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Fall in the BRC last week?
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By Peter Stokes
From Them Thar Hills
Dec 21, 2012
Wall Street, Moab, UT

The people in the cockpit of your next airline flight understand this phenomenon well, and that's why there are pre-flight checklists that everyone has to go through every time, regardless of how many years experience they have.


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By TWK
Dec 21, 2012

Checklists are great and work well when properly implemented. Everyone should read "The Checklist Manifesto: How to get things right" by Atul Gawande.

But is a checklist really needed:

1. Buckle harness correctly--check!
2. Tie into the correct end of the rope correctly--check!

My partners and I do use a simple checklist routinely:

On belay?
Belay on,

Climbing?
Climb away!

When we do this at the gym, a lot of people snicker. I guess they don't find it necessary. We use this verbal exchange for a quick visual check of the other guy's gear.


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By Ryan Williams
Administrator
From London (sort of)
Dec 21, 2012
El Chorro

Glenn Schuler wrote:
I think it is still a very small percentage when you consider just how many more climbers there are. It just seems like a lot because there are so damn many of us. Not only that, the amount of climber "tie-ins" per day skyrocketed with the emergence and popularity of climbing gyms. My partner only tied half of his figure 8 before getting on toprope at Shelf Road back in the 80's. So he's 30' up getting ready to pull the 11c crux move and his rope slides out of his harness and he is instantly free soloing. Screaming, yelling and panic ensued but he was able to get back on the ground unscathed. I still tend to check my knot a third time even after I'm 15' off the ground.


Right on. I had a friend do the same thing just a dozen feet to my right a few years ago. Outdoors. She actually noticed before the rope came undone and went in direct to a bolt.

Like you, I check my knot after clipping the first or second bolt most of the time. I don't know why, I just do, especially indoors. For some reason I just feel like there is more of a chance of me fucking up indoors, since we are usually carrying on some sort of conversation between laps and there are lots of hot girls running around.

John McHugh wrote:
At a gym I climbed at in New Zealand it was assumed if you bring your own rope you know what you are doing. It is a strictly American reaction to immediately blame the gym, and in my opinion something we need to change. Unless draws are being pulled off the walls it hardly seems like the gym's fault. How about some personal responsibility.


It's not just the US. The Brits always talk shit to me about our "blame someone else" culture and all of the lawsuits, but the only time I've heard of someone winning a lawsuit against a climbing gym was in the UK: Banker Woman gets 100,000

I don't know what happened in the end but I'm pretty sure she got her money.

Evan S wrote:
I've personally seen two people forget to clip into the auto belay at the BRC. One was an experienced climber in the back room who got half way up the wall before I mentioned to him he wasn't attached, I was able to get up there and hand him off the auto belay and still downclimb myself. The other was a new climber who made it all the way to the top of the front wall before she noticed, the staff did a great job of piling up bouldering pads and climbing up to rescue her. It can happen to everyone, and it's their own responsibility to take their life into account... climbing isn't safe and shouldn't be thought of as such in any circumstance.


I'm still with people like Scott on this one. I just don't see how people do that. I mean what the hell else do you have to do before leaving the ground on an autobelay? Harness double backed? YES. Clipped in with a locker? YES. That's it! You don't have to check if you have hydraulic pressure, you don't have to check if you have enough fuel, you don't have to check if the cabin is pressurized, etc.

At the very least I visually inspect my knot and my partners belay device and say "we good?" If he doesn't answer I don't climb.


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By Mark E Dixon
From Sprezzatura, Someday
Dec 21, 2012
Sure, I can belay

Scott McMahon wrote:
haha maybe...but I guess i can't wrap my brain around walking up to a route and "forgetting" to even pick up a rope and tie in. That's a level of forgetfulness and distractedness that I can't comprehend. Maybe if Eva Mendes was doing a strip tease on the next route over. It's mind bottling.


Scott, do you use the autobelays much? Recently I have been, and I can definitely imagine forgetting to clip in. Will try very hard not to forget!


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By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Dec 21, 2012
Bocan

Mark E Dixon wrote:
Scott, do you use the autobelays much? Recently I have been, and I can definitely imagine forgetting to clip in. Will try very hard not to forget!


Not since I switched over to movement, but Im also the type of person that always double checks my harness and knot before I even begin to climb. Personally I couldn't fathom just starting to climb in front of an auto belay without clipping in. I used pants as an analogy, but to me that's almost like forgetting your harness and just starting to climb. It really is the most basic function.

And haha don't mark. You made it past the Mayan apocalypse, stick around for a bit more!


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By TWK
Dec 21, 2012

Mark E Dixon wrote:
. . . and I can definitely imagine forgetting to clip in. Will try very hard not to forget!


That's like forgetting to unzip your trousers before you take a leak.


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By Glenn Schuler
From Monument, Co.
Dec 22, 2012
A grey fox skull wedged in a crack 100' up on a FA I was working on - don't see that every day...

TWK wrote:
That's like forgetting to unzip your trousers before you take a leak.


Thats better than forgetting to put your junk away before zipping your trousers!


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