Weekend Whipper: Near Miss With Rockfall While Clipping

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In this week’s whipper Jess Ursin has quite the surprise while attempting Shield Maiden (5.12c) at Viento State Park, Oregon.

At Shield Maiden‘s tenth bolt, Ursin grabs the clipping hold and pulls up slack. The rock, which we soon learn is a ticking time bomb, stays put until the rope is attached to the next carabiner, but rockets off the cliff as soon as she changes her position. “Luckily no one was hurt. The rock can be pretty chossy at Viento so we were all wearing helmets,” Ursin wrote to Climbing in an email.

And more good news: the broken clipping hold doesn’t drastically change Shield Maiden‘s character or grade. “After cleaning up the loose chips left over, there is a new crimpy side pull that you can clip from, so there is still hope,” Ursin said.

Happy Monday, and be safe out there this week.

Readers, please send your whipper videos, information, and any lessons learned to Anthony Walsh, awalsh@outsideinc.com.

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