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Sport Route Disclaimer???

Original Post
Mike Zasadzien · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2013 · Points: 80

Climbed this new route that was put up at a crag that I've only been to once before. I enjoyed it, noted the choss on the edges as expected on a newer climbs, and had a great day.

What I didn't know, is that when I checked the page for the route later, that it held this following disclaimer at the bottom of the page:

"This route was bolted solely for the purpose of allowing for the first ascent, and the first ascent information is posted here solely to document the history of the first ascent. No person should read this posting with the assumption that this route or the fixed gear left behind is safe in any way or otherwise appropriate to allow for safe subsequent ascents. Climbing is dangerous and should only be done with the appropriate training and risk management practices that include providing for the climber’s own safety. Attempting to climb this route as described above or by any other means or methods could result in injury or death."

Now, I'm reaching out to you guys as to how to take it. Is this a C.Y.A. sort of statement and freeing oneself from liabilty kind of post that we can begin to see more commonly around here? All the bolts were new, and looked to be in good placements to me, and not only that, ends with drop-in hooks for easy transfer to rappels for future use. Obviously there's some sort of risk in somewhat blindly trusting bolts everywhere you go, but this almost makes me want to question if the bolts were placed honestly just for this single FA and without any care that it would hold for future climbs [say by placing mixed metals, or using oddball practices, or perhaps even just a new bolter that was uncomfortable with their abilities].

Has anyone else ran into this? Am I overly paranoid in seeing this disclaimer?

Chadley · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Oct 2014 · Points: 0

Every bolt is suspect!

Jim Titt · · Germany · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 490

Tht´s actually quite neat. It´s putting down in words what everybody should know when they go outdoor sport climbing but usually forget, particularly those newly out from the gym.

rocknice2 · · Montreal, Quebec · Joined Nov 2006 · Points: 3,093

Ever consider that the climb was updated but not the route database.

It's quite common to equip working bolts. Then when the climb and clipping stances are fully worked out, it's re-bolted.

BigB · · Red Rock, NV · Joined Feb 2015 · Points: 340

Seems like a CYA incase something we're to happen and someone came a lookin....

Brian in SLC · · Sandy, Utah · Joined Oct 2003 · Points: 14,995

Reminds me of Brutus of Wyde's disclaimer...

The Disclaimer by Brutus of Wyde



This inaccurate topo is based on dim recollections, half-baked guesses, and outright lies. In NO WAY does it tell the full story. You would probably be better off just trying to find your own way up the mounatin, than you would be if you used this topo. But that statement in no way implies that I am in any way responsible if you don't use the topo, and something bad happens anyway.

Nature is unpredictable and unsafe. Mountains are dangerous. Many books have been written about these dangers, and there's no way I can list them all here. Read the books.

The area depicted by this topo is covered in steep terrain with loose, slippery and unstable footing. The weather can make matters worse. Sheer drops are everywhere. You may fall, be injured or die. There are hidden holes. You could break your leg. There are wild animals, which may be vicious, poisonous, hungry or carriers of dread diseases. These may include poisonous amphibians, reptiles, and insects; insects to which you have allergies, or whose multiple stings can cause anaphylactic shock; mammals which may include skunks, badgers, marmots, lions, tigers, and bears; predatory birds, and all other manner of beasts. Plants can be poisonous as well, and even when not poisonous, can inflict serious injury like a sharp stick in the eye. This topo, and the author of this topo, will not do anything to protect you from any of this. I do not inspect, supervise or maintain the ground, rocks, cliffs, wildlife, vegetation or other features, natural or otherwise.
Real dangers are present even on approach trails. Trails are not sidewalks, and folks have died and been seriously injured even on sidewalks when they have tripped on cracked concrete, plunged into meter boxes with missing covers, been mugged, hit by cars, had pianos fall on them... Trails can be, and are, steep, slippery and dangerous. Trail features made or enhanced by humans, such as bridges, steps, walls and railings (if any) can break, collapse, or otherwise fail catastrophically at any time. I don't promise to inspect, supervise or maintain them in any way. They may be negligently constructed or repaired. Some trails in the area are only maintained by Nelson Bighorn Sheep, who have little regard for human life or human safety, or any humans whatsoever. In summary, trails are unsafe, period. Live with it or stay away.

Stay on the trails whenever possible. The terrain, in addition to being dangerous, is surprisingly complex. You may get lost. You probably WILL get lost. The chances of getting lost multiply geometrically after the sun goes down, due to poor visibility. The sun goes down at least once a day in this area. Not to say that you won't get lost during daylight hours. In either event, carry a flashlight, extra bulb and batteries, compass, GPS, altimeter, cellular phone, food, water, matches and first aid supplies at all times. My advising you of this does not mean there are not other things you should be carrying. Carry them all as well, and know how to use them. I am not responsible for the consequences if you fail to heed this advice. In fact, I am not responsible for the consequences even if you DO heed this advice and, for example, end up in an unplanned bivy because you were carrying too much g*dd@mnstuff, stumble into the bivy fire at 2 am whenyou get up to take a p!ss, and severely burn theflesh on your hands. You have only yourself toblame, so leave me out of it.

Rocks and other objects can, and probably will, fall from the cliffs. They can tumble down slopes. This can happen naturally, or be caused by people above you, such as climbers. Rocks of all sizes, including huge boulders, can shift, move or fall with no warning. If you don't believe me check out the talus slopes at the base of some of the rock walls. They didn't just grow there. Use of helmets is advised for anyone approaching the rock formations. As a matter of fact, approaching the rock formationsis not advised. That is pretty stupid too. But ifyou DO choose to risk your worthless scrawny neckby going near rocks, shoulder pads, knee pads, elbow pads, athletic cups and supporters and other body armor may be handy as well. These items can be purchased or rented from mountaineering shops and athletic supply stores. They won't save you if you get hit by or scrape against something big or on another part of your body. A whole rock formation might collapse on you leave nothing but a grease spot. Don't think it can't happen. It does, and it probably will.

Weather can be dangerous, regardless of the forecast. Be prepared with extra clothing, including rain gear. Hypothermia, heat stroke, dehydration, frostbite, lightning, ice and snow, runoff from rainstorms, flashfloods, etc. can kill you. Rain can turn easy terrain into a deathtrap, can drown you if you're looking up into the sky with your mouth open, and vastly decreases traction on pavement. Snow is even worse, the hazards ranging from snowball fight injuries to avalanches.
If you scramble in high places (scrambling is moving over terrain steep enough to use your hands) without proper experience, training and equipment, or allow children to do so, you are making a terrible mistake. Even if you know what you're doing and are the most experienced and safest climber the world has ever known, you are still making a terrible mistake: lots of things can and do go wrong and you may be injured or die. It happens all the time.

Furthermore, scrambling amongst the huge boulders in this canyon, even without exposure of high places, can result in serious physical and/or emotional injury, or death.
This area, and this route, are not provided with any rangers or security personnel on any regular basis. The other people in the area, including other visitors, USFS employees, foreign agents, biologists and nature freaks, and anyone else who might sneak in, may be stupid, reckless, a religious fanatic, or otherwise dangerous. They may be mentally ill, criminally insane, drunk, using illegal drugs and/or armed with deadly weapons and ready to use them. I'm not going to do anything about that. I refuse to take responsibility.

Excessive consumption of alcohol, use of prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, and/or legal or illegal controlled substances while frequenting this area can and probably will affect your mental state, alertness, and decision-making abilities, and could make an already dangerous situation even worse. Even abstinence won't protect you from the actions of others under the influence of such substances. Tough luck. Not my fault.

The driveways, freeways, highways, streets, alleys, back roads and unimproved 4WD tracks leading to this area kill hundreds of folks each year. Many of these fatalities are folks who aren't even on their way to this canyon, who in fact have never heard of this canyon, but are simply innocent victims. Not so you. You have been warned. You could get killed driving to the trailhead. Wearing your seatbelt tightly fastened with the lap belt low across your waist improves your chances of survival, in most cases (except that one steep section of road) but does not and cannot guarantee your safety. You might die before ever stepping out of your vehicle at the trailhead, or on the way home. It can happen any time. If you think you are immune from this kind of thing, you're fooling yourself.

This is not a sterile environment. Bacteria, viruses, protozoa, protoviruses, fungi and other forms of life and protolife which may or may not be currently included in either the plant or animal kingdom are capable of causing you serious bodily harm, illness, or death. These kinds of biological agents are both endemic in the area or present in the plant and animal populations; and are also capable of being carried or transmitted by your climbing partners and travelling companions. I'm not going to take responsibility for this, either. My advice for you to treat drinking water, wash your hands before and after going to the bathroom and before eating, and to not indulge in unprotected sex in this area, in no way obligates me to be responsible for the consequences if you fail to do so, nor does it mean that even if you DO take these precautions and something happens anyway, that I am to blame. Not so. Forget it. Nada. Negativo.

If you climb, you may die or be seriously injured. And the longer you climb the greater your risk of bad luck, which may or may not be compounded by hubris, catching up to you. This is true whether you are experienced or not, trained or not, and equipped or not, though training, experience and equipment may help. It's a fact, climbing is extremely dangerous. If you don't like it, stay at home. You really shouldn't be doing it anyway. I do not provide supervision or instruction. I am not responsible for, and do not inspect or maintain, climbing anchors (including bolts, pitons, slings, trees, etc.) As far as I know, any of them can and probably will suddenly fail without warning and send you plunging to your death with a bloodcurdling scream, likely pulling your partner to his or her doom as well. There are countless tons of loose rock ready to be dislodged and fall on you or someone else. There are any number of inobvious, extremely and unusually dangerous conditions existing on and around the rocks, and elsewhere in the canyon. I probably don't know about any specific hazard, but even if I do, don't expect this topo or its author to try to warn you. You're on your own.

Furthermore, the fact that I'm not trying to stop you from being in this area in no way implies, nor should it be inferred, that I approve, recommend, advocate, or otherwise in any way affirm that such action on your part is anything but incredibly stupid.

Rescue services are not provided by anyone near this climb, and may not be available quickly or at all. In fact, if anything really serious happens to you in this area, you'll probably be dead before word ever reaches civilization. Local rescue squads may not be equipped for or trained in mountain rescue. They probably won't be. If you are lucky enough to have somebody try to rescue you or treat your injuries, they will probably be incompetent or worse. This includes doctors and hospitals. I assume no responsibility. Also, if you decide to participate in a rescue of some other unfortunate, that's your choice. Don't do it unless you are willing to assume all risks, and don't blame me when it goes bad and you end up getting yourself sued in the process.

By using, or even just looking at this topo, you are agreeing that I owe you no duty of care or any other duty, you agree to release me, my relatives, heirs, dependents, and anyone else I care to name, now and forevermore, from any and all claims of liability, even though my actions may be grossly negligent and/or be construed as reckless endangerment, manslaughter, or other misconduct up to and including premeditated murder. By consulting this topo, you agree to waive forever any rights that you, your partners, dependents, heirs, inlaws, and others known or unknown to you may have, to legal compensation resulting from anything that has anything to do with this topo, including but in no way limited to paper cuts from the edge of the topo itself. If you try to sue me in spite of all this, you agree to pay my lawyers fees regardless of the outcome of the suit, and you expressely agree to re-imburse me for any loss or injury, be it financial, physical, emotional, or imagined, which I may experience as a result of such lawsuit.

I promise you nothing. I do not and will not even try to keep the area safe for any purpose. The area is NOT safe for any purpose. This is no joke. I won't even try to warn about any dangerous or hazardous condition, whether I know about it or not. If I do decide to warn you about something, that doesn't mean I will try to warn you about anything else. If I do make an effort to fix an unsafe condition, I may not try to correct any others, and I may actually make matters worse! I may have done things in the area that are unwise and dangerous. I probably did, but I don't remember. Sorry, I'm neither competent nor responsible. The topo gives you bad advice. Don't listen. Or do listen. It's your choice, but you face the consequences either way, whatever they may be.

In short, CLIMB AT YOUR OWN RISK. If you, or your heirs, relatives, dependents or others known or unknown to you; your partner or your partners heirs, relatives, dependents, or others known or unknown to your partner, are the slimy kind of lawyer-touting parasites who would try to sue the author of a topo, If you can't take responsibility for your own decisions, knowledge, routefinding and plain dumb luck, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE stay far far away from this route and this canyon, give up climbing, and die of some completely natural, painful, and slowly progressive disease.

Thank you, climb safe, and have fun!

END of Disclaimer

Jason Halladay · · Los Alamos, NM · Joined Oct 2005 · Points: 12,378

I've seen a number of the routes equipped and posted by that climber and I suspect he either was once threatened or sued over hardware on a route or is really concerned about it happening. It's unfortunate that this has to be a worry for a route developer but, sadly, the "It's your fault, not my personal responsibility, and you owe me money" attitude is all too prevalent and supported by the legal system in America. I've established many sport routes and occasionally have a similar concern as this developer does.

Gunkiemike · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2009 · Points: 2,800

Too. Many. Lawyers.

rob bauer · · Golden, CO · Joined Dec 2004 · Points: 3,334

Now THAT'S a disclaimer.

John Byrnes · · Fort Collins, CO · Joined Dec 2007 · Points: 577

Thanks Brian. I miss Brutus of Wyde, my evil twin. I did some of my most memorable routes with him.

More classic Brutus quotes:

Profanity is about the best pro you'll get until the crack starts to narrow. Include doubles of profanity in the #6 to #8 range on your rack for this lead.

I don't consider hammering a knifeblade piton into the top of a can an "easy means" of opening the can. Bindner. Done that.

In the middle of the night, a rat investigating my empty food can was surprised by my bellow, and jumped off the ledge into the dark below. I vengefully imagined him slowly spinning through dark space, whiskers askew, still tasting minestrone soup on his grey rat lips.

Try that with a Gaz or propane/butane or some other numb-nuts stove in REAL conditions, and you'll be a popsicle while I and my partner are enjoying a wonderful pink-wine-and-garlic-chanterelle reduction with our roasted quail.

How do you distinguish between being off-route and putting up a first ascent?

The Evil Twins on top of the Rostrum after onsighting the North Face. Sept 1996
- RIP Bruce Bindner.

Glenn Schuler · · Monument, Co. · Joined Jun 2006 · Points: 1,320
dnoB ekiM wrote: Outdoor climbing ACTUALLY IS dangerous. It's not the gym.
Capt. Obvious

oh rrrealllyyy?!?
FrankPS · · Atascadero, CA · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 275

As Captain Obvious would also say, "Climbing is only dangerous if something bad happens. Don't let bad things happen."

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Sport Climbing
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