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John Lang at the summit after climbing the 5.8 variation.
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John Lang
Sep 17, 2014
John Lang at the summit after climbing the 5.8 variation.  
You can do the math yourself. The accidents were largely due to errors on climbs well below the experience level of the now deceased climbers. Google "fatal free solo accidents". The numbers are alarming. It doesn't matter if you aren't a doc. I am not trying to pull rank or diss anyone. Your opinions aren't any less/more valuable than mine. My only personal experience is caring for climbers with broken long bones, head injuries or worse.

You must have missed the Youtube video of John's free climb. No safety devices, no helmet. In fact, John pulled the video of the free solo because of my observation and comment about safety on YouTube.

I am not against climbing at all. When proper safety measures are taken it is a great sport. I draw the line at "free solo" climbing and climbing without head gear. Both are incredibly risky. May 27, 2015
I'm really not sure why two posters are bothered about sound advise. Yes, I am John's Dad. Really, what difference does that make? Yes, I am a Orthopod. What difference does that make? Sound advise... Be safe... No matter who says it is sound advise. Wearing a helmet is sound advise. I can name 10-15 dead solo free climbers and very few who have died climbing with protection. Advising people not to solo free climb is good advise. Cliff bars agrees. I'm not arguing just offering my advise based on common sense, experience, and easily confirmable litany of dead free climbers. As the administrator you should be doing the same. I'm not going to argue about this issue. I am trying to be factual and following Guideline # 1. May 27, 2015
Mike Madsen
Rapid City
Mike Madsen   Rapid City  
I believe he climbed the 5.8 gill route in the video. Which is the "standard Route" to the summit these days. It is the easiest and really more or less a high ball boulder problem with a crux down low to easier terrain up top. This picture of him on the summit with his rope down the infamous Gill 5.12 route which the video does not show him climbing. I agree that Free Soloing is dangerous. I just wanted to specify the comments are below a misleading picture. Hope this helps. May 28, 2015

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