Climbing Junkie Story #17: Jump, Jump Now!

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Climbing Junkie Story 17; In this photo we were jumping crevasses for sport. The next year there was a big-wall rock climbing accident and I had to get a helicopter rescue. I left all my climbing gear with the injured climber, the food, water, clothing, and everything to get the rescue going. As I was running out for help on a glacier at top speed I detected a crevasse and did not have time to stop or think. My instinct to jump paid off. If I had paused for a split second, I would have fallen in for sure. By the time I recognized the crevasse, I was already about to punch through a thinning overhanging section. At the time, in my mind, I said "Jump, Jump Now". It was over 25 feet to the other side at an angle.

  • In school I did the long jump in track. So I had my right leg extended and my left leg was behind. I didn't think I was going to make it because of the great distance. I thought I would do a Wile E. Coyote and just go under the lip on the other side. During my flight, with arms extended out fully, I actually tilted my hands at a slight angle to get some lift. Really!

  • I had so much time during my flight that there was time to look around. I looked to my left and saw the crevasse closing over hundred meters away. looking down it was over 100 feet to the bottom and there was lots of blue ice. I then continued to check out the views during my flight by looking to my right. The crevasse to my right went about a quarter mile to a rock wall.

  • To make a long story short I made it. I ran several miles with bloody toes, found a ranger with a radio, he called in for a helicopter rescue and the climber was rescued off a rock wall the same day. The climber lived although I had my doubts that he would come off the mountain alive.

  • This is just one of many climbing stories I have that usually goes untold. I have mentioned this story a few times to some friends. However there are so many stories I have, it will be impossible to get to them all. I started the Addictive Climbing Stories group so climbers/ hikers and others can tell their story.

  • Interesting some people have mentioned the word Hero. This is the last thing that crossed my mind. I knew only that we were in serious trouble and my focus was on each step down the mountain and rehearsing what I would say to the rescue team. I thought how I would communicate his exact location and that bolts were needed because there were no good anchors. I had many other thoughts on the way down to numerous to count and so serious and grave.

Randy

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Comments (26)

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Michael Buuck on July 30, 2013

This is great! I like the story it evokes :)

Randy T (Randylikest… on July 31, 2013

Buuck Photography, It was a life or death situation for both of us and I went into some kind of...must-get-out-of-here...mind set. It felt surreal and that I was on external auto pilot. I rehearsed my conversations that I would have with the rescue team, each detail and my mind was very unsettled. After I got out to the rescue team center, not knowing the outcome of the rescue, I was left with my own thought on how the rescue would come out.

Randy

Michael Buuck on August 21, 2013

I just read through your story and am amazed. It does make my prior comment somewhat inappropriate :/ It is completely different than the story I had imagined from just seeing the photo - a story of adventure and pushing the limits rather than a life or death situation.

Just unbelievable! It sounds like you were focused and kept your wits about you which made all the difference.

Nadia Kushnir on September 22, 2013

There are no words ....

Aori Ika on March 11

I do not it is to the climbing. However, in any world, from the description and photo to stop the eyes, I felt the need courageous decision in order to avoid a crisis sometimes. I think that it captures a wonderful moment!!

YSL

Greetings from aoriika(^_-)

Christos Theodorou on March 14

Wonderful scene well captured. Best regards from Athens

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Photo taken in National Forest Development Road 39, Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, Deming, WA 98244, USA

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  • Uploaded on April 28, 2013
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    by Randy T (Randylikest…

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