Author Topic: belaying  (Read 855 times)

Offline Admin Al

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belaying
« on: July 29, 2014, 01:01:04 PM »
This was posted on FB by Bobbi Bensman. I totally agree with her on this.

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I am sick and tired of the SILENCE.
One month ago, Rifle Mountain Park, two climbers, both extremely strong, were warming up at one of the roadside crags. Climber A was on the route and slipped off, holds tend to be polished and this can happen (anywhere). Climber B let the rope slip through the GriGri, and climber A fell down onto a ledge and completely DE-Gloved his heel. I just found out that surgery #1 didn't go so well and now surgery # two is happening soon. This poor man will go months without walking/climbing/normal life shit. Just because you climb hard does not allow for complacency. When you take up rope climbing, you have a MASSIVE responsibility for the climbers life that hold in your hands. Climber B was 'called out' on his belaying a few weeks before this accident for having a pretty big loop of slack out, so he had been warned. I do believe there was a skinny rope involved. If you are using skinny ropes, please practice with your belay devices in a gym with padded flooring before you take out to the crags. Make sure you are 150% aware of how they work and what belay device needs to be used for ultimate safety. I have seen a lot of huge loops of slack in the gyms and outdoors. DO NOT BE AFRAID to call someone out when you see this. And lastly: Just because someone climbs 5.14 doesn't mean that they are good at belaying. Always have a conversation about how you like to get belayed when climbing with someone new. Pretend as if the GriGri is an ATC, and don't let go of the break hand if possible. I was belaying a good friend, and he went in straight to the bolt and said 'you can take me off'. I stood there with both hands on the GriGri when his bolt hanger exploded and he fell onto the bolt below and was safe! This is absolute serious shit and this comes from my HEART CHAKRA.

Bobbi Bensman
Al Hospers
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Offline strandman

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Re: belaying
« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2014, 04:20:26 PM »
GOD DAMN RIGHT

You literally hold the other climbers life in your hands..i don't care if it's aGG, tube or hand over hand. pay attention

Offline sneoh

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Re: belaying
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2014, 05:16:47 PM »
GOD DAMN RIGHT

You literally hold the other climbers life in your hands..i don't care if it's a GG, tube or hand over hand. pay attention
+1.

"This is absolute serious shit ".  Well said Bobbi.

"You have to decide to do a flag, where you can broke your vertebrae or a barn door depending of your pro" - the poster formerly known as Champ

Offline SA

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Re: belaying
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2014, 06:23:54 PM »
I had an A-hole drop me at Crow Hill, a few years ago. I didn't know him, and he said that he knew how to belay. I was top-roping CroMagnon, and decided to down-climb the route, to with-in 15 feet from the ground. Before jumping off, I asked him if he was ready, and he said yes.

I found myself hitting the ground pretty hard, and it turns out he COMPLETELY let go of the rope. I asked him what happened, and he replied, " it burnt my hands". If I hadn't down-climbed the route, I wouldn't be here typing this. What a jerk!

I often wonder if the guy realized how serious this was.

Offline Admin Al

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Re: belaying
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2014, 07:09:06 PM »
I often wonder if the guy realized how serious this was.

Obviously they didn't.
Al Hospers
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Offline strandman

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Re: belaying
« Reply #5 on: July 29, 2014, 07:25:14 PM »
Rope burns hurt I guess...but not as much as getting whacked by the person you just dropped.

Offline Admin Al

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Re: belaying
« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2014, 12:29:36 AM »
Rope burns hurt I guess...but not as much as getting whacked by the person you just dropped.

+++++
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Offline OldEric

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Re: belaying
« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2014, 09:18:54 AM »
Yeah it is serious.  One of the issues is that different styles of climbing require different styles of belaying although there are a few constants - not letting go, even with a Gri-Gri (although in Bobbi's exploding bolt scenario there was no evidence that her holding onto the Gri-Gri effected the outcome at all.  It may have, probably would have, worked fine if she had been hands off.  No way of knowing.  There are plenty of examples of the belayer being knocked out cold and the Gri-Gri still working).  Back to my original thought - people usually have one default style of belaying - call it trad style or sport style.  Even if they are aware of the differences they seldom adapt to the context they are in.  And typically they think there their way is the right way and anyone doing otherwise is a fool.  So you get trad belayers short roping and breaking climbers ankles on the steep stuff.  You get sport belayers letting climbers ground/ledge out all the time.

Offline strandman

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Re: belaying
« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2014, 10:15:12 AM »
Maybe... I think paying attention is the real issue.  i can see having a loop of slack at the ready for quick clip, but you have to be ready for anything.

Standing far away from the wall, no attention and big loops of slack = problems    ...and dogs..and ....

Offline sneoh

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Re: belaying
« Reply #9 on: July 30, 2014, 11:02:00 AM »
So you get trad belayers short roping and breaking climbers ankles on the steep stuff.  You get sport belayers letting climbers ground/ledge out all the time.
Sport or trad, there is certainly such as thing as too much slack when the leader is at the second or third piece of pro.
It sounds like the guy who grounded out in Bobbi's piece was not up high and the belayer had too much slack out.

"You have to decide to do a flag, where you can broke your vertebrae or a barn door depending of your pro" - the poster formerly known as Champ

Offline Admin Al

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Re: belaying
« Reply #10 on: July 30, 2014, 11:03:40 AM »
I think paying attention is the real issue.

you got it!!!
Al Hospers
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Offline OldEric

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Re: belaying
« Reply #11 on: July 30, 2014, 11:36:45 AM »
Having a big loop of slack in anticipation of a clip is a sign of being lazy and NOT paying attention.  Anticipate.  And MOVE your body in to give slack quickly - non of this fiddle faddling of pulling it out through the device.  That's in the sport context.  How about when you are x number of pitches up, darkness almost here, storm coming in, anchor is crap, leader out of sight - in that context maybe not short roping isn't the highest priority.  Context.

Yes "pay attention" sums it up - just remember that there isn't one answer that fits all.

Offline lucky luke

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Re: belaying
« Reply #12 on: July 30, 2014, 03:55:42 PM »
Having a big loop of slack in anticipation of a clip is a sign of being lazy and NOT paying attention.  Anticipate.

My partner just told me to gave him a lot of slack because he don't want to be drag down by the rope. I admit that I have done some mistake, trying to remove the tag line from branches make me not going fast enough.

The gap between too much slack and too much belay/rope drag is very narrow particularly at dark, when you don't see your partner. both, the leader and belayer most do compromise. personally, my style is to slow down on a rest and to go as fast as I can in a hard place to stop at a rest. so, my belayer work hard and if I fall as they try to gave me slack...I will have a big fall...by my fault

Don't really know what to say to my partner on that case.