Daily Archives: 18 August 2015

The end of the road?

August 18th

I nearly gave this blog the heading “Disaster”, but it is not quite that.

Low cloud and some rain this morning,  so we gave up all hope of doing Piz Badile and other summits.  Instead, we would traverse along the Via Roma long distance path to the next hut (Rifugio Allievi).

After about 90 minutes I tried to take a short cut in a fairly steep boulder field but somehow slipped and fell awkwardly, crashing my face against a boulder.  A cut just next to my left eye and lots of blood.  No option but to return to the hut, with a makeshift bandage kindly provided by a German couple also on the path.

At the hut they cleaned me up, said it didn’t look too bad but immediately called a helicopter!

Peter decided to return to the car in Bondo, reversing what we did 2 days ago.

The helicopter took me to a hospital in Sondalo, between Tirano and Bormio.

Here I was kept waiting quite a while on a stretcher with an uncomfortable brace round my neck and had to fill in forms.  In due course I was wheeled into the radiography department for scans and X-rays.  Then after another long wait, they told me the results:  brain, left eye, neck, spine, etc all OK, but there were fractures of the cheek bone, which might require further treatment.  I chose to have this done back home in Switzerland.  Then they treated the wound – a few stitches – gave me a detailed medical report and the X-ray photos and let me go.

At 6 p.m. an old friend, Fritz Hagmann,  collected me and took me to his home in Pontresina;  over 90 minutes drive each way.

Result:  I will be unable to continue for at least a week.