Alabama Hills

cover photo
Nov 03, 2018 - Nov 04, 2018

First time climbing at Alabama Hills. 1 full day mostly lead-climbing on various 5.6 - 5.8 routes. Drove up with Andre and met Patrick at Lone Pine. Patrick was familiar with the Hills and took us to some great routes of which there were hundreds. Fairly busy with climbers & RV campers but there were plenty of routes for everyone. Climbed on iconic shark-fin rock with great views of Whitney in the distance. Moved on to nice 2-pitch then to some harder bouldery short climbs with Andre leading & us top-roping. Camped at nearby paid campground mostly filled with RV campers.

Broke tent pole from expensive Hilleberg tent! :(

On the 2nd lead climb of the 2nd day, was overconfident on a quite run-out section of a 5.7 and unfortunately fell while clipping on the run-out. Fell about 10 ft and struck inner ankle of left foot against the bolt. Impact sheared the skin causing a wide bloody gash. I felt the sharp pain but didn't realize I was bleeding until someone on the ground asked if that was my blood - after which I noticed quite a bit of red on the wall. Was lowered and helped to the ground by the many bystander climbers in the area. Fortunately we were close to camps and cars so there were plenty of people to help with first aid & bandages. Got wound cleaned and dressed, took some ibuprofen and helped to Andre's car. Still bleeding pretty solidly through bandages, we were expecting to have to drive to Bishop for nearest hospital, but asked in town and fortunately there was a small hospital with ER facility down the street. Hobbled into the ER dripping blood on the ground and spent a few hours getting stitched up (18 stitches!) Was given crutches and new dressings. We ate lunch at a local diner then Andre drove us home.

It would take about 2 months before I could walk normally (mostly) again, but fortunately no fractures or serious nerve / ligament damage.

Difficulty5.6 - 5.8
Highest Elevation
JurisdictionInyo National Forest, Lone Pine
TrailheadAlabama Hills