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taydude


Aug 10, 2009, 11:08 AM
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How much gear do you carry?
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So I just went to the Gunks for the first time this weekend. It was amazing but I got my butt kicked. I lead a 120' 5.5 and was completely exhausted by the end. I was carrying a double set of cams and nuts plus about 10 small tricams pink-blue and more trad draws than I can remember. I feel like the weight of the rack might have been limiting me a bit.

What do you guys tend to do? At some point once I'm more experienced I'd like to start leading trad closer to my sport limit but I feel like it would be impossible with so much gear.


suprasoup


Aug 10, 2009, 11:24 AM
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Re: [taydude] How much gear do you carry? [In reply to]
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Wait you took a doubles rack up a single pitch route???Crazy

Edit: JK, taydude. When your first starting out it's always a good idea to carry more than what you think you'll need. The more experience you gain, the better you'll be able to assess what you can leave behind.


(This post was edited by suprasoup on Aug 10, 2009, 11:57 AM)


fresh


Aug 10, 2009, 11:40 AM
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how many cams? like 15 it sounds like? it probably didn't help but I doubt it was the real limiting factor. 5.5's in the gunks don't require as much of a strength-to-weight ratio as they require observation, balance, and finesse.

I usually take 10 cams, 1.5 sets of nuts, 2 hexes, 8 alpine draws, 2 quickdraws, 4 shoulder slings, 2 double-length slings, and I normally have a ton left over after moderate pitches.


sween345


Aug 10, 2009, 11:44 AM
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  Jackie?


shimanilami


Aug 10, 2009, 11:44 AM
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My goal whether I'm climbing sport or trad is to carry only what I need, nothing more and nothing less. It takes some experience to learn how to gauge this, but it will come with time. One thing that will help is to study what you didn't place at the end of a pitch. You might begin to see patterns that will help you refine your attack the next time around.

In the meanwhile, I'd suggest that the size of your rack is not the reason you were exhausted after 120' of 5.5 climbing. Face it, you were gripped. With experience, you'll learn how to relax on trad and eventually push the same grades that you do in sport.


shockabuku


Aug 10, 2009, 11:45 AM
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Seems like you rarely need doubles at the Gunks except maybe in the small range of cams (< #1 Camalot). My standard rack was:

one set of nuts
pink, red, and brown tricams though I rarely used the brown
blue, green, and yellow Aliens
blue, yellow, orange, and red Metolius FCUs
#1-#3 Camalots.

I always carried about a dozen trad draws, couple of extra slings (1 48", 1-2 24") and a couple of extra locking biners.

I think I might have added a .75 and another #1 Camalot if anything.


suprasoup


Aug 10, 2009, 12:00 PM
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In reply to:
With experience, you'll learn how to relax on trad and eventually push the same grades that you do in sport.

Man I'm still waiting for the day I even come close to my sport grade...Unsure


tigerlilly


Aug 10, 2009, 1:28 PM
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My main trad partner and mentor has been climbing in the Gunks for about 25 years. He's 66, not particularly aggressive and leads up to 5.6 and a few favorite 5.7's. He has 11 cams (C4s and Tech Friends) that he usually carries, a set and a half of nuts, 3 tricams (red, brown, blue) 11 trad draws and 2-3 shoulder slings. For certain routes that call for large gear, he'll add a #4 C4 and/or a couple large hexes. He was comparing his rack to that of some other folks we climb with, and he's probably the most minimalist. When I lead on his rack, I often wish for (and sometimes bring my own) extra cams in the fingers to hand sizes. I also sometimes bring my own pink tricam. I tend to place a little more gear than he would for the same pitch.

Another guy I climb with leads 5.8's with as much stuff as you describe (he has three #2 C4's), plus hexes, and all his biners are heavy old 1970's ovals and D's (read: extra heavy). He's strong enough to get away with it, and used to carrying it. I doubt I could get off the ground carrying his rack. Shocked

Kathy


(This post was edited by tigerlilly on Aug 10, 2009, 1:29 PM)


taydude


Aug 10, 2009, 1:31 PM
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thanks for the advice guys. I'm going to start keeping an eye on what gear i've got left over after a pitch.


qtm


Aug 10, 2009, 2:12 PM
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Yeah, when I started I was sewing up the routes, all the way to the top. I think one time I had 25 cams on me. At that point, my goal was placing gear, and so I made a point to place as much as possible.

With more experience and help from mentors, I learned to place gear more efficiently, placing less gear but at better points along the climb. As you gain more experience, you get a better idea of what is safe, what is risky, what is downright dangerous, and where you feel comfortable. There's nothing wrong with placing a lot of gear, whatever makes you feel comfortable, safety is important.

Still, at the top of each climb, take a look at what gear you have left. Are you getting to the top with 9 out of 10 tricams? Used up all your small cams and still felt you didn't have enough? As you go you'll figure out what works for you.

My standard rack is 15 cams, set of nuts and 12 runners. I'll add more or less depending on the route, if there are cruxes near the top, traverses, multiple gear anchors.

I don't find extra gear slows me down much (then again I don't lead all too hard so what do I know...) What does slow me down when I'm not careful is rope drag. Easy to get the rope running badly and adding friction.

So, what route was it? Updraft? Ursula?


coolcat83


Aug 10, 2009, 2:16 PM
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It's also the Gunks, some of those 5.5 pitches are pretty hard for the grade till you finesse the route. I carry a set of nuts with double 4-6, a 6 and a 8 hex(good for large nut placements and have come in handy), tricams two pink, one red-blue, 14 cams ranging from a purple tcu to a #8 metolius, doubles in mid size. keep in mind i'm doing more than one pitch, and I like to sew it up if I can. I also carry 3 quickdraws, 6-7 trad draws, and a couple triple runners. Plus belay device, cordolette, misc stuff... never felt like the gear has held me down, it's almost always my mind that keeps me from doing something hard.
If i do something that's shorter I cut down on the gear.


(This post was edited by coolcat83 on Aug 10, 2009, 2:26 PM)


zealotnoob


Aug 10, 2009, 2:25 PM
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shimanilami wrote:
With experience, you'll learn how to relax on trad and eventually push the same grades that you do in sport.

I'd agree with this given G gear on the trad route.


bill413


Aug 10, 2009, 5:32 PM
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What fresh & others have said.

I carry
1 set of 7 cams (of various flavors) from Metolious 00 to Camalot #2
Tricams: 0.5 (2 of em), 1 (1 of em), 1.5, 2, 2.5, #5 (for Baby, & other large placements)
Nuts: one set + some leftovers
Micronuts: small wires
A couple of small hexes, (like a #3 & #2) just cause they're on the micronut biner.
I also carry, frequently, a #4 camelot, which I try & place very low on the pitch so my second has to carry it.

Several slings (5-6) one or 2 double length slings, a couple of quickdraws (trad or sport)
2 "cordalettes" (or equalettes) when I leave the ground...after the first anchor, I'm only carrying one.
1 sceamer

I feel like my rack is on the heavy side.

One other point that hasn't been mentioned - find the good stance to place pro. If you are holding on with one finger and your big toe while you fiddle with gear, you will be wiped at the end of the climb. If you have two feet on a ledge and a no-hand stance when you place gear, you'll be much fresher. Most of your placements will be between those extremes, but always look for a good place to stand when placing gear.


AntinJ


Aug 10, 2009, 5:52 PM
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Being relatively new to climbing myself - I have often tried to slim down my rack as much as possible by inspecting the route from the ground, or using a guide book. Just remember that many types of gear are interchangeable as long as you are comfy placing bomber passive pro.

How often are you running out of stuff by the end of the pitch?


Partner rgold


Aug 10, 2009, 7:02 PM
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I kinda like the opposite philosophy from the one mentioned: I like to have a single all-purpose rack that I basically use for everything in the Gunks. Other areas have other demands, but there too I try to figure out what works in general.

I posted this somewhere else but it doesn't do any harm to repeat: my standard Gunks rack is large but not as big as some:

A set of Metolius Curve Nuts.
A set of assorted brass trinkets.
A set of BD C3's---usually not the grey.
Aliens blue, green, yellow, grey, and red.
BD C4's purple, 2 green, red, yellow.
A blue C4 usually stays on the ground.

Twelve trad draws, six free biners, some over-the-shoulder slings including a double-length one.

This pretty much amounts to a double set of cams through the green C4 size, with most of the doubling occurring in the less reliable small sizes. This works for me on almost all climbs from 5.8 to 5.10, even if I combine pitches into a 200 foot extravaganza.

So I were you I'd ditch the 10 (!) tricams, or at least pare it down to four, go to a single set of nuts and lose the doubles in the largest cam sizes.

Then stop overgripping!


taydude


Aug 10, 2009, 7:38 PM
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qtm wrote:
Yeah, when I started I was sewing up the routes, all the way to the top. I think one time I had 25 cams on me. At that point, my goal was placing gear, and so I made a point to place as much as possible.

With more experience and help from mentors, I learned to place gear more efficiently, placing less gear but at better points along the climb. As you gain more experience, you get a better idea of what is safe, what is risky, what is downright dangerous, and where you feel comfortable. There's nothing wrong with placing a lot of gear, whatever makes you feel comfortable, safety is important.

Still, at the top of each climb, take a look at what gear you have left. Are you getting to the top with 9 out of 10 tricams? Used up all your small cams and still felt you didn't have enough? As you go you'll figure out what works for you.

My standard rack is 15 cams, set of nuts and 12 runners. I'll add more or less depending on the route, if there are cruxes near the top, traverses, multiple gear anchors.

I don't find extra gear slows me down much (then again I don't lead all too hard so what do I know...) What does slow me down when I'm not careful is rope drag. Easy to get the rope running badly and adding friction.

So, what route was it? Updraft? Ursula?

It was actually Horseman. The corner system at the beginning really killed me. I just couldn't find a solid stance to stop and place gear. Luckily i got a good rest after the traverse and cruised the end. I ended up running out of slings and had to use a couple nuts as a draw at the end haha.


shockabuku


Aug 10, 2009, 8:09 PM
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Heh, Horseman kind of freaks me out too.


caughtinside


Aug 10, 2009, 8:13 PM
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Generally I take 12 cams and 12 nuts for a normal longish pitch.

If it's short cragging I'll shed a couple cams as needed.

No tricams, they're less useful out here.


AntinJ


Aug 10, 2009, 8:13 PM
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haha Nice work Taydude! I led at the Gunks for the first time in December and almost ran out of gear before the crux on Shockley's (missed the obvious belay station(s))...lesson learned. Don't worry it gets better with time!

But to answer your question:
Set of C4's to #4
Set of C3's
1 set of nuts
3 Tricams
8-10 trad draws

Sometimes Hexes, depending on the climb


(This post was edited by AntinJ on Aug 10, 2009, 8:16 PM)


coolcat83


Aug 10, 2009, 8:36 PM
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taydude wrote:
qtm wrote:
Yeah, when I started I was sewing up the routes, all the way to the top. I think one time I had 25 cams on me. At that point, my goal was placing gear, and so I made a point to place as much as possible.

With more experience and help from mentors, I learned to place gear more efficiently, placing less gear but at better points along the climb. As you gain more experience, you get a better idea of what is safe, what is risky, what is downright dangerous, and where you feel comfortable. There's nothing wrong with placing a lot of gear, whatever makes you feel comfortable, safety is important.

Still, at the top of each climb, take a look at what gear you have left. Are you getting to the top with 9 out of 10 tricams? Used up all your small cams and still felt you didn't have enough? As you go you'll figure out what works for you.

My standard rack is 15 cams, set of nuts and 12 runners. I'll add more or less depending on the route, if there are cruxes near the top, traverses, multiple gear anchors.

I don't find extra gear slows me down much (then again I don't lead all too hard so what do I know...) What does slow me down when I'm not careful is rope drag. Easy to get the rope running badly and adding friction.

So, what route was it? Updraft? Ursula?

It was actually Horseman. The corner system at the beginning really killed me. I just couldn't find a solid stance to stop and place gear. Luckily i got a good rest after the traverse and cruised the end. I ended up running out of slings and had to use a couple nuts as a draw at the end haha.

Interesting that I usually have a nice rest before the traverse, which is hardest for me, then a shake out by the optional belay, which i skip and just cruse to the top. The feet are really important to find stances on Horseman (as with most routes), some of the feet for decent stances can be found on the face, like some dished out areas. Also remembering that there's a nice crack there helps, I've thrown a hand jamb or two in there. That said I don't thin i've ever done the route exactly the same way twice...something about it, and yeah it's freaky for a 5.5, unusually steep and fairly sustained at points imo.


taydude


Aug 10, 2009, 8:48 PM
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Yeah after Horseman I got on Black Fly also 5.5 and it felt like a cake walk. It seems like the stars at the Gunks are a rating system in themselves.


apeman_e


Aug 10, 2009, 9:08 PM
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You must be be wildly over-gripping to be spent at the top of horseman. Outside of the brief traverse to get to the optional belay, you can keep all your weight on your feet for the entire climb.

Another thought on rack weight: Having unused cams in the small sizes, and carrying a few extra nuts, doesn't weight all that much. It's the big cams that add up quick. Also, placing tricams can be very tiring. No one needs ten of 'em.


tradrenn


Aug 12, 2009, 12:04 PM
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Last time I climbed at the Gunks my rack looked like this:

Stoppers:
#4 to 8 with triples in 6, 7, 8. (BD)
Aliens:
Black, Blue, 2x Green, 2x Yellow, Gray, Red
Camalots:
.5 to 3 one of each.
Tricams:
Pink, Red, Brown.

8 2foot draws (tripled)
1 3foot draw
1 1foot draw with revolving rope biner.

Cordolette with 4 lockers
Reverso on a locker.


tradrenn


Aug 12, 2009, 12:11 PM
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Have you gone to the Gunks yet ?


granite_grrl


Aug 14, 2009, 7:08 AM
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IMO carrying a double set of cams on climbs such as you'll find at the Gunks is pretty silly. These aren't crack climbs, and there are nut placements a plenty, so why all the cams?

Double up on the medium nuts, make sure you have your tri-cams, get rid of your extra cams and you'll have a pretty good Gunks rack.

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