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Chockstone Forum - Trip Reports

Tells Us About Your Latest Trip!

Author
TR: Lindfield aid climbing practice

sbm
23/09/2013
11:50:06 AM
The weekend rolled around, and I had an injured shoulder which put free climbing out, the ski touring trip had fallen through, I had a shiny new micro traxion, and a bag of aid gear that had mysteriously ended up in my car.

So time to try and learn a few new systems. I knew a few people were heading to Lindfield for the day, so I loaded a PDF of Chris Macnamara's big wall climbing book on my phone, and headed up to do some of that "practice" stuff, that everyone always says you should do before trying something on a big cliff for real.

Despite a late-ish start, I had the place to myself at first (the boulderers didn't arrive until noon!). I clipped the single dodgy carrot at the top of the She-Oak Wall and backed it up off of the tree, fixed the rope so I had two ends hanging down, and then took ages trying to get the coil of rope hanging perfectly just off the ground to tension the primary rope end. I then spent like another 15 minutes fiddling with my elastic shock cord chest harness, trying to tension the micro traxion just right. Just before I was about to blast off, I had a paralyzing moment of doubt, and unclipped everything and went and googled the Petzl manual, just to make sure the micro traxion was set up correctly. It was all good, and I did a free lap of the She Oak wall to test it all out and tie backup knots on the secondary rope end.

I'd heard you can just disengage the cam on a traxion, and leave it on the rope in pulley mode when you rap, but I wasn't able to do this as the cam kept catching on the rope and re-engaging. So I took it off the rope on every lap.

Anyway it was time to pull out the ladder-thingies! As suggested by Chris Mac I didn't use daisies or a fifi hook, so I could concentrate less on tangles and more on climbing the etriers and top-stepping. It turns out it's not quite as simple as climbing a ladder, but I had it figured out and made good progress, until I tried to make a creative endwise camming hex placement in a hole that was a bit too small. I stepped gently into the bottom step to bounc and POP! I was on the rope, and the hex and aider clipped to it were on the ground. D'oh.

I continued to make some pretty funky passive placements and aid all the cracks and seams on the wall. It was a bit worrying to learn that C3's can actually do the 'Vertical Limit' thing, where they make horrible grinding noises and slowly shift as they are weighted. In the end it did stick in the weird sideways flaring pocket so that's good though.

A few friends turned up and were either impressed or bemused, but that didn't matter, as I had discovered there were hooks in the bag of aid stuff! After initially trying to use a cam hook on an edge as a bat hook (whoops), I also figured it out (the hardest part is not looking at the hook when you test and weight it!) and was able to top step on a talon hook placement, which was not scary at all and I thought was the height of badass, until I remembered I was on top rope.

So after six or seven laps, I'd done everything obvious I could think of, and packed up and hung out with everyone bouldering. Mount Buffalo aid weekend, here I come.

IdratherbeclimbingM9
Online Now
23/09/2013
8:43:18 PM
On 23/09/2013 sbm wrote:
>The weekend rolled around, and I had an injured shoulder which put free
>climbing out, the ski touring trip had fallen through, I had a shiny new
>micro traxion, and a bag of aid gear that had mysteriously ended up in
>my car.
>
>So time to try and learn a few new systems. I knew a few people were heading
>to Lindfield for the day, so I loaded a PDF of Chris Macnamara's big wall
>climbing book on my phone, and headed up to do some of that "practice"
>stuff, that everyone always says you should do before trying something
>on a big cliff for real.
>
>Despite a late-ish start, I had the place to myself at first (the boulderers
>didn't arrive until noon!). I clipped the single dodgy carrot at the top
>of the She-Oak Wall and backed it up off of the tree, fixed the rope so
>I had two ends hanging down, and then took ages trying to get the coil
>of rope hanging perfectly just off the ground to tension the primary rope
>end. I then spent like another 15 minutes fiddling with my elastic shock
>cord chest harness, trying to tension the micro traxion just right. Just
>before I was about to blast off, I had a paralyzing moment of doubt, and
>unclipped everything and went and googled the Petzl manual, just to make
>sure the micro traxion was set up correctly. It was all good, and I did
>a free lap of the She Oak wall to test it all out and tie backup knots
>on the secondary rope end.
>
>I'd heard you can just disengage the cam on a traxion, and leave it on
>the rope in pulley mode when you rap, but I wasn't able to do this as the
>cam kept catching on the rope and re-engaging. So I took it off the rope
>on every lap.
>
>Anyway it was time to pull out the ladder-thingies! As suggested by Chris
>Mac I didn't use daisies or a fifi hook, so I could concentrate less on
>tangles and more on climbing the etriers and top-stepping. It turns out
>it's not quite as simple as climbing a ladder, but I had it figured out
>and made good progress, until I tried to make a creative endwise camming
>hex placement in a hole that was a bit too small. I stepped gently into
>the bottom step to bounc and POP! I was on the rope, and the hex and aider
>clipped to it were on the ground. D'oh.
>
>I continued to make some pretty funky passive placements and aid all the
>cracks and seams on the wall. It was a bit worrying to learn that C3's
>can actually do the 'Vertical Limit' thing, where they make horrible grinding
>noises and slowly shift as they are weighted. In the end it did stick in
>the weird sideways flaring pocket so that's good though.
>
>A few friends turned up and were either impressed or bemused, but that
>didn't matter, as I had discovered there were hooks in the bag of aid stuff!
>After initially trying to use a cam hook on an edge as a bat hook (whoops),
>I also figured it out (the hardest part is not looking at the hook when
>you test and weight it!) and was able to top step on a talon hook placement,
>which was not scary at all and I thought was the height of badass, until
>I remembered I was on top rope.
>
>So after six or seven laps, I'd done everything obvious I could think
>of, and packed up and hung out with everyone bouldering. Mount Buffalo
>aid weekend, here I come.
>
I have had a night-cap of a scotch (or two), which may affect this reply, but my initial reading of your trip report indicates good things to me...

1. You got out and had some fun, which should be the object of all climbing...

2. You don't necessarily have your 'system' dialled yet, in terms of exposure, time on a wall, rope jiggery-pokery efficiency, etc, but I commend you for the starting of the process...

>elastic shock cord chest harness

3. ... I don't know how you set it up, but for me, shock cord is only to keep it tensioned-up as I climb, rather than support my weight, especially if I happen to fall.

>I didn't use daisies or a fifi hook (snip)
>I stepped gently into the bottom step to bounc and POP! I was on the rope, and the hex and aider clipped to it were on the ground. D'oh.

4. ~> this is the main advantage of daisies, i.e. they connect to the gear to be tested and prevent it from 'going the distance' in the event the placement fails a bounce test. Lindfield being relatively short is kind on your gear in the event of loss while learning!

>horrible grinding noises and slowly shift as they are weighted.

5. This is applicable to lots of placements. The thinner the placement, the more likely it is to grind and possibly 'pop'... For your ongoing free-climbing experience this is a valuable insight as to what makes a secure placement...

>top step on a talon hook placement, which was not scary at all

6. Thin aid = scarey hook placements, amongst other things.... This is can even be encountered in overhanging territory, and it need only be slightly on the evil side of vertical to achieve scarier than normal hooking!

>So after six or seven laps, I'd done everything obvious I could think of, and packed up and hung out with everyone bouldering. Mount Buffalo aid weekend, here I come.

An excellent introduction for the upcoming aid weekend, and we look forward to catching up with you and progressing further!

Thanks for posting the Trip Report.




BlankSlab
27/03/2014
12:00:06 PM

>>elastic shock cord chest harness
>
>3. ... I don't know how you set it up, but for me, shock cord is only
>to keep it tensioned-up as I climb, rather than support my weight, especially
>if I happen to fall.

Curious about what you use to set this up. I assume this shock cord is just some type of elastic cord to hold your device up so it runs on the rope and engages properly.

After reading the TR its giving me the motivation to go out and do some aiding. Been thinking about it for a long time and spend a few Saturday mornings doing TR solo on easy stuff at a local crag. Time to make some aiders and get out there.

IdratherbeclimbingM9
Online Now
27/03/2014
12:10:54 PM
On 27/03/2014 Batey wrote:
>>3. ... I don't know how you set it up, but for me, shock cord is only
>>to keep it tensioned-up as I climb, rather than support my weight, especially if I happen to fall.
>
>Curious about what you use to set this up. I assume this shock cord is
>just some type of elastic cord to hold your device up so it runs on the
>rope and engages properly.
>
I use elastic shock cord of approx 4 mm diameter, as anything thinner tends to cut into my neck uncomfortably.
It is simply tied in a loop through the top eye of the ascender and placed over my head.

The ascender's bottom eye is attached to my harness.

The size of the loop is personal preference, but I find slightly tight when stretched in use, works best.
The loop is simply to orient the ascender for easy following of the rope, rather than kinking and jaming.
If/when I use a chest harness, I also attach the ascender top-eye loosely to it with a maillion, so that I can rest by leaning back off the rope if necessary.




>After reading the TR its giving me the motivation to go out and do some
>aiding. Been thinking about it for a long time and spend a few Saturday
>mornings doing TR solo on easy stuff at a local crag. Time to make some
>aiders and get out there.

Good one.

BlankSlab
27/03/2014
12:15:07 PM
Cheers,

So it was what i was thinking. Ive been using tape cord to make something similar to get the device to sit correctly but having trouble making it comfortable. Elastic cord makes sense. Looks like im off to the shop at lunch.

There are 5 messages in this topic.

 

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