Bishop Peak fall victim is Cal Poly student from Arroyo Grande

January 2, 2017
Evan Lalanne

Evan Lalanne

The man who fell nearly 30 feet around the top of Bishop Peak Thursday evening is Evan Lalanne, 18. Lalanne is a Cal Poly student and graduate of Arroyo Grande High School, where he was a star volleyball player.

Lalanne suffered severe neck and back injuries and was paralyzed from the waist down in the aftermath of the fall, according to a GoFundMe page set up on his behalf. It is possible, though, the teen could regain full control of his body.

On Saturday, Lalanne underwent surgery at Stanford University hospital in order to straighten and stabilize his spine and remove bone fragments that were pressing on his spinal cord. He is expected to be transferred to a therapy facility that specializes in severe spinal trauma.

“Evan is a young, strong and determined person,” the GoFundMe page states. “All this will serve him well in this long road ahead.”

The GoFundMe page has raised more than $50,000 in just two days.

In Lalanne’s senior year at Arroyo Grande High School, he was the captain of the volleyball team, according to high school sports site Max Preps. The team finished 21-5-3.

It remains unclear what caused Lalanne to fall. He was airlifted off Bishop Peak after rescue crews climbed up the mountain to aid him.


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I wish this young man a full and speedy recovery. There is a lot of research being done regarding spinal cord injuries, so I am hopeful for the young man. This KID had a freak accident, and he deserves our support.

Actually we have been given almost no details on this accident, it’s exact location or the actions that lead up to it, so we really do not know if it was a “freak” accident or not.

You are correct. I assumed this kid slipped and fell off the side, which isn’t “freak” but tragic nonetheless.

Very sorry to hear his injuries were so severe. A very difficult thing to deal with as a young man in his prime. Again, I have read the other posts and am utterly appalled at people who complain constantly–about everything–but mostly about the fact they are “bothered” by people or surrounding circumstances near them–when in reality they are extremely fortunate to own a property in this city. One of these days–you will hear a LOUD POP over near Bishop’s Peak….and it will be the residents pulling their head of out their ass. Get real….sometimes people…need other people–it is what the world is all about….being there when they do!

Heard yesterday that possible paralysis. Sad to happen to anyone but especially a young person. Sending prayers for him and his family.

This is terribly sad. I hope this tragedy is not used to realize SLO Parks & Rec’s dream of closing or partially closing Bishop Peak and other SLO taxpayer-owned resources.

It sure as heck is my dream. Us residents are tired of the BS. We’re tired of people parking outside our houses at all hours. We’re tired of people leaving trash everywhere. We’re tired of people knocking on our doors asking for water or to use the phone. We’re tired of hearing helicopters overhead at night because someone fell in the dark and hurt themselves.

Oh, and we’re also tired of people telling us we knew what we were getting into living here, even though many of us bought the property long before the city was donated the trailhead land and opened it up to the public.

cosmos7 you sound like a very selfish person. you live in a desirable location near open space that is sought after by nature loving people. what do you think the people who live on the beach experience? but sadly you probably bought your home when it was affordable and now you can’t afford to move. boo hoo for you. would you like some cheese with that whine? get a life in 2017!

But does that mean nature loving people need to be disrespectful and discourteous?

I’m sorry… I didn’t realize that living on Bishop’s Peak meant I needed to clean up other people’s trash, open up my home as a hospitality suite for casual passers-by that bang on my door, and pay as taxpayers tens of thousands a month because people continually hurt themselves and need life-flights.

Hikers have been going up Bishops for decades. It’s gotten significantly worse in recent years because lately people don’t respect these resources and don’t know their own abilities. If you can’t take care of those resources or yourself when using them you don’t get to demand that they remain available to you.

People buy at the beach and don’t want beach people who don’t live there.

People buy at the dump but don’t want the stink.

People buy at the airport but don’t want to hear planes.

People injure themselves but you want the rescues to be whisper quiet.


Our house has been in our family for more than thirty years and it’s never really been a problem until about the last 5 – 7 years. The people coming and going used to be a lot more respectful. If you want to come pick up the trash left in the street and are willing to pay for the monthly life-flights be my guest…

Can’t say I blame you. I don’t even like climbing Bishop’s Peak anymore. Way too crowded. Seems like I’m doing more stopping than walking as I step aside to let people go by. Also, I see college students hiking up with overnight packs and cases of beer. I doubt they are being good stewards of the area.

At least the City finally put trash cans and dog poop bags at the trail heads, so hopefully you don’t have to deal with people leaving their bags behind or dumping them in your trash can.

Then move. The mountain (and those that climb it) were there long before you.

Cosmos7 can’t afford to move so he falls into the slo county category of another homeowner complaining about people enjoying the open space near their home. pathetic~

Then move. You probably pay less in property taxes in a year than people do in a month. Your “tax dollars” wouldn’t fill a pothole, much less have an impact on that view you get to enjoy as a wasteful baby boomer who whines all day while pillaging the medicare and social security fund. Go get some more free diagnostic testing while you complain about your social security COLA.

The $10K or so I pay in property taxes each year doesn’t even cover a single life-flight off of Bishops, but yet the city now has to do one on an almost monthly basis. It isn’t enough to cover the salary of someone to come pick up the trash left in the street and on the trail. It isn’t enough to cover the cost of installing bathroom and water facilities so that hikers don’t knock on my door asking to use mine.

Are you volunteering to cover the cost, or is it easier to pretend that I’m just a NIMBY that isn’t cognizant of the drain this resource is putting on our community and in particular this neighborhood. Perhaps you’d prefer a pay-to-use implementation?

I get your frustration. But it’s your attitude that needs re-framing.

In my neighborhood, and I too am a homeowner, I am now beginning to see people pushing shopping carts down the road. We have people pilfering through our garbage, people stealing packages that are delivered, the ATF has busted a house nearby 3 times. I clean my front landscape of mini booze bottles, cigarette butts, and even the occasional hypodermic needle. My little neighborhood is mostly working class people, a few retirees, and a few riff-raff that inherited homes from parents or are squatters in their parents’ homes. I have ghetto birds that fly around looking for suspects, and the police patrol our neighborhood several times a day. I pay DEARLY for my opportunity to live on the central coast– I could sell right now and pay a house off in in a place like Tehachapi where it i snowy and away from gross Bakersfield and have property. Yes, again I hear you that it IS annoying to pay so much to deal with people who are so thoughtless.

That said, unless you live on a mountain top that YOU own, you are going to have “unsavory” types that come and go. It just depends on what KIND of “unsavory” types you must live near. Where YOU live, the unsavories are Cal Poly kids that have parents that love them. If they trash your landscape, mommy and daddy will reimburse you. Where I live, I have to ask Victim Witness and the DA to reimburse me and to garnish the money from someone who was texting while smoking weed and literally trashed my front yard by running all over it. She could have killed someone. I have to wake up to a local PD knocking on my door to notify me that during the night, someone took a joyride while extremely drunk, totally one of our vehicles parked in front of the house, along with damaging 8 others and knocking over a fence in a 3 block area.

Now, as to your property taxes, they are based on 1.12% of the purchase price of your home last I checked. If you have owned your home for so long and STILL pay 10,000 a year, then you must have purchased your home for a million dollars if your numbers are correct. That should afford you plenty of equity to buy your own mountain somewhere.

What I DO think should happen is that perhaps a parks or City employee could patrol or hike through the area to help with clean up. Community service hours could be earned by allowing people to clean up the area. Those with parking tickets or fines could pay off their fines with this type of work. Those willing to do this are less likely to be “unsavory”, as unsavory types could care less about fines or going to jail. Those people are in my neighborhood.

Someday you might find yourself lying on the floor of your home, or in an accident on the highway. I would never wish that upon you, but I know someone who almost got killed on Highway 1 who through no fault of his own was hit head on by people vacationing here from out of the country. A helicopter flying him to care saved his life. I would hate to think the neighbors would begrudge him of lifesaving care. I would hate to think someone would begrudge YOU of lifesaving care.

I think SLO county health promotion should maybe come up with a plan to educate our community on how to enjoy our beautiful county SAFELY. Bring water, a phone, appropriate gear for the journey. Most people don’t mean to be rude or unprepared, they just don’t know any better. BUT– the taxpayers must be willing to fund prevention. Prevention involves teaching people common sense- duh bring water, duh don’t wear flip-flops hiking, duh wear sunblock, duh don’t get lost. What we are seeing today is a result of a lack of education and a lack of enforcement of existing laws.

As to your problem with bathroom or water, I get how annoying that must be.

If the US can put up drinking fountains in the deserts for illegal aliens, then maybe they could put up a couple at the base of the trail heads or something. That will keep people from dying.

As for bathrooms, they can go pee in nature. That’s the experience they went out to seek. Let them enjoy.

These are conveniences. People need to learn to suck it up a bit.

Do you realize that taxpayers will guarantee underlying payment for such flights to the public agency responding, but usually the cost is then pased onto the citizen who needed the service?

Also do you realize how much nicer SLO was 30 + years ago before we were invaded by wandering herds of NIMBY’s like you?

Your house wasn’t built when I first started climbing that mountain. Now I need you permission to climb it?

If you ask me the blight started long ago—about 30 years when they built further and further up the hill, which allowed people like you to gain purchase in our community.

You should try being a bit more neighborly to people in distress.

And perhaps more charitable. Needing to make this thread a complaint about trash, when a young man’s life was upending enjoying nature makes you look small, and out of step with most of those in your community.