Base Camp Blog

See Something Cringe-Inducingly Unsafe? We Want to Hear About it

Do everything right, and climbing is actually pretty darn safe. Still, some people assume they can guess at the technical bits and everything will be fine, like this person a friend of mine rescued recently:


"I was teaching a belay class when, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a girl yanking on the end of a loose rope.  To my dismay, she was belaying a climber with no belay device. The climber was at the top of the wall, 'tied in' to the grigri. He was weighting the rope and the belayer was supporting his weight with her bare hands."

Have you witnessed anything cringe-inducingly dangerous from uninformed climbers, either inside the gym or at the crag? We want to hear about it. Tell us what happened in the comments and your story could be featured in an upcoming issue of our print edition.

photo: laurelfan/Flickr;


Previous Comments

As a student working at both a climbing gym and university wall, I am always intrigued to see other gyms/universities. I visited Kansas University's wall. To belay, I needed to take the 'belay test.' They want you to use gri-gri's that they provide. The instructor was giving me guidlines while I belayed my climber. She said I didn't need to keep my hand on the break line. I responded trying not to sound like an asshole. I said, "I'll keep it on there in case the gri-gri fails." She responds, "It won't fail."

Anna - 03/24/2014 9:15:58

I was climbing in a gym with a buddy. I was tying in when my buddy suddenly walks away from me and reaches towards the person belaying at the station a couple of ropes over from us. I then noticed the belayer was looking up at the climber with his hands in the air. He was standing on the brake end of the rope with his right foot and taking pictures of his girlfriend at the very top of the wall! He even seemed insulted when my buddy held the rope in the brake position and explained to him the danger of the situation. He seemed more mad that we ruined his girlfriends new facebook profile!

B - 03/17/2014 10:23:01

I work at a climbing gym, we always get first time climbers belaying veteran climbers who brought them but thought it was unfair that only they should have the fun... Even though we tag them and tell them specifically NOT to belay their host after they pass the front desk. But the dodgiest thing that i still find super hard to believe is when we caught a dad (who is a competent climber) 'belaying' his kid on a 12m wall as if he was raising a flag on a pole. No belay device, harness, or any indication of climbing gear whatsoever. Even after doing a rescue and giving the dad a stern warning he just replies "oh he's so light, and i don't have my gear anyway". We tell him that if his son wants to keep climbing TR under his supervision he HAS to have proper gear and use it correctly. He reluctantly heads to the rental desk and moves on to another wall. A moment later i ask the guy at the rental desk if he rented a harness and a belay device, and he told me "nope, just the harness". I run upstairs and find him belaying his son through a series of loops through his harness. Wasn't even a munter! Poor kid was terrified. He left after that. Shame to see that people usually choose egotistical option of getting pissed off at someone correcting you and never coming back, rather than listening to the advice for their own safety. His own kid! Still dumbfounded on that incident.

Zoé - 03/16/2014 10:37:43

So we were climbing some easier stuff in finale figure, when i saw a guy climbing a 7a next to us. The crux was in the start at the route, between the 2 and 3 clip, as the lead climber scream and tries to pull through the crux i see his belayer having about 3 meter lose robe out, standing far away from the wall. Even more horrifying was the fact that a sloppy 5c route was just below the 7a line meaning the ground the first couple of clips was CLOSE. the climber makes a dynamic powerful catches to a jug and make it to the easier part of the route luckily without falling.

Mikkel - 03/16/2014 12:17:20

one time climbing mt lemmon in az, two of my buddies ask to borrow my rope for a bit to do a multi pitch climb, they get up to the first belay and I tell them that my rope is a 60m and to be careful. next thing I know I hear a bit of yelling and soon after they got down, I found out he passed the end of the rope on the rap from the top and just downclimbed to the next belay, choice.

nathan wikstrom - 03/16/2014 12:48:32

In was climbing in Chamonix a few years back. I had just reached the top of a route that was more than a 100 metres long. A man that has probaly climbed since hemp ropes where used comes up, clips a carabiner without a screw gate in an old rusty piton, clips in the rope then throws the rope over his shoulders and yells to his partner to start climbing... He was not secured himself, just standing up on the slope at the top... Luckily, the second did not fall.

Christian - 03/15/2014 1:39:51

On a climbing trip just starting our day, my friends and I came upon a group of climbers on the warm up wall. We all started climbing, while waiting to climb I look over and see one of the climbers from the other group is only tied into one hard point. Getting their attention I let them know of the error. They fix the problem and start to climb. His first clip he back clips. Once again I inform him of the mistake. He fixes it. Finally for his 3rd clip he Z-Clips for the last time he is told of the error. The climber tries to keep climbing falls and lucky for him the rope catches him just before he decks but still hits the floor with his heels somewhat hard because of the rope stretch. My group finally decides to climb at a different wall.

Joe - 03/14/2014 1:52:58

One time I read a bunch of stories about unsafe climbing experiences online, and I was surprised at how many people "got out of there" rather than saying something about the unsafe practice.

JB - 03/13/2014 9:30:39

A guy was roping up and he had a very old ship yard rope. We told him how unsafe that was and he said that his dad used the rope through out all the 80's and that it should be fine. We told him it is really sketchy and that he should not and while we were walking away he asked his buddy "you want to risk it?"

David Cook - 03/13/2014 9:27:23

A few extremely climbing-safety-heavy friends and I were packing up as it was getting dark after sport climbing in Colombia at this magnificent crag. A guy asked if one of us could help him clean a route, and I volunteered. As I neared the top, a roof where two bolts were properly set, I noticed the guy's "anchor" consisted of a single unlocked biner in only one of the bolts, attached to a single poorly meshed sling, to a single unlocked biner (with another unlocked biner attach to nothing adjacent to it hanging there). He had been belaying three first-time climbers on top rope at that spot. Definitely learned my lesson that day.

Stav - 03/13/2014 8:06:55

I was climbing with a few of my friends at Linville Gorge. We were sorting through our gear and deciding which climbs each team would do when two guys walked up asking to take a look at our guide book. After passing the book over and talking for a minute or two we continued to pack our gear. Then one of them said, "You guys brought trad gear?". Puzzled, we looked at each other and responded, "Yeah…" they told us how they had just brought a rack of draws because they were intending to do a route that was "Bolted". We felt that it was time to get as far away from these guys as possible so we headed off to climb. Later on, while a pair of my friends were cruxing on a route, my friend Dave and I decided to hike around and locate some climbs we wanted to get on. A few minutes of hiking lead us around a bend where we saw the two guys we had met in the parking lot. They were starting the second pitch of a climb, neither were wearing helmets, the belayer was simply standing on a ledge not tied off as his friend was about 15-20 feet up. The climber yells down "I can't see any bolts! I don't think I can down climb these next moves… but I'm gonna go for it!". My stomach is churning as he continues up, passes a small bulge and yells down, "A bolt! its only 10 to 15 feet away!" at that point we decide its time to get the hell out of there. We continue on with our day, climbing some awesome routes. Hearing no screams for help and seeing no helicopters the rest of the day we thought those guys must've figured it out and hopefully rapped down at some point. At the end of the day we see them in the parking lot. They run up to us and say, "Dudes, that route was sick! It got so ran out at one point we had to jam a quick draw into a crack and use it like a stopper, it was bomber!!" All I could do was shake my head and walk away.

Chris - 03/13/2014 8:23:41

At Echo cliffs in Malibu mid February, I coach a youth competition team, these kids crush indoors and out, we were climbing near a group of a dozen "new" climbers, they were climbing some easier stuff while the kids were running end of day laps on Java (5.11d). I guess one of the guys didn't want to be shown up by 11 year olds, so he decided to lead Espresso (5.11a) His belayer says "I'm not comfortable lead belaying yet" he reassures her everything is "fine" The guy makes it halfway up the route to the first crux; his belayer says "My neck is hurting, I'm gonna look at the ground, you just tell me what you need." She says this as the climber is mid- pull with about 10 feet of rope out, he blows the clip, she loses control of the brake end, and the climber ends up whipping 30-35 feet. I don't know how she regained control but the climber was only a few feet above the deck when all was said and done. No one in that group had any business being outdoors yet, and the incident could have very well ended with three children watching a person fall to their death. Climbing, as a sport is growing rapidly, and we all have a responsibility to check other people on their safety,even if it means a few touchy egos getting offended. If enough fatalities occur because of ignoramus' like this group we can kiss the local crags goodbye, they'll be shutdown and deemed "unsafe".

Seth C. - 03/12/2014 10:39:11

I looked over to where two people were climbing a hard route and the belayer was explaining how to do the crux, with both her hands in the air and none on her belaying device. Shaking my head about another person too "cool" to keep their hands on the grigri while belaying, I noticed something weird and realized it was an ATC, not a grigri. Fortunately, me yelling kept the person leading from sitting in the rope, which she told me later she was just about to do. Lucky.

Silvie - 03/12/2014 7:24:03

I was leaving an outdoor gym in northern Italy after a day of climbing, when three guys came up the path (it was already pretty late); while we were packing our stuff to leave I've noticed one of the guys making some strange moves while doing his knot. I thought "something is wrong in the way he did it" but I'm not super-expert and didn't want to be insulted by somebody that could turn out to be an alpine guide. I thought for one minute if to say something and then decided that being insulted was better than being co-responsible for someone's death. I went to the guy "may I check your knot?" and as he said yes I took the rope and pulled it lightly. The knot untied completely. Not an alpine guide in the end.

Matteo - 03/12/2014 7:21:47

I was leaving an outdoor gym in northern Italy after a day of climbing, when three guys came up the path (it was already pretty late); while we were packing our stuff to leave I've noticed one of the guys making some strange moves while doing his knot. I thought "something is wrong in the way he did it" but I'm not super-expert and didn't want to be insulted by somebody that could turn out to be an alpine guide. I thought for one minute if to say something and then decided that being insulted was better than being co-responsible for someone's death. I went to the guy "may I check your knot?" and as he said yes I took the rope and pulled it lightly. The knot untied completely. Not an alpine guide, in the end.

Matteo - 03/12/2014 7:19:42

I was climbing at a popular local spot where we have a tyrolean traverse. I was beginning to tie myself in and when I looked over the edge at a route that has anchors for a top rope, the rope was fed through the anchor itself instead of a carabiner. The rope already looked like it was fraying a bit.

Murph - 03/11/2014 9:30:51

I was climbing at my local gym in the bouldering cave with a friend. I was taking a break and looked up at a guy that was close to the top of one of the walls and realized he wasn't clipped in to the auto-belay, which was still attached to the bottom of the wall. For a second I thought maybe it's some hot shot that thinks he doesn't need to clip in, until I realized he had a rental harness and shoes. I thought how do you tell someone not to let go and not have them freak out and fall? My friend ran over and said sir don't let go, you're not attached! We tried sending the auto belay up to him but he couldn't catch it. Luckily he was able to down-climb. When he got down he said he hadn't realized he wasn't clipped in. I'm so glad I saw him before he got to the top and let go, or that may have been my first time witnessing someone's death.

Ariane - 03/11/2014 8:24:16

This past weekend...a college kid in Boulder Canyon lowering his friend with one hand through an ATC, holding a beer with his other hand. At one point he let the dude slip about 10 feet and somehow regained control of the brake strand. They both laughed about it afterward. I quickly left the crag so as not to have to deal with watching some kid break his neck. I'm not against having a couple brews at the crag as long as you pack it out, but put it down for 30 seconds while you're lowering.

Jeff M. - 03/11/2014 1:05:55

My partner and I were climbing Eagle Dance at Red Rocks as an earlier party rappelled back down through the anchors. I was leading and reached a bolted belay just as one of the other climbers prepared to lower his partner down to my belayer's stance below (first red flag: why not just rap?). Unfortunately, the dude had somehow clipped his anchor strand and not the lowering strand up through a draw clipped to the anchor -- meant to provide some extra friction, the draw instead ensured the strands ran parallel to each other through the ATC instead of allowing the dude to lock off the brake strand by his hip. As I clipped in, still unaware, the lowering partner launched...and slid maybe 30 feet in an uncontrolled fall before his partner, who had kind of dived into the coil of rope managed to somehow hold a mess of coils to keep his partner from going any further. There was blood and swearing but no major injury.

garth - 03/11/2014 11:02:19

What is wrong with bolt in the picture?

Jim T - 03/11/2014 9:40:16

I was climbing at a small local crag popular with both beginners and more classes. I led an easy trad climb set a top rope and started belaying a friend on her first outside climb. About 30 feet away I saw a big guy start to rope-solo up a tricky 5.8 on what I assumed was a fixed rope. After lowering my friend we started to walk around to the top of the cliff to clean the anchor and head to a different area. I then noticed that the guy next to us was both struggling quite a bit and belaying himself not with a Gri-Gri or silent partner or some such, but with a petzl ascender. Watching him climb 4 feet and struggle to pull the slack through made me uncomfortable, but I don't really know anything about rope solo climbing and he was near the top so I didn't see the point in intervening. The real problem was when I got to the top I saw just as he pulled over the lip that his "anchor" consisted of his much smaller buddy sitting 5 feet back from the ledge holding the rope around his hip. I explained to blank stares that he never would have been able to hold his friend if he fell with 4 or 5 feet of slack in the system and if he was lucky he would have dropped him. It seems more Likely that he would have been yanked right over the edge and taken a 40 footer onto his friends head.

Ed - 03/11/2014 9:37:05

... belaying a ~20kg kid with bare hands. in one of the largest climbing gym in North Italy. When presented with a grigiri, did not know how to use it...

Mirko Bovo - 03/11/2014 8:57:31

Typical crowded Spring day in Red Rock Canyon. I am repelling down from the last pitch of Birdland. I get to an anchor with a minimal ledge. Climber A at the ledge is belaying a leader above them. Climber B is waiting for the anchor to get free so he can bring up his second. Climber B was clipped into one bolt with a locker. The other end of the sling was clipped into a gear loop! Good thing he hadn't weighted it. I quickly clipped the sling to his belay loop. I then shot Climber A a dirty look.

Daniel Siegel - 03/10/2014 10:07:01

I work at a climbing gym. One time, I saw two girls climbing together and about half way up the wall, the climber decided she needed a new facebook profile picture. She asks her buddy to snap a quick pic, which caught my attention. As I started walking over to the dynamic duo, the belayer proceeds to drop the belay, grab her phone and with both arms raised, starts taking pictures of the climber. Needless to say, I flipped my shit on them :/

Daniel - 03/10/2014 8:59:12

A few years ago I was belaying a friend at a new climbing crag a couple of hours away from where I live in São Paulo, Brazil, when I looked to my left and gave one of those 'casual look and then wide-eye look' to observe the belayer next to me feeding rope to his leader through his ATC by holding the device with his right hand and feeding the rope above the device with his left hand. Basically repeating the poor technique of belaying indoors with a Grigri, but with an ATC. So I approached him and basically told him he should just always keep a hand on the rope strand BELOW the ATC otherwise his friend might land right next to him in case of a fall. Fortunately, the leader did not fall, and I went back to not visiting popular crags anymore, as I had previously determined a few years prior, in order to avoid witnessing such events and potentially serious accidents.

Sam C - 03/10/2014 8:32:34

At the top of Positively Fourth Street in Eldorado Canyon there is a ledge with a modest tree for an anchor. There was a family top roping PFS as I started up a climb nearby. Upon arriving at the belay ledge I was shocked to see the family's "anchor" was a sling wrapped on an upper BRANCH of the tree. Yeah, we decided to move on.

Charles - 03/10/2014 8:23:35

I was climbing at Maple Canyon last fall, there was a party of 5 next to us that morning that had been joking around and having fun and slowly climbing a few of the easy routes, no one really seemed to know what was going on, and there were a lot of questions shouted down mid route. They seemed a little out of place but were having a good time, so know when that day said much, just gave glances over at times. I was at the top of a route cleaning and getting ready to lower when one of the climbers in the party was at the top of their route next to me. She had a long sling clipped to her belay loop on one end and gear loop on the other, a makeshift PAS. At the top of the route she clipped the carabiner from the belay loop into one of the anchor bolts, and yelled off belay. I had been watching her and quickly yelled hold on! wait!! She looked at me like I was crazy and i said that your gear loop will not hold you, she first looked at me with a blank look, then her harness, then she laughed and said woops. Woops?! I meant to clip in the other way, thanks. That was it, she was basically unfazed. Her friend at the bottom said she was new to leading and cleaning, and without going crazy, I said to him she needed more instruction or was going to get hurt, he looked at me like I was an ass hole. That was that, some people are hard to help, glad I was looking over her shoulder while she at the top of the route, I have never witnessed a serious accident climbing and really don't want to. Number one, anchoring with a PAS into one bolt and going off belay is a terrible way to clean a sport route. Two, at least girth hitch the sling or PAS your tie in points so this cannot happen. Three if they had been focused at the crag hopefully this wouldn't of happened. Things go wrong quickly not slowy, glad there wasn't an accident that day, we went and found another cliff after that one.

Eric - 03/10/2014 6:08:31

Last summer we were climbing at the Index Town Walls and saw the sketchiest roped soloist ever. We had just finished warming up on Aries and were rappelling off from where that route intersects with Great Northern Slab (5.7), probably the easiest full length route at the crag. Halfway down the first rappel we passed this guy on the second pitch of his route belaying himself with a standard ATC. He had built an anchor at the station below him and was free climbing and placing quite a bit of gear, but claimed, when i tried to tactfully ask if he was self-belaying, that if he falls he just has to grab the rope really quick. Rope burn you might think? Yep, he proudly claimed he had done this before and fallen and, as you would expect, torn up his hands. At the base his climbing partner, who was wearing a tree-climbing harness, explained that he would be belaying but his shoulder was bothering him. Me and my friend agreed free-soloing might be safer.

Jacob - 03/10/2014 5:55:58

Just yesterday I went ice climbing at Frankenstein cliff in Crawford notch, NH. We were the second car in the lot and pulled up to the couple who had beat us there. "What route are you planning on my buddy called over to them?" "We are here to climb Frankenstein." Again we asked which route and proceed to inform them of our intentions. They gave us the same response. We hiked past them on the approach and headed to our destination in the amphitheater. They were behind us and went to the climb to our right. We got geared up and looked over and couldn't see them anymore. Shortly we see a rope get dropped from the top of the climb and by this point my buddy had started his lead and I was belaying. We mentioned to each other that we didn't think the rope was all the way down but couldn't be sure from where we were. My climber had cleared the first bulge when I looked over and saw a climber at the end of his rope on rappel at least 15 ft from the base of the climb. By this point a handful of other parties had arrived at the climbs and we overheard comments about dropping a rope to them from other climbers. The party that climbed up after us had been over at the other climb and mentioned that the climber's partner felt uncomfortable lowering him from the top of the climb so he had rappelled but obviously had never read any info on the climb or the area, since it isn't suggested to rappel most of the routes in the amphitheater.

Rob Dunn - 03/10/2014 5:48:32

I was climbing in Clear Creek Canyon in Colorado a year ago and a man asked if he could hop on the route I was climbing after I finished. I said yes. The route was a 5.7 warm up. The man then informed me and my friends that he was going to free solo it. At first, I thought it was ok due to the easy grade of the climb. I was immediately put off be seeing him stuff his feet into a pair of dragons that looked two sizes too small in preparation for a slabby 5.7. Just as the man was about to get on the rock, his friend said he had only been climbing for a month. I immediately realized that I might witness someone die. I suggested that this was a bad idea but he ignored me. He got two moves up and fell 6 feet to the ground. He immediately got back on the rock again and continued climbing. His legs were shaking violently but he continued on up. As he reached the crux (if you can call it that), he started screaming like Adam Ondra on la dura dura. Somehow, he stayed on the rock and topped out the climb. He had been watching too many videos about Alex Honnold. I wish there was a way for this inexperienced climber to learn his lesson without injury or death.

Chris Dewey - 03/10/2014 4:46:19

A climber came up to warn us about a sketchy dude in Smith Rocks some years ago... After describing the guy he told us this story. Apparently the climber met the sketchy dude at the crag and the sketchy dude offered to give him a belay. The climber was three-quarters of the way up a route when he looked down and noticed something chilling... His belayer was GONE! The rope just hung loosely down from his harness to the ground. So the climber clipped into a bolt and rapped back to the base. He found the sketchy dude flirting with some girls down the crag a little ways. When the climber aggressively confronted the guy about his "belaying," the sketchy dude just said, "what? You looked like you were doing fine!"

Jason D. Martin - 03/10/2014 4:45:49

Overheard next to us at a local crag: "Only one end of the rope is on the ground!" "That's OK, I'll rappel on both strands until I get to that point, then I'll finish the rappel on one strand" Fortunately a chorus of "NOOOOOOOOO----STOP!!!!!!" by all the nearby climbers kept the climber from rapping off the end of the rope.

RIchard Bothwell - 03/10/2014 4:41:34

My climbing partner, Mollie, and I were passing through Vedauwoo and chose for a simple day of sport climbing at the Beehive Buttress since we were on the tail end of a 10 day climbing trip. Sport climbing…at Vedauwoo…we should have expected to encounter what we did. To this day, it is the most bizarre, unsafe, and idiot-induced climbing event that I have witnessed. We were well under way of our day when a group of 3 football-playing, cow-pushing farming boys showed up, dumped their immense amount of “stuff” and left. They arrived again 20 minutes later, doubling their group size by adding their non-climbing, hootin’ and hollerin’ girlfriends. They geared up – and then it got weird. The lead climber was looking to climb Back to Bucket Country (5.8) a route we started our day on and that was pretty straightforward and solid at the grade. The lead belayer finished tying a full-body swiss seat, put the leader on belay and the lead climber took off. By this point, Mollie and I were keen on observing this entertaining group of people. If lead belaying in a full body swiss seat isn’t bad enough, the leader was having and awful hard time climbing the 5.8. Whip after whip after whip. I applaud his tenacity for taking repeated 12-footers, especially with his belay. The belayer caught each and every one in his full body swiss seat with a deep squat backwards with his 225lb frame creating the hardest lead fall catch known to man. Finally, after quite the battle with the route, the leader got to the chains, built an anchor and was lowered. We thought the show was over…. A lightning storm started to move in and Mollie and I were looking to clean our route and get out of there. Our group of good ol’ country boys to our left had the same idea. You could hear the most experienced climber quickly instructing another climbing on how to clean. The cleaner put on the only apparent climbing harness the group owned and was put on top rope belay by a person in another full body swiss seat and he took off. But he struggled his way up, barely making it to the anchors. By the time he gets to the top, the storm is just about on top of the area and he is struggling to remember how to clean the anchor and rappel. “Are you at a good spot…I mean, like, are you standing on a ledge?” yelled the “experienced” climber. “Yeah, I suppose,” replied the cleaner. Much more undecipherable conversation and instruction took place while I focused on my task at hand. I had just gotten to the ground after finishing cleaning my route when I heard a horrible crash. Mollie and I looked at each other, then examined the group to our left. No, it wasn’t the cleaner falling and hitting the ground, it was just his harness. Apparently while I was worrying about not getting struck by lightning and quickly and efficiently cleaning my route, the group’s experienced climber told their cleaner to take off the harness, while holding onto the bolt hanger, and toss it down so the experienced climber could climb the route and clean it. The experienced climber dawned the harness and made quicker time this time around and arrive at the anchor with his harness-less buddy. I have no idea what happened next. It started drizzling and more and more lightning was striking. We left with two guys standing at the anchors of this 90 foot route, one in a harness and the other with no harness and standing on a small ledge with his fingers through the bolt hangers with an ensuing thunder and lightning storm knocking at the door. And to make matters worse, this group of country folk chose to cut down a few trees at the beginning of the approach trail so they could set up camp (everything plus the kitchen sink) right on the approach trail. Their newly formed road led 60 feet further from the nice parking and camping area.

Patrick - 03/10/2014 4:24:11

I was at a rest halfway up a route and took a moment to watch some guys cleaning a decently overhung route. The climber had a draw clipped around his end of the rope and the other end clipped around the rope on the wall side. When he reached the last draw (closest to the ground) rather than communicating and coming up with the BEST way to remove the last draw he just unclipped the final draw from the lowest bolt. At this point he still has the draw clipped onto his end of the rope (just above his knot) to the belayer's side of the rope with the rope running through the anchors at the top. The climber swung out about 20 feet from the wall and once the rope went taut it whipped the belayer across the ground at least the same distance. I lost sight of him but heard his head smack a rock. My wife is a WFR and was able to administer first aid but the guy was pretty obviously concussed and had a pretty wicked split in his scalp. A little more communication and it could have been completely avoided.

Johnathan - 03/10/2014 4:07:12

Never seen anything like that,, but I have seen a fellow climb about 200 feet up some loose slaps with a water fall near with no safety gear equipped with cowboy boots... he never fell but it sure did make me cringe

Jamie DuBois - 03/10/2014 4:03:27

- A guy had threaded both ends of his rope down through one side of his ATC and up through the other side rather than bending the rope through properly, and was clipped from his belay loop to the wire loop on the ATC. The carabiner on the belay loop wasn't touching the rope at all. He was getting ready to rappel off of Independence Monument. God knows how he got up there. - On a different occasion, I was supervising an open-climb session at a rec center and realized a few minutes in that one of the kids (all of whom had been individually tested by me for competency with the auto-belays) had opted to forgo a harness and clip in to his belt loop. Singular.

Angus - 03/10/2014 3:55:03

This one was bad. The guy had put a harness around a tree at the top of the climb. At the bottom, he put ANOTHER harness around a dead tree at the bottom of the route. He used an oval off of the harness at the tree for the anchor and then used A PULLEY to belay his daughter!!! But hey, at least he put a helmet on her. SAFETY FIRST! :)

BEN - 03/10/2014 3:47:10