 BD harness, 1 black harness, 1 bike helmet, 1 reverso, 2 trango equalizers, 2 atcs, 1 pair green Evolv shoes, around 10 biners locking/non-locking, assorted runners, orange/yellow Evolv chalkbag, etcÂ…

If found, please PM.

Help another fellow climber recover what was lost in a due to unfortunate circumstances. Thanks!!!

transattic · · Los Angeles, CA · Joined Nov 2010 · Points: 5

Thanks JJ! Much appreciated for the reply.

caughtinside · · Oakland CA · Joined Nov 2006 · Points: 1,470

Who says you can't epic sport climbing. Thank god for the chopper rescue!

David Appelhans · · Medford, MA · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 410

1. How did leaving your "rack" help you survive?

2. Did the rescue cost you anything?

EDGE · · Between Nederland and Boulder, · Joined Jul 2008 · Points: 1,370
caughtinside wrote:Who says you can't epic sport climbing. Thank god for the chopper rescue!
Danny Boyle is all over this. The working title for the movie is "8 3/4 hours."
Jon H · · MD/DC · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 123

This thread is way better than the same thread he started over on RC. And here I thought that RC had the monopoly on snarkiness.

But he did epic sport climbing...

Snupe · · SoCak · Joined Jun 2010 · Points: 20
Richard Shore wrote:Why are you bringing Trango alpine Equalizers to Echo Cliffs?
well, the gear description also mentions 10 assorted biners with some runners, so I don't think they really had the ideal Echo Cliffs rack.

I was somewhat skeptical of this story, but evidently it's real ...

edhat.com/site/tidbit.cfm?n…
Scott McMahon · · Boulder, CO · Joined Feb 2006 · Points: 1,425
Jon H wrote:And here I thought that RC had the monopoly on snarkiness..
Anything to do with sport climbing or bouldering gets cut up over here.
David Appelhans · · Medford, MA · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 410

And to think the Animal Actors of Hollywood is only a few miles away.

What's that Lassie? Timmy and his friends are lost in the hills above Sherwood Country Club?! And it is 2 miles north, south, or east to the nearest road in the RAIN! Quick, where's Arnold, we have to get to the chopper.

Map

transattic · · Los Angeles, CA · Joined Nov 2010 · Points: 5

All I can tell you is that my each of us had been to Echo Cliffs once before. One friend (3 of us stranded) had previously escorted out a couple of friends (not stranded) 3 hours earlier and was familiar with the trails. But as soon as it hit 4pm it got dark and started raining. We didn't have any waterproof jackets or boots. With weak 10-30 lumen flashlights (1 headlamp), we hiked back the way we thought we came. At a certain point on the trail we hit a dead end. After searching for 30 mins for the main trail, we hesitantly decided to take the riverbed, which should have led us to the picnic tables thus the main trail. A friend was carrying the rack on his shoulder (not in a backpack) that required steadying with one hand, on the other hand, there was a flashlight. The riverbed rocks were slippery and we could not rely on our feet at all. Visibility dropped dramatically as my glasses fogged up from the 40 degree F and showering rain. Every step we took we created the new path. We had to break branches, stomp vegatation, walk through streams, and such. After all this struggling, my friend wanted me to throw away my 50-pound pack, but I refused. He instead tossed the rack so he could stay balanced, free a hand, and prevent any more ensnaring from the wild branches/thorns. That was a good idea at the time. Finally, after 3 hours of hiking in this freezing, hopeless condition (talking about going 1/5th the normal speed), we decided to take shelter in a tiny cave. Luckily someone else had already stayed here before as we could tell from a wooden plank covering the top of the cave held by a wooden pole. We could not build a fire with any dry leaves, branches, or kindling we found nearby. Even after shaving twigs for an hour, the lighter could only burn some topo printouts and subway wrapping, but the tinder would just cherry out. Luckily, I pulled out a dry northface down jacket, which I gave to a friend. I had a nylon thermal long sleeve and pants, which I threw on. My second friend had it the worst as he was only wearing a thin wind breaker, 2 tee's, and pants. Still drenched and with a fire, we huddled closely throughout the night. The time went by slowly without a chance of sleep. At 2:30am, my friend heard a chopper in the distance and started yelling for us to get out there and signal with our flashlights. I was so delirious that I tried to ignore his words in an attempt to doze off and maintain the little warmth I had left. Of course, we eventually got up and strobed our lights, and they quickly located our base. After the helicopter made it's third round, the ranger dropped down and guided us to the highest ground around. After a 10min hike,b the chopper was hovering along the edge of the hill where we had to climb in one by one. We got a 30 second ride to the parking lot where my brother, friend, and sheriffs were waiting to greet us. The End.

Lesson of story: leave 2-3 hours earlier than the expected sunset since it is a canyon, and everyone should pack enough equipment for survival.

And a special thanks to those who did not judge me and offered their assistance. Everyone else should have hearts like yours.

Jay D. · · The Corner Office · Joined Feb 2010 · Points: 30

Awesome.

Heli-rescue while sports climbing. I wish more people would exit the gyms and start climbing outside. We need more stories like this one.

Julius Beres · · Boulder, CO · Joined Jun 2008 · Points: 270

Ok... so maybe you weren't thinking clearly because you were lost and scared... but, if you had a harness, some 'biners, and a bunch of stuff you typically attach to a harness and you wanted your hands to be free, why wouldn't you just put on the harness and clip everything to it?

Amy Hadden · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2009 · Points: 0

Okay, wait. I'm still really curious as to how the copter got involved. Did your friends try to find you at all? I'm assuming it wasn't you who called SAR. And what did the sherriff say once your 30 second heli ride was over??

Julius Beres · · Boulder, CO · Joined Jun 2008 · Points: 270
transattic wrote: my friend wanted me to throw away my 50-pound pack, but I refused.
I reread this and I am curious... why did you have a 50 lb pack??
1 rope (<10 lbs, my 70m weighs 9.8 lb)
18 quick draws ~4 lbs
A few locking biners, belay device, etc. another pound

That is only 15 lbs... Add in head lamp, jacket, some water, etc., and you still don't get to 20 lbs. Even with a second full size rope, you are still under 30 lbs.

I've gone alpine climbing with ~50 lb pack, including a tent and other gear. It is hard to believe that you had a 50 lb pack and not enough gear to survive a night without needing a helicopter rescue...
Tristan Burnham · · La Crescenta, CA · Joined Oct 2009 · Points: 1,585

Sleep in the Kamaziai cave you pussy.

Ed Earl Johansen · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2006 · Points: 0
Julius Beres wrote: I reread this and I am curious... why did you have a 50 lb pack?? 1 rope (<10 lbs, my 70m weighs 9.8 lb) 18 quick draws ~4 lbs A few locking biners, belay device, etc. another pound That is only 15 lbs... Add in head lamp, jacket, some water, etc., and you still don't get to 20 lbs. Even with a second full size rope, you are still under 30 lbs. I've gone alpine climbing with ~50 lb pack, including a tent and other gear. It is hard to believe that you had a 50 lb pack and not enough gear to survive a night without needing a helicopter rescue...
Well, add a Rotory hammer drill and 20 lbs of bolts and hangers in there and see what you come up with.
ryan mattock · · calabasas Ca · Joined Jan 2008 · Points: 440
I along with 2 friends were climbing in Echo Cliffs. Due to loss of daylight/visibility mixed in with the heavy rain we were unable to hike back to the lot (Sandstone Peak) getting horribly lostic Text

where were you at Echo or Mount Olympus?
Spider Savage · · Los Angeles, ID · Joined May 2007 · Points: 530

The suffering you endured that night is beginning to pale under the thunderous ridicule you are getting. (Supertopo thread has over 50 posts in first 4 hrs.)

In a few years you'll all be much smarter. Keep on climbing.

Boy Scout motto: Be Prepared

Bryan Gilmore · · New England · Joined Nov 2005 · Points: 1,225

One time when I was on Everest w/o O2 (of course), and going super, hella-light (ala Estaban Casa) I remembered that I forgot my one piece down suit, I just didn't pack it... so, long story short, I had to bivy in the Sandy Pittman cave for the night. Luckily for me I did have my TNF heated fleece jacket so I was super toasty and didn't have to use my sat phone to call the guy [chopper] who rescued that other guy earlier in the week. So, when I got back to ABC I quickly grabbed my one piece down suit and hastily repacked and onsighted the Beeotch "in a day". Oh yeah, even at that altitude my Adidas sport goggles never fogged up - maybe you should invest in some, they're well worth the $300. I can't remember why I'm telling you all this, oh well.

Fat Dad · · Los Angeles, CA · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 60
EDGE wrote: Danny Boyle is all over this. The working title for the movie is "8 3/4 hours."
That is pretty damn funny.

I'm glad you survived your little adventure and hope you get your rack back, but man do I not want to go climbing with you.
Shawn Mitchell · · Broomfield · Joined Mar 2008 · Points: 250

what a thread!

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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