Stairway to Heaven - Not the Song

FormerHangie

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FormerHangie
In the Austrian Alps, there's a mountaineering device called the Stairway to Heaven, although a lot of people would consider it their worst nightmare.

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I've done a lot of risky stuff, but this is a hard nope, even if I were qualified to try it.
 
As we're on a pilot forum, I'm confident a full 70% of us wouldn't do this because we're afraid of heights.
I found out I am not afraid of heights, I am afraid of falling.

I had psychiatrist for a student back when I was instructing. He was a very interesting person.

Yes, I know it is not the fall, it is the sudden stop that will get ya...
 
As we're on a pilot forum, I'm confident a full 70% of us wouldn't do this because we're afraid of heights.
This summer my daughter and I climbed an abandoned fire tower. I could only make it half way up. Way too rickety for me. She raised the "how are you a pilot" point. I explained I don't mind heights but I do mind "edges". She's old enough that I'm years beyond the point of her thinking I can do anything, but, it still bothered me to be such a wuss in front of her.
 
The first jump is easy. The second one, you are more relaxed and aware of what’s going on, and that is the scariest step you will ever take off the ramp of a C130.
 
I'd do it. Note the climber appears to have two safety lines clipped to the side cables. Otherwise, no.
 
In my best Al Borland imitation voice ... "I don't think so Tim!" :no:
 
Yeah, not me. Straight up and down? Maybe. But that really looks like it wants to let go at the bottom and bounce you sideways into the cliff side at 60 mph. I have too much faith in entropy and gravity to give that a go.
 
I've climbed half dome by the easiest technical route (Snake Dike)-and far and away the sacriest part for me was the decsent down the cables with lots of folks climbing and descending all around who had zero climbing experience.

This via ferrata? Done correctly-with two separate, redundant lanyards attached a solid harness, and to the cables by locking carbabiners? super safe.
 
And here I thought this thread was referring to the 1946 David Niven movie....
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After all, Niven DOES play a pilot in this movie.....

Ron Wanttaja
 
I'm not afraid of heights.

I'm not afraid of falling.

What I'm afraid of is the sudden stop at the end
I am afraid of heights (like many pilots I’ve discovered). Flying doesn’t bother me. That ladder? No effing way.
 
I explained I don't mind heights but I do mind "edges".

I’ve only had that feeling a handful of times…

After flying along in IMC, suddenly shooting out into a wide open vista…

Taking off from an airport that falls off rapidly at the end of the runway…

Intentionally skimming along a butte, like in Monument Valley, and having it fall away.

Beyond that, I’ve never had much of a sense of height while flying.
 
Has anyone hiked Angels Landing in Zion National Park? I have done several big walls in Yosemite, used to lead 5.9 pretty solid, and I am not ashamed to admit that Angels was scary. There are rails in places but you go out on an arete for maybe a quarter mile that is only several feet wide in places with 1500' drop each side. When it widens out to about 20' there are no rails at all. I would feel more secure on the ladder, even without a lanyard. The other scary thing about Angels is people are passing you and coming back so lots of tight squeezes. A bunch of people have fallen to their deaths there.
 
Has anyone hiked Angels Landing in Zion National Park? I have done several big walls in Yosemite, used to lead 5.9 pretty solid, and I am not ashamed to admit that Angels was scary. There are rails in places but you go out on an arete for maybe a quarter mile that is only several feet wide in places with 1500' drop each side. When it widens out to about 20' there are no rails at all. I would feel more secure on the ladder, even without a lanyard. The other scary thing about Angels is people are passing you and coming back so lots of tight squeezes. A bunch of people have fallen to their deaths there.
I can’t lead Yosemite 5.9 (impressive!) but I’ve done the “easy classics”- and angel’s landing I felt “sketchy” at times, admittedly in part due to my impatience with waiting for others in crowded sections.
 
I don’t even like to go out on my tower’s catwalk. I’m scared of edges too. In Arizona, we have a steep drop off called the Mogollon Rim. (pronounced muggy-on). The first time I flew over it and it dropped off, I got the heeby geebies. Sure the Grand Canyon would be even worse
 
We're planning a zion trip for this summer, and I didn't even put my name in the lottery for a permit for angels. I wonder if the permit system makes it any less sketchy.

We took a hike in southern Illinois a couple years ago that had a part that was maybe 20' long and 6' wide with about a 50' drop off each side. My family all walked across with no trouble, but I had to crawl on my hands & knees. It made me queasy watching them go across. I knew I don't like heights, but I didn't know I'd have a physical reaction that strong.

I got stuck on top of my shed one time (14' sidewalls) because every time I'd try to get back on the ladder, it'd shift a bit. Of course I didn't have my phone, so I just sat up there and waited an hour and a half for my wife to come home and hold the ladder for me. I hate ladders. My usual strategy is to put a pallet on the forklift and have her lift me up with that.
 
This bridge at Grandfather Mountain was more my style:

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I stayed on the parking lot side. My wife went on ahead.I had a nice conversation with the volunteer.
Funny thing is, my wife and I rode our motorcycles up to the parking deck. She was terrified of the twisty turning on the road up. While they were very tight turn climbing, it didn’t bother me at all. But my wife said, never again.
 
Loved it. One of my best days outdoors, ever. Started at dawn, finished last rap just before midnight.

What’s your fave Yosemite climb?
South Face Washington Column. We did it in good style, got up to Dinner ledge the first day then did the two pitches above and fixed ropes, jumared up those the next day and at the top by 1
 
We took a hike in southern Illinois a couple years ago that had a part that was maybe 20' long and 6' wide with about a 50' drop off each side. My family all walked across with no trouble, but I had to crawl on my hands & knees. It made me queasy watching them go across. I knew I don't like heights, but I didn't know I'd have a physical reaction that strong.

I have recurring nightmares not unlike that.
 
As I have aged I've gotten worse about heights. Back in college routinely rappelled off the back end of the football stadium with the campus ROTC outfit with no issue. Don't think I would do that now.

But with regard to the edges comment. Look at the KIZG RNAV 32 and note the 2533' tower just left of the approach path. Flew that approach in VMC the other day and looking down on the tower there was a guy at the top changing a light bulb or something. THAT gave me the heeby jeebys and I was strapped to an airplane! o_O
 
Knife Edge trail in Katadin is fun.

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I need to get back west for some big wall climbing. Been a while.
 
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