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_fiend_


Sep 6, 2006, 4:46 AM
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My current biggest problem is:
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Not trusting what trad gear I have in, over-protecting routes, and spending too long placing unnecessary back-up or closer gear.

(Yes, I know how important good gear is, believe me I am experienced and skilled at it....just not confident despite that).

So... :wink:

My biggest challenge is: To learn to trust my trad gear, to protect routes very safely but no-more, to realise when I have enough good protection in and not to spend time adding to it.

My biggest opportunity is:

To be aware of this issue and to focus on placing gear quickly and efficiently, including looking around carefully to get the best gear first time.

To realise when my gear is good but I am being tempted to back it up, and to look carefully at the safety situation and to resist that temptation if appropriate.

To, if appropriate, do some falling practise onto trad gear to learn to trust the system.

...

Feel free to comment or to add yours :)


dingus


Sep 6, 2006, 5:36 AM
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Re: My current biggest problem is: [In reply to]
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Good stuff. Just remember, if a piece of protection failing spells disaster, back it up bro!

Example: you climb 20 feet up easy ground to a thin crack, place a solid alien. You know its well placed but you're gonna have to climb another 10 feet to get to the next potential placement. If you fell and the alien pulls, you're in serious trouble.

I'd likely back that alien up these days, if I could!

DMT


glyrocks


Sep 6, 2006, 6:45 AM
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In reply to:
Good stuff. Just remember, if a piece of protection failing spells disaster, back it up bro!

Example: you climb 20 feet up easy ground to a thin crack, place a solid alien. You know its well placed but you're gonna have to climb another 10 feet to get to the next potential placement. If you fell and the alien pulls, you're in serious trouble.

I'd likely back that alien up these days, if I could!

DMT

That's exactly what happened to me a few months back, actually. And you're right, it is serious trouble.


jamaica


Sep 6, 2006, 7:03 AM
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Re: My current biggest problem is: [In reply to]
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finding enough time to climb, there is never enough time


saxfiend


Sep 6, 2006, 7:03 AM
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Re: My current biggest problem is: [In reply to]
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I'll be interested in hearing what Arno says on this topic. Do you know why you don't trust your placements? Have you ever taken a fall and had a piece pull, or have you ever taken a fall on gear at all?

When I first started leading, my trust in my gear was pretty low, but now I wonder if I've swung too far to the opposite pole -- trusting my placements more than I should. I think part of that is because I'm still leading at a low enough level (5.8) to where I'm pretty confident I'm not going to fall; also, the two times I've taken lead falls on gear, it held with no problem. And I feel like I've come to a point where I can pretty well tell a good placement from a marginal one. I always ask my second to let me know if he/she finds something I placed that wasn't worth a damn; I haven't gotten any red flags in a good while.

On the other hand, I stay on guard against getting casual about the whole thing by reminding myself every time I lead that my one big whipper was on a 5.6!

JL


notch


Sep 6, 2006, 7:14 AM
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In reply to:
Good stuff. Just remember, if a piece of protection failing spells disaster, back it up bro!
Someone once told me to have 2 pieces between me and death. That has always stuck in my head

In reply to:
... place a solid alien.
Isn't a solid alien an oxymoron?just kidding


puerto


Sep 6, 2006, 3:27 PM
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I've only been tradding about a year so I sow it up..On a recent easy 90 foot pitch I placed 11 pieces..

I could care less if the devil himself tells me to place less gear, I'll still keep sowing it up for now..I do try to look for nut placements so I don't run out of cams for any possible pumpy/non nut compatible sections towards the top of the route..


Partner bri1682


Sep 6, 2006, 3:47 PM
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Re: My current biggest problem is: [In reply to]
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I have two problems. The first is finding enough time to climb, I cant get out or to the gym as much as I want. The second is that I am still relatively new to climbing so I run into all kinds of newbie problems, but mostly that gear is expensive.


saxfiend


Sep 6, 2006, 7:24 PM
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In reply to:
I have two problems. The first is finding enough time to climb, I cant get out or to the gym as much as I want. The second is that I am still relatively new to climbing so I run into all kinds of newbie problems, but mostly that gear is expensive.
Just to fill you in since you're new -- this forum is meant for discussion of mental aspects of climbing. For example, the subject at hand: how much do you trust your gear when leading trad? There's other more appropriate forums for talking about the price of gear or gym climbing.

To the OP: you can probably avoid off-topic replies if you use a better subject line. :wink:

JL


arnoilgner


Sep 7, 2006, 10:38 AM
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Nice PCO workup fiend. Did you notice how your answers become more engaging?
I'd say the falling practice would give you experiential knowledge that your pro holds. Intellectual knowledge (well...it looks solid) will usually not give you the trust level you need. If you do practice falling on trad, have plenty of pieces in.
I also like placing two pieces below cruxes where there is a larger possibility that I'll fall.
arno


rockguide


Sep 7, 2006, 11:15 AM
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In reply to:
Good stuff. Just remember, if a piece of protection failing spells disaster, back it up bro!

Example: you climb 20 feet up easy ground to a thin crack, place a solid alien. You know its well placed but you're gonna have to climb another 10 feet to get to the next potential placement. If you fell and the alien pulls, you're in serious trouble.

I'd likely back that alien up these days, if I could!

DMT

Well said. I also back up protection on sections of a climb where a fall seems likely when I have doubts about the quality of the placement, even if only to give me the confidence to commit to moves.

I also tend to double the pro before I go go for:

1) Crux moves. Probablility of falling is high
2) When piece failure leads to ground or ledgefall
3) Climbing on questionable rock
4) When heading into a long runout
5) Coming out of a long runout
6) When unsure of the route and I feel I may be downclimbing back
7) When my confidence feels low

B


gobotrocker


Sep 8, 2006, 8:46 AM
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Re: My current biggest problem is: [In reply to]
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You solved this yourself by looking at this situation from a the place that gives you options. ie; power.

"My biggest opportunity is"

This attitude or way of looking at it, transforms it fom being "My biggest problem" into "My opportunity".

The thing that is currently helping me, is allowing this all to be a process, one that unfolds in it's own time not according to my ego\agenda.


_fiend_


Oct 10, 2006, 2:53 PM
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Arno, cheers.

This came about because I'd seen this weakness in my climbing recently, and wanted to moan and grumble about this problem - but then I remembered the RWW take on "problems", and it seemed natural to work it through in this way. I haven't had much chance to put it into use on appropriate routes (most of the ones I've done either putting in loads of gear hasn't been a problem, or they've been bold and fiddly enough that it's been important to do so), but having the awareness of it as an issue, an issue that forms a challenge I have the opportunity to try to overcome, has been useful.


Saxfiend:

I have taken very few falls onto trad gear - I've had a general inhibition about both falling and allowing myself to get into situations where I might fall, even on bolts. I did some falling practise last year which helped with that, but I've still got to work on trusting trad gear - I understand the mechanics and trust it LOGICALLY, but not EMOTIONALLY - and that will probably come the most with experiencing it working.

But I need to do more of that experiencing, since, oddly enough, my small experiences of falling onto trad gear have actually shown me that gear I didn't really trust is still good enough to take a fall. For example my best fall was 8m or so down a slab past a 0.75 Wallnut in a reasonable but shallow slot - I hadn't really trusted it but it had a bomber 6 Wallnut just below....but the 0.75 held! Equally I've had a couple of experiences lowering off the smallest Camalots where I haven't been trusting them at all, and they haven't budged in lowering off. But I guess I haven't done enough to take these experiences in...

Oh, and I do go by the mantra of always at least 2 good bits between me and the ground!


slimper


Oct 10, 2006, 3:58 PM
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I've been fighting this same battle for a while now. Recently I climbed with a friend from work. He leads harder trad routes then I do. Watching him climb inspired me to trust my gear more.
The biggest difference in our climbing is instead of pausing and rethinking every placement. Then, going over every possible outcome if a fall did happen. He placed the gear and flowed onward. I think the mental game is a tough one to overcome while trad climbing.

Good luck, and be safe.


phojar


Oct 10, 2006, 5:37 PM
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I'm not sure how much this will help others, but for me I found that getting on multipitch trad routes where I had to build my own belay anchor helped me learn to trust my gear more. I also found that thinking about the climbing ahead and where my next placement will be instead of wondering if my gear will hold a fall has at least helped me enjoy the climbing more. A few weeks ago I was climbing a layback and I kept thinking "why does this rock feel so funny?" after I got to the belay ledge I realized I had not chalked my hands the entire pitch because I was focusing more on having fun and enjoying the climb.


coolklimber


Oct 25, 2006, 2:08 PM
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I am moving from sport to trad, and I am learning by doing mixed routes. My plans to tell wether or not my gear will hold is I go above a bolt and place a piece of gear, climb above it, and take a fall. If the gear holds, it holds, if not, I will fall to the last bolt.

>Cam


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