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Chockstone Forum - General Discussion

General Climbing Discussion

 Page 4 of 6. Messages 1 to 20 | 21 to 40 | 41 to 60 | 61 to 80 | 81 to 100 | 101 to 104
Author
to A(id) grade or not to A(id) grade

nmonteith
17/03/2005
2:40:44 PM
What aid system does the current blue mtns guide use? (Does the Pircher/Carter guide have aid climbing?)

LittleMac
17/03/2005
2:42:27 PM
I've done both as have many others, it just seems silly to continue with the M system when what makes an aid route hard is your inability to place bomber protection for extended periods. This when taken into accounts with the difficulty in actually placing gear dictates that when there are no pieces within a pitch (including the belay) which will hold a fall, we have recahed the limit of aiding, hence the lack of need for an open ended M system.

IdratherbeclimbingM9
17/03/2005
2:54:01 PM
On 17/03/2005 nmonteith wrote:
> A6 means that nothing will hold a fall on the pitch INCLUDING
>the belay. How do you get any higher than that? You don't need an open
>ended system for aid climbing.

On 17/03/2005 LittleMac wrote:
>hence the lack of need for an open ended M system.

Hey cobbers.
Read 'Party of One' by Greg Child (It's his treatise on Jim Beyers exploits), before you close your minds as to where the A system 'finishes'.

>No matter how much technology changes - the A aid grades still work.
So do the M grades for exactly the same reasons.

LittleMac
17/03/2005
3:05:13 PM
On 15/03/2005 gfdonc wrote:
>Actually good point raised there - there is no Aus equivalent to C1, C2
>etc as seen in recent Yosemite beta.
>We're all assuming the M grades are referring to clean aid only now, aren't
>we?
>- Steve


In regards to this I would say that if we go for the A sytem we need to embrace all of it's features.

Therfore routes such as Ozy would end up being A2+ (as a general aid grade) but would also have a C2+ rating as well (denoting that it is hammerless)

Surely the M grades would need to adopt something similar.

IdratherbeclimbingM9
17/03/2005
3:05:39 PM
sticky wrote:
>btw - what do you do with a mixed rock/ice route that needs some aiding in the Aussie system? What does the M refer to in that case? Ok, not likely to happen in the Aussie climate.

Free & M grades would cover it, unless Neil et al put up new lines (in Oz) as practice for overseas and get them published as WI ? / Scotish ?? / whatever !, depending on what they already feel comfortable with!

(snip ...days)

>I'll shut up now.
Please don't. Your input is equally valid (if not as vociferous as some!).

IdratherbeclimbingM9
17/03/2005
3:14:04 PM
On 17/03/2005 LittleMac wrote:
>Therfore routes such as Ozy would end being A2+ (as a general aid grade)
>but would also have a C2+ rating as well (denoting that it is hammerless)
and a UIAA grade of ..
& a transwobbleregion grade of ...
and a ...


>Surely the M grades would need to adopt something similar.
They are already 'clean' by default, as technology has overtaken the hitherto lack of supporting documentation.
I support this argument with the theory that most newbie aid climbers already have cams, and go out and buy hooks rather than hammers.

------------------------------------------------------------------
>routes such as Ozy would need two grades anyway, a first ascent grade (hammered ascent) and also a clean grade (hammerless).

and free grades!

LittleMac
17/03/2005
3:18:56 PM
On 17/03/2005 M8iswhereitsat wrote:

>>Surely the M grades would need to adopt something similar.
>They are already 'clean' by default, as technology has overtaken the hitherto
>lack of supporting documentation.
>I support this argument with the theory that most newbie aid climbers
>already have cams, and go out and buy hooks rather than hammers.

I would defend my arguemnt by saying there still are aid routes being put up which use hammers, so therefore the M grading system can not be clean by default.

And not to harp on a point but if we are to reatin our historical background as has been quite strongly agrued, routes such as Ozy would need two grades anyway, a first ascent grade (hammered ascent) and also a clean grade (hammerless).

And of course a free grade but thats not the argument here


nmonteith
17/03/2005
3:25:36 PM
There are certainly quite a few hammer aid routes being put up in Queensland over the last five years.

IdratherbeclimbingM9
17/03/2005
3:30:08 PM
Have to get Philthy to 'rum' (eyepatch and all) a poll up there to see what they ought to use as a grading system!

-----------------------------------------------------------------
>And if we get enough of the right people we might actually achieve something
You trying to stack the numbers now?!
:) ... try coupling this with the next line in nm's post!! :) ie

>I have already directed them this way!

nmonteith
17/03/2005
3:33:20 PM
I have already directed them this way!

LittleMac
17/03/2005
3:35:34 PM
Fantastic little debate we've got going on here we just need a few more people to weigh in and we can have some real fun. And if we get enough of the right people we might actually achieve something.
Wendy
17/03/2005
5:43:08 PM
with this debate in 3 existing and 1 disappeared thread, it's getting very tedious to follow ...

Close ended systems have were all set because someone thought the top end constituted the absolute limits of possibility. Which they turned out not to be. So we end up with these silly systems that put things in the middle (like +, -, a, b, c, d, and an assortment of adverbs). These things also seem to proliferate in the moderate to hard end of the spectrum, because this is where other routes get pushed down to as more extreme routes have to be fitted into the closed end system. The A system doesn't have A0+, because the easiest end isn't feeling the pressure so much. Also, when it comes to climbing them, little things make a much greater difference to climbing at harder grades, so routes are considered harder grades with relatively less change from the last grade (I'm not sure if I've explained my train of thought here properly ...), but it means that there's a need to define more grades as routes get harder. And with the development of new gear, routes that may now be considered to have no worthwhile gear and no worthwhile belays may in the future have gear capable of protecting them, therefore, current A6s will get squished down into the bursting seams of the other grades. Maybe this also suggests that no aid grading system is going to remain fixed, because we'll have to reconsider the routes in the light of new gear developed.

LittleMac
17/03/2005
5:46:50 PM
That was all a little bit confusing, but I can see your point. having said this wouldn't it be a reasonable assumption to aaume any new gear which would allow higher grades to be climbed would make it easier to climb less difficult routes, therefore opening up the top grades again anyway.

IdratherbeclimbingM9
17/03/2005
6:02:12 PM
>therefore opening up the top grades again anyway.
No;
...because what Wendy is saying, is that there is often very little separating top end aid grades and it (the difference between grades) can come down to a single (new technology) piece of gear.
The easy grades will always be easy and the technology doesn't affect them as dramatically because of this.
(Have I read you correctly Wendy?)
Onsight
17/03/2005
6:11:04 PM
On 17/03/2005 nmonteith wrote:
>What aid system does the current blue mtns guide use? (Does the Pircher/Carter
>guide have aid climbing?)

"M" grades - of course.

If the M grade system could be improved then, please everyone, stop debating it, and knock our collective heads together and "fix" it.

So far the only (half?) good reason I've heard to change it is possible confusion with the Nth American mixed (rock/ice) grading system (which also uses the M prefix), but other than that or even despite that - I see no reason to roll over and play dead for Uncle Sam.

LittleMac
17/03/2005
11:56:53 PM
It;s not a question of rolling over and playing dead, it's about coming up with a system which is easy to understand and provides the user with useful information about a particular route.

Currently the M system fails in this regard as it doesn't have the supporting literature which describes what each grade represents. As M8 sugested any improvement in this regard will more than likely involve plaugerising the A system to simply make our system workable.

In short, why not just go with the system which has proven itself worldwide instead of trying to rejig a syste, which in all likelihood will end up being very similar to the A system anyway.

climbau
18/03/2005
8:40:40 AM
I'm obviously not too bright, I just can't see the problem with the M grades. Come to think of it, I don't see a fault with the A grades either. I tend to simplify things in order to understand, basically M0 is easy and M8 is bloody hard and those grades inbetween denote a gradual increase in difficulty. What is the prob, to me it just comes down to heritage and identity.


nmonteith
18/03/2005
9:36:18 AM
I found this letter in Thrutch 66 from 1975. It seems the grading debate is endless. It even references our own Mike Law!

"And on grading: i agree with Mr. Staszewski that A1 - A4 would be a simpler system but is it really worth changing? As the grading system is only a guide (so easy to forget) than no following party should get too hung on whether a climb is graded 16 is actually 5 or 17, or whether an aid pitch is M2 or M3. As a guide to uniform grading the master said that all climbs of the same grade should be of similar overall difficulty. (Mr M. Law please point out one 15 of similar overall difficulty to Angels) Remember too that difficulty is assessed by the first ascent party, who were possibly using only Ewbank crackers or Stuba pegs. On simplification: The use of M0 as an additional grade serves only to complicate. There are enough gradations already. Because of the huge difference between resting on a nut and using it for progress in any way (slings or chinning on it), I suggest that all aid, however slight, be graded M1. An exact description of what that aid entails must of course be included in the route description. Forget what grade you're up to and how it compares to what Fred Nurks is climbing. Try enjoying climbing.

Trevor Gynther"

nmonteith
18/03/2005
9:38:31 AM
I also note that the recent McMahon/Narkowicz Northern Tasmania guide uses the A system to describe aid routes.
kachoong
18/03/2005
10:21:10 AM
....I only find one reason why I don't like the M system and that's because I ice climb and an M grade exists to describe mixed climbs.... it's just confusing, even though I know the difference.... and anyway when I think about it, I wouldn't find a mixed ice climb in Australia with any aid sections to call it WI4 M6 18 M5....
....I think it should stay as the Australian aid grading.... people convert free grades all the time, why not aid grades too.... one more system aint going to make people break down.... foreigners should deal with it....

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