Experienced free climber, 31, dies after falling 80 feet from North Carolina mountain 

Mail Online | 7/1/2019 | Chantalle Edmunds For Dailymail.com
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A free climber has died after falling 80 feet from Shortoff Mountain in Burke County, North Carolina.

He's been named as Austin Howell, 31, who was from Chicago and regularly posted on Facebook and Instagram about his free climbing adventures, that don't involve ropes or safety equipment.

Howell - Pm - Sunday - Burke - County

Howell was pronounced dead around 1:30 p.m. on Sunday according to the Burke County Office's Facebook page.

Howell had scaled part of the same mountain before in the nude and posted a video showing the experience.

Burke - County - Emergency - Communications - Center

Burke County Emergency Communications Center said it was notified around 11.45am that a climber had fallen from the mountain.

County officials said the section from which Howell fell was 'one of the most difficult portions.'

Howell - Area - Time - Emergency - Responders

Howell is said to have landed in a hard-to-reach area which extended the time it took for emergency responders to rescue him.

Officials said other climbers had reached Howell and performed CPR in vain before rescue officials arrived.

Indications - Accident - Burke - County - Emergency

'All indications are that this was a true accident,' Burke County Emergency Management Director Michael Willis told Fox News.

He added that it was likely Howell was climbing alone without ropes or harnesses.

Photos - Howell - Media - Accounts - Climber

Photos from Howell's social media accounts show him to be an avid free climber who had successfully taken on mountains and rock faces across the states, much to the admiration of his followers.

He described in detail his many climbing achievements.

Post - April - Howell - Instagram - Freesoloist

In an post dated April 18, Howell who used the Instagram handle freesoloist, wrote candidly about how he'd 'bailed' on climbing The Black Cliffs in Idaho and how it 'didn't smell right.'

'Life is an inherently dangerous sport. The only safety any of us have lies within our ability to make competent decisions. The only thing...
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