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Belaying From Above Tip
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Aug 11, 2011
Emperor of the North.... On of the best 13a's at J...
Hi,

I made this video demonstrating an efficient way to belay from above on single pitch trad routes or when topping out multipitch routes. Solid/live trees need to be available,

Climb On,

Jon


Jon Richard
From St. Louis, Missouri
Joined Mar 1, 2006
661 points
Aug 11, 2011
The traverse out to the Yellow Ridge on the Dogsti...
There is a better way to do this, better because you can nail the two adjustments, distance from belay to power point and distance from belayer to edge on the first try with no adjusting of knots or fixing wrong lengths with extra cloves---a method that does not work, of course, if the wrong length is too short.

1. Walk around the tree as in the video.

2. Tie an overhand or figure-eight knot in the strand attached to the climber's harness (NOT in both strands as in the video). Tie this in exactly the position you want the power point to be in relative to your waist.

3. Adjust belaying position, taking in or feeding out rope around the tree, until you are exactly where you want to be.

4. Clove hitch the strand from the other side of the tree (the strand that doesn't go to the belayer's waist) to a locking biner on the power point.

You're all set with everything adjusted right.

Some things to consider, whichever method you use:

1. Inspect the tree for sap. Getting that out of your rope is hell.

2. Make sure that the rope running to the climber from the belayer and the anchor rope from the belayer to the tree together form a straight line. Otherwise, the belayer will be violently pulled sideways if the second falls.

3. The anchor rope is going to stretch if there is a fall. Make allowances for this when deciding where to stand.

4. In many cases, it will be a bad idea to belay with a plaquette or guide-belay device from a power point constructed as in the video. The reason is that a fall by the second could, depending on the set-up, drive the power point and device down to ground level, where releasing the device might become even more problematic than usual. The combination of tension on the rope and the device flat on the ground might make it physically impossible to rotate the device into release position.
rgold
From Poughkeepsie, NY
Joined Feb 15, 2008
288 points
Aug 11, 2011
Good video of the good practice of extending your anchor for ease of communication, etc.

I always think its funny when you see a belayer way back from the edge shouting to their partners while they're humping a tree because they short anchored with a cordallette.
Evan1984
Joined Aug 15, 2007
77 points
Aug 11, 2011
Crux Move
Evan Horvath aka Evan1984 wrote:
I always think its funny when you see a belayer... humping a tree


Thats not very tolerant
Phil Lauffen
From The Bubble
Joined Jun 20, 2008
2,113 points
Sep 2, 2011
Buenos Dias!
Hi, I made this video demonstrating an efficient way to belay from above on single pitch trad routes or when topping out multipitch routes. Solid/live trees need to be available, Climb On, Jon
>

Good effort. I happen to use the method RGold describes, but this seems fine, if you prefer it. I would however mention two things: first, that you need to use a "plaquette device" that auto-locks. Otherwise when the second falls there is no way move your arm far enough back to lock off the rope.

And second, when walking back to the location you want to belay from it's a good idea to hang onto the other side of the rope just in case you slip. You did mention that you're still on belay but if the belayer doesn't know your heading back towards the edge, they may erroneously assume you're on safe ground setting up the anchor and be slightly less prepared for catching a fall.
-sp
From East-Coast
Joined May 25, 2007
80 points
Nov 14, 2011
Pilot Mountain NC
Just a reminder that if you're using this method and your tree is a distance from the edge, that your anchor is dynamic and can/will stretch a bit. It may be enough stretch to lose your footing on belay if the rope is weighted.

I bring it up because I read an accident report where anchor/rope stretch was an attributing factor to a belayer being pulled a little over the edge, where he hit his head and dropped his second (not using an autoblocking device).
S. Fischer
Joined Feb 8, 2011
46 points


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