32

Both sport climbing and trad climbing are a form of lead climbing, which means the first climber to go up is not protected by a rope from above. A sport climber uses quickdraws which, as you mentioned, get clipped to bolts that have been placed in 10 to 15 foot intervals. At the end of the climb a sport climber can expect to find a belay anchor consisting of ...


25

Off width cracks are cracks that are too big to finger jam or fist jam, but too small for you to fit inside and chimney climb, so you have to come up with really awkward and very physically excerting moves to get up them, like climbing upside down (literally). Basically they are cracks that are just the right width to not be fun, and take a lot of physical ...


17

The best way to lear how to place protections is to climb sport routes that are also suited to protection placement. Bring plenty of quickdraws (and of gear to place of course). Use the bolts, but place protections as if those were your only alternative up there. This will, as the very first and foremost thing, allow you to place plenty of them. The more, ...


13

When racking up, you have a spectrum of possibilities between two extremes: At one end, you could put every single piece of gear on the same carabiner. While the weight savings would be incredible, it would be an absolute pain to place a piece. At the opposite end, you could rack every single piece of pro on its own carabiner. You pay a penalty in weight (...


12

Assuming a vertical, as opposed to traversing, route that is not overhanging, you unclip the rope from the piece and then pull yourself up just like the leader did. Once you are high enough above the piece to account for rope stretch you have the leader take in the slack. The key is that after weighting the rope you want your hands to be at the same height ...


12

I am sure there is no simple formula to add everything up as the load of a high factor fall is not increasing linearly. There have been experiments conducted by Pit Schubert in which he tested a rope with repeated falls on factor 0.35-0.45 on a rope rated to 5 falls with an 80 kilo mass. (Basically the norm just with a low fall factor) He reports that the ...


11

In general it sounds you're not doing anything obviously stupid and you just need more practice. I generally rack some 'draws on both sides - sometimes it can be handy to avoid reaching across. And you can often avoid the 'draw falling into the crack by resting it on a hold, across your wrist or something like that. Try not to place/clip gear far above ...


11

Here are some ideas, with the usefulness depending on the terrain and rock quality and the terrain: Hold it down with an upside-down nut: Place a nut below the spike and clip it to the sling. The nut needs to pull down on the sling so that the sling won't move. The nut will only need to resist being pulled upwards slightly since its only purpose is to ...


10

Personally, I can easily see how this unintended loading can happen. Second gets to a tricky part, asks leader for beta, leader moves over to get a better view of second. This question is an example of one of the really hard problems in climbing. It's almost impossible to get feedback about how well you are building your anchors. You just don't get many ...


10

Double Rope You need two ropes (of obviously different colours so as not to confuse them). Tie into both ropes, one on each side of your belay loop, your seconds will each tie into the other end of one of the ropes. When you set up your belay after you've led the climb, put both ropes into your belay device, you can belay for both of your seconds at once. ...


10

While belaying two seconds at once using the method ShemSeger pointed out is my favorite, it does take a fair amount of experience so I would not recommend it to someone climbing for the first time with two seconds. If you're just starting out, I recommend you use the Caterpillar technique: You lead on a single rope and belay the second as you would ...


9

Before I started to trad climb, I was using mobile protection in an alpine environment. As a consequence, I never fell into a piece of gear and belays (that were not bolted) were save by location, often by slinging some big rock. This is the extreme case, but also when starting to trad climb the same happened: I didn't have much experience so I wasn't sure ...


9

I've been thinking if it is possible to achieve anything (worthy of mention) for someone who started at [36] Lee Sheftel started climbing at 33, climbed 5.14a at 59 and 5.13b at 68 Margarita Martinez started at 34, climbed 5.13d at 58 Akira Waku started at 35, climbed V15/16 at 48 Juichi Ogawa started at ~47, climbs 5.12d at 72, was better at 69 Are these &...


8

You leave behind gear sufficient to create a rappel anchor that is strong enough for any conceivable load that may be placed upon it. This is no different from any other properly constructed rappel anchor, the specifics of which vary with the placement and circumstance. The only situation I can conceive that one would have to violate this rule is in a true ...


8

You extend placements with trad draws when the line you are climbing wanders, in order to minimize rope drag. You do not always need to extend them. I climb with a mix of short sport-type draws and extendable trad draws for that reason. Sometimes you can even just clip the racking biner that the cam was hanging on already (obviously for nuts or anything ...


8

I assume you are only looking for options by going from belay to belay (as opposed to continuous securing like going on taught rope). Method using half-ropes: You tie in on both ropes, your partners on a single one each. They belay you normally on both ropes until you set up the belay-station. Then you secure them using a Munter hitch or a tuber like ...


8

Learning how to place gear is a lot different than actually using it. Trad climbers place their pro, but hope they never have to fall on it. They give it a few tugs, maybe weight it to make sure it'll hold, but for the most part it's there just in case of a fall. Aid climbers on the other hand, they use every piece of gear that they place, they get real ...


8

Liam hinted at the method that was popular in the US while back, and probably still is: follow an experienced climber and clean their gear. You'll get to see actual placements & find out how hard or easily a piece of pro should come out. Aid climbing (with bounce testing) is a great way to learn too. And a great way to kill six hours going only 100 feet....


8

They are user replaceable, in fact some manufacturers recommend replacing slings every 2-5 years if they're very frequently used, but they're only user replaceable if you know how to sew structural climbing gear and have the equipment to bartack a loop of SuperTape or 10mm Dynex. The simplest thing to do is simply replace the worn sling with 1" tube ...


8

I don't grab the biner first, I grab the cam first, pretty much as I would if I were placing it, I then unclip the biner from my gear loop with the cam in hand. There's no fumbling with it during or after, the more steps you put into placing gear, the more likely you are to drop it. I watched a video of this one girl climbing a 5.14 on trad, she had her gear ...


7

You probably want your tool to have a longer extension, more like 100 cm. If this length bothers you, consider using an extendable bungee cord (e.g. 80 cm long, which you can stretch to 100 cm); twist it so it compacts itself when retracted. It might be possible to use a spiral/telephone cord, however it may be too bulky (I have seen it used for ice axes, ...


7

The short answer to that is yes - but the real answer is it depends. If you are climbing on sandstone, this could actually be very dangerous & unethical. The issue with sandstone is that it tends to be a fairly porous rock. After heavy rains, it is likely to have absorbed some quantity of water in those pores. This weakens the rock, compared to the very ...


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