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TRing from anchor bolts (Cat's Eye Face, Horsetooth Res.)
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By Mathias
From Loveland, CO
Sep 1, 2014
I'm posting in the Colorado forum because this is an anchor question specific to the southern bolts of the Cat's Eye Face at Rotary Park. But I also have some general questions about top rope anchors, spurred but the recent thread "Extending a top rope anchor?". So even if you don't know the place I'm talking about, feel free to comment.

I set up a 2' sling with 3 locking carabiners, and ran a dynamic rope (it's my first rope, it's new, and I don't have a static line) down for some TR with a couple friends. The rope kept getting jammed in the deep crack right below the anchor bolts. It was obviously causing a little wear to the rope sheath but nothing major.

Is there a better way to set up an anchor here? Should I have used the 20' 7mm cord I have and set the carabiner the rope was running through below the edge to remove the rope drag and avoid the crack? Is there a better way to set up the anchor, possibly by using some trad gear and a third anchor point farther south to move the master that direction and avoid the crack? And in general, when top roping with a dynamic rope, is it preferable to avoid having the rope contact the rock at all, such as running over the lip like I had it?

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By Eric Bratschun
Sep 1, 2014
To start, that roof can generate a pretty big swing. When set up the way you described (with the rope getting stuck in the crack, and only extending a little below the lip from the bolts)it is easy to put quick wear on the rope. I actually core shot my first rope TRing some friends on that exact climb. You can try to extend the rope a bit further (I would suggest longer, more abrasion resistant, nylon slings that do not quite go below the roof, after all the fun part is pulling that corner) This will reduce some drag and wear, but I would avoid extending thin cord below the roof as that can also be rubbed and break with the swing. I suggest the longer, equalized slings, and you make sure the belayer is standing far enough away from the wall to keep their rope out of the crack, but not far enough that a fall would pull them off their feet. You can also consider buying a short fat TRing rope for climbs up by the reservoir, to help spare your new rope, learn how to belay your climber from the top of the cliff (this can reduce wear, but would be hard on this climb from those bolts) or invest is these rei.com/product/719270/spiroll..., or just use an old shirt or something to protect the rope.

Hope that helps-

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By Eric Bratschun
Sep 1, 2014
...and yes... you want to avoid running the rope over the rock whenever possible. It would be ideal to extend your master point below the roof in this case... but you need to weigh where you want to master point to be.

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By Mathias
From Loveland, CO
Sep 1, 2014
Eric, thank you. Sounds like a little bit of everything would help in this situation. Given the layout of the bolts up top, do you think it would be poor form to utilize one bolt from each pair at the top and move the master point that way? It seems like that coupled with a longer webbing sling (I assume just buying the right webbing and using a water knot would work?) could eliminate my problem and the longer sling would avoid too wide of an angle between the anchor points. Is it common for both sets of bolts to be used by two different climbing g teams at once? If so, I think I might upset some people doing what I suggested.

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By RobC2
Sep 1, 2014
This..
Those bolts are ancient, the rings are welded aren't they?

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By Mathias
From Loveland, CO
Sep 2, 2014
Thanks John. Helpful as always.

Rob, they do appear to be very old and I would guess the rings are welded but being as old as they are it wasn't immediately obvious to me. They still seem sound from the inspection I did.

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By Jon H
From Boulder
Sep 3, 2014
At the matching crux
Just FYI, webbing is not very abrasion resistant compared to cord. Buy some 7-8mm static cord for setting topropes where the anchor sling will be rubbing over an edge.

An easy and cheap option is using lengths of cut up retired climbing rope. As long as it's redundant (e.g. two independent lines to two separate bolts, or a single loop with a tied masterpoint) then there's no issue using retired ropes. Most ropes are retired LONG before they are no longer safe to use.

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By Max Supertramp
Sep 3, 2014
I use the next set of "bolts"/pipes/wtf-they-are-to re-direct a 48" sling equalized between the two main anchorpieces above the Cat's Eye fissure. This kept it outta the crack for me.

I am trying to get out that way a bunch and love to TR/moderate boulder. I just moved to FOCO, OP, and need partners... Feel free to hit me up if you have time and want to go get some supersick TR action goin'.

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