If you're talking statistics, nothing comes close to the carnage reaped on those cute little girls and boys in skirts:
The new numbers are for the 26-year period from the fall of 1982 through the spring of 2008:
There were 1,116 direct catastrophic injuries in high school (905) and college sports (211).
High school sports were associated with 152 fatalities, 379 non-fatal injuries and 374 serious injuries. College sports accounted for 22 fatalities, 63 non-fatal injuries and 126 serious injuries.
Cheerleading accounted for 65.2 percent of high school and 70.5 percent of college catastrophic injuries among all female sports.
Perhaps Steve House and Dean Potter should start growing some cajones and get out Cheer. "You know it, you tell the story, you tell the whole damn world this is alpine climbing territory!" Via LiveScience.
Sad one here, the bodies of two Japanese climbers were found on Denali. This from Climbing.
Rangers at Denali National Park have located the bodies of Yuto Inoue and Tatsuro Yamada near the 20,320-foot summit of Denali. The two Japanese climbers had disappeared in May 2008 while attempting a remarkable enchainment of the two Kahiltna Peaks and Cassin Ridge on the south face of North America’s highest peak. Although evidence of their climb was spotted high on the Cassin, searchers could never locate the men or determine if they had reached the top of the route.
These guys were missing from 2008, which we reported here and never really followed up on because there wasn't anything to report. The story is interesting as the search for another lost climber in the area this year yielded the bodies of the two Japanese climbers. The location shows that there were close to a remarkable enchainement via the Kahiltna. The scope of this climb is immense, following the ridge line from the Kahiltna, this route is long, demanding, and burly. Ach, so close they were, seems from the position that they fell since they were still roped together, however, whether or not they summited remains a question, they shouldn't be on that side of the mountain on the descent, they should have topped out and headed across the Football Field, hard to say, regardless, two climbers are now confirmed lost, our respects to their family.
In my post after the last death on Half Dome aptly titled, Half Dome Cables: Accident Waiting To Happen, I posted a video (now taken down) of the congestion on Half Dome. It was quite ridiculous to watch, and anyone with half a brain could see it would lead to more problems. And it did, last Saturday, and one has to wonder out loud if the NPS is finally going to step in and do something to make the Half Dome cables safer. For those of you that will argue personal responsibility, I'm just going to dismiss you immediately. The NPS has all sorts of precautions in place from barriers around Lower Yosemite Falls at the top of the climb, to bear boxes, to fences on Glacier Point. Given the type of people that visit Yosemite (um, you know, fat people from the Midwest), these precautions makes sense in the well-traveled areas. And if you've hiked Half Dome, you'll know that it's a mule train all the way up, so it definitely deserves the same kind of safety precautions, because currently there are none. And lets be honest, the hike is no joke. Seventeen miles round trip, in the heat of the summer, is not a stroll in the doggie park. People reach the cables tired and often thirsty because they didn't bring enough water and are afraid of drinking out of the streams because of alarmist warnings about giardia.
The NPS continues to be in denial, calling the circumstances a "perfect storm", which is quite ridiculous. I call bullS$#t. They call them perfect storms because they happen rarely, not 4 times in 3 years. So that begs the question, why is the NPS not doing anything? The personal responsibility line doesn't hold water, because the NPS takes plenty of precautions in other parts of the park that negate the personal responsibility argument. Cost? Maybe? Rigging up a safer climb with two cables on either side and slats coming down might be expensive but com'on. Lame excuse. Send a ranger or volunteer up there on crowded weekends to manage the crowd and stop people from climbing during bad conditions. Or rig a simple ascender for people that aren't confident in their climbing skills. Liability? Stronger maybe. If the NPS actually installs more safety equipment, they'll de facto admit it was unsafe and maybe open themselves up to lawsuits from the families of the people who have died in the last 3 years. Want my opinion? Lack of litigation threat. Nobody has sued yet. Once the first suit happens, I'd expect to see quick changes on Half Dome. Just saying. A full list of the last four deaths after the jump.