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To chop, or not to chop: ?? Advice please?
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Partner tim


Sep 25, 2002, 11:28 AM
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It's a drag, but does that make it ok to piss in the public pool? Adding bolts without local consent and against prevailing standards is very poor form, and helps lead to closures in some cases.

What you are saying is akin to claiming that, because it's messy to go after criminals, we should ignore their crimes. While that does in fact seem to be the policy for many metropolitan PD's, that doesn't mean the citizens should act the same way.

On public lands, the rock is as much one user's as any other's. If some guy wants to leave his gear (bolts + hangers) at the crags, he shouldn't be surprised when it gets bootied


maskokalover


Sep 25, 2002, 12:05 PM
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well said steve...as always...

climbing is about looking at a rock, setting up your belay station, and showing mother nature whos boss. If ya are a looser, ya cheat and stick in bolts, because your not skilled enough to crank it yourslef, and ya ruin it for the rest..

bolts should be put in only if enough people cant do it, then its ok, but if just you cant do it, dont be selfish..

-----------
cheers!!
~mark


toobigtoclimb


Sep 25, 2002, 12:18 PM
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Although I'm usually not one to pass up a nice new anchor bolt.....I will say this:

1. TR type anchors are usually readily available as it sounds in this case - no bolts needed

2. Bolting should be done in the style of the area

My 2 cents


fixxervi6


Sep 25, 2002, 2:06 PM
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I'm an anti chopper, but if this is public land, and established route that can be protected without bolts, and is not a saftey issue, I say chop em, I beleive in leave it as you find it.


mrsmylie


Sep 25, 2002, 2:12 PM
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Keep with the ethics for the area. Being that you have been there for as long as you have, I think you should chop them.


ramylson


Sep 26, 2002, 7:37 AM
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First of all, I say chop 'em. Not only for the ethics of the area, but also because of the possible saftey issues a poorly placed bolt represents. Kind of funny though, was looking through an old Rock and Ice (August/September 2001) and found this article. Enjoy..

"Old vs New: Most of us are aware of two very different activites , both known as rock climbing. What used to be climbing has now been given the name 'old school', a title that includes responsibility, integrity, consideration, personal values, morals and respect for the environment. The 'new school' seems to be a loosely organized sport activity that's sold for a profit. Young, anxious climbers, most of whom learned to climb on indoor walls with fixed protection and well mapped routes, are turning natural climbing areas into climbing gyms.

Old school climbings have spent countless hours seeking out hidden outcrops. These climbing areas have been kept secret for obvious reasons: The advertisement of these areas would guarantee their destruction or closure due to increased traffic, parking problems, litter, and the use of bolts. A recent 'advance' in technology known as the Internet has now exposed our secrets.

One particular website that caught my eye is www.climbpa.com. This site led me to visit an area known for many years as Lost World. (The site referred to the area as Lost Crag.) Until recently, all the climbing here was done on toprope, as most of the routes are easily rigged in this fashion.

It seems that someone has been developing Lost World, along with several other nearby areas. It was easy to find the cliff by following a newly established trail, marked by survey tape and litter. When I arrived at the crag, my worst fears were confirmed. I have never seen such a proliferation of unnecessary bolts in such a small area. I counted 50 bolts in under 10 minutes. (It's a little know fact that bolting is illegal in Pennsylvania Game Lands, and that it carries a healthy fine.) Some bolts are alongside good natural protection; most are on established routes that were first done on toprope.

It's already too late to save Lost World. Like many popular and overused crags that were once avery beautiful, this place has been sacrificed. The bolt plague must not be allowed to spread to the more than a dozen nearby areas, most of which barely tolerate climbing. Most of these areas can be found on www.climbpa.com under new names. Advertising these areas on the Internet is a guaranteed way to see them all closed to climbing. Will we allow this trend to turn our sacred areas into trash dumps? Unfortunately, this will most likely be the outcome if the new school has its way. Apparently the opposition is too small or doesn't care." Rob Goodman

Makes you think doesn't it?


ppuget


Sep 26, 2002, 7:59 AM
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Internet and secret trad areas:
Like most technologies the internet has good and bad aspects as does letter writing. I removed 14 bolts from a old time TRing area a couple weekends ago. Two bolts were placed right next to a 4 foot diameter fir at the top of the cliff two more were place right below the fir. The whole removal process took a short time and off I went. Now that's what your letter writer should have done. Spraying in public forums in any media is the lamest form of action imaginable if not backed up by the most simple of "real life" actions. I say direct contact with the bolters explaining your actions is the best solution. In my case I told the bolters before hand that bolts didn't belong on the cliff and that the routes had already been lead and that I would remove any bolts placed. If you don't know who placed them, a quick posting to the web site in question or a go laminate a note at kinkos and post it on a nearby tree for a few weeks explaining why the bolts were removed. That would get the message to the bolters.





zee


Sep 26, 2002, 9:30 AM
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I generally am against chopping bolts, but agree that if all you are setting is top rope ancors, for which you can set natural pro, why waste money on the bolts etc? Pull the one anchor and slash the dudes tires next time you see them pulling sh*t like that.

As to my general statement of being anti-chopping:

Chopping tends to leave scars in the rock which are just as unsightly as the bolts.

Definitely agree with respecting the local tribesmen. Lest ya be eatin'!!! But seriously, for areas which are "discovered", no known climbing in the area previously, and there is a tribe of sport climbers who makes the discovery, who then develope the area as a sport crag, I think it is acceptable to bolt. For areas that are tradable, or top ropeable, and are not in sport areas, then there is no good reason to bolt. Another thought, rock type definitely affects whether a route should be bolted vs climbed with natural pro. For an explaination, go to El Potrero Chico and try trading that choss pile!!!

good luck with the bolt wars, I for one will climb if there are bolts, and climb if there arent. If there are bolts but it can be done on natural pro, I will probably use the natural pro, if I feel like jammin and cammin.



mcfoley


Sep 26, 2002, 9:31 AM
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CHOP THE MO FO'S!!!!
MF


uncle_big_green


Sep 26, 2002, 9:32 PM
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do I even need to write anything?


uncle_big_green


Sep 26, 2002, 9:34 PM
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do I even need to write anything?


paintinhaler


Sep 26, 2002, 9:45 PM
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I would say Take them out. I would also put up a sign about bolting at the parking area or at the start of the trail. This is a hard one. But man you over rule them for one thing.


apollodorus


Sep 26, 2002, 10:10 PM
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Belay bolts don't reduce the difficulty of the climb, but can greatly increase the safety if someone needs to bail. Adding protection bolts on existing climbs is a definite no-no. I would say that chopping pro bolts that have been added to existing climbs is OK, but leave the belay bolts alone.

[ This Message was edited by: apollodorus on 2002-09-26 22:12 ]


micronut


Sep 27, 2002, 10:04 AM
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If they couldn't even get up the 10a on TR, I would question their competance in placing any fixed pro. Did these guys have a power drill or what? Are begginers these days buying a Hilti as part of the standard equip?

It's a good thing guys like Bill are on the scene.


Partner drector


Sep 27, 2002, 10:38 AM
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I didn't read every post because they were so long and though-out. I suggest talking to another climber of the area just to make sure you are not the only person feeling that this is bad. I'm sure any other person there will agree but it's helpful to tell these guys that you ALL think their bolts suck.

They should have chopped the spinner if it was unsafe! Then they should have placed their bolt correctly. Is the spinner spinning because it is threaded and the ut it lose? Not a real safety problem if the but can be tightened but I'd use a torque wrench. Hey... Did they have a torque wrench. If not then you can use that as more ammo when they come back asking why you chopped the bolt. They placed it incorrectly.

It sounds like a chop is in order but still, you should get input from at least one otehr climber.

Dave


mugnyte


Sep 27, 2002, 11:13 AM
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Okay, so I'm another climber at this crag. I've been to this place many times, although I have nowhere near the history with it as Bill.

I'm going out there tomorrow morning just to solo the route and check out these bolts. More later.

mug


billcoe_


Sep 27, 2002, 11:23 AM
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Thank you for the opinions. Your views are as scattered as my own personal thoughts, but like my own tending to want to remove them is the trend.



1st) I've received a couple of PM's asking where this route was from people who want to go pull the bolts. It's at the butte and the route is Blue Bird.



2nd) I had never seen either of these guys before and wouldn't know how to reach them, notice on the tree might work but I suspect they do not get out here reqularly.



3rd) Apollo, this is a 50 footclimb that had been climbed thousands of times on lead and toprope before the 1st "belay" bolt got inserted.



Having said that, although it is a f-ed up mess now, I am still ambivalent on what to do. People now clip the bolts exclusively and don't even back them up. I suspect many do not know how too. I find them convienent, but that of course does not make it right in having htem there. Otherwise, anybody could justify putting in "convenience" bolts all over classic climbs like the Nose just because drilling with a cordless drill is easier than building a belay out of protection. Pulling the bolts will f- it up for those beginners unless they can figure out how to set up a toprope. I appreciate the Ken Wilson quote and there is something to be said for not making it easy or convenient. I didn't participate in the guidebook writing as I felt this area should be more of an "urban wilderness" where one can go figure it out for yourself. You can always toprope any route you wish instead of leading it. Fir trees in Oregon are huge, numerous and I've never seen one damaged by slings as our climbing season is too short, most of the time it's raining and the trees are growing. This area is within the city limits of Portland. That being said, the guidebook came out anyway and people started massing soon after. The bolts have been following the people. As far as contacting the authorities goes..I personally do not want any contact with authorities...of any kind. I climb to get away from those kinds of people, and have never seen where their interjection or "assistance" has helped any situation like this. Portland does not have a unified climbing organization where one can bring something like this up in meetings or something. I would like to have this as a talk and debate to arrive at a consensus - or close anyway. Short of taking a plastic-coated survey and the grease pencil on a tree method I'm not sure how to do that.



I suspect that those who feel stronger than I will rip these bolts out before I get out there next weekend but we'll see. I'm still undecided but maybe I'll bring a wrench anyway in case the spirit moves me. At heart, I'm not sure putting them in or taking them out is a good thing.



Geeeze, I'm right on top of the fence here aren't I?


orangekrush626


Sep 27, 2002, 2:18 PM
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Chop away, dude.

[ This Message was edited by: orangekrush626 on 2002-09-27 14:21 ]


Partner drector


Sep 27, 2002, 5:03 PM
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I guess I was a little confused about what bolts needed chopping. I would certainly limit the number of bolts to 2. If that means chopping the new one then so be it. Otherwise chop the spinner. Like I said before, if it unsafe then it should be removed.

If you are going to chop all of the bolts then you are clearly stating that someone who doesn't own a lead rack cannot climb on the rocks there. That is just a wee bit unfair and elitist.

To go along with that, I always consider the rock to be dead and the tree to be a living thing. Living things desreve a little more repect so I would leave the bolts if they save a tree.

My previous opinion was to chop them but after more thought, it now seems like a middle-of-the-road issue.

Dave


justgoupfromthere


Sep 27, 2002, 5:48 PM
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Wow! I can't believe what I'm hearing. Perhaps the bolts don't NEED to be there, but you said yourself they are convenient. And if you don't want to use the bolts, don't use them, climb it your own way. But let other's climb it their way too. And I think it's a bunch of crap that some of you are raggin on these guys because they can't climb 5.10. Does anyone remember what it's like to be a beginner?
If it's your rock on your land go ahead remove the bolts. And post a notice that this is a no-bolts area. However, if it's public land, then the bolters own it just as much as you do. So leave them alone. I've never placed a bolt and I've never chopped a bolt and never will chop a bolt. You have much more important things to consume your time than chopping bolts. And what if you did remove the bolts and someone climbs the route thinking that the bolts are at the top? Quickdraws don't fit in cracks very well.

LEAVE THE BOLTS!!!


jt512


Sep 27, 2002, 7:34 PM
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Quote:Later I looked at the bolt: it is way too close to the existing "spinner". Factory advice is that you give at least 1 1/2 times the length of the bolt as spacing. This bolt does not offer that much space, and in fact by it's position it is weakening both placements.

Then, clearly, you should remove at least the third bolt, and if the other two placements have been permanently weakened, you should remove them as well.

If there was no valid reason to install the original bolt anchors, then they should be removed as well. It might have been preferrable to have done this a year ago when they were first installed, but if there really isn't any good reason for them, I think you should still remove them. Leaving them allows the precedent to be set that bolt anchors are acceptable at your crag, and I would predict that they will proliferate.

-Jay


sistersboulderingarea


Sep 27, 2002, 9:10 PM
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Hey Bill i like your attitude. You should start a group in P-town that can regulate some stuff like this.

I climbed at Rocky Butte once and must say that there are more problems than these guys putting in a few usless bolts.

Clearly the unsafe pro should be removed. If there are bolts that are completely safe don't remove them just to spite the climbers who arnt skilled or equiped as you.

This crag needs a lot of help. My opinion is that is way to urban allready (houses on top of the hill, bums living in the trees next to the highway).

There is still a good month of climbing up there. Leave them a note let them know what is wrong with the bolts and why they are unsafe.


jt512


Sep 27, 2002, 9:55 PM
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Quote:However, if it's public land, then the bolters own it just as much as you do.

That's logical: It's public land so anybody can do anything to it.

Bolts are not innocuous. They permanently alter the rock. Therefore, the decision to bolt should be judicious.

-Jay


merewyn


Sep 28, 2002, 12:23 AM
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As a young climber who sticks predominantly to bolts, and I like the new shiny ones best of all - I have to say chop em!

I don't know all about your laws in the US regarding sligning trees and what-not, but if it can be protected with natural pro, then no bolts should be placed. Horribly old fashioned for someone so young!

I agree that these guys should be contacted, but not in an effort to be nice to them, but to disuade them from putting in more unneeded bolts.

I like the idea of hiding the epoxy with a bit of dust.


climbingcowboy


Sep 28, 2002, 1:27 AM
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 Bill you sound like a guy who has good ethics, it sounds like from what you said they really arent nessacary and are unsafe. So my opinon is this:
1) at least TRY to notify them first.
2) ask another local climber.
3) remove ANY unsafe bolts
4) you should however leave two bolts the best two even if new ones have to be installed after the bads are removed,
because two reaons, damage to the tree, and more importantly climbers who are thinking there are bolts there and climb only to find none and are without proper equipment to make a safe belay or desent.

This is good of you to ask some of the climbing community before running into action, just make sure to ask your local climbers also.
Geoff

[ This Message was edited by: climbingcowboy on 2002-09-28 01:28 ]

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