Experts Caution Against Little Cottonwood Canyon Climbing Route After Fatality

Experts Caution Against Little Cottonwood Canyon Climbing Route After Fatality

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Experts Caution Against Little Cottonwood Canyon Climbing Route After Fatality

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“It’s just not something you should read about on the internet and be like, ‘Hey, I’m going to go try this Saturday because it looks interesting.’ You should know what you’re in for and know what the route’s going to be like before you go try it. Most of the time you’re scrambling, you’re finding the safest path through the rock, you’re doing a lot of route finding, you’re really far from help if anything goes wrong, you’re really exposed. So if you do slip and fall, it’s most likely going to be fatal or life-changing.” –Salt Lake County Search & Rescue member Michael Finger
The Wasatch Ultimate Ridge Linkup, or WURL, is a climbing route that has gained popularity in recent years that circumnavigates Little Cottonwood Canyon.  The WURL is more than 32 miles long, crosses over more than 20 named peaks and can reach 20,000 feet in elevation gain. The mileage and elevation vary depending on the routes that are taken by adventurers.
FOX 13 reports  Salt Lake County SAR recovered the body of a climber who had fallen over 200ft from WURL this past weekend. The route is extremely challenging, and it is only recommended for experienced climbers and ultra-runners who have ample experience with terrain and are comfortable with extreme exposure.
With the pandemic has come an increasing interest in backcountry travel and social media videos has perhaps given folks a false sense of an average hiker is capable of, so experts want to be CRYSTAL CLEAR….the WURL is the real deal and not for your average hiker with good endurance.  SAR members caution those wanting to try the WURL to truly understand the intensity of the climb.
“You know, if you get hurt at the top of Lone Peak, if you get hurt at the top of one of the ridges and we don’t have the helicopter available, it’s going to be three to four hours before anybody can get there, and that’s just to get there and not get you out if you’re hurt.” 

 

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