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26 votes
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Can you Rappel with an Old Climbing Rope?

You probably should not use it any more. Old ropes seem to be surprisingly strong. A German mountaineering magazine made tests with old ropes. Of 14 tested ropes, 10 would still have been strong ...
Manziel's user avatar
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21 votes
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Rapelling an overhang

I was thinking about this question while rappelling over an overhang this evening with my little girl and payed attention to exactly what I do: Plant your feet on the edge of the overhang, keep your ...
ShemSeger's user avatar
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13 votes

Backing up a abseil anchor with a human

Once when I was in the Marine Corps I did rappel for fun off of a guard rail in the central staircase of my three story barracks building. I did not have any problem with the guard rail as an anchor, ...
Erik's user avatar
  • 9,658
11 votes

Rapelling an overhang

This is not a direct answer but more of an extended comment about safety when rappelling on overhanging terrain. When rappelling over an overhang or an overhanging wall, make sure that you are ...
DudeOnRock's user avatar
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11 votes
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How to rappel with a dog?

Your dog needs a climbing harness: I have a friend who goes everywhere with their dog, and they have a pro-rated harness for them. You need to get your dog a harness, and tandem rappel with them just ...
ShemSeger's user avatar
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11 votes

Can I use SteriGENE broad spectrum disinfectant on abseil rope?

I visit a lot of caves in the Canadian Rockies, and there are similar concerns with transporting microorganisms from cave to cave, as well as diseases such as white nose syndrome in bats. For the ...
ShemSeger's user avatar
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11 votes
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Rappelling with only one arm

Yes If we assume that this is a summer camp setup where experienced (ish) instructors set up and oversee the rapell, sure. A one-armed person would face two major difficulties. Setting up the rapell ...
Guran's user avatar
  • 1,992
11 votes

Can you Rappel with an Old Climbing Rope?

No, it’s not worth the risk. Ropes aren’t that expensive and if it breaks you could hurt yourself.
Charlie Brumbaugh's user avatar
10 votes
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Lowering other members of a party on belay after rappelling

Here is what I don't like about your plan, the less experienced people will be tying themselves in without you present and the last person won't have a second pair of eyeballs to double check that ...
Charlie Brumbaugh's user avatar
10 votes

In canyoning, [why] do people skip a backup prusik?

Canyoneering has one major danger that is not (normally) one in mountaineering: water. If you get stuck abseiling along/in a waterfall and end up hanging in the waterfall, you can drown. An "engaged" ...
imsodin's user avatar
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10 votes
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In canyoning, [why] do people skip a backup prusik?

Canyoneering presents different risks than rock climbing because water is involved This comment on another post shows why water is an important factor (emphasis mine): Canyoneering with an ...
Erik's user avatar
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9 votes
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How to avoid tangling up the rope when throwing it before rappelling?

Toss the middle first. Throwing your rope isn't always the best solution. High winds, trees, and rocky slopes can make it easy for you to get your rope hung up. Throwing your rope is only really ...
ShemSeger's user avatar
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9 votes

What do you do when you're rappelling a halfed rope and you run out of rope on one side?

One thing you can do if there isn't too much friction in your rope, is lock off the short side of the rope, and continue to descend on the long side. With the short end locked off, you can lower ...
ShemSeger's user avatar
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9 votes
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How to stop in the middle of a rappel without an autoblock?

The simple solution is to take the rope (both strands if rappelling on a doubled rope) below the device and wrap the several times around your upper leg and hold your upper leg perpendicular to the ...
Charlie Brumbaugh's user avatar
9 votes
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Protect hand skin while belaying

Making the Grigri's cam absorb most of the friction by finding the sweet spot of its lever, if this device is employed. You should always be doing this anyway. Never depend on friction of the brake ...
endolith's user avatar
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8 votes

Lowering other members of a party on belay after rappelling

Extending everyone's rappels and tying everyone into the rope before the first person descends is the proper, safest way to do things, unless you wanted all the followers to tie an autoblock as well. ...
ShemSeger's user avatar
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8 votes

Knots when abseiling with single rope

Safety disclaimer first I have a rope of 10 m which supports 3 kN (300 kg) strength. I will abseil with it as a single rope. Edit addressing the new info about the rope: Please don't use this rope ...
imsodin's user avatar
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8 votes
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Transition from ascending to descending a rope

Ascending a fixed rope using an ATC guide in lead mode is totally valid, but it is not the "quickest" method (IMHO). Usually what is taught in basic climbing and self rescue courses is to ascend with ...
QuantumBrick's user avatar
  • 3,379
7 votes

Rapelling an overhang

I'm not aware of any special technique, as it mostly does depend on the actual situation. If you already rappelled quite a length, then the force pulling you to the rock might not be to great anymore,...
flawr's user avatar
  • 1,747
7 votes

How to avoid tangling up the rope when throwing it before rappelling?

First of all, don't coil your rope in the "usual" U-shape, like climbers do! (example picture) Or in ASCII art ___ ------- //// o \\\\ |||| |||| |||| |||| |||| |||| \\// \\// ...
anatolyg's user avatar
  • 4,563
6 votes

The dangers of simul-rappelling

I think it isn't fair to simu-abseiling to pull out horrific accident reports and use them to say it isn't safe, because there are just as horrific accidents with "traditional" abseiling. The only ...
imsodin's user avatar
  • 21.7k
6 votes

Rappelling with only one arm

I've done it with a broken arm in plaster, but that was nearly 30 years ago when I was a similar age to your character. We always used figure of 8 descenders in those days and had a safety belayer ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 26.6k
6 votes

What is this no-harness rappel called?

I have been shown this as an emergency method with the note that you would only want to do if there is a real danger of death if you do not do it. We were allowed to try the feel of the method with no ...
Willeke's user avatar
  • 4,522
6 votes

What is this no-harness rappel called?

In Britain, this is considered a form of classic abseil. In the other common variant, the live rope passes between the legs, then across the front of the body and over the shoulder to the control ...
Toby Speight's user avatar
  • 4,771
6 votes
Accepted

What is this no-harness rappel called?

Another British English answer, with a few more terms: Body abseil: rarely used term, any abseil not using a abseil/belay device or carabiner Classic abseil: Rope goes between legs, round the thigh, ...
Jack B's user avatar
  • 216
5 votes

Backing up a abseil anchor with a human

Sicherungsmann Before they invented the first climbing aids, human anchors were all alpinists had for protection. This sounds exactly like something I would do. In fact, I've done it. When I was a ...
ShemSeger's user avatar
  • 53.6k
5 votes

Backing up a abseil anchor with a human

Anchors to rappel from have to be able to withstand some dynamic load -- the difference between just hanging from this point and falling or even just sliding before the rope tighten. So when ...
knitti's user avatar
  • 1,469

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