Climber Shot in Ten Sleep, Wyoming

9/17/13 - Around 2:00 a.m. on Monday, September 16, a climber from Ecuador was shot outside his tent in Ten Sleep, Wyoming, the popular sport climbing destination. Details are scarce at the moment, but Tom Lindner (father of Chris Lindner) was camping nearby with his wife, Elke, and he spoke with the Washakie County Sheriff.

Lindner says, "Based on what the sheriff told me, around 2:00 a.m. on the morning of September 16, two climbers from Ecuador, Ana and Jose Luis, were sleeping in their tent along the road just west of Leigh Creek Campground. They supposedly heard a noise 'like a branch breaking' and went outside to investigate. He was shot in the stomach region by a 'small caliber' weapon. Ana drove him to Worland, Wyoming. The sheriff was notified around 3:00 a.m. and woke us up around 4:00 a.m. By the time we went to check on him in Worland later in the morning, he had already been life-flighted to Billings, Montana."


Washakie County Sheriff Steve Rakness said the victim and his girlfriend are fine, and he is expected to make a full recovery, according to the attending doctor. The victim was life-flighted to Billings because of its state-of-the-art trauma unit. Not many details are being released since the case is still under investigation, but Rakness had this to say: "At this time I do not feel there is any immediate threat to the climbing community in the canyon or the Ten Sleep area, as we have not received or obtained any information or evidence to suggest otherwise. However, because details are sketchy and we are still investigating this issue, I would like everyone to please call with any info they might have about this case, or if anyone observes or hears about suspicious persons or incidents in the area. Any information will be helpful."

Rakness called the case "puzzling," and said investigators have no idea as to why it happened. From initial interviews with climbers in the area, nothing was unusual with the victim during earlier climbs, while eating dinner with another climber, or with the victim's personal relationship.

Contact the Washakie County Sheriff's office at 307-347-2242 if you have any info.




Previous Comments

Dear Americans, Your country is broken and many of you don't even realise it or worse defend it.

Dave - 10/13/2013 1:35:58

LOLOL I bitch about about having to carry 3 lockers, like i'm gonna hang a .45 off my harness at all times as well...... Maybe if they made a combo .45/bolt gun? No, really, If you're climbing close enough to civilization that other people can find you to mess with you then you're doing the whole climbing thing wrong anyways.

TRX XRT - 10/07/2013 10:25:33

I get so tired of people being so anti-gun when they have never even held one. It has been my experience, on every occasion, when I invite a person who has never fired a gun to go target shooting with me, just to see what it is like. They absolutely love it. Many times they go out and buy one, and usually become a better shot than me. I also carry a firearm when I am out in the mountains, where I live the threat is not animals but poachers, meth heads, and people dumping trash out of the back of their pickup trucks, they'd rather shoot you then risk getting caught.

Anthony - 09/28/2013 11:34:01

I get where your coming from Johnny, and it makes sense in your country where it's so easy for anyone to carry a gun. I do however believe that in many places in Europe or Canada when your climbing you wouldn't need a gun at all. Plenty of other countries with stricter gun laws are getting by just fine with way less shootings and violence then in America. I am also an avid climber and outdoor enthusiast living in Canada and I grew up all my life in the North-West coastal mountain region of BC where there are plenty of outdoor "threats" (and almost never a gun-wielding meth head) and although I encountered many a bear in my lifetime, I never needed a gun. The attitude that you should have a gun nearby lest you be "attacked" by wildlife is a symptom of that way of thinking. To me that is similar thinking to saying we should bolt all traditional climbs to make it "safer". The idea we should be killing beasts for defending themselves or their young against often ignorant and disrespectful enthusiasts shows our selfish attitude of being somehow more important than every other creature on this earth all too well. My point? Many life threatening situations with animals could be avoided with knowledge and respect. Many life threatening situations with a gun wielding human could be avoided if that human didn't have access to the gun in the first place.

SS - 09/25/2013 5:24:36

I don't put much faith in statements like what Washakie County Sheriff Steve Rakness had to say: "At this time I do not feel there is any immediate threat to the climbing community in the canyon or the Ten Sleep area, as we have not received or obtained any information or evidence to suggest otherwise." I'd ask him, "Would you have said the same thing the night of the shooting before it occurred?" Because if you wouldn't, then you really have no idea of how safe it is or isn't.

bob - 09/25/2013 5:13:38

I am a climber, an avid outdoors-man, a hiker/backpacker and snowshoe'r, an Army Veteran and a proud citizen of the United States of America. I support the 2nd Amendment of our Constitution and believe in protecting oneself from any threat. If you carry a firearm YOU have the responsibility to know your weapon system, receive competent training with it and know the law. You are not carrying a firearm to protect your property, if they want your rack, car, money, etc., let them have it. If you leave the "safety" of your tent or vehicle to "investigate" a noise outside, then you are placed in a dangerous situation and the position to then PROTECT yourself from a potential or perceived threat, whatever that threat may be: wild predators of the animal kingdom or human kingdom; you have the right to protect yourself and others from physical harm: to include rape, kidnapping, mayhem and murder. No person EVER who rightfully and lawfully DEFENDED them-self from an immediate physical threat against their life or person has been incarcerated in the United States. Owning or possessing a firearm, being properly trained in it's use and knowing the law as to when you can use it to protect yourself is a right afforded to us as citizens and human beings. Don't abuse it, but don't throw it away. When you are out in the "wild" you have the responsibility to protect yourself and others who are with you or around you, just as much as it is your responsibility to Leave No Trace. There are rangers, deputies and officers of the law appointed to uphold the law, but they are not in the canyon with you; they are not in the backcountry with you; and they are not standing next to you when you happen along a bear, mountain lion or that meth'd up psycho who wants your wallet to get his/her next is a terrible tragedy that this climber was shot, that there are people willing to illegally deprive a person of their life or property, and that there are those of you who think that it is another person or entities responsibility to protect you or rescue you when YOU haven't taken the necessary, prudent and lawful steps to act rationally in the outdoors or everyday life!

Johnny - 09/24/2013 11:16:15

Yogi bear and the picnic basket (whadda say boo boo). Desperate/lazy hicks(tweekers?) preying upon sleepers,only they were interupted.

from wyoming J - 09/24/2013 12:22:54

Solve a gun problem with guns..... So fucking stupid, I will never carry a gun, I wouldn't shoot someone over my rack you want it that bad take it. Even people who kill in self defense end up in prison the majority of the time. Also if someone wanted my stuff and they held me at gun point and I pulled a gun on them they probably would be far more likely to shoot me that's just common sense let them take it.

taylor - 09/22/2013 3:38:33

@dave did you know that studies show that someone owning a gun is 100% more likely to shoot somebody who is pointing a gun at them?Actually I made that up. Citing the findings of studies is pretty worthless if you're not going to provide a reference. Otherwise, we're just going to assume YOU made it up. sir henry stalwart - 09/21/2013 11:09:39 In a nutshell - "Branas's study found that people who carried guns were 4.5 times as likely to be shot and 4.2 times as likely to get killed compared with unarmed citizens. When the team looked at shootings in which victims had a chance to defend themselves, their odds of getting shot were even higher."

Dave - 09/22/2013 7:34:07

@dave did you know that studies show that someone owning a gun is 100% more likely to shoot somebody who is pointing a gun at them? Actually I made that up. Citing the findings of studies is pretty worthless if you're not going to provide a reference. Otherwise, we're just going to assume YOU made it up.

sir henry stalwart - 09/21/2013 11:09:39

Agree with the other sane humans on here. Carrying a gun to protect yourself in case someone else has a gun doesn't solve the issue at large. America has a long history of solving many of it's "issues" with violence, and it's that mentality that is the ultimate issue. I look forward to a day when the world's leading country sets the standard in pacifism instead of war. Hope that climber has a speedy recovery.

SS - 09/21/2013 9:27:00

It's almost surely gear thieves. We had to put up with them in West Virginia and Kentucky back in the day. Lots of hair-raising stories from our group and our friends' friends. Some people felt that you were lucky if you didn't wake up when they struck, because they were said to usually be armed. They typically hit vehicles or storage tents, and if there's a lookout, he'll be making sure people don't wake up. I used to sleep in the truck to keep them away from the stuff. If you're too close to a main road, it's a real temptation for them. One night I heard noises outside the truck, when it was parked on the edge of a blacktop road in the Gorge - nobody anywhere near me. I rolled over, making just a bit of noise. It was both funny and scary to hear some dude scurrying across the pavement behind me in the pitch black, and then a truck peeling out with the lights off. And if they're like the guys who used to prey on rental cars in cities, then I'm sure they're looking for unarmed foreigners, so targeting this poor guy isn't surprising.

Doc - 09/20/2013 6:33:44

What a retarted statistic. I have one too. People who drive or ride in cars are more 100 times more likely to be in a car accident than those who don't. There now we are all more stupider.

RB - 09/20/2013 2:34:43

Joe & Taylor - I'm glad you don't live in America too.

Bill - 09/20/2013 1:41:38

Can't believe there are people like "joe" who don't understand that they are part of the problem. You think you're safe with your .45 caliber because you're one of the good guys? I know for sure that I'd rather not climb when you're around, just in case you one day decide for a split second that you're not a good guy anymore. By the way, did you know that studies show that someone owning a gun has 9 times more chances of being shot than someone who doesn't?

Dave - 09/20/2013 1:40:16

Im so glad i dont´t live in America. what a screwed up country, you have to carry a handgun to go into the wilderness? People in Europe think it is so bizarre, it just a screwed up police state.

joe - 09/20/2013 5:08:49

Ya, always carry pro of both kinds!! I prefer a full rack and a 45acp!! If bad guys have them, so will I!!

David - 09/19/2013 11:44:35

I love climbing in the states!!!! But the people with guns really freak me out. Hopefully authorities will focus a little more on this area, which has a poor rep for sketchy stuff going on. Real happy to live in Canada!

Taylor - 09/19/2013 6:17:13

This is why I keep my .45 ACP with me at all times, if all good people had there CCW permit you would not hear of this stuff going on. there are bad people out-there that want to do you harm if you don't have a plan to stop them your genetics will not get passed on but there's will. go get a gun or a ice axe.

joe - 09/19/2013 1:40:46

There are only two reasonable and safe assumptions when it comes to handguns. One, if someone pulls one on you, you should assume that their intent is to use it to cause deliberate harm. Two, if you pull one on someone else, you should assume that they will think that you mean to cause them deliberate harm. Any other assumptions are outside the scope of rational gun safety practice.

Craig - 09/18/2013 10:23:57

This story brings to mind a time when my husband and I were climbing in Ten Sleep, WY about 5 years ago. We were camping in the free camping area along the gravel road across the highway from the Main Wall. Around 2 or 3 in the morning we were woken up by 2 trucks idling alongside our campsite on the main dirt road. They were loud, but we didn't really feel threatened. They were probably out partying. They drove away. But then about an hour later, a truck drove up into our campsite. They were about 10 yards away, idling with their lights on our tent. We stayed in our tent, contemplating what we should do. The truck idled for about 5 minutes before finally backing up and driving off. Who knows what would've happened if we had gotten out? We were worried they were going to run us over.

Randi - 09/18/2013 8:49:12

Maybe this will add a little insight to the issue. Tensleep, Wyoming, early June, 1970, dairy stand, edge of town, two climbers, Winston and Howard are sitting in a convertible MGA with the top down drinking milkshakes. Two really big cowboys approach the car. One bends down and in a low voice asks, in my face, on the driver's side, "Wonder if they are hippies? The other, on Howard's side, bends down and says, "They ain't got no beards." The one on my side said, in my face, "Yah, but they got loooooong hair." I said, "Hey guys, we aren't hippies. We both just graduated from college and we both got out of the service a few months ago." They walked away. And if we had been hippies, or climbers, or queer, or environmentalists, or liberals, or if we had had beards, or were smoking dope, or had an anti-gun sticker on the car, or a thousand other things?

Winston - 09/18/2013 8:09:50

Yeah Ronin, I agree. Usually when a human fires a gun at another human, they don't mean to harm/kill them. "Just out here misfiring my gun at 2:00am around your campsite." Get real...

PH - 09/18/2013 5:52:06

Robert- evidence of what? Only that a gun went off. Misfire, kids jacking around, poachers... there are three "no immediate threat to the community" reasons. No matter what the gun-hating media and the fear-based government want you to believe, not every gun goes off with the intent to kill someone.

Ronin - 09/18/2013 2:01:52

No immediate threat to the community or evidence to suggest otherwise. A bullet wound is pretty good evidence.

Robert - 09/18/2013 1:23:11