Canadian ice climber John Freeman is lucky to be alive after the ice pillar he was scaling in Canada’s Banff National Park broke off and sent him tumbling hundreds of feet down the cliff face.
The fall, which happened two years ago during the springtime, was captured by Freeman’s helmet-cam. He recently shared the footage with sports website Epic TV, which called the ice climbing fall one of the craziest ever recorded.
Here’s the free-hanging piece of ice Freeman was climbing. “We got a good sense that it was a healthy piece of ice,” Freeman says in the video, “and we wanted to climb.”
After getting past a portion of thin ice, everything seemed to be going well. “It was fun,” says Freeman.
That is, until Freeman hit this segment of ice. On the fifth swing of his axe, he says, “things changed dramatically.”
Freeman could hear the sound of the ice breaking and knew at that point that whole ice pillar was moving. Tons of ice came crashing down on him as he tumbled a few hundred feet down the slope beneath the hanging ice.
Amazingly, Freeman made it out alive without any serious injuries. His nerves weren’t shaken either. In the video, he says he went climbing the next day.
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