Climber and Author Joe Simpson He wrote the book Touching the Void about his ill-fated climb of Siula Grande mountain in Peru with his climbing partner Simon Yates. Now there's a movie adaptation of the book. During the climb, Simpson fell and broke several bones in his leg, crippling him. His friend, determined to find a way to get Simpson home, tied their two lengths of rope together (each was 150 feet) and lowered his friend down the mountain 300 feet at a time. When Simpson failed to respond to Yate's signal to retie the rope, Yates made the agonizing decision to cut the rope.