Climber made famous in award-winning film Touching The Void survives a 300-foot fall into an abyss on a mountain in Tajikistan
- Simon Yates’ brush with death in Peru in 1985 inspired the film Touching the Void
- Almost 40 years later, he survived another catastrophe in which he fell from a height of 90 meters during a climb
He once cut his injured climbing partner loose over an icy cliff to save himself in a terrifying episode that was later turned into an award-winning film.
Now, almost forty years later, Simon Yates has survived another near-catastrophe: he plunged 90 meters into an abyss on a 6,000 meter mountain this summer.
Mr Yates, whose decision to send Joe Simpson hundreds of meters into a canyon in Peru to cut a rope in 1985 gripped viewers of the 2003 film Touching The Void, had his final showdown in July with death in Tajikistan.
Mr Yates, 60, fell and disappeared on Patkhor Peak after a poorly secured rope came loose.
The father-of-two, who suffered five broken ribs and two shattered vertebrae, told the Sunday Times: ‘I just thought: ‘That’s it, I’m out, this is the end.’
Nearly forty years after his death-inspired film Touching the Void, Simon Yates has survived another near-catastrophe: he plunged 90 meters into an abyss during a mountain climb this summer.
It happened as Yates and his partner Mick Fowler were returning from a failed attempt to summit Patkhor Peak.
They had rigged their rope to rappel down a steep ice wall, but failed to attach it to a backup anchor.
“He collapsed and he fell backwards, cartwheeled through the room and disappeared,” said Mr Fowler, 67, also a father of two.
On this occasion, Mr Yates, who would be told in 1985 that Mr Simpson miraculously survived after cutting the rope between them, noticed his partner.
Mr Fowler managed to find him and they spent two nights on a glacier suffering from food poisoning before help arrived.
Mr Yates claimed yesterday that the latest deadly episode had not brought back memories of events almost 40 years earlier. He said, “I never once thought about Peru.”
He added that he had not spoken to Mr Simpson for years, explaining: ‘We never had much in common.’
Mr Simpson was contacted for comment.