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Old     (deepstructure)      Join Date: Jun 2002       10-08-2003, 7:12 PM Reply   
had a great weekend riding up at lake mead with the burks, the lindstroms and various friends. the weather and the water were awesome. rode a ton saturday.

then sunday afternoon i was riding doubles with erica...and met my match in a rock outcropping. never saw it coming. i should have looked ahead but was instead watching erica ride.

here's a rough idea of the layout:

i was riding right-foot foward (switch for me) watching as erica cut in and jumped the wake. i was just about to switch back to regular and cut in for a backroll...

and then i woke up looking at rocks, wondering what the heck was going on.

i was lying on my side, one foot out of my bindings, roughly 8ft up a hill of rocks, with my feet uphill from my head. it only took me a second to realize what had happened. the blackout itself must have only lasted 5 seconds at the most.

according to those that saw it my board made a loud *crack* as it hit the rocks and i ragdoll-cartwheeled up the hill. i pretty much always wear my helmet while riding, but of course this time i wasn't because it was on the other boat, which we hadn't come in contact with yet.

you can see pics of my injuries here:

unfortunately we weren't videoing at the time, nut thane did get some footage of the aftermath as i was loaded onto a backboard and carted off by the patrol to a waiting helicopter to be air-lifted to university medical center in vegas. (7.5MB quicktime)

the other adventure for me was getting my sportbag with my car keys stolen saturday night from the campground. although we recovered the bad, the keys were gone. the bummer is that not only did i have to spend much of sunday waiting for a locksmith to come out from vegas (at least i had company as erica had locked herself out of her car that morning and also needed a locksmith!), but when he made the key for the car, he discovered that at some point (probably before i'd purchased the car used from a dealer a few months ago), the car door locks had been tampered with as if in an aborted theft attempt, and the key he made wouldn't work!

since i'd always used the keyless remote to open and lock the doors i'd never known this. so of course, now (since the remote went with the keys), not only could i not lock my doors, i couldn't alarm the car either.

so...along with making various appointments with doctors to heal my body, i've had to get my alarm remote replaced too, and will eventually need to replace the locks on my car doors!

but despite all this, i had a fantastic time. i met and rode with a great bunch of folks, enjoyed excellent times with great water and boats and have some stories to tell to boot.

so i have nothing but find memories of my weekend with mark, shannon, troy, tracy, adam, danielle, erica, thane, molly, nelly and the kids. thanks all of you for the fun times and support. hope to do it again soon - without the airlifting to a vegas trauma center part!

btw, just so everyone knows, im doing fine. i was released from the hospital the same evening. thane and mark drove my car to vegas and dropped it off for me. i drove to the airport and met up with my girlfriend kimberly who had jumped on the first flight from l.a. she could get and we drove to stateline where we stayed the night and continued our journey home to l.a. the following day.

doc says 3-4 weeks for the broken finger to heal and i get the staples out of my head friday. so i should be back at it in no time! :-)
Old     (tparider)      Join Date: Aug 2003       10-08-2003, 7:26 PM Reply   
That is one of the craziest stories I've heard in a while. it will be a good one to tell around the campfire..hahaha...

I'm sure you'll make a full recovery. Watch where you're going next time!!!!
Old     (obrienride16)      Join Date: Jul 2001       10-08-2003, 8:44 PM Reply   
wow chris, that really sucks, but it sounds like you got really lucky with your injuries. i hope everything goes well and you're back out there soon.
Old     (socalwakepunk)      Join Date: Dec 2002       10-08-2003, 8:55 PM Reply   
Danger is my business!!!! Seriously, glad to hear that things were not worse.

BTW, how did you do when the Doc started with the staple gun on your melon? I was in a car wreck a few years back, and even with that numbing gel, when the Doc started stapling my dome like he was puttin' up Christmas lights or somethin', I about tossed the cookies.
Old     (timmy)      Join Date: Jul 2001       10-08-2003, 8:56 PM Reply   
yes you got super lucky

you probably remember i had a little mishap with my leg in august, still not walkin, so i feel for ya.
Old     (socalwakepunk)      Join Date: Dec 2002       10-08-2003, 9:06 PM Reply   
In a few months, you'll be ready to start shaving you lid, just like me! Seriously, chicks dig the scars (just don't tell 'em about the plate in your head)!
Old     (supersport)      Join Date: Dec 2001       10-08-2003, 9:18 PM Reply   
Oh Man! It could've been worse.
Old     (liveoz)      Join Date: May 2002       10-08-2003, 9:38 PM Reply   
That is just crazy. That would have been the most watched video on wakepics ever if you had the camera.

Just glad you survived period, one bad bounce could have got you.

My ear drum was torn pretty bad, I won't be back on the water for another 3 weeks myself. Hope Gid can find a crew in the meantime. Although I guess we are the perfect thirds for the next few weeks.

I beleive we have a legitimate Castaic Curse. Who's next?
Old     (colorider)      Join Date: Jun 2001       10-08-2003, 9:59 PM Reply   
Man those are some pointy arse rocks you crashed into. I am shocked you are not completly busted up!!!! Good luck on your recovery and I am glad you are not seriously jacked up.!!!!!!
Old    buttacup            10-08-2003, 10:57 PM Reply   
Yikes, glad you are okay and you still had a good weekend despite the events. It would've been awful to hear about another wakeboarding tragedy this year, heal quickly and get back on the water!
Old     (troyl)      Join Date: Feb 2002       10-09-2003, 8:56 AM Reply   
Christopher was really lucky. The big sharp rocks had just a small clearing where he hit and he was easily 15 ft from the water line and 8 feet above the water. It could have/should have been much worse. It was so great to see him give the thumbs up from the rocks when I arrived with the patrol. That ride to the Marina and back was the longest 30 minutes of my life, I thought he was out cold the whole time. We had no cell coverage in the area we were in.

One thing for sure is I will have much more first aid equipment on my boat from now on. We could have/should have given all the first aid that the Patrol gave (except O2) but all we had were a few bandaids and a roll of tape and a pair of tweezers.

Old     (ryan_shima1)      Join Date: Sep 2002 Location: Layton, Utah       10-09-2003, 8:57 AM Reply   
Danielle told me about your crash last night at the bar, amazing man and I'm glad to hear that you're doing alright. We're heading down to mead at the end of this month so I guess we better keep an eye out for rocks )

Wishing you a fast recovery!
Old     (blackandblue)      Join Date: Oct 2002       10-09-2003, 9:19 AM Reply   
Dude, that's so rough...must've been a nasty lookin tumble. I'm glad you're still here to talk about it. Get well soon...
Old     (wakepaula)      Join Date: Jul 2002       10-09-2003, 10:09 AM Reply   
OMG!! You are so lucky. Thats the scariest thing ever! I'm so glad you are ok:-)

I thought our double riding was harry. On our houseboat trip, my son and I were riding double. He thought I was pointing for him to go, I was letting him know that I was going. I went, did a TS 180, he went, did a W2W grind on my arm!! I was lucky enough put my arm up to protect my face from geting hit by his wakeboard. Yeah, the batteries had just run out before we got a shot of that trick. I was ok and we got a big laugh but you know, I have to say this. We're all out on the water so often and our chances of something happening like that are so high. THAT worries me. As a matter of fact, just last weekend, a boat had to "full on" throttle down to avoid running over our guy that went down in front of him...he came within 5 feet of mowing him over. That's the closest call yet! I don't ever want to witness something like that again.

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE!! Everyone be safe:-)
Old     (aaronlee13)      Join Date: Jul 2001       10-09-2003, 10:12 AM Reply   
Wow... sorry to hear that... get better soon...

I got a rope burn once! That was bad... didn't get and pics or video of it, it happens so fast.
Old     (scottay)      Join Date: Nov 2001       10-09-2003, 10:13 AM Reply   
While reading I am thinking "Chris always wears a helmet", bad luck!
And I am also thing "wow, does Kim know about Erica?" How did you explain that one?
Anyways, hope you heal fast!
Old     (cfisher)      Join Date: Apr 2002       10-09-2003, 10:28 AM Reply   
Christopher - Man! You are now in the running with my Schleprock tales....glad to hear that you are all right! I have yet to watch the video....I'll try downloading it and watching it locally.

Hope you have a speedy recovery!!!!
Old     (phaeton)      Join Date: Feb 2002       10-09-2003, 10:42 AM Reply   
Wow glad you survived. It could of been worse. Not knowing the whole story it seems the boat driver could of prevented the whole thing. I could be wrong though. Hope you recover fast and have good luck from now on.
Old     (magic)      Join Date: Mar 2002       10-09-2003, 10:47 AM Reply   
Phaeton, bingo... kinda what I was thinking too.
Old     (hatepwcs)      Join Date: Mar 2002       10-09-2003, 10:51 AM Reply   
I hope you didn't damage any of those rocks, that is a national park you know. Just kidding, is the 4 angle video dont yet?

Okay, okay really, speedy recovery, looks like it could have really been worse. Glad you are okay.

If I get flamed so be it, that being said. I believe the observer and or driver could of helped to prevent this. It's really important to do your job. It's your responsibility to forecast the riders position as well as the rider to watch where he she is going. This could have been alot worse, thank goodness it wasnt. Let be safe out there people.
Old     (troyl)      Join Date: Feb 2002       10-09-2003, 11:52 AM Reply   
Part of the problem was riding doubles in a narrow area. We have been riding in this spot several weekends this summer and its a great area for perfect water. Unfortunately to get the perfect water you have to go back and forth through a narrow channel. The particular spot where Chris fell is the narrowist in the area and thinking back, its not a good place for double riding.
After you shoot through the narrow section it widens up to about 500 yards.
One thing I can tell you is that everyone in the boat has hundreds of hours on the water and there was no alcohol involved. I was in the other boat (with Chris's helmet) and I am not sure where the eyes of all 4 of the observers were, but I KNOW that the boat driver didnt have much choice in this part of the channel.

Doubles riding is/can be dangerous in the best of conditions. I think we can all learn from Chris on this one.
Old    wakeboard_iraq            10-09-2003, 11:56 AM Reply   
When I go riding on my brother in law's boat, we have hand and arm signals for a lot of things (hard to believe hand and arm signals from a military guy I know).

Sometimes the rider is not noticing a hazard and you typically cant yell to him (if the radio is up and you dont have time to turn it down) so the way we get his/her attention is to stand up and smack the rope several times as it comes off of the tower - the rider will feel the vibration in the handle and instinctively look at the boat. From there you can give any signal you want - like, "look out!"

Unfortunately, accidents happen despite all of the precautions. I have been to Mead a number of times and in some places there are canyons where the boat driver cant do anything but stay in the middle.

That is one of the great things about this website, we all see good and bad things and learn/adjust from them. I am sure that riders will be more aware of what is in front of them, observers will be more attentive, drivers will stay further from the rocks, and hopefully, more people will wear helmets.

Glad you are doing OK Chris.
Old     (canaday)      Join Date: Dec 2002       10-09-2003, 11:58 AM Reply   
Chris is lying, he lost a fight! I'm just kidding Chris, good to see you're ok.
Old     (supersport)      Join Date: Dec 2001       10-09-2003, 1:03 PM Reply   
Phaeton, Chris etc... I was thinking the accident could have been avoided by the driver/observer also. But, how many times have you pulled someone into a narrow cove or channel and had total control over your rider? We do it everyday at the Castaic cove. How can a driver/observer predict a rider's path? I'm not saying that a super alert observer could have yelled or banged the rope like Jim was talking about but that would have been a pretty a extraordinary situation.

Chris get well soon. You cheated death man!

Old    wakeboard_iraq            10-09-2003, 1:09 PM Reply   
Joe, everybody,

I was not saying that the driver or observer was at fault in my statement above - and if it came out that way then I apologize. No driver or observer would ever expect the rider to run aground so even if they saw the outcropping they probably would not have said anything.

Old     (waken23v)      Join Date: Jul 2002       10-09-2003, 1:16 PM Reply   
Good to hear you OK. That's what happens when your rubber necking at chicks. I got tomorrow off for the 4 camera photo shoot. Since that is postponed, I am just going riding at Castaic. If you available, your welcome to hold the flag and laugh at us. By the way I am going up to Lake Naci next weekend (leaving early Friday). So I won't be available for the filming next Friday.
Old     (supersport)      Join Date: Dec 2001       10-09-2003, 3:04 PM Reply   
I referred to you only in regards to getting the attention of the rider.
Phaeton, Sean, Neelley and even myself were thinking that it may have been possible to avoid this accident from the driver/observer seat. My last post just pointed out that it would be pretty extraordinary for that to happen.
Old     (lchamaschuk)      Join Date: Feb 2002       10-09-2003, 3:05 PM Reply   
I think Garret hit the nail on the head - "That's what happens when you're rubber necking at chicks". My brother got into a car accident watching some chick on the sidewalk!
Old     (deepstructure)      Join Date: Jun 2002       10-09-2003, 3:30 PM Reply   
hey all, thanks for the support! i'm feeling better each day. tomorrow i get the staples taken out and then it's hopefully just a few short weeks until my hand sets and i can ride again.

i understand folks wondering about the driver, etc. but believe me, the only thing that would have prevented this would have been me watching where i was going. in the end, we are ultimately responsible for ourselves out there. if i had just taken a moment to look ahead at some point i would have avoided it.

as always, hindsight is 20/20. this accident was just one of those unfortunate series of events (not the least of which was me riding w/o my helmet!), but it happens. i take full responsibility for not being completely aware of where i was going. it didn't have to be as obvious as a rock-outcrop. it could have been floating debris, another downed rider, etc. any manner of items that those in the boat may not have seen or realized would impact (pun intended), my ride.

i had avoided this particular part of the shore once the day before, but this time just wasn't thinking about it. even if someone in the boat saw it coming, there is no way there would have been time to warn me. in fact, had they been able to it might have been worse. as it was i was completely unaware and relaxed, which most likely helped.

regardless, i'll survivie and be back riding soon. as troy said, just take a tip from this and keep your head up out there - especially when riding doubles, riding close to shore or doing both! :-)

Old     (rob_c)      Join Date: Feb 2003       10-09-2003, 8:58 PM Reply   
Christopher, I'm glad to hear you are doing fine.When I first started to read this I thought about how you always wear your helment, it figures the one time you don't.Thank God your ok! heal up and will ride together soon.
Old     (rock_n_boardin)      Join Date: May 2003       10-10-2003, 10:42 AM Reply   

I am soooo glad to hear you are ok, that is so f****n crazy. My only questions is "did you find, love on the rocks???" If so it might have been worth it. LOL Just kidding!!!

We had an incident at the Delta this year, it is just so amazing how a good time turns very very very bad in a matter of seconds. I swear after our incident I had second thoughts on whether I should even be out there in a boat, the thoughts of resale value crept in too. It makes you sick to your stomach. But like your group, ours is a very experienced group and have gone many many hours/years without a serious incident. I am thankful ours ended like yours, with a bruised and stiched body, but nothing more beyond that. Because it sounds like in both our cases, it could have been so much worse.

Well heal up quick! We want to see you out on our boat soon!


By the way, for now on I am wearing my helmet too. This Monday I received a minor concusion on a bad fall. I was pretty punch drunk for a good hour or two. Temporary lost my short term memory. uggghhhhhh

Be safe all!
Old    wakeboard_iraq            10-10-2003, 1:16 PM Reply   
Just for eveybody - ProTec Shapiro helmets are on EBAY all of the time - typically go for about $30 plus $10 shipping. Of course they are new.

Search "wakeboard" - not "wakeboards"
Old     (rock_n_boardin)      Join Date: May 2003       10-10-2003, 1:21 PM Reply   

I agree that is a great helmet, with the ear flaps and all. Plus it has a little style to it. Only problem is it does not work very good when I don't wear it!?!?!? hmmmmm LOL

Old     (tahoe)      Join Date: Mar 2002       10-10-2003, 1:42 PM Reply   
Hey Christopher, glad to hear your ok, and not a statistic. Get well soon !
Old    wakeboard_iraq            10-10-2003, 2:06 PM Reply   

The ear flaps, to me at least, are key in that I no longer get ear aches from water being forced into my ear from falls.

I did have a nasty fall last week in which I broke the snaps that hold one of the ear pieces in - so I just ordered a new helmet for $40 (a lot cheaper than a new ear drum).
Old    papi            10-13-2003, 11:16 AM Reply   
Glad your OK!!!

Here are piks when my son hit the rocks (the day after his 13th birthday) at the north end turnaround of Ski West lake 1. (Ski West is a man made tournament size lake with islands at each end for the turnaround, The bank, at the turnaround, is covered with rocks about 1.5 - 2 cuft each) He was doubling as well and got outside the wake. The whip action sent him across the rocks. Those who saw it said he did a good job of maintaning until his speed slowed down. His mom throuht he didn't make it.

At the Hospital - Head shot
At the hospital - Body
Old     (deepstructure)      Join Date: Jun 2002       10-13-2003, 3:31 PM Reply   
ouch!! wow - both arms broken? and i think my life is annoying because i have a bandanged up right hand! sheesh. hope he had a full recovery and is back at it. he's a trooper!
Old     (bjbatch)      Join Date: Apr 2002       10-13-2003, 3:46 PM Reply   
Best wishes for a speedy recovery. You were definitely very lucky! As soon as you possibly can, get that pinky finger moving and out of the splint. I tore a tendon in mine last year and the doc kept it in a splint so long that it got all full of scar tissue. A year later I still can't bend it fully and ride with only nine fingers on the handle. ..
Old     (deepstructure)      Join Date: Jun 2002       10-13-2003, 4:07 PM Reply   
bruce, thanks for the well wishes. how long were you splinted? my doc says 3-4 weeks. i have taken the bandage off a couple of times to let the hand breathe, but the doc emphasized that the main thing is to not let it move so the bone can heal.

im seeing him again wednesday, so ill defintely bring that concern up with him. im thinking 3-4 weeks (and no ligament damage that i know off), that i should be
Old     (bjbatch)      Join Date: Apr 2002       10-13-2003, 4:16 PM Reply   
Chris - I am certainly no medical expert, but I would think that would be fine. I was in mine for 12 weeks, and did not realize what would happen after all the immobility. I would definitely bring it up, just in case you have any other soft tissue damage that you can't see yet. Bones heal pretty easily. It is the tendons that are really difficult to fix, as I found out.


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