Blake Bowling aimed to redpoint 1,500 routes in Kentucky's Red River Gorge. The Madness, a 5.13 route at the Motherlode, would be number 1,499. When a friend came by his camper van and asked if Blake wanted to climb, he grabbed the rope he'd already used many times before while rehearsing the moves on the Madness. This time, however, using that rope would be a near-fatal mistake.
Sharp End host Ashley Saupe interviewed Blake about his accident and the very simple steps he could have taken to prevent it. Blake and his belayer had 52 years of combined rock climbing experience, proving that experience is no guard against serious accidents.
Blake's story and photos can be seen at the Accidents in North American Mountaineering website: http://bit.ly/1TrlGTB.