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help get me past my limit
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jefffski


Sep 14, 2009, 2:50 PM
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help get me past my limit
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i've been climbing for 15 years--almost all trad. this year and last i've made a big effort to climb at my limit--hard 10s. i have rarely spent time working a route, i think because i love onsighting. this does mean though, that i don't climb above my limit.

for example, yesterday i tr'ed an 11b with one fall. this climb is what i consider, well above my limit. i've never onsighted or redpointed a trad 11.

i want to go try this 11b on lead, but i'm really worried that the moves are too hard to get gear in when i need it.

should i:
tr it again and figure out the gear, or
go for it and risk failing. failing might mean hitting a ledge.

it's so easy to say go for it, but the fear of failing, knowing,or believing that the route is too hard for me, reinforces the idea that i will fail. on 10s, i can convince myself that i'll succeed. no such luck re 11s.

thanks


(This post was edited by jefffski on Sep 15, 2009, 12:11 AM)


lena_chita
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Sep 20, 2009, 7:53 AM
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Re: [jefffski] help get me past my limit [In reply to]
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You have already TR-ed this particular climb. I do not see what difference would it possibly make to TR it again a few times and figure out the moves and the gear before trying to lead it. You don't get more 'points' for leading it after TRing once, vs. leading it after TRing 5 times.

Don't get me wrong, I think it is important, if you want to push your limits, to get on the climbs that are harder than what you have onsighted before and try to lead them without first scouting out the moves on TR. But find a climb with good gear for a first attempt like this, not a climb with a bad fall potential on a ledge... And if you need to first do a few climbs in that grade by learning the moves on TR, to build up your confidence that you CAN do climbs of that grade-- then why not? Tell yourself that you will first redpoint 4 (or whatever number) of climbs in that grade by TRing before attempting to lead, and then pick a lcimb in the same grade and try to lead it onsight.

You have been climbing for a long time. How many times have you fallen on gear in that time? How confident are you in your gear placements? if you don't trust the gear, it would be pretty hard to push past your limit... so do you trust it?


jefffski


Sep 20, 2009, 6:51 PM
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Re: [lena_chita] help get me past my limit [In reply to]
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Good idea. I've deliberately worked a route once only. time to do it again.

Thank you


bradley3297


Oct 6, 2009, 6:28 AM
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Re: [jefffski] help get me past my limit [In reply to]
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thriller off the void is a great first 11b. its softly graded.


blueeyedclimber


Oct 7, 2009, 8:09 AM
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Re: [bradley3297] help get me past my limit [In reply to]
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bradley3297 wrote:
thriller off the void is a great first 11b. its softly graded.

You're also not placing gear at any of the hard parts.

As far as pushing your limits, it all comes down to having confidence in yourself. Not necessarily confidence that you can climb it, but confidence in your decision making and ability to climb safely. First you have to have a good awareness of your actual climbing ability. If you know that your absolute limit on toprope is 11b, then either choose climbs a little easier or choose a well protected route. Second, have confidence in your ability to place gear. If you want to tr a route that is hard for you before you lead it, then that is up to you, but there is nothing wrong with walking up to a climb that you know you will probably not get clean and leading it. If you know that you will make good decisions when you are leading it, then go for it.

Josh


bradley3297


Oct 7, 2009, 10:17 PM
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Re: [jefffski] help get me past my limit [In reply to]
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I have the solution. tr and place mock gear. if you can place good gear while top roping. up you go


jefffski


Oct 7, 2009, 11:45 PM
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Re: [bradley3297] help get me past my limit [In reply to]
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i hear they call that trad sport or gear sport.

maybe it means rethinking what trad means. trad has represented the idea of climbing in a traditional way, that is, without prior practice.

knowing which pieces of gear to place where, and knowing all the moves is a step away from trad. it's still a gear climb though.

kind of like the brits call headpointing, when they practice gritstone climbs.

my love of trad or gear climbs has a lot to do with the mental aspect, figuring out which gear i can sacrifice, when to place it and when to run it out.

i also love the aesthetics of trad climbing--that i am following a natural, and very visible or obvious weakness or feature in the rock. this aesthetic is often missing in sport climbs.

so, while the idea of prior practice keeps the aesthetic of the climb, it removes some of the joy of the puzzle.

just some thoughts.


arnoilgner


Oct 16, 2009, 9:22 AM
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Re: [jefffski] help get me past my limit [In reply to]
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hi jefffski,
the overriding concern should be taking an appropriate risk. if you don't know the gear will hold a fall then you need to find out. one person suggested mock leading on tr while you place gear. i think that is an excellent suggestion with one addition: fall on the gear you place. to do this you'll need two belayers, one for the tr and one for the lead rope. have the tr belayer keep the slack in the rope so the lead rope will catch the fall. but, have just enough slack in the tr so it catches you if the piece blows.
-
you need experiential knowledge that your gear will hold. this will give it to you.
seems like you also need to work sport routes and do falling practice. on-sighting is fine but you'll learn skills redpointing that will make you a better on-sighter.
arno


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