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By Michael.T
Nov 3, 2013
Here's the place to share with the climbing community all of the tips and tricks you use to make your climbing experience a bit more enjoyable. Please share anything that you think could be of use to a fellow climber.

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By Jake Jones
From Richmond, VA
Nov 3, 2013
Me and the offspring walking back to the car after...
Walking the Rope

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By Ryan Nevius
From The Range of Light
Nov 3, 2013
Mt. Agassiz
When using a cordelette in a trad anchor, clove hitch it to one of your pieces of gear, near the knot. This will keep the knot from sliding down to the masterpoint area when you go to "equalize" everything.

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By Rob Dillon
Nov 3, 2013
When loading packs at the truck, place the beer in your partner's pack.

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By KevinCO
From Loveland, CO
Nov 3, 2013
When climbing at an area with Chipmonks that get into your pack/food, use a protein powder container as a lunch container. Leave it outside your pack and the pack open so they don't chew up your pack.

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By Ryan Nevius
From The Range of Light
Nov 4, 2013
Mt. Agassiz

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By Mostafa
From Alameda, CA
Nov 4, 2013
Cujo 5.11d Red Rocks
Carrying H2O: instead of doing a crappy tape job on your water bottle make a prucell prusik with a small cord.

Works great you can even put two smaller bottles. Can withstand a beating in chimneys and OWs and comes undone easy enough at the end of the day.
1 bottle
1 bottle


1 bottle
1 bottle


two bottle
two bottle


two bottle
two bottle


Ryan's trick is great too I use it often.
I need to start doing Rob's beer one.

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By Jan Tarculas
From Riverside, Ca
Nov 4, 2013
Seconds before onsighting Gun Smoke V3, Joshua Tre...
Ryan Nevius wrote:
When using a cordelette in a trad anchor, clove hitch it to one of your pieces of gear, near the knot. This will keep the knot from sliding down to the masterpoint area when you go to "equalize" everything.


wow. such a simple idea but very usefull. I'm going to start doing this. No more knot bugging the crap out of me. thanks for the tip

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By mark felber
From Wheat Ridge, CO
Nov 4, 2013
Rob Dillon wrote:
When loading packs at the truck, place the beer in your partner's pack.


If you find beer in your pack that you didn't put there, drink it all before your partner can.

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By Old and Busted
From Centennial, CO
Nov 4, 2013
Stabby
If you're in bear country, always carry a knife for your partner's leg.

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By Jake Jones
From Richmond, VA
Nov 4, 2013
Me and the offspring walking back to the car after...
When you're setting up a rappel, put the backup hitch on first so that the hitch takes the weight of the rope. This will enable you to pull some slack through and easily feed your bight(s) of rope into your device with two hands- not having to struggle with the weight of the rope.

Seems basic, but I've seen a hell of a lot of people fight with trying to feed the weight of 2 60m ropes into their belay device. Especially if they're wet.

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By Brendan Blanchard
From Strafford, NH
Nov 4, 2013
Obi Wan Ryobi - Darth Vader Crag, Rumney NH
Jake Jones wrote:
When you're setting up a rappel, put the backup hitch on first so that the hitch takes the weight of the rope. This will enable you to pull some slack through and easily feed your bight(s) of rope into your device with two hands- not having to struggle with the weight of the rope. Seems basic, but I've seen a hell of a lot of people fight with trying to feed the weight of 2 60m ropes into their belay device. Especially if they're wet.


I've done this a time or two, but if I'm not using a hitch/backup, I usually just pull up a few feet and hold it against the rock with my foot if I'm on a ledge, otherwise, the battle ensues.

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By wivanoff
Nov 4, 2013
High Exposure
Have the ends of your cord and webbing cut and melted at an angle instead of straight across. Makes it much easier to thread when tying knots.

Tie your chalk bag around your waist with a loop of 6mm cord. I use a sheet bend to make the "belt". You'll always have some cord for Prussick, load releasable knot, rap tat, etc.

Tape a single edge razor blade inside your helmet.

Keep a keychain LED on or in your chalkbag

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By Jake Jones
From Richmond, VA
Nov 4, 2013
Me and the offspring walking back to the car after...
When bailing or being lowered off of one piece, say like a 1-bolt anchor, tie a friction hitch around the belayer's side of the rope, and use a locker to connect it to your belay loop. If the top piece fails, the piece below you that you have not yet cleaned will catch you via the backup hitch. This can also be accomplished with and auto-assist device like a GriGri.

This is really just an extra precaution, more than a trick/tip, but I employ it when I'm in this situation. It would suck to complete the route and then crater while you're being lowered- unlikely as that may be.

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By camhead
From Vandalia, Appalachia
Nov 4, 2013
You stay away from mah pig!
Here's a cold-weather tip for keeping your fingers warm. It's called the Funky Penguin (tm).

Lock your elbows, extend your finger tips as much as you can, and bend your wrists backward. Basically, you are trying to make a completely right-angle "L" shape with your arms and hands. Now, move your shoulders up and down quickly. If you do it right, you will feel blood rush into your hands and fingertips. Works for warming up before a climb, and even de-pumping at rests. You're welcome.






  • May contribute to the Screaming Barfies if used improperly. Use at your own risk. If you are pregnant, depressed, or have a history of butthurt, the Funky Penguin (tm) may not be for you. Some people experienced erectile dysfunction after doing the Funky Penguin (tm). The Camhead Corporation, LLC, Inc., is not responsible for any psychological scars that may result. The Funky Penguin is not actually related to any real Antarctic Aquatic Avian species, nor to James Brown or George Clinton. Talk to your doctor before making any changes to your climbing warmup routine.

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By GMBurns
Nov 4, 2013
Climbing at Morro Anhangava in Southern Brasil.  (...
Always pay the trick a tip. Just rude not to.

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By Jake Jones
From Richmond, VA
Nov 4, 2013
Me and the offspring walking back to the car after...
camhead wrote:
Here's a cold-weather tip for keeping your fingers warm. It's called the Funky Penguin (tm). Lock your elbows, extend your finger tips as much as you can, and bend your wrists backward. Basically, you are trying to make a completely right-angle "L" shape with your arms and hands. Now, move your shoulders up and down quickly. If you do it right, you will feel blood rush into your hands and fingertips. Works for warming up before a climb, and even de-pumping at rests. You're welcome. *May contribute to the Screaming Barfies if used improperly. Use at your own risk. If you are pregnant, depressed, or have a history of butthurt, the Funky Penguin (tm) may not be for you. Some people experienced erectile dysfunction after doing the Funky Penguin (tm). The Camhead Corporation, LLC, Inc., is not responsible for any psychological scars that may result. The Funky Penguin is not actually related to any real Antarctic Aquatic Avian species, nor to James Brown or George Clinton. Talk to your doctor before making any changes to your climbing warmup routine.


When you give your current gig up, Pfizer may have an opening for you.

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By WDW4
Nov 4, 2013
Global Village, Red River Gorge KY
-An idea from user hikingdrew that I've used: rack DMM Torque Nuts from the top loop to eliminate clanging while on the harness. Alternatively, extend the sling, and then clip the short sling.

-Extend your rappels. Like This
Eliminates this problem

-If you can alternate leads on multipitch routes, use the rope in the anchor. If you can't, stick with the cordalette or double length sling.

-If you have rigid stem friends on your rack, throw a gunks tie off on those bad boys and rack them from that loop. If you also re-sling them from the base, sizes smaller than 3 will sit on your harness with the cam lobes facing upwards, making it easier to see which is which.

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By chuffnugget
From Bolder, CO
Nov 4, 2013
only climb at crags where you can immediately update your 8a.nu status

... and don't cut trees; it makes people very sad while sitting in their wooden houses sitting on their wooden chair looking at their computer on their wooden table.

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By Peter Franzen
Administrator
From Phoenix, AZ
Nov 4, 2013
Belay
WDW4 wrote:
-If you can alternate leads on multipitch routes, use the rope in the anchor. If you can't, stick with the cordalette or double length sling.

I have all but eliminated slings from my mulitpitch anchors, especially when they are bolted. A little planning when the second arrives can make it easy for one person to lead every pitch and get off of the anchor easily.

An extra minute or two spent on rope management at the anchors is always worthwhile. Since belay stances are sometimes crowded or uncomfortable, I often find it helpful if the leader stops after placing one or two pieces (terrain permitting) so that the belayer can fine-tune their position and get comfortable.

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By Ryan Nevius
From The Range of Light
Nov 4, 2013
Mt. Agassiz
Know how to rappel with a carabiner brake, in the event that a rappel device is dropped.


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By Daniel vH
Nov 4, 2013
Ryan Nevius wrote:
Know how to rappel with a carabiner brake, in the event that a rappel device is dropped.


It's much easier to just use a munter hitch. Completely safe, and a lot harder to mess up.


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By Brian Scoggins
From Eugene, OR
Nov 4, 2013
Jake Jones wrote:
When bailing or being lowered off of one piece, say like a 1-bolt anchor, tie a friction hitch around the belayer's side of the rope, and use a locker to connect it to your belay loop. If the top piece fails, the piece below you that you have not yet cleaned will catch you via the backup hitch. This can also be accomplished with and auto-assist device like a GriGri. This is really just an extra precaution, more than a trick/tip, but I employ it when I'm in this situation. It would suck to complete the route and then crater while you're being lowered- unlikely as that may be.


This seems both pointlessly fussy and needlessly dangerous. If the top piece fails *and* you're being lowered, then you just take the fall: now there's no risk of melting through a sling or damaging your rope's sheath because you couldn't trust your belayer not to drop you.

A lot of these are useful tips, but this one is predicated on doing something really stupid to begin with, namely letting somebody you don't trust belay you.

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By Ryan Nevius
From The Range of Light
Nov 4, 2013
Mt. Agassiz
Daniel vH wrote:
It's much easier to just use a munter hitch. Completely safe, and a lot harder to mess up.


Yep, also an option. But the carabiner brake is less likely to twist the heck out of your rope, in my experience. To each, his/her own.

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By Ryan Nevius
From The Range of Light
Nov 4, 2013
Mt. Agassiz
Brian Scoggins wrote:
This seems both pointlessly fussy and needlessly dangerous. If the top piece fails *and* you're being lowered, then you just take the fall: now there's no risk of melting through a sling or damaging your rope's sheath because you couldn't trust your belayer not to drop you. A lot of these are useful tips, but this one is predicated on doing something really stupid to begin with, namely letting somebody you don't trust belay you.


You're missing the point. This is common practice. See Petzl's diagram here:

Technique for lowering off of a single, fixed prot...
Technique for lowering off of a single, fixed protection point (image from Petzl)

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By Jake Jones
From Richmond, VA
Nov 4, 2013
Me and the offspring walking back to the car after...
Brian Scoggins wrote:
This seems both pointlessly fussy and needlessly dangerous. If the top piece fails *and* you're being lowered, then you just take the fall: now there's no risk of melting through a sling or damaging your rope's sheath because you couldn't trust your belayer not to drop you. A lot of these are useful tips, but this one is predicated on doing something really stupid to begin with, namely letting somebody you don't trust belay you.


This has nothing to do with not trusting your belayer, melting through a sling, or "just taking the fall". I don't think you're understanding the scenario. Also, I mentioned that a device can be used in lieu of a backup hitch constructed of nylon. It is a useful tip. Please consider the scenario, and perhaps you'll see your error.

You're being lowered off one piece at the top. You've cleaned everything off the top half of the route on the way down. If the top piece blows, your advice is to "just take the fall". That sir, will put you injured or dead on the deck. Think about it.

I also mentioned that it's unlikely that a single piece (mainly a bolt- there are plenty of one-bolt anchors out there) will fail, but not taking it into consideration and not preparing for it at all is a bit negligent from my perspective. YMMV.

  • *EDIT: Thanks Ryan. I was looking for a diagram like that but you beat me to it.

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