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Big Wall Rack Discrepancy On The Web
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By Travis Haussener
Nov 28, 2012
I've been climbing for almost a year now, trad for about 6 months and I have gone down the same slippery slope as all the others before me. I already have an enormous rack; doubles in 3 and 2 triples in 1, .75, .5, .4 and a single .3, 4, and 5 plus single and double TCU's.

I'd like to do moonlight buttress by the spring or next fall (I'm not looking for route beta but just to give you an idea of where I'd like to be in the future). While perusing the web at work I stumbled on Supertopo's recommended rack for a number of big wall climbs and beside the normal big wall gear that I still need to acquire offsets, hooks, etc it says "2 sets of Metolius Master Cams to #5 AND 2 sets of Black Diamond Camalots #0.5-4". I'm perplexed by this...do I need to keep purchasing more cams (I know you can never have enough) or can I begin to focus on the more specialty items of the big wall rack through my meager salary, and this was just a either/or personal preference thing.

Thanks

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By csproul
From Davis, CA
Nov 28, 2012
Summit of Wolf's Head with Pingora in the background
Travis Haussener wrote:
I've been climbing for almost a year now, trad for about 6 months and I have gone down the same slippery slope as all the others before me. I already have an enormous rack; doubles in 3 and 2 triples in 1, .75, .5, .4 and a single .3, 4, and 5 plus single and double TCU's. I'd like to do moonlight buttress by the spring or next fall (I'm not looking for route beta but just to give you an idea of where I'd like to be in the future). While perusing the web at work I stumbled on Supertopo's recommended rack for a number of big wall climbs and beside the normal big wall gear that I still need to acquire offsets, hooks, etc it says "2 sets of Metolius Master Cams to #5 AND 2 sets of Black Diamond Camalots #0.5-4". I'm perplexed by this...do I need to keep purchasing more cams (I know you can never have enough) or can I begin to focus on the more specialty items of the big wall rack through my meager salary, and this was just a either/or personal preference thing. Thanks

So, you've been climbing trad for 6 months? First, I'd say use what you have and get a lot more trad climbing under your feet. You have more than enough gear to get you through most any trad climbs with maybe the exception of Indian Creek-type climbs. Do you own a couple sets of stoppers?

If aid climbing is your goal for the future, do you have aiders, daisies, and ascenders? Those are essential personal aid climbing items, even if climbing with someone else who can supplement your rack. The gear list really does mean "both", although there is a lot of unneeded overlap between the large Metolius and the small BD cams. You basically already have that. What you really need to do is spend some time practicing aid with what you have and get the technique dialed. This will also tell you something about what you are missing as far as gear. If I were you, I'd get a basic set of hooks and cam hooks (do not use in Zion!) before spending more on cams. But really, the best bet is to use what you have and get more experience trad climbing. Try to find someone to climb an aid route with...someone that already has any extra gear that you'll need and the experience to show you how to use it.

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By Rob Warden, Space Lizard
From Springdale Ut
Nov 29, 2012
blah
I am in a similar boat with needing to purchase. if your Aiding, I would take care of my personal set up first get your daisys aiders jugs ect for your self. its hard to borrow that kind of stuff. then focus on aid specific protection. however, from my experience on some big wall stuff 1 set of offset everything is a good start. for me that looks like one set of offset aliens and the largest offset mastercam (important size), DMM alloy and Brass offsets, Imps, Peenuts. thats it for my personal aiding Pro. My friends each have some other stuff and we mix racks fairly frequently. the aliens come free climbing a lot in zion though so they are a fairly worthwhile use of your money. also, ditch the smallest C4's and get aliens from blue to red, and buy purple if you can find it.

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By Taylor Bentz
Dec 1, 2012
In my experience, the overlapping sizes of Camalots and Mastercams/Aliens, is about types of placements, not size. Those big Mastercams are SO nice in some Yosemite placements that you could never get a C4 in.

BUT Wait for BD's new Predators to come out. I emailed and asked, and they replied that they should be coming out in the next few months. They will be the perfect mix between Metolius and Alien. Then buy doubles of the regulars, and doubles of the offsets.

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