Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Tuesday, 05/14/13 Mishap on Green

Had a great run up Green this afternoon.  Started from Chautauqua taking it really easy, then 10 minutes in, I started to get into a groove and started pushing a bit.  Never felt like I was going too hard, but the ascent was just flowing well and I made the summit in 39 minutes, not a PR, but not too bad considering the very slow start and how easy it all felt.

I skipped up the summit rock and past 2 college age guys sitting just a few feet below the true highest point (between the true summit and the summit cairn).  Surprised by my somewhat decent ascent time, I wanted to rip the downhill and see if I could get back to Chautauqua in under or near an hour, but as I turned to head down off the summit rock, there were two more guys coming up.

For some reason, instead of waiting and working my way around them, I started working my way down the North side of the summit rock, which is easy to get to a step half way down.  To reach the ground from that step, it either requires a short face in downclimb, or what I thought was an easy 5 foot jump to the NE.  I hopped off, but in mid air, I had a moment of hesitation and questioned where and how exactly I was going to land.  The best option was a large embedded boulder which is where I originally planned to land before I would once again have to hop the remaining foot or two to the ground, but my speed and trajectory were just a touch off and before I knew it, I came off the mid-way boulder and came crashing to the rocky ground below.

It all happened so fast and it was startling what an impact such a minor fall provided.  I was in shock, pain, disbelief and it brought back memories of really eating shit over the handlebars of my bike .  I let out a series of loud and involuntary F bombs and the guys on the summit peered over to ask if I were OK.  I tried to play it cool, but I was in a bit of shock and quite embarrassed.  I spent a bit taking inventory, trying to determine if this was something I could shake off, or if I needed some help or not.

Adrenaline had fully taken over and I knew I should not linger.  I slowly started gimping down Greenman, eager to get to the large snowbank below the final switchback I had passed on the ascent.  I stopped to clean up a little (if you see a bunch of bloody snow in the trail, that was me) and kept on moving, as I knew I had to take advantage of this adrenaline high.

I hobbled my way back, oohing and ouching the whole way, having to explain my bloody self to the occasional hiker.  I felt like a real idiot.  The car was a welcome sight and I got down just barely faster than I made it up (an accomplishment, as I was thinking I may have to head to Flagstaff road and hitch a ride).

Once I got home and started to clean up, the pain really starting to sink in.  An hour later, I was surprisingly still bleeding, but fortunately I don't think I need any stitches.  It is my kneecaps however that hurt the most and I can't bend them and can hardly stand or walk.  I don't think anything is broken (I hope), we'll see what tomorrow brings.  I'm hoping I can escape this with just a day or two off and a lesson learned.

When I walked in the door at home, my 2.5 year old daughters were telling me I need to go to the doctor and get a cast (since they have each had broken bones in the past few months).  This was pretty cute and really helped make light of it all.

This is the best picture I have of where it happened.  The rock just behind the dog on the right side of the photo is the one I tried to hop onto, but could not stick the landing.

Both knees have some bumps and swelling

Both my hands got it good too, thought I may have sprained my wrists at first, but they are just a bit strained.