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Chockstone Forum - General Discussion

General Climbing Discussion

Author
Aid Climbing

wombats
31/10/2004
10:26:09 AM
We dont( or maybe I havent seen it yet), see much in the way of Aid Climbing in Aus. I kinda mean what is publicised.
Why is that? Is it because there is not enough interest for the Mags.etc
Or are there not many climbers out there who Aid Climb?
Only asking for curiosity's sake. See and hear alot about Sport, Trad & Bouldering, But what about Aid?
Any reasons?

mousey
31/10/2004
10:49:18 AM
id say theres a much smaller proportions of aid climbers and while we have good cliffs around for it, theres no BIG big cliffs (ie everything you could do in a couple days)
just a thought, maybe.....
(btw id love to see more stuff on aiding & im very interested in getting into)

wombats
31/10/2004
5:38:21 PM
Interesting you say that you're interested MM, 'cause Mike from the states asked me the other day if there was a call for Aid Climbing gear, books and videos. We couldn't really give him an accurate answer so thought we would put the question out there... maybe A5 can point is in the right direction.

BTW: MM did you get the last set of zeros?? Mike mentioned someone bought them but I forgot to ask him who. Just wondering.

mousey
31/10/2004
7:20:34 PM
i got the email through to him then realised id be $100 short and passed the deal on to rodw

IdratherbeclimbingM9
1/11/2004
1:31:52 PM
On 31/10/2004 wombats wrote:
>We dont( or maybe I havent seen it yet), see much in the way of Aid Climbing
>in Aus. I kinda mean what is publicised.
>Why is that? Is it because there is not enough interest for the Mags.etc
>Or are there not many climbers out there who Aid Climb?
>Only asking for curiosity's sake. See and hear alot about Sport, Trad
>& Bouldering, But what about Aid?
>Any reasons?


Such esoteric questions!

Australia’s ‘aid history’ largely followed on from Europe and later USA, but with the ubiquitous local innovation that Aussies are renown for.
My guess is that it is not popular largely due to the ever changing politics of climbing; as it seems to me that since free climbing hard stuff became the ‘aim’, then at the same time ‘aid’ became a dirty word !
Perhaps in time aid will see a revival when people want to start pushing the limits of what is possible again. Most aid practised in Oz is based on the USA version of it, which evolved out of Yosemite.

I think magazines would still be interested in aid articles today, if done as adventure climbs. I can’t see the masses wanting to know about a bumbly clean-aiding a hard sport route though.

True re: not many aid climbers being about; … as opposed to the odd climber who pulls on a piece of gear (or two) to get past a crux etc.

For some statistics see the;

http://www.chockstone.org/Forum/Forum.asp?Action=Display&ForumID=15&MessageID=480&Replies=0

… for recent info on Australia’s icon aid climb Ozymandias Direct.

Maybe a time / convenience factor comes into it as well. Aiding is slow; requires more gear (=costly); and is often plain hard work, (downside).
… But on the upside, it allows you to go places you could not otherwise get to; appreciate those locations due to the time spent there; exercise the mind (like chess-jigsaw) in getting placements to stick; allows testing your mental reserves for extended durations of ‘scary-as-you-like’ commitment; it will keep you fit; and last but not least it can be fun!

Once you become bent enough to want to do multiday ascents, you then get the added benefits? of combining camping out (in the vertical arena), with climbing.

> (snip) if there was a call for Aid Climbing gear, books and videos. We couldn't really >give him an accurate answer so thought we would put the question out there... maybe >A5 can point is in the right direction.

I know that those who are into aid would love to be able to easily obtain all the above, but realise the practicality from a vendors perspective that there isn’t sufficient money to be made from it to warrant the effort, unless it’s a sideline to a profitable business.

Aid for aids sake, is an esoteric game indeed!

Phil Box
1/11/2004
3:15:56 PM
The other players in the market of aid climbers are the people who go overseas to the big walls to aid. Often these people will require gear that can only be sourced from OS.

wombats
1/11/2004
5:04:28 PM
Thanks, what is the grade comparison between A1 & A5 ? In terms of say sport, Trad & Bouldering.

mousey
1/11/2004
5:12:35 PM
i think it goes on things like how many body weight placements there are in a row, then the W one is how long it takes a typical party or something. and on heaps of aid routes since theres sections of free climbing theres a free grade as well??

IdratherbeclimbingM9
1/11/2004
5:23:17 PM
On 1/11/2004 wombats wrote:
>Thanks, what is the grade comparison between A1 & A5 ? In terms of say
>sport, Trad & Bouldering.

They are different grade systems and NOT directly comparable.

IMO they are not even loosly comparable as climbing on gear does not equate with free-climbing, but I will attempt to answer your question anyway.

At its most basic level:~
A1 = easy Sport = easy Trad (Gd 10, ie most folk generally requiring a rope?) = easy Boulder (V0 ?)
A5 = impossibly hard Sport (a guess, ... say Gd 45+!!) = Trad Gd 45+ !! = Boulder V24+ (took 21 off 45 !)

Unlike Sport & to some extent Boulder, Aid can involve VERY lengthy maximum scare factor. Perhaps no more so than committed runouts on poor pro for Trad, ... but the timeframe for same is hours on the sharp-end rather than minutes.

Although grade A5 in Aid has been achieved and Gd 45 in Sport / Trad has not (yet), likewise Boulder V24; there is a significant anomaly in the Aid Grade Range; in that what used to be considered A5 is now considered ‘New Wave’ Aid Grade 4-ish.

IE as hard-aid standards have risen the (already) existing standard of climbs within the grading system, have been ‘compressed’ to absorb it !!


Syd Huxley
1/11/2004
5:33:33 PM
i think aid climbing hasnt seen much attention in mags cause its shit boring,to do not to mention
to read about.
i over heard a conversation (dropped some eves) about somones brilliant idea to drill small
holes up a blank slice of tiapan wall,why you ask? to practice their bat hooking and it goes without
saying that i got somwhat stuck into him after hearing that.
im not sure what kind of gear aiders use these days but i know that the piton is not entirely out
of use,and in my opinion the use of them is as good as chipping.
i know that some of the free route on the nose is climbed on piton scars.sure it might be cool
climbing on the holes chipped out with pitons back when they thought it was the only way
up but to do it now,in this day and age with levals of climbing as high and rising as they are
is a completly selfish act of stonicide.

IdratherbeclimbingM9
2/11/2004
8:15:53 AM
On 1/11/2004 Syd Huxley wrote:
>i think aid climbing hasnt seen much attention in mags cause its shit boring,to
>do not to mention to read about.

You have obviously never done any hard aid, but I respect your opinion nevertheless.

>i over heard a conversation (dropped some eves) about somones brilliant
>idea to drill small holes up a blank slice of tiapan wall,why you ask? to practice their bat
>hooking and it goes without saying that i got somwhat stuck into him after hearing that.

Good on you.
'Irresponsible aiding' is a crime.
IMO the whole of Taipan Wall is 'off limits' to old style aiding!
Clean aid (ie hand placed passive protection) would be OK though.

>im not sure what kind of gear aiders use these days but i know that the
>piton is not entirely out of use,and in my opinion the use of them is as good as chipping.

You have obviously never done any hard aid !, ... or perhaps 'hard-to-protect' ground up adventure routing of new climbs?
EG I placed a single piton belay in a 'closed seam' 100m up a 335 m slab (new route with total length 450m) last weekend, and although (in the whole climb) I used peckers two maybe 3 times and backed up another belay later with a small knifeblade piton, I will warrant that without the use of those items we may as well have called the climb a free-solo.
Such things as semi hanging belays 200 m off the deck on a #2 stopper don't strike me as safe climbing, ... hence the backup piton.
(The next ascentionist had better have similar equipment unles they intend to set bolt belays).

>i know that some of the free route on the nose is climbed on piton scars.sure
>it might be cool climbing on the holes chipped out with pitons back when they thought it
>was the only way up but to do it now,in this day and age with levals of climbing as high
>and rising as they are is a completly selfish act of stonicide.

I wager that it will be a very long time indeed before anyone can free climb the minimal impact scars left by Peckers and Birdbeaks. These modern pitons make Rurps seem excessively large and can often be hand placed as well !!

It is an act of 'stonicide' to attempt to free climb overhanging incipient seams that are marginally negotiated without the use of Peckers / Birdbeaks; RP# 1 (or less) etc.

As a side note; I enjoy the benefits of climbing on 'established' climbs, be they bolted, Trad or whatever. I suspect strongly that in the future there will be those who enjoy climbing on the aid climbs I put up these days. For the most part though, I also suspect that these hypothetical free climbing ascentionists will regard these very same climbs as hitherto untouched unless I decide to leave trace of my passage or write them up !
gfdonc
2/11/2004
8:30:55 PM
Err .. back from our epic trip to Buffalo these past 3 days I can vouch for the demanding and very tedious nature of aid climbing.
Very tired .. need to sleep more .. trip report to follow later.
- Steve


IdratherbeclimbingM9
27/01/2005
1:35:03 PM
On 1/11/2004 wombats wrote:
>Thanks, what is the grade comparison between A1 & A5 ? In terms of say
>sport, Trad & Bouldering.

Additional crosslink to another thread for A1-A5 explicit detail.

http://www.chockstone.org/Forum/Forum.asp?Action=Display&ForumID=15&MessageID=683&Replies=0

There are 13 messages in this topic.

 

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