Home Forums Accidents, near-misses and mishaps Snake fall/bite at Bobs

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  • #60732 Reply

    Hermie the carpet python took an 18m ground fall at Bobs Hollow last friday. That is, he decided to bite me twice on the hand, and as i pulled away, he remained latched on, and then momentarily let go as my hand was above the deck, and started flying towards my beautiful belayer. Now the lesson learnt here is that gri gris and auto lock belay devices are the way to go. Had my belayer panicked upon a snake hurling towards her, or even worst, the snake falling on her and then let go of the rope to remove such snake from her head, I also would have taken an 18m ground fall. This is the second time a grigri has nearly come in handy for me, with the first time; me nearly passing out on belay after seeing a 50m ground fall. This $H!T happens people! use an autolock

    #60737 Reply

    P.S. learn your snakes, or bring a species guide, and always take compression bandages

    #60926 Reply

    Good advice John. I know a lot of people who don’t carry a first aid kit at all and while snake bite seems to be an increased risk at Bob’s in recent times, there are plenty of other places where they pop up. I’ve come across quite a few in recent months when I’ve been out training in the Perth hills, including tigers. We also saw quite a large tiger on the way out to Llama Rock (Climber 1: Gee, that’s a shiny stick. Climber 2: It’s not a stick).

    Snakes can’t always be easily identified by their colouration and mistakes are often made.  I’m no herpetologist but I have had to identify snakes at work when clients proudly present dead snakes that have bitten or may have bitten their pets. On one occasion, the ‘dead’ snake presented to me was not dead and my lack of experience was surpasssed only by my stupidity (and curiosity) when I continued to hold this very large tiger snake by the tail as it started to wriggle and get angry. I’d be angry too if someone hit me with a shovel and put me in the boot of their car. Apparently I’m not scared of snakes, only heights and cockroaches.

    There is marked variation in colouration within snake species. For example, tiger snakes may or may not have stripes and may vary from green to black or dark brown. Identification depends on the specfic characteristics of head scales, number of mid-body scales, anal scales being divided or single and nature of sub-caudal scales. Yeah, I know, all very well when they are dead, or at least not attached to your hand. Mind you, if you’ve been bitten by a venomous snake you’ll know about it pretty quickly.

    Compression bandage, immobilisation, grigri, mobile phone and some basic first aid training.

    #62751 Reply

    Good advice all round. Glad no-one was badly hurt… except maybe the snake. How’s  ‘Hermie’ is after decking out?

    Any idea what prompted the snake to bite you? i.e. how close were you, did you try and use him/her as a hold etc?


    #62774 Reply

    hermie was fine, just a bit startled. he was sleeping in a deepish pocket/ledge, and as i put my hand on the hold, he clearly felt invaded. i didnt know he was there but for the rest of the day i adopted a new climbing style of hands low/head high, to peek on future unsuspecting snakes, albeit potential face bites, not so clever, but helped calm the nerves

    #62919 Reply

    Poor Hermie. If you were scared, imagine how he felt. Minding his own business, having a nice thermally rewarding experience in his little rock pocket and then suddenly he gets the unpleasant taste of human and finds himself airborne, having his very own involuntary base jumping-without-a-squirrel-suit experience. He’s probably still in therapy.

    #86225 Reply

    wow bet u needed a fresh set of underware after that. I was at churchmans 2 weeks ago getting ready to climb. When i thaught I saw something drop from the face. 5m away was a dazzed tiger snake. He was clearly suicidal and took the 30m dive. He then took off after shaking him self off.

    #111823 Reply

    Yep have done a snake coarse, it is very difficult to distinguish alot of the australian snakes as they are all part of the brown snake species, and some can even be a cross bread.
    In saying that, I had a snake miss me by about 6-7m at CHURCHMANS while I was flaking my rope, getting ready to climb, he decided to take a leap from the top and just missed me.hes ok, shook him self off and limped away, was a wake up call though. Grigri, enough said

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