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General => Ice & Winter Climbing => Topic started by: neiceclimber on March 04, 2014, 01:54:52 PM

Title: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: neiceclimber on March 04, 2014, 01:54:52 PM
What's happening in the valley? You can't look at a bolt without people slinging mud, but you can leave a fixed rope on Lions Head. What's next, put in a zip line so the guides can get home to their ski bunnies faster? Safer my ass, talk about pussifying a mountain. 
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: darwined on March 04, 2014, 02:22:23 PM
It's litter installed by the AMC
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: kenreville on March 04, 2014, 02:30:17 PM
BAN the AMC
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: old_school on March 04, 2014, 02:42:38 PM
I've waited there personally and with clients anywhere from 40 mins to over an hour while people in micro spikes, Merrill day hikers, and all kids of inappropriate kit try to navigate up and down those two steep sections. I summited 12 times last season and 7 times this year and I welcome them.

Has nothing to do with getting home to our families but speaks directly to safety and reasonable time for passage.

I really wish everyone that climbed that mountain had proper gear, experience, general comfort navigating steep terrain and rock. The fact of the matter is 90% of the people that take that trail have little to no business being there dressed as they do with as little experience or knowledge.

People still have to negotiate a steep headwall but now have the option of a hand line to help them navigate it safely and in reasonable speed. I see no problem with the hand lines and am happy to have them there. Ok pureists...blast away!!!  ;) ::)
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: tradmanclimbz on March 04, 2014, 02:46:44 PM
I'm fine with it as long as I get to bolt anything I want ;D
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DaveR on March 04, 2014, 03:06:43 PM
I've waited there personally and with clients anywhere from 40 mins to over an hour while people in micro spikes, Merrill day hikers, and all kids of inappropriate kit try to navigate up and down those two steep sections. I summited 12 times last season and 7 times this year and I welcome them.

Has nothing to do with getting home to our families but speaks directly to safety and reasonable time for passage.

I really wish everyone that climbed that mountain had proper gear, experience, general comfort navigating steep terrain and rock. The fact of the matter is 90% of the people that take that trail have little to no business being there dressed as they do with as little experience or knowledge.

People still have to negotiate a steep headwall but now have the option of a hand line to help them navigate it safely and in reasonable speed. I see no problem with the hand lines and am happy to have them there. Ok pureists...blast away!!!  ;) ::)

If you are so incompetent that you need fixed ropes to get up Lions Head you should go back to your fucking living room and sit in front of the TV with a beer watching National Geographic specials about climbing!

REMOVE THE FIXED ROPES!
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: frik on March 04, 2014, 03:13:00 PM
What are those fixed lines made of.... 10mm, 9mm? Static or something that would be good for sport climbing with?
Also how far a walk is it up to the Lion's "head".

thanks
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DaveR on March 04, 2014, 03:19:54 PM
What are those fixed lines made of.... 10mm, 9mm? Static or something that would be good for sport climbing with?
Also how far a walk is it up to the Lion's "head".

thanks

LOL :o
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: darwined on March 04, 2014, 03:25:44 PM
I've waited there personally and with clients anywhere from 40 mins to over an hour while people in micro spikes, Merrill day hikers, and all kids of inappropriate kit try to navigate up and down those two steep sections. I summited 12 times last season and 7 times this year and I welcome them.

Has nothing to do with getting home to our families but speaks directly to safety and reasonable time for passage.

I really wish everyone that climbed that mountain had proper gear, experience, general comfort navigating steep terrain and rock. The fact of the matter is 90% of the people that take that trail have little to no business being there dressed as they do with as little experience or knowledge.

People still have to negotiate a steep headwall but now have the option of a hand line to help them navigate it safely and in reasonable speed. I see no problem with the hand lines and am happy to have them there. Ok pureists...blast away!!!  ;) ::)

Purists?  We're not talking "Murder of the Impossible" here Grammy, more like "Murder of the Improbable".  If it inconveniences the guides to wait, I have zero issue with it.    Safe passage?  I'm not even gonna touch that one.  Sheesh!
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: JBro on March 04, 2014, 03:28:43 PM
We are talking the Lion's Head winter route correct? The two steep icy sections have trees to grab don't they? If someone cannot get up that without a hand-line they have no business being on the mountain in the first place.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: strandman on March 04, 2014, 03:58:57 PM
Grammy...I might need those lines for you to guide me up Wash..PLEASE

Maybe the start of WH slabs is next..afterall, you can see the hotel better from the Toilet bowl   :'(
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: ELM on March 04, 2014, 04:49:01 PM
I am not for a fixed line on anything that should be considered a trail. It sets a precedent that will not be reversed. Much like cutting stairs into the stone on the Falling Waters trail or using rebar to pin rocks down at Square Ledge. Someones idea that that's the way to allow access is wrong headed and more dangerous than a tippy rock or a patch of ice.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: markvnh on March 04, 2014, 05:34:31 PM
I seem to remember a thread towards the end of last year about this same thing - and responses where about the same. I don't think they should be there. It encourages people without the skill set to go higher and potentially get into even more trouble above tree line. If the AMC placed the fixed lines I think they should fund SAR and would bet not a dime comes out of their coffers for this (don't even get me started on the AMC not paying taxes!).
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DaveR on March 04, 2014, 06:28:51 PM
I am not for a fixed line on anything that should be considered a trail. It sets a precedent that will not be reversed. Much like cutting stairs into the stone on the Falling Waters trail or using rebar to pin rocks down at Square Ledge. Someones idea that that's the way to allow access is wrong headed and more dangerous than a tippy rock or a patch of ice.

A++++

Fixed ropes, stairs cut in trails, huts that are ugly and the highland center. >:(
All from an organization that talks about preserving wild places. They are fucked up!  :P

Who will have the balls to remove them? ;)
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: eyebolter on March 04, 2014, 06:39:47 PM
I climbed that route in the winter with my Mom when I was 15....

Just saying.   I mean, come on.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: tinker on March 04, 2014, 06:44:06 PM
Guides have ski bunnies stashed at home?
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: strandman on March 04, 2014, 06:57:23 PM
Only ice guides...during summer, rock guides keep water bunnies by the rivers
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DLottmann on March 04, 2014, 07:29:02 PM
I predict this thread will go far... unfortunately.

I’ld ask we try to stay civil and not spread rumors (this rope had nothing to do with the AMC).

Before sharing my opinion let me paint the picture for those of you not familiar with Winter Lion’s Head Route on Mt. Washington.

Both the AMC White Mountain Guidebook and the USFS describe this route as “a steep mountaineering route requiring the use of crampons and ice axe and the knowledge of how to use them”. This description unfortunately, is not respected by a large portion of non-guided groups on Mt. Washington. While I believe in the essence behind the “Freedom of the Hills”, that which everyone has a right to go into the mountains and learn from good & bad experiences yada yada... this particular section of the LHWR is a shit show almost every weekend of the winter.

This section, jokingly called the “Hillary Step” by regulars is only 30 feet in length, is 4th class in nature, and leaves little option for passing parties up or down without halting their progress.

10 years ago guides may short rope a client or two through this section... more recently it’s become common to install a hand line during the ascent that the party can use. This might be because guide services have increased their client/guide ratios for these trips and the fastest way to get 5:1 through that step is a quick hand line. I’ve always cleaned it after the last person in my party, and carried it to the summit, re-installing it on the descent (and maybe teaching an arm wrap rappel on descent).

This season, and perhaps a bit of last season, some guides have left the hand line up for the day. This, IMO, is the reason for conflict. The main argument for it being a “day-fixed” rope is this;

This route sees so much beginner traffic that this bottleneck can add an hour to your descent. This is a common experience for me... I crest Lion’s Head on the descent, still half a mile from tree-line. Sweet, no one in sight, should be a great descent. 20 minutes later enter tree-line. 10 minutes later find people sitting on packs or leaning on trees as 40+ people try to move through this 30 foot 4th class section...

That is the argument. Let me be clear of what side I’m on. I don’t like “day-fixed” ropes for a few reasons;

1) It does detract from the skilled minority of climbers who can waltz through this section in micro-spikes while chewing gum and twiddling their thumbs...

2) It’s quick enough to clean it during ascent/descent

3) Might need that rope higher up (or end up going down another way)

Even though I am against a fixed rope there, I think given the traffic this trail sees there needs to be a better solution. I’m not sure what that is. Not having the rope there will not keep neophytes from crawling there way up there, whether properly equipped or not. I always look forward to the Spring so I can sometimes use Lobster Claw gully as an alternate descent with clients on busy days...

It’s only 30 feet... I actually think a wooden ladder like the one on Summer Lions Head Trail would solve the issue...

And quick question for DaveR, ELM, and JBrochu: You all made anti-step cutting comments on trails, I was curious how you felt about the massive trail work at Rumney to facilitate travel?
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: strandman on March 04, 2014, 07:35:19 PM
I'll be civil but;

It's OK if guides fix ropes ?  Reminds me of the "I'm a local" shit in the 80's to justify rap bolting   ::)
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: JBro on March 04, 2014, 07:41:28 PM
@Dman

In general I'm not opposed to trail work if it's for the purpose of minimizing erosion. They steps that I complained about do absolutely nothing to prevent erosion and were cut 100% for convenience.

Regarding Rumney: I've not been there since all that new work was done. However, it's seems pretty clear to me that work had to be done due to erosion so I suppose I support it despite not having a first hand look at it.

I guess a good example of preventing erosion was the work done by the developers of Echo Crag. Had they not done that work when they put the routes in, that place would be a mess now.

So I'm not opposed to bog bridges, water bars, etc. Cutting steps for no reason or leaving ropes on a walk up route seems like taking things a step too far.

Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: Pete Jackson on March 04, 2014, 08:03:35 PM
Do the ends justify the means, or are the means themselves important? Are you a deontologist, consequentialist, or an etymologist? (I jest)

Seriously, though: if Everest is going to be fixed from the icefall to the summit, Mt Washington can take a handline through a shitshow section, AMC or otherwise.

Washington is far from a wilderness experience. Now, if you were to put a handline in on Owl's Head, we'd have to have nasty words.

If you're really that angry about the fixed line, you carry a knife, right? 
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DaveR on March 04, 2014, 08:55:43 PM
And quick question for DaveR, ELM, and JBrochu: You all made anti-step cutting comments on trails, I was curious how you felt about the massive trail work at Rumney to facilitate travel?

The step cutting done on the FR ridge trail was done for no other reason than to make the trail easier than it already is for idiots! I fought long and hard with the forest circus and the AMC trail people about cutting steps in mountain trails and eventually gave up.

It is Hard to compare Rumney to Mount Washington or Franconia Ridge. Its next to the road and has become a total cluster fuck! Rumney is just the regional office of the New England climbing gyms. The trail work done there was done to prevent the total destruction of the entire area by the masses and to try and prevent some idiot from being killed by a car.

It used to be that Mount Washington was one of the few places that you could go in the winter and have a great experience with a friend and it often felt like a way bigger mountain than it is just because of the conditions. As things like fixed ropes get added it just removes that experience and now there is one less place to go. Having a fixed rope there also IMO encourages stupid people to push on. Instead of putting stairs there lets put in heated stairs so they don't ice up! That will make it even safer.

I am on the western side so I avoid the cluster on Lions Head by going up thru Amonousic ravine. There are some great ways to climb Washington from that side without the crowds.

DMan, I have NP with a guide stringing a rope for his clients if it is immediately removed but to leave it there is wrong IMO and I would likely remove it. Many times on a good day I have stayed on top to watch sunset and have come down that section late at night by headlamp. It is barely 4th class and finding a rope there I would consider it someones trash and remove it if it were not for this thread
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: OldEric on March 04, 2014, 09:48:44 PM
I climbed that route in the winter with my Mom when I was 15....

Just saying.   I mean, come on.

Actually you didn't Ward - when you were 15 that route didn't exist - there was a winter route but it was more around to the left.  Where Albert and Michael got hit.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: neiceclimber on March 05, 2014, 07:58:14 AM
No problem here with fixing a line for your clients to use going up and down, I might snicker when passing, but to leave it fixed is BS. I'm all for trail work if it alleviates erosion or spaghetti trails in every direction. Building something for the unprepared and inexperience is just plain wrong. If this is the case you have no basis to complain when rescues happen.

I love the dichotomy of MWV. Guides can justify fixed lines and fixed anchors because it saves time. But try to replace a pin with a bolt and they just go crazy. I'm generalizing, certainly not all guides believe this.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: ELM on March 05, 2014, 08:27:59 AM
And quick question for DaveR, ELM, and JBrochu: You all made anti-step cutting comments on trails, I was curious how you felt about the massive trail work at Rumney to facilitate travel?
First off...I don't climb at Rumney so I have not seen "the massive trail work" you mentioned. I have made my opinion about the fixed line known. But now I'll now expand that to trail managment too...just for you.
  Hiking trails do need to occasionally have structures to keep hikers on the trail and prevent people from stomping off into the woods to avoid a muddy section; in the end making the trail bigger. Plus steps do need to be done occasionally to control erosion and again keep hikers from stomping off the trail etc. Trail management does go amuck at times but I don't need to go into that...or mention "freedom of the hills".
   This was not placed by a trail manager though. It was placed by a guide who did it so his clients could have an easier time. He should have removed it or been shamed by other guides into removing it.
   Never should a fixed line be placed over an exsisting trail to "make it easier" for a few months. It will lead to a guard rail being fixed there eventually. Just because this trail cannot be traversed by "everyone" easily in the winter is not a good enough reason to fix a line. Many people should not be on that trail in the summer let alone the winter.
   
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: old_school on March 05, 2014, 08:37:16 AM
LOL....ridiculous
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DGoguen on March 05, 2014, 08:56:58 AM
I don't have a dog in this fight either way, but it is possible to descend the trail while they are screwing around with the fixed ropes.
Granted it's a little downclimbing to stay out of their way, but you just climbed a route in Huntingtons.
I've done it twice this year. Both cases a school outing group. 
I think people are afraid to do it because the "official" will yell at them. I told the leader I was just going to scoot by. He was cool with it.
Another hiker, waiting in a line of maybe 16, not with the group yelled "hey why don't you wait your turn". I said "because it's not bowling"
It wasn't even close to being a problem.

I know it's a philosophical issue, and it's a slippery slope, but 30' of rope on a mountain with a TV station on top is not the end of the world.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: frik on March 05, 2014, 09:01:54 AM
I am totally in favor of installing fixed ropes anywhere in the white mountains where someone could possibly slip and get a boo boo, as long as they use 200 ft 8.8mm everdry.  Also they should periodically inspect and replace all fixed lines so they are always in excellent condition.
 
 
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: neiceclimber on March 05, 2014, 09:06:51 AM
^^^ there's a road to the top of Cathedral and I can see peoples TV's from the cliff, does that give me the right to build a via Ferratta for Joe Sixpack. But you are correct Washington is hardly pristine. Doesn't it set a precedent for all the new to hiking/climbing people, a little bit of struggle, should fix a rope.  Hunger Mt. in VT has a rope on the slabs maybe 20ft, not really needed but it keeps people from wondering into the woods looking for a workaround, this I'm ok with.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: M_Sprague on March 05, 2014, 09:23:09 AM
They should get it over with and build a high speed tramway from the top of Wildcat and a casino resort in place of the weather station.  Such wasted potential there.   Maybe a vacuum tube train from Brettonwoods too. Tourism could be completely revitalized. And then you folks who actually want to walk up in the cold would be contributing to the economy by acting as zoo animals for the tourists
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: perswig on March 05, 2014, 09:34:06 AM
and it's a slippery slope ...

Well, yeah, isn't that why there's a rope there??

(grin)
Dale

Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DGoguen on March 05, 2014, 09:34:43 AM
as long as they use 200 ft 8.8mm everdry.  Also they should periodically inspect and replace all fixed lines so they are always in excellent condition.
also Bicolor, original packaging nearby for product verification
and a cool sticker for your effin roofbox.  ;D
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DLottmann on March 05, 2014, 09:36:56 AM
And quick question for DaveR, ELM, and JBrochu: You all made anti-step cutting comments on trails, I was curious how you felt about the massive trail work at Rumney to facilitate travel?
..Just because this trail cannot be traversed by "everyone" easily in the winter is not a good enough reason to fix a line. Many people should not be on that trail in the summer let alone the winter.

Thanks DaveR, ELM, and JBrochu for satisfying my curiosity... wasn’t implying anything but was just curious...

One point that should be clarified is the Winter Route is not open in the summer. It is not designed for travel when the ground isn’t snow covered/frozen and climbing it in the summer would lead to massive erosion issues on the route.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: JBro on March 05, 2014, 09:38:02 AM
For those coming down from Huntington: just curious, is Escape Hatch not in good nick right now? I know it sucks in the early season but if it's not in good shape by now the snow must be quite low up there this year?

 
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DLottmann on March 05, 2014, 09:40:18 AM
...it is possible to descend the trail while they are screwing around with the fixed ropes.

I think this 10 foot ice section off to climber’s right is enduringly referred to as the “Wilcox Direct” or “Townsend Direct” depending on the guide making the reference  :P
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DLottmann on March 05, 2014, 09:41:32 AM
For those coming down from Huntington: just curious, is Escape Hatch not in good nick right now? I know it sucks in the early season but if it's not in good shape by now the snow must be quite low up there this year?

Post hole nasty bushwhack madness... until the deeper layers consolidate it travel off travel in none wind blasted areas is very difficult...
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: ELM on March 05, 2014, 09:44:23 AM
I really do wish there was a water slide from the top of Whitehorse though... ;D
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: fresh on March 05, 2014, 09:50:28 AM
noticing a conspicuous absence of discussion of Michael Wejchert's cutting of the fixed line, which he discusses here: http://farnorthclimbing.blogspot.com/2014/03/on-ropes_4.html

the fixed line changes the experience for anyone else who wants to climb the mountain without using fixed gear. I know it seems ridiculous to anyone who runs laps on it every winter, but for aspiring mountaineers, doing Washington in winter on your own is a big deal. I don't see why guides can't fix the line each time they go up and carry it with them. can't see any other reason for keeping the fixed line in place but convenience.

Reggie
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: strandman on March 05, 2014, 09:54:34 AM
What about the huntington "trail"  in summer..surely that needs a line ?  and maybe a guardrail atop the Airation Buttress and...
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: JBro on March 05, 2014, 10:01:24 AM
That blog was awesome. I loved this part...

Quote
I am the punk who pulled the fixed rope on Lions Head on Saturday, March 1rst, 2014.  In true "punk" fashion, I didn't just pull it.  I cut it into little pieces, stuffed it into my pack, and tied one piece on the outside so if anyone had any questions that day on the mountain they'd know who the culprit was.  I admit there was a smack of egotism in tying the remaining bit of rope to my pack.  The owner of the rope called me out on cutting it and I gave him my name and my employer.  At no point did I attempt to hide in any shadows.


To clarify my position: the fixed rope doesn't bother me nearly as much as cutting steps into the rock in Franconia. I was more baffled that people actually felt the need for it.

I'm also now baffled that apparently dozens of people are hiring guides every weekend day to walk them up Lions Head...? Who would have ever thunk it...
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: strandman on March 05, 2014, 10:19:21 AM
no problem with M removing the rope..prolly shouldn't have cut it up but...if  you gonna go for it.....
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DLottmann on March 05, 2014, 10:20:04 AM
...
I'm also now baffled that apparently dozens of people are hiring guides every weekend day to walk them up Lions Head...? Who would have ever thunk it...

Shouldn’t be that surprising... with the popularity of shows like “Everest” more and more people are wanting to give the sport a try... and Mt. Washington is quite accessible for 1/4 of the country’s population. Not everyone that wants to try climbing needs to go out a buy plastic mountaineering boots, crampons, and an ice axe, or learn how to navigate in a white out (though I love teaching that).

Hiring a guide usually means these things are included. I think of the people I’ve guided up there (and over 10 years it’s in the hundreds) less than half will go on to actually become “climbers”. And that’s ok... they have an awesome experience to reflect back on, share with office mates, family, etc. Many who do go on to become climbers have looked at there 3 day intro to mountaineering as the first stepping stone in what becomes a lifetime passion... I think most guides are honored to have played a small role in their new found addiction.

I think as experienced climbers we take for granted how much goes into a quality ascent of a mountain like Washington... we’ve been doing it so long. If you spend much time on that mountain in the winter you can’t help but be amazed by the amount of folks who have never packed a backpack properly, unsure of their clothing systems, can’t set an efficient climbing pace, not sure where the trail goes above Alpine Garden (many lately try to tag on behind a guided group)...
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DaveR on March 05, 2014, 11:19:23 AM
noticing a conspicuous absence of discussion of Michael Wejchert's cutting of the fixed line, which he discusses here: http://farnorthclimbing.blogspot.com/2014/03/on-ropes_4.html

the fixed line changes the experience for anyone else who wants to climb the mountain without using fixed gear. I know it seems ridiculous to anyone who runs laps on it every winter, but for aspiring mountaineers, doing Washington in winter on your own is a big deal. I don't see why guides can't fix the line each time they go up and carry it with them. can't see any other reason for keeping the fixed line in place but convenience.

Reggie

I have no problem with what Mike did. I just would not have wasted my time to cut it up.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: darwined on March 05, 2014, 12:14:44 PM
Micheal Wejchert,

Much respect brother.

Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: WharfRat on March 05, 2014, 01:02:18 PM
I don't chime in much anymore on Internet forums as most of the time it really does not need to be said. Often my opinions are unpopular and a tift for a tat is a waste of all our energy.

In this case my hats off to you Michael and I am compelled to be a voice that risks saying so. I don't make it up that way much but if I ever do and I find a rope I will also take it down. I think I would carry it out and leave it at the visitors center. That is not to say I do not like your cut it up and hang a piece on your pack approach because I do. On the other hand well I see the other hand and think it would be more productive.

Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: frik on March 05, 2014, 01:41:16 PM
OK... so if we substitute "Rumney" for "Mt Washington" and "quick draws" for "fixed ropes"
everyone is ok with that - right?

PS: I would not cut up the draws....
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: WharfRat on March 05, 2014, 01:46:54 PM
Nope. Take those down when you're done also...

Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: lucky luke on March 05, 2014, 01:52:38 PM
As I use the route one or two time in winter. I agree; when you wait on line that a party came down, it is long.

As most client don't know to rap and the route is more a scrambling that people use to do with out rope, I am not sure that it is safer with or without rope. When the feet slip... you need a belay, not a rope who will drag you on the steeper ground. Learning to tie a sit harness with the rope and belaying the client with a rope is safer for me. To go up, make a top rope and down to the client can be more use full and faster too. So, the client will have to learn basic technique and teach how use full it is to know more about mountaineering. And maybe they will take a course of climbing.

As a fast climber, I think that the "ice flow" of people true the difficulty most be reasonable. A party with five people who have hard time most let skill people to go at a normal speed. They most let the other party go down.

So, you gain in speed by using an anchor an belay and you are more respect full if you belay your partner. In that trail, if there is ten people, it is normal to wait 30 minutes with or whit out rope. But when a climber took more than ten minute in a move...it is too slow. Slow climber most let the normal speed climber go first.


 
 
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: M_Sprague on March 05, 2014, 02:40:15 PM
I really don't understand the appeal of doing routes that are known CFs. I would much rather go bushwhack up a lessor hill than deal with that. I tend to avoid popular summer hiking trails though too. The idea of getting stuck behind others, having to constantly pass them, or having some really fast people walking up my ass would ruin it for me. Then again I suppose I am kind of antisocial sometimes, deliberately walking off trail if I hear somebody coming so I don't have to deal with them
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: steve weitzler on March 05, 2014, 02:54:06 PM
I had surgery on my knee three weeks ago and was planning on climbing Mt. Wash in 2 weeks. Please don't remove the ropes as I may need them this time around.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: frik on March 05, 2014, 03:28:21 PM
Luke, you are at the top of your game.
People, behold the master at work.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DLottmann on March 05, 2014, 04:17:04 PM
... Slow climber most let the normal speed climber go first.

Except on Standard Route Right?

Seriously though, “normal” speed is hard to quantify, which is why I think you brought up the whole commitment rating in another thread...
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: strandman on March 05, 2014, 05:36:10 PM
I really don't understand the appeal of doing routes that are known CFs. I would much rather go bushwhack up a lessor hill than deal with that. I tend to avoid popular summer hiking trails though too. The idea of getting stuck behind others, having to constantly pass them, or having some really fast people walking up my ass would ruin it for me. Then again I suppose I am kind of antisocial sometimes, deliberately walking off trail if I hear somebody coming so I don't have to deal with them

Sure, but your a bit fuckin' whacked ? ;) ;)
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DaveR on March 05, 2014, 06:26:10 PM
OK... so if we substitute "Rumney" for "Mt Washington" and "quick draws" for "fixed ropes"
everyone is ok with that - right?

PS: I would not cut up the draws....

No, remove your stuff there also.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: lucky luke on March 05, 2014, 09:23:50 PM
Except on Standard Route Right?

Seriously though, “normal” speed is hard to quantify, which is why I think you brought up the whole commitment rating in another thread...

On standard, I follow the current. I won't pass those who where above me and I didn't stop any climber going the same speed. A guide zig zag between us and didn't respect the other climber.

Yes normal speed is hard to find, but guides are supposed to see a lot of people and certainly can argue about the commitment rating. It could be interesting to have discussion between you and strandman on a particular route, like fun house. For me, an hour a pitch is some thing normal. People who take an hour an a half are slow and two hours most climb easier route. But you have to discuss technically why you decide that it is an hours and ventilator an hour and a half.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DaveR on March 06, 2014, 07:02:14 AM
I don't have a dog in this fight either way, but it is possible to descend the trail while they are screwing around with the fixed ropes.
Granted it's a little downclimbing to stay out of their way, but you just climbed a route in Huntingtons.
I've done it twice this year. Both cases a school outing group. 
I think people are afraid to do it because the "official" will yell at them. I told the leader I was just going to scoot by. He was cool with it.
Another hiker, waiting in a line of maybe 16, not with the group yelled "hey why don't you wait your turn". I said "because it's not bowling"
It wasn't even close to being a problem.

I know it's a philosophical issue, and it's a slippery slope, but 30' of rope on a mountain with a TV station on top is not the end of the world.

Pretty much what I do. I won't wait around and get cold and be late for dinner and beer because of a bunch of people who can't move thru 30' of terrain that is barely 4th class. A couple of weeks ago I passed some people going up Flume Slide and they were pissed. I got a lecture for being out alone and a lecture as I passed from the bumbly group leader about how rude it was to pass people on the trail!

No fixed ropes on Flume slide or Trypyramid in winter with no crowds and there are far more places to fuck up on them than Lions Head. :)
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: JBro on March 06, 2014, 09:01:49 AM
The concept of a "group leader" for a hike is another thing that has always blown my mind.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: Admin Al on March 06, 2014, 09:04:57 AM
The concept of a "group leader" for a hike is another thing that has always blown my mind.

for many people I agree, but for Mt Washington let's be realistic here... Tho it's called a "hike" it's really a lot more serious than that much of the time.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: JBro on March 06, 2014, 09:30:18 AM
The concept of a "group leader" for a hike is another thing that has always blown my mind.

for many people I agree, but for Mt Washington let's be realistic here... Tho it's called a "hike" it's really a lot more serious than that much of the time.

I guess if you absolutely positively have to do it on a specific day. But then again that's a bad mindset to take into the mountains -- especially for someone that's inexperienced.

For myself, even with plenty of experience I cannot tell you how many times I just decided to do a lesser mountain or find something to do below treeline because conditions were miserable up high.

I did get caught in a whiteout above the alpine garden the first time I did Washington in the winter. Had to navigate to the summit by following the humming sound of the cables holding down the buildings on top, then crawled down the auto road until hooking up with a trail leading back to Pinkham.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DLottmann on March 06, 2014, 10:32:22 AM
[quote author=JBrochu link=topic=8379.msg65300#msg65300 date=

I did get caught in a whiteout above the alpine garden the first time I did Washington in the winter. Had to navigate to the summit by following the humming sound of the cables holding down the buildings on top, then crawled down the auto road until hooking up with a trail leading back to Pinkham.
[/quote]

One of the reasons people choose to go with a guide. Many folks suffer heading down the auto road which is twice as exposed as heading down Lions Head... Most have no map,compass, or skills using them...
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: old_school on March 06, 2014, 10:34:29 AM
It is an aesthetic beautiful 11' corner of broken rock, crampon scratches, erosion and exposed roots. It should be done cleanly and purely, I agree.  Save the choss!! ;) lol
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: lucky luke on March 06, 2014, 12:20:03 PM
The concept of a "group leader" for a hike is another thing that has always blown my mind.

I am for a group leader in climbing as well as in hiking. Often accident happen not because the people are not skill, but because two good decisions make a bad decision, like auto road versus lion head. The responsability of knowing his partner, finding the good alternative and don't let your motivation over pass safety is hard. With my best partner, he his leading as I can took the sharp end of the rope on harder climb. 
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: JBro on March 06, 2014, 02:45:21 PM
One of the reasons people choose to go with a guide. Many folks suffer heading down the auto road which is twice as exposed as heading down Lions Head... Most have no map,compass, or skills using them...


Nothing personal, but I would rather suffer.

Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: steve4464 on March 06, 2014, 03:54:37 PM
I used this rope on Sunday coming down. I was third ( and last ;-) in our party to get there and was surprised to see them down climbing on a rope when I got there.

s it was long since dark when we arrived, at first I thought it might be helpful. But the rope, to me, was not in the best of shape  and the knots were very small if you have climbing gloves on, read -  hard to hold. Kinda zoning anyway, and thinking about beers and burgers at the Moat, I had already clipped my axe to my harness and begun descent when I realized it would been better to just down climb as usual.

I thought it kinda low end for a "guided" setup, more like some "regular" folks decided to put it up. Rope ethics notwithstanding, I don't think it will be there long, regardless.

Yeah, not on board with the need for fixed ropes on Lion's Head Winter... although, I have been fortunate enough to never have been waiting any more than a few minutes to get by other parties either....
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: krankonthis on March 06, 2014, 05:00:52 PM
"but because two good decisions make a bad decision,"
Im not a math genius but that does not add up.  Does two bad decisions make a good one?  If that's true I have made lots of good decisions.  ;)
Sam
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: strandman on March 06, 2014, 07:27:09 PM
One of the reasons people choose to go with a guide. Many folks suffer heading down the auto road which is twice as exposed as heading down Lions Head... Most have no map,compass, or skills using them...


Nothing personal, but I would rather suffer.

Because YOU also need  Deputy group Leader  as well    :(
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: JBro on March 06, 2014, 07:47:15 PM
The concept of a "group leader" for a hike is another thing that has always blown my mind.

I am for a group leader in climbing as well as in hiking. Often accident happen not because the people are not skill, but because two good decisions make a bad decision, like auto road versus lion head. The responsability of knowing his partner, finding the good alternative and don't let your motivation over pass safety is hard. With my best partner, he his leading as I can took the sharp end of the rope on harder climb.


The decision to go down the auto road was a good decision for us. We had a map and compass and sort of knew how to use them. (Very few people are truly expert you just don't get enough practice.) Problem is if you can only see 5 feet in front of your face it makes it really difficult -- plus the winds started really screaming and it would have been hard to even use the map without it getting ripped up/out of our hands.

Had we more intimate personal knowledge of the terrain navigating by compass might have been feasible, but at our then current level of experience and with the conditions that came out of nowhere we took the smartest decision. Better to suffer a little and get back home safely than turn into a permanent popsicle.

I've been up there a lot since then and never once caught in anything nearly as bad.

Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DLottmann on March 06, 2014, 09:16:26 PM

The decision to go down the auto road was a good decision for us. We had a map and compass and sort of knew how to use them. (Very few people are truly expert you just don't get enough practice.) Problem is if you can only see 5 feet in front of your face it makes it really difficult -- plus the winds started really screaming and it would have been hard to even use the map without it getting ripped up/out of our hands.

Had we more intimate personal knowledge of the terrain navigating by compass might have been feasible, but at our then current level of experience and with the conditions that came out of nowhere we took the smartest decision. Better to suffer a little and get back home safely than turn into a permanent popsicle.

I've been up there a lot since then and never once caught in anything nearly as bad.

There is really only 3 compass bearings that need to be known to get from the summit back to Lions Head in 10 foot visibility... I would never expect someone to actually figure those out from a map in the middle of harsh conditions, hence the need for a “White Out Navigation Plan” before getting caught in a white out... basically I figure out the sections above treeline from the warmth and comfort of my kitchen table before heading out somewhere I might need it... here’s my plan for Lion’s Head:

http://davidlottmann.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/route-card1.pdf

"Better to suffer a little and get back home safely than turn into a permanent popsicle.”

True, though the amount of exposure to NW winds while trying to descend the auto road could be deadly, when descending the summit cone in the correct direction could save a life... when it’s 80+ NW winds going down the auto road is a terrible choice, as you can be out of the wind in 200 yards if you know what you are doing (obviously experience helps here, as does preparation)...

I find solid map & compass, and actual navigation skills, a fading lost art that many more climbers would benefit from investing some time in...
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: tradmanclimbz on March 06, 2014, 09:33:46 PM
if it is nasty up On the garden i always felt that headding down central or South gully was the best way out of the hunnington area.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: JBro on March 06, 2014, 10:00:12 PM
A good descent if you climb Pinnacle is right from the top (before walking up the last bit to the Garden) you can walk right down to the top of the ice on Odell's, cross over the gully proper to the big flat rock ledge, then cross over into South and down. You obviously don't want to fall on much of that terrain though or you are going to pitch right over the Odell icefall.

 
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: Admin Al on March 07, 2014, 07:35:06 AM
A good descent if you climb Pinnacle is right from the top (before walking up the last bit to the Garden) you can walk right down to the top of the ice on Odell's, cross over to gully to the big flat rock ledge, then cross over into South and down. You obviously don't want to fall on much of that terrain though or you are going to pitch right over the Odell icefall.

 

Isnt a better and faster choice off Pinnacle using the Escape Hatch?
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: JBro on March 07, 2014, 07:59:59 AM
A good descent if you climb Pinnacle is right from the top (before walking up the last bit to the Garden) you can walk right down to the top of the ice on Odell's, cross over to gully to the big flat rock ledge, then cross over into South and down. You obviously don't want to fall on much of that terrain though or you are going to pitch right over the Odell icefall.

 

Isnt a better and faster choice off Pinnacle using the Escape Hatch?

From the top of the climb it's only a couple of minutes down to the top of the Odell's ice. Then from there it's maybe a few more minutes to cross into South and descend.

I suppose if you're done for the day maybe it's a wash with Escape Hatch since Escape Hatch brings you out further down and near the trail. But if you're going to do another climb this is way faster imo. Escape Hatch is definitely safer but if you're comfortable descending stuff like Central and soloing the gullies this is fine.

Me and a friend used to go up Odell (just the ice) and down South then still get to Pinnacle 1st party. Then up Pinnacle and down this descent. Then pick one of the other gullies depending on what was open and descend Central. Then keep going if we were in shape.

Supposedly there is also a good walk-off descent on the north side of the Ravine but I never did it.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: old_school on March 07, 2014, 08:11:58 AM
probably should remove the ladder on the summer route while we are at it eh?   ;) :P
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: JBro on March 07, 2014, 08:18:16 AM

There is really only 3 compass bearings that need to be known to get from the summit back to Lions Head in 10 foot visibility... I would never expect someone to actually figure those out from a map in the middle of harsh conditions, hence the need for a “White Out Navigation Plan” before getting caught in a white out... basically I figure out the sections above treeline from the warmth and comfort of my kitchen table before heading out somewhere I might need it... here’s my plan for Lion’s Head:

http://davidlottmann.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/route-card1.pdf

"Better to suffer a little and get back home safely than turn into a permanent popsicle.”

True, though the amount of exposure to NW winds while trying to descend the auto road could be deadly, when descending the summit cone in the correct direction could save a life... when it’s 80+ NW winds going down the auto road is a terrible choice, as you can be out of the wind in 200 yards if you know what you are doing (obviously experience helps here, as does preparation)...

I find solid map & compass, and actual navigation skills, a fading lost art that many more climbers would benefit from investing some time in...

Looking at your map I think we took the auto road until Nelson Crag trail. From there conditions either improved or we were just less exposed but I remember it was much more comfortable once we left the auto road and the trail wasn't too hard to follow at that point. (This was 25+ years ago so hard to remember accurately.)

I agree that real map and compass skills are important. Also self-rescue and wilderness first aid, etc. The issue for weekend warriors is that to actually be proficient with all that stuff you have to practice it a lot and you would never actually get to go climbing. I'm not trying to downplay the importance of that stuff, I'm just saying taking a refresher every couple of years isn't going to cut it when you find yourself in deep shit.

So weekend warriors imo are almost always going to be taking on some more risk than someone who gets out almost every day and can practice a lot -- often getting paid to practice.

Thanks for the info about how bad the Auto Road can be in the wrong conditions. We thought it only sucked because it's so long and miserable to walk on, and until now I figured we had made the safest choice when maybe we didn't.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: lucky luke on March 07, 2014, 12:07:30 PM
"but because two good decisions make a bad decision,"
Im not a math genius but that does not add up.  Does two bad decisions make a good one?  If that's true I have made lots of good decisions.  ;)
Sam

two bad decision make an accident. the leader let a party go first and the party went to take good picture, so they cross a slab and trigger an avalanche ( central couloir last year)

two good decision and you have a conflict between two people and forget about the danger. If one guy said I am turning back...you can't leave him alone to keep the party and make your life in real danger.

One bad decision and the other people can avoid the accident by being alert and confident.

One good decision is the best for sure. 
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: Max Forbes on March 07, 2014, 01:24:02 PM
If someone wants to put fixed lines up for a day to get his friends or clients up, fine, but take them down after. Fixed lines ruin the fun of climbing the mountain on your own. I've never been a fan of fixed lines, ladders, rungs, or carved steps anywhere in the mountains. If you can't do it on your own without the aid of something someone has built for you, you have no business up there. 
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: Homeless Junkie on March 10, 2014, 11:23:50 AM
 I understand exactly what you guys mean. Take the fixed lines down!! It takes away MY wilderness experience. No screws either. I can't stand seeing the holes left in the ice by those things. Don't even get me started on crampons. People should be able to get up the trail without the aid of something some company built for you. Those crampons scratch the rock and ice and leave marks all over the place. It ruins MY experience looking at all that irreversible damage.

 You shouldn't be able to hire a guide either. That would solve everything.

 
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DLottmann on March 10, 2014, 03:39:18 PM
Yesterday I saw fixed line all the way up Lobster Claw Gully... a large group looked to be training for something... or maybe they were just avoiding the clusterF that is WLHT.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: darwined on March 10, 2014, 05:27:56 PM
I understand exactly what you guys mean. Take the fixed lines down!! It takes away MY wilderness experience. No screws either. I can't stand seeing the holes left in the ice by those things. Don't even get me started on crampons. People should be able to get up the trail without the aid of something some company built for you. Those crampons scratch the rock and ice and leave marks all over the place. It ruins MY experience looking at all that irreversible damage.

 You shouldn't be able to hire a guide either. That would solve everything.

 

Fail.  You don't leave your screws on a climb for weeks at a time
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: DLottmann on March 10, 2014, 05:30:37 PM
I understand exactly what you guys mean. Take the fixed lines down!! It takes away MY wilderness experience. No screws either. I can't stand seeing the holes left in the ice by those things. Don't even get me started on crampons. People should be able to get up the trail without the aid of something some company built for you. Those crampons scratch the rock and ice and leave marks all over the place. It ruins MY experience looking at all that irreversible damage.

 You shouldn't be able to hire a guide either. That would solve everything.

 

Fail.  You don't leave your screws on a climb for weeks at a time

LOL. You fail at irony and satire.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: darwined on March 10, 2014, 05:42:08 PM
Oops
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: Homeless Junkie on March 11, 2014, 04:14:37 PM
Weeks?.. wait, weeks! I retract what I wrote.

 Seriously though, Next thing you know people will be leaving more than fixed lines.. They'll leave o2 bottles, flags and tent poles.

 Darwined, I was talking about the hole in the ice not the screw itself. Those holes are worse than the marks left by crampons on rock.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: WanderlustMD on March 11, 2014, 04:34:28 PM
Ropes that aren't directly in use by the party that placed them have a right to be moved. Of course, they can also be handy in many contexts. Lion's Head seems a little overkill for fixed ropes but who am I to judge?

I can see why the fixed rope was removed but cutting it up was a bit over the top IMO, as was tying it to the pack like he just scalped someone...seriously...

Small world stuff.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: strandman on March 11, 2014, 04:38:39 PM
Mike may have been wrong to chop up the rope(he admits that) but...if your gonna go for it, you might as well go all out
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: crazyt on March 12, 2014, 03:37:48 AM
Just think what it could lead to. Roads and trains and buildings. All to enhance your quality outdoor experience.
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: Admin Al on March 12, 2014, 07:07:57 AM
Have you ever been to Asheville NC? The Blue Ridge Parkway is like a road across the top of the Presie's...
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: strandman on March 12, 2014, 10:36:53 AM
Ya Al..and sometimes the weather is almost as bad !!
Title: Re: Ropes on Lions Head
Post by: CD on March 20, 2014, 05:31:02 PM
Jeez
I probably picked the wrong month to bolt the standard rt chimney on Cathedral. Fixed a line on the cave wall too.