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Chockstone Forum - General Discussion

General Climbing Discussion

 Page 1 of 5. Messages 1 to 20 | 21 to 40 | 41 to 60 | 61 to 80 | 81 to 85
Author
Ben Nevis - Shame on you. What a waste of a crag.

JBM
9/08/2009
7:58:43 PM
After 7 years of driving back and forth past this crag I finally organised a look see for
myself.

Today me and a buddy did a trip to Red Rock. My impressions:

1) Drive-in was easy and quite pleasant with cup a of coffee and the heater full bore in
the truck
2) The area is beautiful
3) Despite all the angst around finding the abseil start, we walked straight up to it
4) Given it was 4 degrees and windy, we were so keen to check out the climbing we
rapped in and pulled the ropes behind us in full belay jackets
5) The moves were great, the rock was fantastic, the views incredible
6) The whole experienced was flushed down the toilet due to an incredibly shit bolting
practice.

I mean, honestly, were we going through a "Bachar-Yerian" machismo phase when this
crag was developed or are we that freaking cheap?

Look, I appreciate the whole bolting from the ground up mindset, but effectively the
development of these routes in the style in which they were done has ruined the
crag/routes for countless generations to come.

After finishing for the day, I could not help but think what a great crag this would be if it
were properly bolted (read:developed). And don't even get me started on the use of
carrots....

Someone has clearly gone to the effort of putting in some beautiful belays recently.
Thank you.

However, the routes suck in their current state and the crag is ruined.

Now before you go spouting off about "adventure", I'm not opposed to the occasional
necky line or bold run out. But it's a low angled granite slab for god sake - not some holy
obelisk in Sheffield.

Well, now I feel better. However, it would be nice to see this crag properly used and
redeveloped. How many other 150-200m routes have we got 2 hours from Melbourne?

Fish Boy
9/08/2009
8:27:57 PM
This will be interesting.

Those super long routes have tiny short hard sections and long sections of piss easy. You aint gonna die....

You ask "How many other 150-200m routes have we got 2 hours from Melbourne?" Well, I'm not sure I see where that fits in? The Cathedrals is one that I can think of....why should this dictate retrobolting or an ethics shift?

Good day!

JBM
9/08/2009
8:37:57 PM
>piss easy

Define piss easy. Who's defnition?

>You aint gonna die....

Shit happens.

>You ask "How many other 150-200m routes have we got 2 hours from Melbourne?"
>Well, I'm not sure I see where that fits in?The Cathedrals is one that
>I can think of....why should this dictate retrobolting or an ethics shift?

Bottom line: better use of the crag. Cathedrals ain't an option at the moment, so I guess
that means this is the only crag available that meets those criteria? Pity no one wants
to use it. Check out the description of Ben Nevis on this site.
>
>Good day!

Better day.

foreverabumbly
9/08/2009
8:39:10 PM
On 9/08/2009 JBM wrote:

>
>Look, I appreciate the whole bolting from the ground up mindset,

Obviously you dont, so maybe cut the crap?

> but effectively
>the
>development of these routes in the style in which they were done has ruined
>the
>crag/routes for countless generations to come.
>
No, just you. A bit egotistical thinking you can speak for generations to come, isnt it?
>
>However, the routes suck in their current state and the crag is ruined.
>
No. Its not. continued development will ruin the crag, more bolts, chalk and erosion will ruin it, the current 'state' of the routes seem to have only ruined your day, not the actual cliff.

>it would be nice to see this crag properly used and
redeveloped. How many other 150-200m routes have we got 2 hours from Melbourne?

So you would like to see one of the only 150-200m adventure climbing routes 2 hours from Melbourne converted to a sport crag?

JBM
9/08/2009
8:43:42 PM
>So you would like to see one of the only 150-200m adventure climbing routes 2 hours from
Melbourne converted to a sport crag?

It's got bolts, buddy. Therefore, by definition it is a sports crag. Just a bad one.

Egotistically yours.
Fish Boy
9/08/2009
9:16:48 PM
Sport crag it is not.

Sport and trad do not refer to bolts/no bolts. Ground up, onsight ascents are "traditional" and sliding down your rope to place your bolts, inspecting and rehersing are sport techniques.

It's great there because it IS a runout, stance drilled sea of granite. Why ruin that?

Do you suggest a retro of B-Y too!?!?

Fish Boy
9/08/2009
9:20:51 PM
On 9/08/2009 JBM wrote:
>>piss easy
>
>Define piss easy. Who's defnition?
>

If a climber is on an 18 that has 85% of it's route (many rope lengths) somewhere around a 10, well....maybe I got lost...

evanbb
9/08/2009
9:32:59 PM
I'm against you too here JBM. Allowing different bolting styles ans philosophies change the reward from the climb. So you crapped yourself on a long route? Who cares? You didn't die, but thought you might. So maybe your judgement improved? Maybe you've learnt to harden the fukk up in future, but what you got was a different experience to what you would have got if there was a bolt every 300mm.

The point is, we do not want a homogenous sport. There MUST be differences in style, otherwise there is no improvement, no scope for further challenges, mental and physical.

The crag is not wasted. Your talents were misdirected. Suck it up, admit you were't good enough and try something else. It happens to me all the time.
Tlockwood
9/08/2009
9:34:43 PM
i found this article to be quite interesting, with a lot of good thoughts on todays cultures of climbing, in terms of people 'sport' climbing on trad climbs and vice versa.

just because a climb is protected by bolts doesn't mean that traditional ethics can't prevail in the area in terms in the way a cliff is climbed.
have a read:
http://www.rockandice.com/inthemag.php?id=31&type=tnb

i think it would be sad if the place is retrobolted. replace old rusted carrots if necessary but don't add any new ones.

JBM
9/08/2009
9:51:46 PM
"Traditional"

Why do you put this inverted commas when describing the approach...?

Look - at the end of the day I am all for people creating their individual "masterpieces" to
leave their mark on a generation - ie B-Y. However, if the motives for run outs are:

1) I want to get the first ascent first (read the guide book)
2) I'm lazy
3) I could give a rat's ass about who does this route after me ("this route is all about
me")

Then I think we can leave the holy debate on style and ethics behind.

We are talking sub 18 routes on a crag that does not rate when compared to one an
hour or so down the road. Not masterpieces.

On another note - most of the original bolts were such shite quality that there are
sometimes 1 or 2 other bolts right next to them (thank god) that are meant to be used
as replacements. (messy).

However if I stick to your logic, Nick, we should actually use the original crap bolts to
maintain the sense of original adventure!! ;-)

Which reminds me, a young guy recently tried to do the B-Y on all natural gear (does
that mean he gets to chop the bolts..). I guess if you wanted to preserve the sense of
adventure at Ben Nevis - you could always skip the bolts?

Thanks for the discussion - it's pretty interesting when you look at all facets of the issue.
In this case, I simply propose that it is a irrelevant point - the crag is NOT in Sheffield, is
NOT the B-Y, is NOT Araps, etc. It's just a fun crag that could provide a lot more
enjoyment if developed better.

Cheers.

JBM
9/08/2009
9:55:11 PM
Evan,

Some of your assumptions may be misdirected or possibly miscalibrated:

1) My climbing ability
2) My actual experience had today (I enjoyed myself)
3) My Talents

Agree - that there must be differences in style - I boulder, trad, sport, alpine, ice and
high altitude climb. I can assure you that some of those experiences have lead me to
crap my pants.

However, today did not.

Have you climbed at Ben Nevis?



On 9/08/2009 evanbb wrote:
>I'm against you too here JBM. Allowing different bolting styles ans philosophies
>change the reward from the climb. So you crapped yourself on a long route?
>Who cares? You didn't die, but thought you might. So maybe your judgement
>improved? Maybe you've learnt to harden the fukk up in future, but what
>you got was a different experience to what you would have got if there
>was a bolt every 300mm.
>
>The point is, we do not want a homogenous sport. There MUST be differences
>in style, otherwise there is no improvement, no scope for further challenges,
>mental and physical.
>
>The crag is not wasted. Your talents were misdirected. Suck it up, admit
>you were't good enough and try something else. It happens to me all the
>time.
Tlockwood
9/08/2009
10:02:25 PM
i've climbed there
Fish Boy
9/08/2009
10:12:05 PM
Hey Brad, long time...!

No idea why I put it traditional in inverted comas. I'm tired, that's my excuse.

Is it better to experience a climb the way it's author intended? Or to create a climb which anyone can do, a commitment free ascent?

My logic, ha, I have none...BUT, I wouldn't suggest using the old bolts, nor not using them. One is fully aware of what climbing at this place is like with the VCC guide. The runouts are not a shock, nor are they any more dangerous than any other climb.

If these routes are a testament to pure trad ethics, leave them be. Not all climbs are for everyone.

Be good.

southcol
9/08/2009
10:54:21 PM
A nice heated debate brewing here.

I have never climbed at Ben Nevis, (only in Scotland!) but been on many granite slabs...why are slabs historically synonymous with runouts ? I hate falling or tumbling for ever on sharp granite.

One common concept most climbers tend to agree on is staying alive. I think with any type of climb 'a run out' regardless of length, difficulty, bolts or natural, becomes unacceptable to all but a few when the fall results in serious injuries or lights out.

The level of risk taken is an indivudual choice this is sometimes difficult to assess at the bottom of a climb, if its bolted one tends to assume its safe. Not that Im a huge fan of it, but the British grading system lends itself well to assessing the subjective risk.

JBM, out of interest, are the bolted routes at Ben Nevis dangerously run out ?

jbm
9/08/2009
11:07:08 PM
IMO - yes. Upwards of 15m in some cases - if you don't miss a bolt.

This is not helped by vague route descriptions which may have resulted from the FA's wandering all over the face themselves.

Good example of this being "Yasser - grade 14". The description for starting the 2nd pitch is useless especially given the location of the new belay.

If you are a grade 14 climber - you could definitely hurt yourself.

>JBM, out of interest, are the bolted routes at Ben Nevis dangerously run
>out ?

southcol
9/08/2009
11:52:22 PM

>If you are a grade 14 climber - you could definitely hurt yourself.

Its not really slab related, but I remember hearing about a well regarded climber from a country very close to here. He retro bolted a bunch of sub grade 16 routes that were either unclimbed since the first ascent or scenes of nasty falls by beginners unable to attempt the high graded safely bolted routes nearby.

These almost forgotten unused routes became popular, helping newbies getting into climbing without risking injury or death...there is still plenty of unclimbed choss in the region to solo to match the ' thrill' of climbing run out bolted routes.
A good example of retro bolting??



evanbb
10/08/2009
7:07:20 AM
On 9/08/2009 JBM wrote:
>Have you climbed at Ben Nevis?

Nah, and I fail to see how that is the point. You don't like how something was bolted and think a 'resource' has been 'wasted' because it's not more friendly. I disagree that you should bring it down to the lowest common denominator. Simple as that.

It doesn't matter at all that it's close to Melbourne, the only long routes available etc. There will always be an argument that suggests the crag needs to change. This sort of thinking starts one on a slippery slope. "The bolts are too far apart" soon becomes "there aren't enough bolts" then maybe even "this section is too hard compared to the rest of the climb".

All of these statements are subjective; ie you don't like it. So, climb somewhere else. It's that simple.

nmonteith
10/08/2009
8:08:07 AM
I've climbed at Ben Nevis many moons ago. I had a great day out - it is runout in places yes, but the easy angle of the rock means a fall would be more like a gravel rash inducing tumble rather than a solid deck. I enjoyed the runouts and the style of the place in general. My vote is to keep it how it is.

ado_m
10/08/2009
9:50:10 AM
Fix it up - it is about time that safety and reasonable bolting standards trump a first ascentionist "rights" to leave a crag in a poorly bolted (thus unused) condition!

Simply no excuse for putting in shit carrots 15 metres apart. I've visited so many little granite crags in victoria with terrible bolting from the 80s that it would be nice to have one with bolts a reasonable distance apart (ie 5 metre).

While appreciate it may not be that desperate in nice weather within your grade, but when it starts pissing down even a low angled slab can be treacherous to climbers well within their grade...

The first ascentionist don't own the crag, and so if someone wants to spend their time and money retrobolting to make the route safe by reasonable standards then best of luck to them....sure, ask the first ascentionist to be polite (if you can find them), but if they've got a problem with it then screw them and fix the route up so it can be enjoyed safely in a variety of conditions.

Brad - do you know who put up the route you climbed? Why don't you ask them if you can rebolt (to be polite)? I'll give you a hand if you're looking for one, in spring.
Fish Boy
10/08/2009
10:10:56 AM
If you are not prepared for the adventure, go somewhere else.

Weenies.

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There are 85 messages in this topic.

 

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