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Chockstone Forum - General Discussion

General Climbing Discussion

 Page 5 of 12. Messages 1 to 20 | 21 to 40 | 41 to 60 | 61 to 80 | 81 to 100 | 101 to 120 | 121 to 140 | 141 to 160 | 161 to 180 | 181 to 200 | 201 to 220 | 221 to 239
Author
34?

shmalec
18/03/2004
4:37:51 PM
ok off the topic but...

if the first ascentionist does a trad climb in "bold style" without using all the placements available no one says "hey you can't do this climb unless you only use the cam in the undercling at 20m" do they? There's still the opportunity for those wanting to replicate the FFA to not use the other placements. Same should go for sport routes. The first ascentionist insisting that no other bolts be placed is just on an ego trip by insisting everyone climbs that route in the original "bold" way rather than enjoying it in their own way.

Its exactly the same as chipping except that safety is concerned rather than a chipped eyesore.

rodw
18/03/2004
4:58:18 PM
I think part of the problem is what we define as chipping vs cleaning vs reinforcing vs alteration of route.This is what I think they mean,

Chipping - An alteration of rock to allow easier ascent of that line, normally by sticking on or manufactureing holds/enhancing holds.

Cleaning - Removal of suspect rock that in the persons opinion would come off should it be loaded, with no intention of pulling off holds/formations that will sustain repeat ascents.

Reinforcing - Fortifying existing "suspect" holds so they will sustain repeat ascents.

Alteration of route - removal of good holds and formations to limit ways of ascent, fortifying a certain sequence and lowering chance of other ways to ascend the route.

Do people agree with these definitions?

If so, in my opinion, cleaning and reinforcing is okay, the other two definately not okay.
gfdonc
18/03/2004
5:59:11 PM
OK now we're back onto chipping - I agree the removal of alternative holds just to try to sustain the difficulty of the climb is dispicable. Really poor style.
To do so especially to favour the FA's particular climbing style is even lower.
There. My $0.02. No mention of bolts anywhere.
kieranl
18/03/2004
9:23:01 PM
My stance is that chipping is not on.
It's sometimes a fine line between chipping and cleaning. I have abandonned new routes on two occasions over thirty years when what I thought were dodgy flakes refused to break off. One of the climbs has since been done by someone else who was unaware of the history. I have no problem with that. It was me who stuffed up.
Breaking a dodgy hold because it makes a climb easier is not on as far as I am concerned. On a trad route you might remove the hold because of the fall risk but that doesn't apply on a sport route.
Onsight
18/03/2004
9:39:12 PM
On 15/03/2004 Steve M wrote:
>"Sticky" you can't possibly be trying to justify to people that actions
>cannot be judged unless you know the person or know his motivations. Nobody
>cares why he did it, nobody is saying he is not a nice person or whatever.
> All that is totally irrelevant to whether modifying routes to suit your
>desires (easier or harder) is acceptable. I'm sure if I turned up to Diamond
>Cliff with a jackhammer to put up a route the way I wanted it you would'nt
>have such a care free attitude.

Precisely.

I think it is important that we don’t go making assumptions as to Ben’s motives as I’m sure many people will end up wrong. I was talking about actions - and the results and consequences of those actions.
Onsight
18/03/2004
9:42:33 PM
On 15/03/2004 shmalec wrote:
>…its not the same route now.

That’s right.

There seems pretty widespread agreement that this is “poor style”, or “breaks the rules”, or whatever. When that happens in any other sport your achievement is disqualified. Doesn’t mean running 100m in 9.75 seconds isn’t a fantastic achievement.

This has raised some interesting issues (re climbing ethics) which, in this case especially, have some interesting technical and practical implications - and the climbing community has the right to discuss them.

rodw
19/03/2004
7:33:32 AM
>Breaking a dodgy hold because it makes a climb easier is not on as far
>as I am concerned. On a trad route you might remove the hold because of
>the fall risk but that doesn't apply on a sport route.

I thought you "cleaned" a route to get rid of loose dangerous rock that will result in rock fall, not to make it easier??
climbingjac
19/03/2004
9:14:14 AM
I really like the comments of shmalec and BJ2. They have very much aimed to address the issue at hand in clear, concise English :-)

We've got some really good thought processes going on people - good to see :-)

jac

nmonteith
19/03/2004
9:32:28 AM
I think the ascent is still valid - he climbed the wall using only natural features. If someone else had come along (a tourist!) and chipped off the holds then people woudl still regard the route as having its first ascent done by Ben. Just because the first ascentist did the chipping dosn't mean the ascent is now not vaild. Lets just say i go back to one of my first ascents many years later and inadvertanlty rip off a loose jug on the route - does that suddenly make the climb invalid and am i 'disqualified'? I don't think so!


rodw
19/03/2004
10:29:02 AM
Ney Neil, depends on wether the loose jug was pulled off because it would have fallen off, or you wanted to lessen the ascent options...splitting hairs I know, but thats what this whole thing is all about.

Take for example I do route A and the sequence I used made it a grade 19, then you came along and did a different sequence which was 17, technically the climb would then be downgraded wouldn't it...because half of the problem/challenge of any route is to find the easiest ascent and because I didnt see the easier way dosnt give me the right to destroy that sequnce to enforce my first mistake. (Not Im not talking variants here, as thats a different keetle of fish).Whats to stop people later on coming along and using eliminates, then claiming harder grades, cause those eliminates suited there style. "You can't use the right hand pocket or that grey knobby thing". imagine the guide book saying that, it would be stupid (or a bouldering guide book :) )...so in the scenario Bens allegedly done, hes gone one step futhur and eliminated those holds. Wether that makes the 34 valid or not will be something everybody has a differing opinions on.
James
19/03/2004
10:44:36 AM
I think it'd be good if no-one ever got on the route again. Best way to say "that's not cool". All this internet talk is one thing, but it would send a far stronger message for the route to be ignored completely.

rodw
19/03/2004
10:56:34 AM
Okay ill stay off it, thats a promise!!!! :)

shmalec
19/03/2004
12:42:56 PM
don't think anyone would deny that the climb's a great achievement.
but whether its valid or not comes down to your own idea of whats "fair play".
inevitably I think the guidebook entry will have his name on it and include the phrase "...sparked great controversy...".


Estey
19/03/2004
4:15:47 PM
I think it would be unfair on other climbers to have a voluntary ban on repeat ascents. Its a 'cutting edge' route (no pun intended) so there is no doubt that most elite climbers will want to have a go.

If the majority want to show their displeasure at the 1st ascentionist's actions perhaps the next addition of the guidebook could withold recognition. For example the route might be recorded as
M? 25m 34
Chipped!
The 1st ascentionists name would not be recorded and no stars would be given to the route.

In reality this route and the first ascentionists actions will become infamous so the grapevine will let everyone know who made the 1st ascent.

Estey

nmonteith
19/03/2004
4:28:02 PM
The new Rock mag is on its way to our newagents sometime in the next week. I wonder if this topic raises its ugly head - or do they protect their roving Rock corraspondant - mr cossey?
climbingjac
19/03/2004
4:28:47 PM
Here are my thoughts:

This topic is about whether or not the climbing community will recognise the ascent of Australia's newest hard route - at grade 34.

It has been made pretty clear by a number of posts to this forum topic that chipping did in fact occur on this route. The chipping did not occur as a direct result of concern over rock that was likely to either fall off, or be torn off during a repeat ascent of the route. In other words, based on posts on this forum topic, it is clear chipping has occurred.

The motives behind the chipping are irrelavant to the argument. The persons involved are possibly also irrelevant. It is merely relevant that it occurred. The incident has posed the following questions:

1. Is there significant unrest about the incident that the climbing community would like this climb to be made an example of, in order to discourage such activity in the future. Based on the posts, it would seem so.

2. Should individuals that indulge in this sort of behaviour be entitled to sponsorships? Well, this one is up to the organisations offering sponsorship. Time will tell on this one.

3. Is the climbing community willing to recognise Mechanical Animals as a climb? Well, I'd say we have to. It's there. It's not as though we can snap our fingers and make it invisible. Technically, a person has ascended it, albeit under dubious circumstances.

4. Is the climbing community willing to recognise the FA's efforts as a significant sporting achievement (putting up Australia's first 34)? I think the answer to this is two fold. Technically, as I said, a person HAS ascended the section of rock now named "Mechanical Animals". This cannot be denied. Can we applaud the ascent? Sure - why not. No-one is doubting that the FA is very strong, and capable of stringing together grade 34 sequences. It is what occurred AFTER the ascent that is the clincher. The nature of the route has been changed to enforce a sequence. Some may call this bad sportsmanship. After all, let’s say you compete in the World Cup, and you top out. That does not mean that as you’re being lowered down, you get to remove any holds from the wall that you didn’t use!

I have spent quite some time pondering whether or not to publicize my opinion on this. Some will disagree with my opinions. Some will agree. Others will have differing opinions. But if we don't discuss these things, and no fuss is made, then no-one thinks there is a problem, and it can occur again.

My view, for those that care about the future of this sport, is that the first ascent of Mechanical Animals proved that we have some strong people in this country. In particular, the first ascensionist himself. What sits badly with me is that Australia is supposed to be a country of democracy. A land of freedom, and where people from different backgrounds, with different skillsets, different interests, and different ideas on things, are accepted - and in fact nurtured. So when I think about the fact that a sequence has been forced to conform everyone to follow one person's sequence, I'm not a happy little vegemite.

The best thing about climbing is that there is no incorrect way to ascend a route. Everyone is built differently. Everyone has different strengths. That's what makes it great. For me, what occurred on Mechanical Animals goes completely against everything that makes climbing great - and everything that makes Australia a great place to be.

So, girls and boys, awesome. We have a grade 34 in Australia. Good-oh. Something to train on, I suppose. Do we want it on the world stage as an example of how we play the game here? I don't.

In summary – if you want to do something that is supposed to set an example in this sport, and a new benchmark for your country, then do it the Australia way… please.

Have a nice weekend, and climb safely. Thankyou for your time.

Jac

ted e bear
19/03/2004
5:08:09 PM
WELL PUT JAC

MY OPINION
CLEANING ACCEPTABLE, AND APPRECIATED
CHIPPING NOT ACCEPTABLE.

CONGRATULATIONS TO ANYONE WHO CAN CLIMB 34

IF SOMEONE DELIBERATELY CHIPPED A HOLD TO FORCE A SEQUENCE, I AM NOT IMPRESSED AT ALL.

IF IT WAS DONE TO STOP THE CLIMB FROM BEING DOWNGRADED, THEY SHOULD BE TAKING A LONG HARD LOOK AT THEMSELVES. THAT CAN ONLY BE DESCRIBED AS SELFISH AND IMMATURE

IdratherbeclimbingM9
19/03/2004
6:21:30 PM
On 19/03/2004 climbingjac wrote:
>This topic is about whether or not the climbing community will recognise
>the ascent of Australia's newest hard route - at grade 34.
>(snip) But if we don't discuss these things,
>and no fuss is made, then no-one thinks there is a problem, and it can
>occur again.
> (snip) So when I think about the fact that a sequence
>has been forced to conform everyone to follow one person's sequence, I'm
>not a happy little vegemite.
>The best thing about climbing is that there is no incorrect way to ascend
>a route. Everyone is built differently. Everyone has different strengths.
> That's what makes it great. For me, what occurred on Mechanical Animals
>goes completely against everything that makes climbing great - and everything
>that makes Australia a great place to be.
>(snip) Do we want it on the world stage as
>an example of how we play the game here? I don't.
>In summary – if you want to do something that is supposed to set an example
>in this sport, and a new benchmark for your country, then do it the Australia
>way… please.

We are one, but we are many... (snip) I am, you are, we are climbing Australians.

I agree climbingjac; well said.

34 = awsome. We should not ignore the climb or consider it invalid. Just write it up as it is, including that it was 'retrospectively sequence enforced'. Don't rely on ignoring it because controversy dies out in time, .. and we should pass on our history / inheritance.

Some other brief thoughts on earlier posts in this thread;

Risk vs runouts?
Keep the adventure. Not everything needs to be sanitised or safe. As Mikl said 'its a priveledge to participate in a sport that you can die doing'.

Physical vs mental, which is harder?
Both! and I disagree that it depends on the climb, (alone), because it also depends on the climber and their abilities, motivation, weather etc. Its not static but changes from person to person, day to day & moment to moment as well as climb to climb.

Sport routes = designer routes?
Probably often, but the medium is still natural. The designer element only comes in as far as the protection abundance/lack-of exists.

Preinspection & groundfall ?
Who cares, as we should all be left to our choice of whether to attempt it or not, and in the style we choose, (without buggering the game for those who follow).

Rock ownership vs ethics of bolting?
Personally I am from the camp where minimum bolts = better. Things evolve. What is considered ethical bolting today may be considered outlandish or conservative in the future, but the rock is marked every time ...

Yvon Chouinard from Rock & Ice No127 Sept. 2003
Q: Does the rise of standards in bouldering & sport climbing spill over into other facets of climbing?
A: "Bouldering & sport climbing are valuable, but they are not legitimate forms of climbing. Without risk, things like that are not really climbing."

Q: Do climbers educate themselves?
A: "Climbing has become a very selfish thing. The trend began with the me-too generation of the 80's. An example is the Dolomites, where everything is bolted. It's pitiful we are no longer a self-policing activity."

Here is another thought (from me);
The aid grades stop at fairly low numbers (but hard ascents). I am into the 'mental trip' that goes with climbing, that is why my moniker is A5iswhereitsat. I am aspiring to the hard ascents, not the number attached to the grade as such.
If the climbing community said OK Gd 35 is bloody hard so lets just call it quits there. After that we simply go for harder mental ascents due less bolts etc!
(Gd 35 with more metres height and less bolts is harder mentally, than less height and more bolts).

Kieran; Good to hear you are coping OK. You are right about "whatever", as it is all trivia.

Hex-troll; methinks you are p***ing in my pocket, however I am happy to put wood on your cauldren fire in order to share the warmth.

gfdonc; I agree with you, so don't run and duck for cover. If the gym-outdoor-newbies want to sanitise climbs (and history?) then they will have to climb over our ancient but bold bodies containing adventuresome minds1st!


Joe
19/03/2004
7:11:45 PM
>Yvon Chouinard from Rock & Ice No127 Sept. 2003
>Q: Does the rise of standards in bouldering & sport climbing spill over
>into other facets of climbing?
>A: "Bouldering & sport climbing are valuable, but they are not legitimate
>forms of climbing. Without risk, things like that are not really climbing."

What a wank!!! Not really climbing.... whatever.

I understand Bens actions are being focused on because it (MA) is a route at the (Australian) cutting edge, but i think that there are other examples which are much much more dodgy... Glueing on of plastic holds, and pieces of rock in blank sections to make routes more consistent at the grade. Perhaps if you are militant about enforcing an anti-chipping campaign, then you should not climb on chipped or comfortized routes, otherwise you are just a hypocrite. Chipping isn't new, i still climb chipped or comfortized routes, so by my own rationale I don't really give a shit about chipping, whatever, everyone has an opinion. You are going to miss out on a lot of really good routes if you refuse to climb anything which has been altered, and a lot of them you probably won't know if they have been chipped or comfortized or altered in some way (But ignorance is no excuse!).

Rock Weasel
23/03/2004
12:00:10 AM
Considering that Ben Cossey has posted to Chockstone in relation to other topics, perhaps he could grace this discussion with with an eloquent justification for his actions...

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