Ok I learned my lesson

7:29 p.m. on August 14, 2012 (EDT)
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I (state my name) do solemly swear to never EVER wear my wedding ring climbing again. 

Saturday I spent more time than I ever wanted to hanging by my ring finger.  Not my finest moment. 

I noticed about ten feet off the deck that I had forgotten to either remove or tape over my wedding ring as I normally do.

Nine out of ten times I do face climbing so this is a non-issue.  This time my ring caught in a crack and refused to move either out of or deeper into said crack.  If I had been on better footing or had any sort of hold for my right hand it might have been okay but I was trying to move quickly through a tougher section and hanging by my ring in the crack was NOT in the plan.

So, with a shove that nearly knocked me off the rock and a few magic words I managed to get my ring and associated fingers and hand free.  I got to the next wide spot in the climb and removed the offending symbol of eternal love and dedication.  With my slightly roughed up (glad it was basalt not granite) ring securely on a locking carabiner on my harness I proceeded to finish the climb. 

Now I understand why Dean Potter used to wear his wedding ring from Steph Davis on a necklace. 

8:30 p.m. on August 14, 2012 (EDT)
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Been there, done that. Except that it took longer than a few seconds and I was on lead. My second (and belayer) was (and is) my spouse. She noticed I was taking a very long time at one spot on what should have been a moderate section. After a while, she called up to see what was going on. I can't repeat my reply due to the "family friendly" and "no profanity" rules of Trailspace, but her reply, in a sweet voice, was that I had her permission to remove the ring, since she preferred having my fingers intact. But ... I better save the ring. Meantime, some of my fellow climbers were about to fall off their routes from the laughter. I did extract the finger from the ring, pounded in a pin (this was in the bad old days before chocks eliminated pitons and Friends were still a deep dark secret, known only to a certain guru and early prophet of the UltraLight), and after a bit more struggle, I did retrieve it. These days, the ring resides in a dedicated container in a very safe place. Hey, at least I did not have to amputate with a dull knife.

Many are the rock climbers who have encountered this phenomenon. Including my spouse, who forgot to take her diamonds off one time. Luckily, she realized it on a slab pitch, before the following crack pitch.

9:15 p.m. on August 14, 2012 (EDT)
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If you want a better understanding of this, google up sports medicine and ring fingers as it happens with basketball players who get their rings caught in metal hoops.  I would include a photo but it's just too graphic.

12:14 a.m. on August 15, 2012 (EDT)
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Tipi Walter said:

If you want a better understanding of this, google up sports medicine and ring fingers as it happens with basketball players who get their rings caught in metal hoops.  I would include a photo but it's just too graphic.

 From a young age into my early thirties I had been under the impression that men didn't wear wedding rings. My Father never did, I would learn later it was due to him working around machinery and with high voltage electric, it was just not wise. Growing up in the building trades and primarily those where your fingers were constantly not more than a fingers width from a 14" table saw blade, it just was not done. It was bad enough if you slipped, but to have something that was going to grab and pull your whole hand in...

I didn't marry till my mid thirties. I tried the "but honey, it's not safe". She wasn't having it. Funny thing, I scratched the hell out of it climbing up the rock face of a waterfall in Puerto Rico the first day of our honeymoon. She frowned at the blood and the scratches on the ring & I just told her, "that is the kind of guy you married".


Glad to hear you can still count to ten sage.

5:40 p.m. on August 15, 2012 (EDT)
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Thanks all.  It feels better knowing that I am not the only one to make this kind of mistake.

12:01 p.m. on August 16, 2012 (EDT)
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JerseyWreckDiver said:

I had been under the impression that men didn't wear wedding rings. My Father never did, I would learn later it was due to him working around machinery and with high voltage electric, it was just not wise.

I've worked in heavy industry, and the same policies apply to long hair, and necklaces and other jewellery. Not that you're as likely to snag those on a rock face, but it's something to consider.

My wife never minded me not wearing a ring at work, but I had to have it handy afterwards. She has plain gold band she wears when she's working, and saves her diamonds and other jewellery for her own time.

9:16 a.m. on August 21, 2012 (EDT)
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My wife said once she'd rather see me lose a finger than my wedding ring.  I think she was joking.

1:50 p.m. on August 22, 2012 (EDT)
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my grandfather was a surgeon in new york city.  never wore rings, actively discouraged people from wearing them while doing sports or if they had a job where they used their hands.  he apparently had to repair or amputate a lot of torn-up fingers where rings got caught on something.

i used to wear my wedding ring on a ball chain (the cheap metal necklace for dog tags in the military), but i hooked one of those on a branch & nearly lost the damn ring anyway.  i usually leave the ring in my briefcase or in one of those zippered pack lid pockets now. 

i suppose you could think of your wedding ring as another nut/stopper in your rack....

8:52 p.m. on August 25, 2012 (EDT)
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My parents stopped wearing their wedding rings due to an accident my dad had. He had to go to the hospital because he "de-gloved" his ring finger while climbing down from a hunting stand.

1:15 a.m. on August 29, 2012 (EDT)
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Keep it on a cord around your neck

10:12 a.m. on August 29, 2012 (EDT)
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I  lost my beloved Law School ring whilst climbing. Uggh.

October 24, 2014
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