Australia

How ‘Superman’ plunged 300m down cliff

Steve Turner, 50, was climbing Mt Barney with two others on Saturday when he fell 300m down a cliff face called The Governor on Mt Barney, 90km southwest of Brisbane.

Emergency services located Mr Turner’s body on Saturday night but were unable to retrieve it until Sunday night due to the terrain.

The two other climbers, in their 30s, raised the alarm and were flown to safety just after 5pm.

Fellow climber Henk Morgans told ABC Mr Turner had decades of experience of climbing under his belt.

He said the death had shaken the small and close-knit southeast Queensland climbing community.

“No matter what it is, a small accident or an incident or a tragedy, it really affects our little group of friends and we’re virtually a family so at this time we kind of come together and try and be supportive and lend a hand where we can,” Mr Morgans said.

Acting Inspector Warren Parker said three experienced climbers were descending down the summit of Mt Barney when the fall took place.

Mr Turner “somehow came detached from the climbing rope and has fallen a significant distance some 300-400m and has fallen to his death,” Insp Parker said, according to the Courier Mail.

On Facebook, members of the South East Queensland Rock Climbing Group paid tribute to Mr Turner, with many sharing stories about the experienced climber’s feats.

“RIP Steve, you took me on my very first multi pitch climb (Ruby of India), but more importantly you got me off when we got caught on pitch three in a super cell storm. I will always remember you as an absolute Superman” - Alexandra Bishop

“Steve was a superhero. We got caught by a supercell storm climbing Ruby of India with him almost two years ago. It remains the scariest day of my life. He was so strong, brave and competent, and worked so hard to get us off there safely. This is so sad.” - Emma Caitlin

“Difficult to come to terms with such a terrible loss. Condolences to his family, Steve is one in a million and will be sadly missed.” - Royce Genn

“Farewell my friend, I will never forget the moments we spent in the vertical world. You’re a great inspiration and if I ever get to do half of what you have achieved, my life will be full. From the summit of Mt Cook, Ruby and many many times romping up Logan’s. You’re a legend and a hero to me. Rest in peace” - Luke Ellis

“SEQ is going to miss you Steve. You were a strength in our community. Passionate about everything you did and passed on skills to many. Forever in the mountains of our minds.” - Peter Jones

“Rest in peace Steve, thanks for living with such passion. You inspired myself and so many to want to get out and really see this world.” - Nathan Sharp

“A mates mate, a blokes bloke and truly great friend. This is hard to write, as we only spoke a while back about Mt Cook together this year. You saved my arse more than once, you helped so many and asked for nothing in return. You will never be forgotten. RIP mate” - Noel McBurnie

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