Warning: the video below could be disturbing to some.
BOULDER, Colo. -- A climber who fell 50 feet from the Flatirons in Boulder says he is incredibly lucky to be alive.
Kyle Walker was recording his climb in April when he slipped and fell straight down.
“I was hanging off the rock and there was lichen everywhere on the rock. I distributed all the weight to my feet and as soon as I slipped, it was freefall immediately. I fell 5 seconds," he said. "Ultimately, I was like, 'I'm dead, accepted that was it.' Luckily, hit the slab and decline of the rock slowed me down enough so I didn’t die.”
Walker says he's always been the adventurous type and took up scrambling and mountain climbing to overcome his fear of heights.
“I just became obsessed with pushing back my fear of heights and pushing my limits and disregarded all the safety," he said.
It took about 1 1/2 hours for another climber to find Walker and call for help.
“Whenever I hit, I was in so much shock, I didn't know what was going on and I wasn't able to really feel pain," Walker said.
Walker admits he's not an expert climber and that he made several mistakes while he was trying out a new route on the Flatirons. He said he was wearing the wrong shoes, didn't have the right gear and should've had someone more experienced with him.
His advice for other climbers: “Don't climb based on what you think you know. It's not enough. Learn from someone who has done it enough to show you how to do it safely.”
As difficult as the video can be to watch, Walker said it gives him strength to move forward with his recovery.
“I would watch the video right before surgeries. I've already been through the diceyist part of all this," he said.
He just spent three weeks in the hospital and had a number of surgeries. He broke eight ribs, his hip and both hands. He also punctured his lung. But he knows he is very lucky to be alive.
“It kind of changed my perspective on life. So in a way, it wasn’t all bad," Walker said.
He is heading back to his home in Texas to continue on the road to a full recovery.AlertMe