Rock Fall at Echo Cliffs on Espresso


Original Post
P.J. Tezza · · Oxnard, CA · Joined Jul 2011 · Points: 0

A buddy of mine was visiting last weekend. We headed to Echo Cliffs early Saturday morning for some sport climbing. After a couple of warmups, Kevin led up Espresso. At the last bolt, he pulled off a very large flake. He said it had lots of chalk on it and didn't look unusually loose. From my perspective at the belay, the rock chunk falling looked huge. It shattered into pieces on the left side of the corner system on the way down. Fortunately, I was watching carefully. I did my best to avoid the debris, concentrating mostly on my head, but it was like playing Asteroids and some of it caught me. It didn't help that I was being sucked back into the corner as Kevin was falling. I ended up with stitches in my shin, scratches everywhere and, several days later, I still have a few more places with sharp pains. Wear a helmet and watch for falling rock at Echo! 

On the drive back down Yerba Buena Road, we picked up a fallen motorcyclist and took him along on our ride to the hospital. He had slid out on rock fall debris. He ended up with broken ribs. Take it easy and watch for fallen rock on the roads!

Andrew Krajnik · · Plainfield, IL · Joined Jul 2016 · Points: 253

Yikes! Glad to hear you all survived with relatively minor injuries!

Jeff Luton · · Ventucky Ca · Joined Aug 2016 · Points: 0

Gnarly and noted. Conveniently y'all both needed to head to the same place!

David Fogel · · Lake Forest, CA · Joined Apr 2015 · Points: 1,210

Glad you're all OK! Thanks for posting, I suggest posting a quick comment under Echo's 'condition report' feature to give other climbers a heads up during this period of time... Yet I am unsure if this is typical in Echo or not.

P.J. Tezza · · Oxnard, CA · Joined Jul 2011 · Points: 0
David Fogel wrote:

Glad you're all OK! Thanks for posting, I suggest posting a quick comment under Echo's 'condition report' feature to give other climbers a heads up during this period of time... Yet I am unsure if this is typical in Echo or not.

Good idea - done - thanks. I have read other comments about loose rock at Echo, so I assume it has happened to others, but I don't know if it is common to pull off chunks as big as the one that came down on me.

Guy Keesee · · Moorpark, CA · Joined Mar 2008 · Points: 310
David Fogel wrote:

Glad you're all OK! Thanks for posting, I suggest posting a quick comment under Echo's 'condition report' feature to give other climbers a heads up during this period of time... Yet I am unsure if this is typical in Echo or not.

It is common at ECHO........   I was there when a big block fell off while my friend was clipping.... lucky he made the clip because the rope was above the big block and lucky a bolt was not in the big block.... I forget the name of the climb... just to the left of "Casey at the Bat" .... people now call sandbag because its now a really hard 10b......  

This is why the place is called "Choss" by many.

Glad to hear no permanent injures.  

 

Izzy Nawfal · · Redondo Beach, California · Joined Feb 2014 · Points: 165
Guy Keesee wrote:

It is common at ECHO........   I was there when a big block fell off while my friend was clipping.... lucky he made the clip because the rope was above the big block and lucky a bolt was not in the big block.... I forget the name of the climb... just to the left of "Casey at the Bat" .... people now call sandbag because its now a really hard 10b......  

This is why the place is called "Choss" by many.

Glad to hear no permanent injures.  

 

I threw out my back last October when large hold came out in my hand on the SAME climb. I was able to hold it long enough for my belayer to move.  Wear a helmet out there!

Benjamin Chapman · · Small Town, USA · Joined Jan 2007 · Points: 13,267

Yep...a pretty common phenomenon at Echo Cliffs and throughout the Santa Monica Mountains.  There is a reason it's called "Choss" and John Long referred to it as "Vertical Mud." Likely "Blackout," Guy. That area around "Casey at the Bat" has been evolving since those routes were put up and will continue to shed choss. Good call to wear a helmet.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Post a Reply

Log In to Reply