Andrew Bower, 26, a climbing instructor and EMT from Spokane, Washington, died in a fall at Dishman Hills on November 6.
ON JULY 7, AROUND 1 P.M., Anna Dvorak, 28, a professor at Eastern Washington University in Spokane, and her partner Tyler Adams prepared to start up the third pitch of the Mountaineer’s Route, a popular 5.9 on the Elephant’s Perch, a 1,000-foot granite buttress in the Sawtooth Mountains of central Idaho.
ON MAY 27 AT ABOUT 1:10 P.M. TYLER GORDON, 22, ascended a fixed rope to the ledge of Camp 6 on the Nose, just five pitches shy of the summit of El Capitan. Gordon joined his partner, Ryan Dilts, and two friends he had made on the route while his other partner, Cletis Blum, led the Changing Corners pitch above them.
At 5.9 C2, the Nose is considered to be the easiest full-length route on El Capitan, which makes it extremely popular and draws relatively inexperienced big-wall climbers. But the Nose also is a complex climb, requiring a large repertoire of techniques that may be unfamiliar to newcomers. In the nearly 60 years since it was first climbed, the Nose has seen more than its share of accidents.
On the afternoon of March 24, longtime Yosemite Valley resident, Jacob Hawley, 36, and a friend stopped by the Sentinel Boulders to huck laps on one of Hawley's favorite problems, the Door Knocker Traverse (V3). Hawley had climbed the problem many times and was not concerned that his buddy seemed distracted by an attractive woman climbing nearby. The traverse is only six feet high, after all.
On June 14, Nicholas Mozdzierz, 25, fell 50 feet to the ground while climbing at the North End of Cathedral Ledge, New Hampshire. Mozdzierz lay unconscious for several minutes. He was wearing a helmet and did not suffer life-threatening injuries.
On March 13, 2015, Scott Sederstrom, 44, a nurse in Mammoth, California, and longtime fixture on the East Side outdoor scene, failed to return home after a day of climbing at the Owens River Gorge. That night, Sederstrom’s fiancée, Suzanne DeBonno, became concerned and drove to the Lower Gorge parking lot, where she found his van and dog, Yogi...