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Grounder! Extremely Lucky—Must Have a Guardian Angel

He had done the route before. Why worry? He slung in a nut, expecting to cruise the crux and then place a good #3 cam. Uh-oh, big mistake ...

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Ramsés Laguna knew right away it was bad:  “I knew I underestimated the route, and I knew I didn’t take more precautionary measures, so I paid for it the hard way.”

Laguna, from Tijuana, Mexico, was on Goat Crack (5.10c/d) in Valle Azteca, Ensenada, Baja California.

“Yeah. I did a lousy job on it,” he tells us. “I’ve done it before, but this time I just put in a nut, I thought I was going to go through the crux easily to place a #3 cam, and [be] done. But I forgot what to do, and fell.”

He ticks off the obvious errata: no helmet, meager pro.

What did the belayer say?

“He asked if I was OK.  I said yes, that my head hit his leg, which prevented it hitting the ground.

“Anyway, I was lucky enough to come out of that with a bruised left leg, some chest pain and an ascent an hour later.”

Thanks to Ramsés Laguna for use of the video. Readers, please send your whipper videos and information—and of course any lessons learned—to Alison Osius, aosius@outsideinc.com. Thanks to all.