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northcave


Oct 25, 2010, 3:35 AM
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Leash or no Leash?
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I'm relatively new to alpine stuff. Done a few routes around PD. Anyway I'l always used my leashes but increasingly i see people doing full alpine mixed routes without leashes on their axes. Surely this can't be a good idea? I mean dropping an axe half way up a gully or hard pitch is not good and you only need to accidentally knock it when getting some gear or shacking out.

What are people views on this and personal experiences. Is it somewhat one of those things where having a leach is not cool anymore?

Thanks

Tim


meanandugly


Oct 25, 2010, 4:29 AM
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Re: [northcave] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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I don't worry about cool, I measure it by what a dropped tool will do to my day. So single (or 2) pitche(s) Not an end to a good day of climbing so leashless it is. Multi-pitch...never dropped a tool, but it would really screw your day if you dropped one on 6th pitch.
I love the freedom of leashless, so this year I am going to give the spinner leash a try.


brokesomeribs


Oct 25, 2010, 6:23 AM
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Re: [northcave] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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northcave wrote:
I'm relatively new to alpine stuff. Done a few routes around PD. Anyway I'l always used my leashes but increasingly i see people doing full alpine mixed routes without leashes on their axes. Surely this can't be a good idea? I mean dropping an axe half way up a gully or hard pitch is not good and you only need to accidentally knock it when getting some gear or shacking out.

What are people views on this and personal experiences. Is it somewhat one of those things where having a leach is not cool anymore?

Thanks

Tim

Leashes have gone the way of the dinosaur. They force you to wear thicker gloves, make your hands colder, make your swings less precise, give you the screaming barfies from lack of circulation, are a pain in the ass to disengage to place screws, and make it impossible to match on tools.

Get a proper leashless tool (Cobra, Viper, Nomic, Quark, X Monster, etc) and your climbing will jump a full grade.

If it's a route with high commitment, get a pair of tethers, AKA the spinner leash. If you don't want to spend $50 on the Black Diamond model, I make them myself and mine are double the strength - the weakest component (the swivel) is rated to 880 lbs. The BD is rated to 2Kn (450 lbs).


kaizen


Oct 25, 2010, 6:29 AM
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brokesomeribs wrote:
If it's a route with high commitment, get a pair of tethers, AKA the spinner leash. If you don't want to spend $50 on the Black Diamond model, I make them myself and mine are double the strength - the weakest component (the swivel) is rated to 880 lbs. The BD is rated to 2Kn (450 lbs).

Any instructions/material info you care to share on your own tethers? I am in the need for some, and was going to post this morning on what people use/have made.


climbingaggie03


Oct 25, 2010, 6:57 AM
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Re: [kaizen] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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i'm not too sure of the lengths, but I've got a buddy who made some. He bought some webbing (1inch I think) opened it up and put shock cord in it. He tied a loop in the middle, loops on the end and off you go. Seeing as it's october, I haven't ice climbed with him in a while so I'm kinda rusty on the details, but I'm sure it's not too hard.


jnrose5


Oct 25, 2010, 1:20 PM
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Re: [climbingaggie03] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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I've seen really elaborate homemade leashes, but I'm not exactly sure that it needs such a high level of attention. If the main worry is potentially dropping a tool on a route, you really need nothing more than a very thin piece of bungy cord attached to each tool. No webbing, carabiners, swivels, etc.

Anything more than this is only necessary if you were to fall onto one of your tools that remained stuck in the ice or rock. I've never been in that situation (not to say that it never happens, it just hasn't happened to me). A good argument could be made that if you have the chance to make something full strength, why not do so? To me, simplicity is not only more practical, but it also keeps me away from a false sense of security, whether that be in my full strength leashes or my climbing (in)ability.


the_climber


Oct 26, 2010, 2:23 PM
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Re: [brokesomeribs] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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brokesomeribs wrote:
Leashes have gone the way of the dinosaur. They force you to wear thicker gloves, make your hands colder, make your swings less precise, give you the screaming barfies from lack of circulation, are a pain in the ass to disengage to place screws, and make it impossible to match on tools.

Get a proper leashless tool (Cobra, Viper, Nomic, Quark, X Monster, etc) and your climbing will jump a full grade.

Saying Leashes have gone the way of the dinosaur is a bit of a stretch.
And they don't force you to wear thicker gloves (I often wear MTB gloves or Mechanics gloves when climbing... doesn't get thinner than that). If they are effecting your swing, or cutting circulation off they are not adjusted correctly. As far as placing screws... for pure ice the androids really are about as fast as leashless for placing screws.

Better technique with body position, finding stances and reading ice will improve one's climbing more than simply getting a "leashless" tool.

Leashes have their place, and leashless has it's place. Simply different tools for similar jobs. Leashes should be adjusted so that they are not weighted until you're grip is relaxed, and should be set long enough to never restrict the swing.


dr_feelgood


Oct 26, 2010, 3:17 PM
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Re: [the_climber] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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Leashes are for dogs.


the_climber


Oct 26, 2010, 3:34 PM
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dr_feelgood wrote:
Leashes are for dogs.

And collars are for slaves.


Colinhoglund


Oct 26, 2010, 4:29 PM
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Re: [northcave] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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Leashless is great in the alpine, especially when you need to quickly switch to plunging, then back to swinging, then clipped to your harness etc. A few of my partners go totally free.
That being said, even though I haven't dropped a tool since my second day of leashless climbing, I'd probably use some light bungie tethers in the alpine/really long ice route where dropping a tool would end my day. $2 worth of tiny bungie and a few light cheapo biners would do it for me.


daneburns


Oct 28, 2010, 9:32 AM
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Re: [northcave] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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Leashless climbing on a specifically designed leashless tool is easier and warmer. Trying to do so on a tool that is not designed to give you the added support can be frustratiing and won't help your climbing ability.

Likely more than you ever wanted to know but the links may help:

http://coldthistle.blogspot.com/2010/01/ice-tool-umbilicals.html


(This post was edited by daneburns on Oct 28, 2010, 10:35 AM)


granite_grrl


Oct 29, 2010, 6:50 PM
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Re: [daneburns] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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I started leashless and it was totally the way to go.

That being said the OP was talking in terms of "alpine". Not sure if he's apply this to one or two pitch WI routes or if he's actually in an alpine environment. If I was heading into the mountains I might rather have something other than my leashless tools.


meanandugly


Oct 29, 2010, 7:29 PM
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And clip them in with dovols....


daneburns


Oct 30, 2010, 11:18 PM
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This seems pretty alpine to me :) But kidding aside, I don't use leashes anywhere these days. I do how ever use umbilicals.



Jon Griffith photo

http://www.alpineexposures.com/blogs/chamonix-conditions/648962-general-update-and-steck-record-10-jan


EvilMonkey


Nov 2, 2010, 5:23 AM
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Re: [granite_grrl] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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In reply to:
I started leashless and it was totally the way to go.
i've gotta disagree with you there. i spent my first season climbing on straight-shaft tools, and i think that's the way to go. it really gave me a respect for some of the equipment that so many of our routes were put-up using. getting in and out of non-clipper leashes is a real pain in the nuts.

in my opinion, with modern leashless tools, the only need for leashes is when soloing on harder grade ice. otherwise, teathers or just a nasty kung fu grip.


granite_grrl


Nov 3, 2010, 6:03 PM
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Re: [EvilMonkey] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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EvilMonkey wrote:
In reply to:
I started leashless and it was totally the way to go.
i've gotta disagree with you there. i spent my first season climbing on straight-shaft tools, and i think that's the way to go. it really gave me a respect for some of the equipment that so many of our routes were put-up using. getting in and out of non-clipper leashes is a real pain in the nuts.

in my opinion, with modern leashless tools, the only need for leashes is when soloing on harder grade ice. otherwise, teathers or just a nasty kung fu grip.
Do you still climb WI on straight shafted tools?


Colinhoglund


Nov 4, 2010, 10:56 AM
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EvilMonkey wrote:
In reply to:
I started leashless and it was totally the way to go.
i've gotta disagree with you there. i spent my first season climbing on straight-shaft tools, and i think that's the way to go. it really gave me a respect for some of the equipment that so many of our routes were put-up using. getting in and out of non-clipper leashes is a real pain in the nuts.

in my opinion, with modern leashless tools, the only need for leashes is when soloing on harder grade ice. otherwise, teathers or just a nasty kung fu grip.

Or we could respectfully acknowledge the effort of the first ascentionist by not chest pounding about how good we are, and still enjoy the bonuses of modern equipment. I don't hear anyone debating about the pros and cons of modern screws over the old pound ins. If you like the old style tools so be it, a great deal of us like l leash less. Which does bring up a good point though, the oldschool strait shaft tools (that require leashes) do work swell for plunging in alpine settings. However we also now have tools like the Sum'tec. Leashed/leashless all in one, have your cake and eat it to.


bearbreeder


Nov 8, 2010, 1:11 PM
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Re: [northcave] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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leashless ...

leashes are for hawt gurls ;)


shoo


Nov 8, 2010, 1:18 PM
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Re: [northcave] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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Leashes are like hexes. There are only two types of people who use them: 1) n00bs, 2) old hardmen/women who fucking earned it and don't give a shit about your newfangled technocrap.


Partner epoch
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Nov 8, 2010, 1:54 PM
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shoo wrote:
Leashes are like hexes. There are only two types of people who use them: 1) n00bs, 2) old hardmen/women who fucking earned it and don't give a shit about your newfangled technocrap.

Gold.

Fucking Gold!!!!


shoo


Nov 9, 2010, 7:10 AM
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Re: [epoch] Leash or no Leash? [In reply to]
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epoch wrote:
shoo wrote:
Leashes are like hexes. There are only two types of people who use them: 1) n00bs, 2) old hardmen/women who fucking earned it and don't give a shit about your newfangled technocrap.

Gold.

Fucking Gold!!!!

Thanks!

The only time I really ever recommend someone use leashes is when I'm teaching an absolute beginner to climb ice and I suspect they'd be likely to drop tools. This is mostly with people who have little rock experience who aren't likely to take up ice climbing as a long-term sport. They probably aren't going to be able to utilize any of the advantages that leashless offers anyway, and I'd rather not have myself or others impaled by errant tools.

I will go ahead and note that Mark Synnott, one of New England's better known guides and badasses under the age of 50, strongly recommends leashes for hard, multi-pitch ice. While I don't agree with him, it's worth pointing out.


Edvin


Nov 9, 2010, 12:53 PM
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I started ice climbing last winter, went without leashed right away . The number one reason I fail on steeperground(WI5 and higher) is that my hands and forearms get so pumped I simply can't hold my tools anymore.

Been thinking about using a leash on one axe to hang from when placing gear. Good idea? Bad idea? Which muscle group fails first for you?


daneburns


Nov 9, 2010, 7:04 PM
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Edvin wrote:
The number one reason I fail on steeperground(WI5 and higher) is that my hands and forearms get so pumped I simply can't hold my tools anymore.

Ice climbing should be more like rock climbing. No reason to fail because of strength. Better to work your technique on leashless tools and learn how to avoid the pump.


sandstone


Nov 9, 2010, 8:36 PM
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Edvin wrote:
...Which muscle group fails first for you?

In a discussion on another website someone pointed out that most people flame out not because they can't pull up anymore, but because they can't swing anymore. The point being to make sure you include training for swinging.


Guran


Nov 11, 2010, 7:33 AM
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sandstone wrote:
Edvin wrote:
...Which muscle group fails first for you?

In a discussion on another website someone pointed out that most people flame out not because they can't pull up anymore, but because they can't swing anymore. The point being to make sure you include training for swinging.

+1

If you only manage to plant that tool well into the ice you can always go "F*ck style points", clip a sling to your tool and get some rest.
If you find yourself unable to swing your next tool properly while the other one is too poorly planted to trust... then you're screwed.

And the pump is almost always a sign of poor techique, not weak arms.

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