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By Helldorado
From Boulder, CO
Mar 22, 2009
It was a nice sunny Saturday in Eldorado Canyon, so I don't think this experience is out of the ordinary. My partner and I arrived at the base of Rewritten (5.7) on Redgarden Wall. It was N's first multi-pitch climb. We took our packs off and were about to split a sandwich-but not half a minute later a loud party of three from Fraiser (CO) showed up. This was just a buzzkill (or so we thought.) There were three of them and two of us, but it don't believe this gave them the right of way.

I knew that it was downhill from here, and I struggled not to let the situation get out of hand; it was the crux of the climb come to think of it. They hassled us about which route we were climbing and their leader climbed not 5 feet below my partner, but thankfully they were headed up an easier route after the first pitch. The other party knew we were about to climb the route the also wanted (albiet slowly) and also pointed out a route 2 grades harder around the corner, which the said was the base of our particular route (which I know is I lie.)

Anyways, the point of this story is to not be an idiot- that seems pretty obvious, but really only a select few people will not climb below other parties. The other party was really antagonizing; to put it bluntly they put their priorities ahead of ours, and I don't take too kindly to that shit, especially because my partner is somewhat of a newb. My priority is safety which is ultimately more enjoyable for all. The last time I went to the base that particular climb, there were climbers on the first pitch, so N and I turned around and hiked back down the trail like normal, courteous human beings. There are thousands of other routes to do, and you shouldn't sheist other people if you are too stupid to realize it (stick to the gym).

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By Josh Audrey
From LAS VEGAS
Mar 22, 2009
maneater
just because your the first to the climb does not mean people can't climb behind you. that being said sounds like they were rude, but thats how shit goes suck it up and deal with it.
josh

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By Izza
Mar 22, 2009
Waiting in lines
Climbing in Eldo on the weekend
it's a gd zoo
driving up to summit county on the weekend
waiting in lines
it's a mf'ing zoo
if you want peace and solitutude
seek out places where not everyone and their mother goes
and even then
still
don't go there on the weekend
call in sick instead
and even then
you might be
waiting in lines

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By matt.l.b
Mar 22, 2009
Personal
I'll put my vent in. A friend and I were climbing Calypso we had a top-rope setup and were getting some laps in and relaxing. Two things happened that really got under my skin. First off at the start of the day some guy stuck his head out from the tipped boulder and asked if we were the one puffing. We we not nor were the other five climbers at the base. He began to let us know his opinion and how he felt... At that point I really wanted to let him know how I felt about my rights and the rights of others and how he could shove... "Serenity now." A few hours later two women approached the base of the climb and with out hesitation began talking how they could rearrange my anchor after one had led the pitch. If someone is on the route and you want to climb it at least ask them what they are doing. Beside the fact the person leading should not have to be told what to do with an anchor much less my anchor. Oh and by the way if you are a total stranger, rude, and need help with anchors; under no circumstances are you allowed to touch my anchor. Her "fast" lead took an hour and fifteen minutes for the first pitch.

What happened to mutual respect and graciousness.

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By Matt Kear
From Boulder, CO
Mar 22, 2009
Personal Photo
As many of you know, there are few good places to do instruction for new climbers in the flatirons, that are not slabs. One weekday morning, I was in the Amphitheater doing a simple TR, when a guide showed up with a client (happened to be a female guide, but it really did not matter). The guide did a lot of pointing and loud talking (mostly critical of my friend who was doing the climb at this time, then proceeded to drop a rope right next to him as he was climbing! She then proceeded to tell me that there was plenty of room for two climbers, which there probably was, but she did this without asking permission or talking to us at all. When I confronted her about her decision, she proceeded to tell me that since she was guiding she had a right to do whatever she wanted, she was getting paid for it.

I was a guide and I always knew that I was responsible for the safety of my clients and the people around me. Hopefully, we can learn from this and by doing a few simple things.

1. Talk to others: We all share the same passion for the outdoors. Remember that someone you have not met, is just a friend waiting to be had.
2. Always be flexible: So many things can (and will) change our plans, the weather, crowds, inner conflict. The only thing we can control is our attitude.
3. Be polite: The mountains should inspire and challenge us to be the person we want to be, make sure it is a polite person.

Be safe and have fun!
Matt

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By Paul Shultz
From Hudson, Ma
Mar 22, 2009
Me!
1. Talk to others: We all share the same passion for the outdoors. Remember that someone you have not met, is just a friend waiting to be had. 2. Always be flexible: So many things can (and will) change our plans, the weather, crowds, inner conflict. The only thing we can control is our attitude. 3. Be polite: The mountains should inspire and challenge us to be the person we want to be, make sure it is a polite person. Be safe and have fun! Matt

I agree with Matt 100%.

I feel like no one says hey or even nods anymore at some of the places I climb. I'm the kind of person who, be it climbing or hiking or whatever the sport, will usually strike up a conversation, even if its just hows your day going. Seems like the no one wants to be that way!

Other comments, being polite should include not top roping 6 climbs and only using 2 of them at a time. It may well be easier to do this, but there are other people in the world besides you. It doesn't take long to move a top rope and can be a good learning experience for beginners!

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By Marc H
From Lafayette, CO
Mar 22, 2009
The Cathedral Spires in RMNP, left to right: Stile...
matt.l.b wrote:
First off at the start of the day some guy stuck his head out from the tipped boulder and asked if we were the one puffing. We we not nor were the other five climbers at the base. He began to let us know his opinion and how he felt... At that point I really wanted to let him know how I felt about my rights and the rights of others and how he could shove... "Serenity now."


"Let's not play that way."

Sounds like a bad after-school special. :)

I almost wish I'd been there to see it. Almost.

--Marc

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By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Mar 22, 2009
Bocan
Maybe I expect too much from people. I can't stand it when loud obnoxious parties come up below you when you are leading, talking to your belayer and distracting the heck out of you. Yeah I know that people can do whatever they want, but I keep it low key when I see someone else is leading. I think it's just common courtesy.

We are climbing on White Whale one day, while another party came up on Hiatus. Maybe we were climbing too slow, but my partner ended up having to climb under their rope as the routes merged and they climbed up and over our belay. Knowing the routes merged, why the heck would you do that? It compromises everyone's safety.

And ice is even better. Gung-ho guys come up with sledgehammers for picks, smashing and raining down loads of ice on anyone in the vicinity. Myself personally I don't treat climbing like drinking at the bar. I respect others around me and try not to impact the quality of their climbs or the serenity of their day.

But what can you do? Longer approaches, obscure climbs are the way to go!

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By Buff Johnson
Mar 22, 2009
smiley face
The best solution I found was switching to the explosive cam-mores; they are relatively easy to install in the natural features and also denote "Place Toward Enemy"; which in a pinch, really helps. You can even try successive placements to go for a pinball wizard.

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By Matt Sedor
From portland, or
Mar 22, 2009
mmmmmmonkey
man, whats up with colorado climbers and drama?

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By Chase Gee
From Wyoming/ Logan Utah
Mar 22, 2009
My Top Secret Yet to be named crag.
Matt Sedor wrote:
man, whats up with colorado climbers and drama?
theres just so many in the area there's bound to be a few douche wizards.

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By AWinters
Administrator
From NH
Mar 22, 2009
Red-tail Hawk, Buttermilks
johnL wrote:
I've ran into like 2 climbers in 13 years that I didn't like. I think you've got a bad attitude.



try getting out more- there's a lot of asshole climbers out there, and egos as big as the mountains they're climbing

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By Kevin Stricker
From Evergreen, CO
Mar 22, 2009
Any time you get crowds of people in a "traditional" area you are going to have problems as people tend to act like they are in rush hour traffic. The best solution I have found is to give a big smile to every one I meet and don't expect anyone to be a jerk. 90+ percent of the time it works like a charm. On those rare occasions when people are just being idiots, I have found that letting them know how you feel right then is the best solution. We all have done stupid things, and sometimes just having a little conversation about it is all it takes for people to understand.

Personally I find the best solution is to go somewhere where the crowds are not.

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By Tony B
From Around Boulder, CO
Mar 22, 2009
Got Milk? How about forearm pump? Tony leads "...
matt.l.b wrote:
I'll put my vent in. A friend and I were climbing Calypso we had a top-rope setup and were getting some laps in and relaxing. Two things happened that really got under my skin. First off at the start of the day some guy stuck his head out from the tipped boulder and asked if we were the one puffing. We we not nor were the other five climbers at the base. He began to let us know his opinion and how he felt... At that point I really wanted to let him know how I felt about my rights and the rights of others and how he could shove... "Serenity now."


Hey, sorry if you took it that way, and glad you got yourself vented now. It was not supposed to be preachy or offensive. Still, maybe you should tell it like it actually happened??? Geting sympathy or pats on the back for something that didn't happen that way isn't going to bring you much comfort. You had to know that others who were there would be reading this, eh?
Yeah I popped by after smelling the stuff for 5 minutes from the other side of that Boulder and said:
"I have got no problem with it, but the one time I've ever been dropped by a belayer, he was a stoner. That is something I'd consider if it was my belayer."
One guy from the other party said that it was nobody there, and was pretty windy... I acknowledged that and left it at that - about 10 seconds of interaction at most. If that got under your skin and ruined your day, you sure must have a lot of bummer days.
2 other MP.commer were right there in the other group, and both of them can vouch for that if necessary. So don't make a fool of yourself. Trying to make me out to be an anti-drug straightedge or some 'serenity' hippie type would be pretty laughable. And for that matter- tell me about your "right" to smoke pot in Eldo. hahha ha. Go tell it to a cop or a judge or someone who even cares. They'll explain it better to you. Again, I got no problem with it, but it isn't a "right."
Maybe you'll make peace with it if you try to look at it from an angle that someone was just checking in and saying "Have fun, but be safe, eh?" That was my intended approach. I have personally cleaned human remains from THAT PITCH and off of the West Chimney, and didn't want to do it again. Ever hand a bag full of bloody clothing and gear to someone's mother? Ever clean chunks of brains off a ledge? Ever come down from a pitch up to your elbows in one of your friends blood? It might change your perspective on safety...
We play a fun game, and it can be dangerous at times. So how do you feel about drunk driving? Can I caution a drunk friend about drinking and driving? What about a stranger?

matt.l.b wrote:
A few hours later two women approached the base of the climb and with out hesitation began talking how they could rearrange my anchor after one had led the pitch. If someone is on the route and you want to climb it at least ask them what they are doing. Beside the fact the person leading should not have to be told what to do with an anchor much less my anchor. Oh and by the way if you are a total stranger, rude, and need help with anchors; under no circumstances are you allowed to touch my anchor. Her "fast" lead took an hour and fifteen minutes for the first pitch. What happened to mutual respect and graciousness.

Let's talk about mutual respect and graciousness then...]
You say that you had a TR set to run laps on the first pitch of a multipitch climb for how many hours on one of Eldo's most popular and accessable lines? Sounds like she was on it for a short time by way of comparison. Although she may have been in the wrong for discussing your anchors without including you in that discussion... For what it is worth, she probably said nothing directly to you about the anchor becuase she was socially uncomfortable talking to you about your TR that had been there for several hours, by your own account.

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By Cpt. E
Mar 23, 2009
boulder.

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By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Mar 23, 2009
Bocan
Wow...almost made it 2 pages for the Boulder comments came out. Of course those climbers could have been from anywhere in the world..but they were climbing in Boulder, so they must be Boulder A*holes.

I always get a kick out of that..Most of the jerk (IMO) climbers I've met have been outside of Boulder.

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By Adam Berger
Mar 23, 2009
Rebuffat's Arete on Rewritten
Tony Bubb wrote:
2 other MP.commer(s) were right there in the other group, and both of them can vouch for that if necessary. .


I was one of the guys at the base of Calypso when Tony stopped by. I've only met Tony once before, but certainly have read many of his posts here on mp.com. I thought Tony was just being friendly, talked for a few seconds about the guy smoking pot(who we later saw soloing all over the wind tower) and people who belay stoned and then a minute about his surgery. I'm not sure what the big deal was.

My buddy and I also talked with the two guys who had the TR set-up on Calypso. My opinion about that aside, they were also really nice guys who we talked with while we packed up our gear.

People seem too quick to make a big deal about little things. When you climb the classic easy routes in Eldo on a 75 degree day in March, they are going to be busy. We all just need to be a little more patient with each other.

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By TBlom
Mar 23, 2009
So you were surprised to see another party on rewritten? And your party of two couldn't climb faster than a party of 3? Not trying to be rude, but speed is safety up there, maybe try swanson's Arete next time.

You definitely have the right of way, but having people climb up yer'ass is pretty normal on a busy day on a popular moderate in Eldo, especially rewritten. That being said, the other party probably could have scouted another line.

Also, to 'matt l.b.' hogging a popular line like Calypso for several hours with a top rope is pretty lame... Eldo is a trad area, not really a TR area, and you should expect on ANY day to find people piling up behind you if you set up a TR on routes like this. Go to happy hour crag in Boulder Canyon, or Sport park, if you want to set up TR's all day. "Getting in some laps " is pretty lame on Calypso, go to the ledge and walk off! Go do something else!

To those that DO crowd climbs... you are asking for a rock to the dome. My partner and I almost always choose to avoid climbing behind other parties in Eldo because of likely rockfall (The base at rewritten is like a firing range on a weekend, keep yer helmet on!). there are so many climbs in eldo, we have always found something to jump on at the right grade. Several days we have put off our main objective because someone else was on "our climb", but we were rewarded by having the routes to ourselves later.

Lastly, although there are beginner grade climbs in Eldo, I still do not believe it is a good place to take beginners... lots of objective dangers even on easy routes there, lots of rope technique and drag problems to solve while climbing... go to Boulder Canyon, plenty of uncrowded stuff to practice on with less rockfall and better gear placements.

RE: weed smoke. I've been dropped, but only by a sober person. 15 years of climbing, mostly kind of baked, and I've never had any problems. To say "stoners drop people" is like saying "girls suck at math" the stereotype is not realistic, especially considering the number of climber/stoners that I know. People with poor experience or a weak grip drop people!

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By Tyson
From Salt lake city, ut
Mar 23, 2009
Adam Berger wrote:
When you climb the classic easy routes in Eldo on a 75 degree day in March, they are going to be busy. We all just need to be a little more patient with each other.


I definitely agree with Adam. Couple of points that are probably obvious.

-You're free to do whatever you want if you're first in line but it's pretty impolite to run TR laps on Calypso on a busy warm day.

-When climbing popular, moderate Eldo multi-pitches on weekends (e.g. Rewritten) you can go ahead and plan on having a group in front of you and a group behind you. Sorry. Usually other climbers are really friendly and I've gotten to know some great folks hanging out at busy Eldo belays. Chill out, be friendly and recognize that people who aren't really cool are the exception rather than the norm.

-By doing a little extra hiking and doing climbs that were at least partly shaded I had an entire crag to myself on Sunday (and yes I was <20 minutes drive from Boulder.) If you want solitude stay the hell away from Calypso or Rewritten on a beautiful spring weekend.

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By J. Fox
From Black Hawk, CO
Mar 23, 2009
Me too!
I've got a crazy story too. My partner and I were in 11-Mile Canyon this past Saturday. Gorgeous day! We got into the canyon and ready to climb by 9am. Neither of us had ever been there prior to this. We thought, "Shit, The Staircase is a popular climb and will be flooded with climbers, lets do it first!" So, we headed up that route and don'tcha know it...not another gd climber anywhere in sight! The nerve of these people leaving this route and all of Arch Rock to us alone!

We sent with style and then rushed over to Turret Dome to climb The Staircase before the hordes could congregate on it. Basking in warm sunshine I raced to the base of the route to secure it for us. Again, not another soul in sight! Unbelievable! This place is the pits! We climbed the whole route and of course ended up seeing two jerks climbing on the other side of the dome from us...too many dang people if you ask me!

Eleven Mile Canyon is way overcrowded! We saw two climbers in 7 hours of climbing. How did it come to this? So then we headed over to Eleven-Mile Dome around 4:30pm and there was a throng of 4 people TR'ing Moby Grape...Jeebus! That's it...we left promptly.

DO NOT CLIMB IN ELEVEN MILE CANYON...STAY AWAY...IT'S OVERCROWDED!!! Did I mention all the obnoxious fly-fishermen we had to deal with too? Crazy.

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By Buff Johnson
Mar 23, 2009
smiley face
You musta hit it on an off day. I always have good luck finding crowds.

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By Tony B
From Around Boulder, CO
Mar 23, 2009
Got Milk? How about forearm pump? Tony leads "...
Tevis Blom wrote:
RE: weed smoke. I've been dropped, but only by a sober person. 15 years of climbing, mostly kind of baked, and I've never had any problems. To say "stoners drop people" is like saying "girls suck at math" the stereotype is not realistic, especially considering the number of climber/stoners that I know. People with poor experience or a weak grip drop people!

To some degree I agree, but not to all degrees. I agree you can't say that all people of such a group are a problem, but some people can be, and the statistics can follow. Let's try these stereotypes:
  • Men are not as good at multi tasking.
  • Women are not as good at spacial manipulation and target interception.
  • Men can't have babies.
  • Women are not as big/strong as men and can't compete in the NFL.
  • Stoned people have slower reaction times and altered perceptions, and might have difficulty with difficult safety situations.
  • Engineers can't spell for craaaap and make ltos dan ltos of typos.
  • Drunk drivers are safe- I know because I've never been hit by one. (Caveat- one did leave a highschool buddy of mine with permanent mental disabilities after smashing his head in.)
Which one doesn't belong?

I never said that 'stoners drop people.' I said a stoner dropped me.
One is a stereotype, the other a fact. The stoner who dropped me had 20 years of hard climbing experience. To say that weak and inexperienced people drop people is also a stereotype. In my case it is an invalid one. I am lucky I hit a ledge and stopped there- I am alive to talk about it.

I don't feel bad saying "if one of you guys is about ready to get a belay from someone who is baked, please consider it carefully."

To note- I never said a climber can't go kill himself- just that one should carefully consider who it is that will be responsible for his life while he climbs, given that there is a large group of potential belayers present.

The guy soloing walked over a few minutes later while we were tying in at the base of our pitch, with shoes on and racked, and he climbed just a few feet over us, kinda sketching a little and slightly off the main crack 20' off the ground. We stepped out from below him and waited for him to go by- either one way or the other. Shrug...

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By Hank Caylor
Administrator
From Golden, CO
Mar 23, 2009
Pure bliss..
Tony Bubb wrote:
I don't feel bad saying "if one of you guys is about ready to get a belay from someone who is baked, please consider it carefully."



Tony, please let me give you the greatest stoner belay ever. It will reaffirm your trust in bakers, I promise.

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By Ian F.
From Phx
Mar 23, 2009
I am so glad I don't live on the front range. Sounds like a circus every good day out. I guess it's the price you pay for abundance of great climbing.

Regarding the Weed! I would tend to agree that it is a vast stereotype. Having been climbing for 17 years, as well as going through highschool and college, which all of which will indefinitely make you croos paths with people that smoke. It is a large stretch to say all people that smoke are dangerous. For instance, a guy whom smokes daily will have a lesser effect from the THC, where if someone rarely smokes and gets high, is going to be pretty close to useless. I would just ask any smoker, what type they are. Daily, or rarely. Don't let the rarely touch your rope. The daily guy, has successfully incorporated weed into his everyday, thus accustomed to the effects, much like controlling fear, these guys control their hightened awareness to thus be better climbers. This is half kidding, rebute now.

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By Stucker
From Centennial, CO
Mar 23, 2009
Old Greg with his downstairs mix-up.
I love this web site.

Cpt. E wrote:
boulder.


Isn't this guy referring to the sport of bouldering and not the town? Which if he is is a good point. Its hard to hoard a boulder line all to yourself since your gear is not laying all over it and (bonus) you won't find people climbing above you. And if everyone wants to get baked they are less likely to kill their "partners", though they do need to focus long enough to give a meaningful spot.

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By Evan S
From Erie, CO
Mar 23, 2009
Me, of course
Oh boy, the weed thing. I'm probably just wasting my time spewing my opinion here but I can't help myself. I was a massive stoner for a solid 10 years, we're talking baked all day every day, no joke. During this time I engaged in tremendous amounts of gnarly skiing inbounds and backcountry, countless miles of solo mountain biking and plenty of climbing. Through it all I suffered no more than your average amount of sports related injuries, and only a handful I can directly attribute to being blazed. Depending on the person, pot can actually increase attentiveness at times, but I have also seen plenty of my friends do absolutely dumb ass thing because they were baked. I made a personal choice not to smoke much anymore, and I don't, only every couple months and never before anything dangerous or important. I feel like my athletic skills have improved greatly since I stopped smoking, way more than I would have guessed actually. So the point is, I guess I have no point, if you wanna get high, that's up to you, but don't let if fuck up my fun.

And yes, there are plenty of jerk face climbers in Boulder, but there are plenty of jerk face people in this town period, climber or not. Any mecca of outdoor activity will attract athletes with egos and attitude. The ratio of punks may be higher than other places, but there are so many fantastic, humble, friendly climbers here too that I think we make up for it. Thanks all.

FLAG


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