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Weekend Whipper: A Perfect Spot Saves the Day When a Highball Goes Awry

A good spot is often taken for granted, but spotters are unsung heroes, our invisible ropes when our feet leave the ground

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As Justin Taylor reached the topout to Goodnight Cowboy (V6) in the South Platte, Colorado, he found his right hand in the wrong spot for the hand-foot match.

“I couldn’t get weight on my foot or see anything,” he tells us. Next thing you know, we have a dog barking, our climber yelling, the foot popping. Taylor and his friends estimate the fall at 18 to 20 feet.

The tale ends well. Taylor continues, “Aside from some scrapes and a sore tricep, I’m all good!” His friends were just glad he was OK—and lucky.

Asked for any more info on his companions, who are visible spotting, Taylor emails that the main spotter was Jason Giblin and the other was Jeff Sillcox. “No idea on the dog, sorry!”


Happy Friday, and climb safe this weekend.


Thanks to Justin for the video. Readers, please send your whipper videos and information—and of course any lessons learned—to Alison Osius,

Again, please send in your potential Weekend Whipper videos if you have ’em. If you don’t, glad to hear that, too.