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My SAR below Lake Catherine and Rehab

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Re: My SAR below Lake Catherine and Rehab

Postby Rockyroad » Sat Feb 25, 2017 11:38 am

Shhsgirl wrote:Question: How many feet do you think you fell? I am considering wearing a helmet for more difficult X-C this summer, given that I am older and more vulnerable.

Shhsgirl, I'm really glad you were able to complete the trip later that summer. I'd like to give it another try someday. My best guess is that I slid about 10 feet vertically and the dropoff to the ground was another 8 feet. I think the helmet is a good idea. I was lucky to have landed on my backpack.



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Re: My SAR below Lake Catherine and Rehab

Postby Shhsgirl » Sat Feb 25, 2017 7:42 pm

Yup. My buddy and I are probably going to bring helmets to the meet up this year. I'll bring one anywhere that I don't know what I'll encounter. The Petzl Scirocco is super lightweight.
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Re: My SAR below Lake Catherine and Rehab

Postby hiac » Thu Apr 13, 2017 7:13 pm

Thank you for your write up. Glad you are recovering. If you don't mind, I have some questions:
1) you mentioned:
I did ask them to reattach my tendon since I was worried it might shrink and lose elasticity.
later you said:
I was still half asleep but I also heard him say he did not reattach the tendon. I now realize this was best
is reattach good or bad?

2) you down climb the cliff, is it Class 3 or 4? is it slippery or lose rock?

3) do you need to buy extra insurance (besides your medical insurance) to cover helicopter rescue mission?

4) did you receive any Wilderness First Aid Training & Courses (such as from REI)? bring any first aid kits? Every time when I pack, I struggle on what first aid kits to bring.

5) do you ever have any thought that you will not make it? panic, recording will?

6) how do you prepare for the shelter for the night, in case no one come?

7) is it better to lower the backpacker first? in other word, backpacker cause the in-balance?
Hope you recover soon!
Last edited by hiac on Thu Apr 13, 2017 7:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: My SAR below Lake Catherine and Rehab

Postby hiac » Thu Apr 13, 2017 7:17 pm

hikerduane wrote:A wet finger and extra mileage get me out of trouble.


what does "A wet finger and extra mileage" mean here?
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Re: My SAR below Lake Catherine and Rehab

Postby hiac » Thu Apr 13, 2017 7:25 pm

in that youtube video, 2:24, someone are naked there?
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Re: My SAR below Lake Catherine and Rehab

Postby Rockyroad » Sat Apr 15, 2017 11:51 am

hiac wrote:Thank you for your write up. Glad you are recovering. If you don't mind, I have some questions:
1) you mentioned:
I did ask them to reattach my tendon since I was worried it might shrink and lose elasticity.
later you said:
I was still half asleep but I also heard him say he did not reattach the tendon. I now realize this was best
is reattach good or bad?

2) you down climb the cliff, is it Class 3 or 4? is it slippery or lose rock?

3) do you need to buy extra insurance (besides your medical insurance) to cover helicopter rescue mission?

4) did you receive any Wilderness First Aid Training & Courses (such as from REI)? bring any first aid kits? Every time when I pack, I struggle on what first aid kits to bring.

5) do you ever have any thought that you will not make it? panic, recording will?

6) how do you prepare for the shelter for the night, in case no one come?

7) is it better to lower the backpacker first? in other word, backpacker cause the in-balance?
Hope you recover soon!

in that youtube video, 2:24, someone are naked there?


I'm glad that the hospital at Merced didn't reattach the tendon because I preferred to have that done at a hospital closer to home and with a trusted surgeon.
Cliff was class 3. It was slippery, solid rock.
Helicopter rescue was operated by CHP Air Operations. No bill.
I haven't taken any wilderness first aid training courses. I do carry a first aid kit but nothing in it could have addressed my injuries.
I never thought that I wouldn't make it. No panic at all. Plus I was thinking Hobbes was coming down the same way the next day so would look out for him. :)
I had my backpack with me so was prepared to pull out my sleeping bag if necessary. Also, the lake below me didn't seem too far. I still had one good leg and one good arm so wasn't totally immobile.
My backpack had nothing to do with the fall. I wasn't careful and just slipped unexpectedly.
The CHP Air Ops crew wore tan/beige uniforms.
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Re: My SAR below Lake Catherine and Rehab

Postby Hobbes » Sat Apr 15, 2017 1:36 pm

Rockyroad wrote:I never thought that I wouldn't make it. No panic at all. Plus I was thinking Hobbes was coming down the same way the next day so would look out for him.


I hadn't seen a soul since the evening before on the west shore of TI lake. It was so peaceful & empty - it's impossible to imagine that SAR activity had taken place there the day before. I came to the waterfall and started looking around for a way down. If I had seen you down there, I can only imagine the adrenaline rush and complete change of experiences.

As it was, it's like one of those fantasy stories where you can have two alternate timelines, with mine continuing oblivious & unaware.
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Re: My SAR below Lake Catherine and Rehab

Postby hiac » Sat Apr 15, 2017 1:43 pm

Rockyroad wrote:
hiac wrote:Thank you for your write up. Glad you are recovering. If you don't mind, I have some questions:
1) you mentioned:
I did ask them to reattach my tendon since I was worried it might shrink and lose elasticity.
later you said:
I was still half asleep but I also heard him say he did not reattach the tendon. I now realize this was best
is reattach good or bad?

2) you down climb the cliff, is it Class 3 or 4? is it slippery or lose rock?

3) do you need to buy extra insurance (besides your medical insurance) to cover helicopter rescue mission?

4) did you receive any Wilderness First Aid Training & Courses (such as from REI)? bring any first aid kits? Every time when I pack, I struggle on what first aid kits to bring.

5) do you ever have any thought that you will not make it? panic, recording will?

6) how do you prepare for the shelter for the night, in case no one come?

7) is it better to lower the backpacker first? in other word, backpacker cause the in-balance?
Hope you recover soon!

in that youtube video, 2:24, someone are naked there?


I'm glad that the hospital at Merced didn't reattach the tendon because I preferred to have that done at a hospital closer to home and with a trusted surgeon.
Cliff was class 3. It was slippery, solid rock.
Helicopter rescue was operated by CHP Air Operations. No bill.
I haven't taken any wilderness first aid training courses. I do carry a first aid kit but nothing in it could have addressed my injuries.
I never thought that I wouldn't make it. No panic at all. Plus I was thinking Hobbes was coming down the same way the next day so would look out for him. :)
I had my backpack with me so was prepared to pull out my sleeping bag if necessary. Also, the lake below me didn't seem too far. I still had one good leg and one good arm so wasn't totally immobile.
My backpack had nothing to do with the fall. I wasn't careful and just slipped unexpectedly.
The CHP Air Ops crew wore tan/beige uniforms.

When you climb down, do you face rock? Have you travel back to that spot and attempt to do it one more time, maybe with a partner? How does that experience change you except the lesson learned. Seems like you continue to plan for the solo trip.

Sent from my XT1028 using Tapatalk
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Re: My SAR below Lake Catherine and Rehab

Postby Rockyroad » Sat Apr 15, 2017 3:23 pm

hiac wrote:When you climb down, do you face rock? Have you travel back to that spot and attempt to do it one more time, maybe with a partner? How does that experience change you except the lesson learned. Seems like you continue to plan for the solo trip.

Sent from my XT1028 using Tapatalk


The last thing I remember was sitting on top of the granite slide, going through my options. So I guess I was facing away from the rock. I don't need to go back and try it again for closure. However, I am curious how the landing spot looks. But mainly, I'd like to someday do the loop I had planned out. If I did, I wouldn't climb down the same place.
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Re: My SAR below Lake Catherine and Rehab

Postby sierrapam » Mon May 08, 2017 9:53 pm

Just curious when you were in the Lake Catherine area last summer. I went solo through there and then on to Twin lakes during the first 2 weeks of August. I'm a 68 year old female and found that route to be fairly rugged. I basically followed Roper's route, although I'm certain that I veered off of it at times. Wondering if I just missed you!

Also, you've validated the reason I carry the SPOT device and am encouraged that your rescue was so swift. I didn't have any dramatic event on my trip, but did end up with a very painful abscessed tooth, which then reaffirmed why I always carry a high-powered pain killer and an antibiotic. They saved me until I could walk out.

Thanks for sharing your story!
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