Max St-Jacques got a little bit more air than he bargained for after letting go on El Gallo De Oro (5.13b) in Tecolote Cave, El Salto, Mexico.
He told Rock and Ice, “I didn’t really want to send the route. At my old gym, I used to not clip the anchors, take a bunch of slack and take the whipper.” Um, cool ?
Max couldn’t sort out the beta toward the end of the route and never even got a chance to not clip the chains. Good thing he didn’t get to keep going though, as he didn’t clips the two draws below him either… “I didn’t think I was gonna fall that low!” he told us.
“Apparently people held their breath at the crag when they saw that! Oops! It was a fun ride for sure though!” he concluded.
Riiiiight. Where to begin… We aren’t going to say everyone should start taking them, but we understand that victory whips (or things akin to them if you’re not at the top) can be fun. If taken in a controlled environment where you know you have plenty of room to work with and know that you won’t come close to hitting the ground, great. It not, you got problems.
Max — 1) It sounds like you and your belayer didn’t really think through the specifics of the situation; and 2) it sounds like you were too cavalier about not clipping things, whether you wanted to send or not (though we’re confused why you would specifically not want to send the route ?) .
In short? Be smart people.
Happy Friday and climb safe this weekend!