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Speedy aid rig..... nirvana?
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By Andy Laakmann
Site Landlord
From Bend, OR
Mar 21, 2010
Racked and loaded... name that splitter behind me? Hint, its on Supercrack Buttress

So I was recently exposed to the following aid rig/movement pattern and tried it in the gym. This came from Hans Florine, so it is tested (at least on 3500 ft of C1 in 2 hours and 38 minutes!)

Holy crap! It is fast, simple, and also has the bonus benefit of eliminating the "daisy fall".

I'm posting it here to ask the peanut gallery two questions... 1) WTF am I missing... is this as good as it seems and 2) Why have I never read about this before?

Requires:

  • Two ladders
  • One adjustable daisy
  • One quickdraw (or short loop, girth hitched) at the waist.

Starting from the ground:

  • Place piece
  • Clip ladder to piece
  • Clip adjustable daisy to ladder
  • Climb up ladder until piece is at your waist (optionally tightening daisy if desire)
  • Clip quickdraw into piece, hang on that sucker
  • Top step as desired
  • Place high new piece
  • Clip other ladder to new piece
  • Clip adjustable daisy (now available, since you are hanging on the draw) to high ladder
  • Test piece as desired. If it blows, you won't lose the ladder since it is connected by the adjustable daisy. And odds are you are still clipped into the last piece with your waist quickdraw, so you aren't taking a fall.
  • Transition to new piece+ladder - unclipping your waist quickdraw if you haven't already.
  • Retrieve old ladder, clip rope in behind you (if you haven't already)
  • Continue

So, WTF am I missing.... seems ideal? No daisy tangle, no daisy fall risk, FAST, stress free top stepping without the fifi, if piece blows you won't lose the ladders. Yes there is a chance you could drop a ladder - so just have a spare metolius pocket ladder on your harness.


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By climber73
From Fort Collins, CO
Mar 21, 2010
Belaying at Ouray

I've been using a very similar system that I learned from Flyin Brian a few years ago. The first difference is that I clip both aiders into one big biner and move them from the old piece to the new piece together, after the new piece has been bounce tested with my adjustable daisy. This means a difference in process from your method in that I put in a new piece, clip a quickdraw into it (or biner), then clip my adjustable daisy into the quickdraw for the bounce test... all of this prior to moving my aiders up to the new piece.

One other difference is that I was taught to use a fifi in addition to the quick draw at the waist. I don't use it every placement, but it comes in handy sometimes to get in closer to the wall for a high placement. When I use it I typically leave the draw at my waist engaged in the piece as a backup if the fifi pops out.

...and you should always clip the old piece after you've moved your aid equipment on to the new piece (as long as you're not backcleaning). This will help avoid clutter and improve efficiency.

I've used this method on three walls, and have always felt it to be simple and efficient.

Have fun!!

--Mike


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By Andy Laakmann
Site Landlord
From Bend, OR
Mar 21, 2010
Racked and loaded... name that splitter behind me? Hint, its on Supercrack Buttress

Hmmm, that is an interesting variation.

To move both aiders up together means you'll be hanging on the draw sans ladders to stand in, correct? Not a big deal, but does that get uncomfortable on the feet after a while (I assume you are just using two ladders).

And so I understand... both ladders ALWAYS move up together - shared on a big fatty biner? So you go from draw to ladder+ladder to draw to ladder+ladder?

I like the idea of a short fifi AND the draw backup.

The reasoning behind moving the ladders+daisy at once is two avoid have to go up to the next piece "twice"... i.e. one movement up. Not up, down, test, up.


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By Russ Walling
From www.FishProducts.com
Mar 21, 2010
Russ

Andy, that is the standard old skool method stated in your OP except for:

I and others use 2 sets of 2 aiders instead of 2 singles and no adjustable daisy. Same same.

fishproducts.com/howto/htmoving.html


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By Andy Laakmann
Site Landlord
From Bend, OR
Mar 21, 2010
Racked and loaded... name that splitter behind me? Hint, its on Supercrack Buttress

Hi Russ -

Yup, reads basically like your page! So I guess it is written somewhere :) Most everything else (including the SuperTaco videos) is a proponent of daisy on each ladder... which is for me a tangle fest.

I think the adj. daisy helps though, particularly if it is overhung or awkward, as I didn't need to struggle to clip in short... but it does add the time of having to rextend the adj. daisy. Or maybe I just have weak biceps (which is true).


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By Tristan Higbee
From Thailand
Mar 21, 2010
Me on a mixed route Crisco and I did in Rock Canyon.

Andy, I use that exact method. I haven't done a ton of aid, but it worked well for me on Prodigal Sun and Finger of Fate. It's essentially the same method from the Chris McNamara aid videos on YouTube, with the addition of the adjustable daisy. I like it!


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By Brian in SLC
Mar 21, 2010
Climbing in Smuggler's Notch

Andy Laakmann wrote:
... but it does add the time of having to rextend the adj. daisy. Or maybe I just have weak biceps (which is true).


Something I've heard that's catching on...to aid in the above (covered in a thread or two on the 'taco):

Swap your adjustable daisy out for a piece of cord and an
USHBA basic. Zip in to take your weight. When you unclip, there's nothing to adjust; the basic just rotates and the cord is free to move.

Er something.

I've gone Russian (quite awhile back) so the aiders thing is so yesterday...

Although I carry a speed stirrup for jugging.

Cheers!


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By Andy Laakmann
Site Landlord
From Bend, OR
Mar 22, 2010
Racked and loaded... name that splitter behind me? Hint, its on Supercrack Buttress

Tristan Higbee wrote:
Andy, I use that exact method. I haven't done a ton of aid, but it worked well for me on Prodigal Sun and Finger of Fate. It's essentially the same method from the Chris McNamara aid videos on YouTube, with the addition of the adjustable daisy. I like it!


Tristan... I seem remember the CMac videos having a daisy on each ladder. In fact, pretty much everything I've read always seems to have two daisies (some have them connected to the ladders, some don't).

The difference for me with this method was only one adjustable daisy and the quickdraw.

I'm still confused by Climber73's suggestion of moving both ladders together. I have to assume he has four ladders then?


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By John McNamee
Administrator
From Littleton, CO
Mar 22, 2010
Artist Tears P3

Andy,

What Hans is suggesting is pretty standard IMO.

Also, try getting rid of your daisies and just stand in balance if you can. You're learn not to drop them. Much faster and less clutter.

I like to have a fifi for clipping into a piece.

I have one adjustable (top jug) and one standard (lower jug) ready on my harness so you can use them if I need to daisy in somewhere or if hooking.

Cheers

John


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By Mark Hudon
Mar 22, 2010
On the North America Wall in 1977.

On anything less than vertical, I'd suggest you learn to "free climb" in your aiders. Meaning, learn to stand in them in such a way that you don't have to hold on with your hands or a daisy. Putting one foot behind the other, rest stepping, etc. BITD we never used daisies, maybe a biner clipped to the harness every now and then.

A very early ascent of the Nose at 99% aid and 100% pitons placed was done is something like 2.5 days.


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By Tristan Higbee
From Thailand
Mar 22, 2010
Me on a mixed route Crisco and I did in Rock Canyon.

Andy Laakmann wrote:
Tristan... I seem remember the CMac videos having a daisy on each ladder. In fact, pretty much everything I've read always seems to have two daisies (some have them connected to the ladders, some don't). The difference for me with this method was only one adjustable daisy and the quickdraw.


You're right! I just watched the videos again. For some reason I thought he eschewed daisies... At any rate, I still do it your way and I like it!


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By JLP
From The Internet
Mar 22, 2010

This method definitely isn't going to turn a putz into a speed climber. Chris Mac is pretty fast, so are Brian and Hans. The key is still all about top stepping, placing and testing gear and having whatever it is you do with your aiders really dialed in.

What I do is highly dependent on the angle of the rock and difficulty of the climbing. If it's easy, just two aiders and no daisies and never clipping into anything is all you need. For harder aid, 2 daisies and 3-4 aiders is probably going to be the fastest thing.


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By Andy Laakmann
Site Landlord
From Bend, OR
Mar 22, 2010
Racked and loaded... name that splitter behind me? Hint, its on Supercrack Buttress

JLP wrote:
This method definitely isn't going to turn a putz into a speed climber. Chris Mac is pretty fast, so are Brian and Hans. The key is still all about top stepping, placing and testing gear and having whatever it is you do with your aiders really dialed in. What I do is highly dependent on the angle of the rock and difficulty of the climbing. If it's easy, just two aiders and no daisies and never clipping into anything is all you need. For harder aid, 2 daisies and 3-4 aiders is probably going to be the fastest thing.


Hey, who you calling a putz? :)

How does two daisies help when it gets hard? Seems like the draw + single daisy (particularly adj. daisy) still gives plenty of safe testing options.

And I've noticed in my gym sessions is that with the adjustable daisy - when it gets way overhung/steep I still don't seem to have a need for more than two ladders... as I can just tighten up the daisy and feel snug-as-a-bug-in-a-rug.

What I do know from personal experience is that two daisies is a f*in cluster! So I'm psyched to lose those and switch to free ladders.

ps. And Brian, you just carry a SINGLE speed stirrup for your bottom foot on jugging?


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By Brian in SLC
Mar 22, 2010
Climbing in Smuggler's Notch

Andy Laakmann wrote:
And Brian, you just carry a SINGLE speed stirrup for your bottom foot on jugging?


Yeah. I use a Gri Gri for most of my jugging, though. Since I've usually got a Gri Gri for belaying anyhow, then, just having one jug seems like less stuff.

Edit to add: using a gri gri to jug a pitch is also super nice for the fix and blast thing. Clean, rap, all without taking the gri gri off. Kinda nice.

If I feel like one leg is gettin' worked on a long pitch, I just switch it.

I've heard folks talk about leading aid with no daisies. For me, its kinda like the leashless debate with regard to ice climbing. Sure, if you're strong enough, it works.

I guess you force yourself to try it sans daisies, then, see if its something that makes sense.


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By Andy Laakmann
Site Landlord
From Bend, OR
Mar 22, 2010
Racked and loaded... name that splitter behind me? Hint, its on Supercrack Buttress

Brian - I've never really found a good description of how to jug with a single ascender and grigri... any beta? I assume this is only useful on steep terrain though?


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By John McNamee
Administrator
From Littleton, CO
Mar 22, 2010
Artist Tears P3

Andy,

Watch this...





Personally, I find it a lot of work for pure jugging. For cleaning really steep stuff, traverses etc it works really real. Jugging starts at 1.50. There are several examples throughout this great movie.

Re the question about using two daisies, when it gets really thin you might be tied in tight to one piece top stepping and then tensioning to a hook with the other. If you take the tension off the hook it pops, etc. Hope this makes sense. Or you might be spreading you're weight carefully...


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By Andy Laakmann
Site Landlord
From Bend, OR
Mar 22, 2010
Racked and loaded... name that splitter behind me? Hint, its on Supercrack Buttress

Nice video!

Am I missing anything, or is it that simple. Stirrup on single jug, stand in stirrup, synch grigri, weight grigri, slide up jug, repeat?

mmmmmmmmmm...... Lunar X looks good.... mmmmmmmmm.


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By JLP
From The Internet
Mar 22, 2010

That looks like hell!

You might want to contrast what's going on in that video with watching someone who actually knows what they are doing with 2 ascenders.

With a little searching on You Tube, Chris Mac and/or Eric Sloan have a bunch of aid climbing tutorial videos. Both of these guys hold at least a couple speed records in Yosemite.

Some guys use 2 ascenders + a gri gri for backup.


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By Jordan Ramey
From Calgary, Alberta
Mar 22, 2010
What was left of the rack when I topped out on the last pitch of Snake Dike on Half Dome.

Brian in SLC wrote:
Swap your adjustable daisy out for a piece of cord and an USHBA basic. Zip in to take your weight. When you unclip, there's nothing to adjust; the basic just rotates and the cord is free to move. Er something.


Huh? I don't get that, but it sounds cool. How is using the ushba and a piece of cord any different from an adjustable daisy?


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By climber73
From Fort Collins, CO
Mar 22, 2010
Belaying at Ouray

Andy,

to answer your question up above, you hang from your adjustable daisy on the new piece while you move the aiders from the old piece up to the new piece.

I know that there are a million ways to do this, just throwing what works for me out there.

... and Lunar X is f-ing awesome!! go do it.

--Mike


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By Bryan Gilmore
From Your Mama
Mar 22, 2010
Beagle

If you just free climb you can eliminate all of this confusion. It's much, much faster and a lot more fun. If you still want to sleep on a rock, just bring some camping gear... and you can replace all that heavy aid-specific gear with your favorite malt liquor. Oh, and you can spend your time on Youtube watching more interesting videos.


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By Brian in SLC
Mar 23, 2010
Climbing in Smuggler's Notch

Andy Laakmann wrote:
Brian - I've never really found a good description of how to jug with a single ascender and grigri... any beta? I assume this is only useful on steep terrain though?


Actually more useful on really traversing pitches. Makes deucying out super easy.

Unlike the video, I redirect the rope out of the Gri Gri to the top jug (DMM revolver works super or just a biner on the bottom of the jumar) so I'm pulling down instead of up. Gives me a nice brake from the bicep pump I seem to get aid climbing. Had tendonitis for awhile so...

Easy to set up. You almost don't need to dink with gettin' any of the distances right. Gri Gri, single jug (handle-less even), stirrup and daisy to jug.

Its personal preference. I'm fair with a set of jumars but found that the Gri Gri method is so simple that I like it and it works for me.

So, John, you think its too much work? Hmmmm....

I think for folks that do only the occasional aid, its a pretty nifty method. Sure, CMac and crew, who have literally many, many miles of jugging, ahem, under their feet, are going to have whatever system they use very dialed (and a joy to watch).

Easy to try. Use whatever works best for you and yours.

Cheers!


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By Brian in SLC
Mar 23, 2010
Climbing in Smuggler's Notch

Jordan Ramey wrote:
Huh? I don't get that, but it sounds cool. How is using the ushba and a piece of cord any different from an adjustable daisy?


I'll toss up Kate's description she posted on Supertopo. Its pretty nifty sounding. See below.

-Brian in SLC

Kate sez:

Hey Guys:

The Ushba basic is rigged to the biner that holds the aider and is clipped into the piece.

There is an 8.1 mil Ice Floss Twin lead line (Sterling) about 5 feet long attached to the belay loop and leg loop, threaded up through the waist loop, like a fifi would be. You tie a stopper knot in the end of this which serves as a nice grab handle and prevents you from flying off the end if you screw up somehow.

The benefits are:
  • You no longer need a fifi, as you can get as close to the aider biner as you want.
  • You no longer have to deal with a twisted daisy, as the rope is round.
  • If you rig them (or any daisy system, for that matter) to a swivel, you no longer have to worry about them twisting around one another. I did this with my regular daisies and it was sweet. This can put you further from your piece if you don't do it in a particular way.
  • The Ice Floss is more dynamic than nylon webbing.
  • There is no friction from a spring-loaded buckle, so pulling the cord through is easier than an adjustable daisy
  • The release mechanism is not spring loaded and there is next to no friction, so it is easy to release and extend them with one hand
The rope is field-replaceable, unlike the strap on adjustable daisies. I hang my ledge and a few and some other stuff from extra Ice Floss. This way, if the sheath wears out or the daisy-rope gets damaged in any way, I just switch it out.
  • The Ushba serves as a backup ascender in case you drop one when soloing, can be used as a backup when cleaning, and can be used as part of the hauling system if you so choose. So its more versatile than an adjustable daisy, all around.
  • You can perfectly customize the length to suit you. I make mine a little long.

The risks are:
  • The ushba can bind on the spine of the biner if you were to take a brief daisy fall, and this must be actively managed, but isn't too much of a pain. This is significant if you use the titanium one, as titanium is more brittle. Had I realized that I would eventually use these for this purpose, I would not have purchased the titanium ones.
  • The ushba has a curved radius on the camming device, but it is possible that it could sever the rope-daisy in a hard fall. This is why we clip the rope in before passing a piece, though, and I still trust this device as much as the buckles on an adjustable daisy, which can also sever the rope.

I never climbed with adjustable daisies because I would get the strap twisted, hated that I couldnt get close enough to the piece and still needed to fifi in all of the time. I also didn't like that the buckle spring tension and friction took a toll on my hands after awhile.


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By Mark Cushman
From Cumming, GA
Mar 23, 2010
Profiley Styley

Brian in SLC wrote:
Unlike the video, I redirect the rope out of the Gri Gri to the top jug (DMM revolver works super or just a biner on the bottom of the jumar) so I'm pulling down instead of up.

This is for sure the better way to set up an ascender + grigri jugging system. You get to pull down and the ropes are always in front of you.


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By Andy Laakmann
Site Landlord
From Bend, OR
Mar 23, 2010
Racked and loaded... name that splitter behind me? Hint, its on Supercrack Buttress

Brian in SLC wrote:
Actually more useful on really traversing pitches. Makes deucying out super easy. Unlike the video, I redirect the rope out of the Gri Gri to the top jug (DMM revolver works super or just a biner on the bottom of the jumar) so I'm pulling down instead of up. Gives me a nice brake from the bicep pump I seem to get aid climbing. Had tendonitis for awhile so...


As someone currently suffering from bicep tendonitis.... +1 for this!

Is deucying out passing a bite through to lower out? If so, wouldn't you need to disconnect the grigri and reconnect it after passing the bite through? I've always had the bite be a loop that extends from my tie in? I'm probably missing something obvious.


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By Brian in SLC
Mar 23, 2010
Climbing in Smuggler's Notch

Andy Laakmann wrote:
As someone currently suffering from bicep tendonitis.... +1 for this! Is deucying out passing a bite through to lower out? If so, wouldn't you need to disconnect the grigri and reconnect it after passing the bite through?


On a traverse, I take the top jug off, pass the piece, then, hit the handle on the gri gri and lower out. Weight goes on top jug, unclip rope from piece, step up on gri gri, reach back and clean piece, voila. Repeat.

Works super slick. With two jumars, seems like you kinda had to slip the rope through the bottom jug, which was always a bit more of a cluster for me.

Yeah, if you have bicep tendonitis, then, try the gri gri for jugging. I cup the top of the ascender with my hand, which seems to make standing up more in balance and I can keep my arm a bit straighter (and not bum out the bicep tendons any more than they already are). Don't really need a handled ascender for this. With the redirect from the gri gri back up to the jumar, you pull down and it works the back of the arm. Sweet.

Cheers.


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