Rock­fall in Yosemite off El Cap­i­tan

Gripped - - NEWS -

A num­ber of big rock­falls from El Cap­i­tan left one climber dead, oth­ers in­jured and an en­tire route de­stroyed. Bri­tish climber An­drew Foster, 32, had com­pleted a climb on El Cap­i­tan with his wife Lucy. Back at the base of the wall, build­ing-sized blocks from the Wa­ter­fall Route broke away. An­drew shielded his Lucy and was killed in the brave act. The rock­falls con­tin­ued for two days. Amaz­ingly, three climbers were on the route that fell off, but above the rock­fall area. Cana­dian Peter Zabrok was one of those climbers and de­scribed the rock as “white gran­ite the size of an apart­ment build­ing.” He posted videos on YouTube that went vi­ral and can be seen with a quick search. While much of the Wa­ter­fall Route is now gone, Yosemite ge­ol­o­gist Greg Stock said the break was caused by the ex­pan­sion and con­trac­tion of the gran­ite. “The rock­fall it­self is noth­ing un­usual,” he said. “We have had larger rock­falls oc­cur in the val­ley this year.”

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