Forums: Climbing Information: Regional Discussions:
Linville gorge am I skilled enough?
RSS FeedRSS Feeds for Regional Discussions

Premier Sponsor:

 


justing_z71


Aug 12, 2011, 12:31 AM
Post #1 of 13 (3098 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Aug 11, 2011
Posts: 3

Linville gorge am I skilled enough?  (North_America: United_States: North_Carolina: Western: Linville_Gorge)
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

Ok me and a couple of friends were thinking of visiting linville gorge. But none of us have ever climbed with trad gear. Most of us have climbed routes only up to 5.9 but LG has some routes rated at 5.5 or so that I assume we could try. Would our lack of experience with trad gear keep us from being able to climb here?


sungam


Aug 12, 2011, 12:58 AM
Post #2 of 13 (3088 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Jun 24, 2004
Posts: 26611

Re: [justing_z71] Linville gorge am I skilled enough? [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

justing_z71 wrote:
Ok me and a couple of friends were thinking of visiting linville gorge. But none of us have ever climbed with trad gear. Most of us have climbed routes only up to 5.9 but LG has some routes rated at 5.5 or so that I assume we could try. Would our lack of experience with trad gear keep us from being able to climb here?
Not sure what you are asking here. Are you asking if you should solo the 5.5's? Doesn't seem like the greatest of ideas.

Or are you asking if you could lead them on gear not knowing anything about gear? Awful idea.


justing_z71


Aug 12, 2011, 2:21 AM
Post #3 of 13 (3075 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Aug 11, 2011
Posts: 3

Re: [sungam] Linville gorge am I skilled enough? [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

No Im not saying I should solo. And I know how to use the gear just have never done it before. My thinking is that yes I know I have no experience with trad climbing, but it is a 5.5. am I being to ambitous maybe?


johnwesely


Aug 12, 2011, 3:50 AM
Post #4 of 13 (3059 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Jun 12, 2006
Posts: 5343

Re: [justing_z71] Linville gorge am I skilled enough? [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

justing_z71 wrote:
No Im not saying I should solo. And I know how to use the gear just have never done it before.

No you don't.

My thinking is that yes I know I have no experience with trad climbing, but it is a 5.5. am I being to ambitous maybe?
Chances are that a 5.5 at Linville might feel as hard or harder than the sub 5.9 sport routes you are used to. Do you really want to be at or anywhere near your limit while essentially freesoloing, which is what you will be doing given your lack of experience? Not to mention that these routes are multiple pitches and very much in a wilderness setting. If something does go wrong, it is not going to be anything like an accident that occurs while cragging. For your own sake, find someone that knows what they are doing and learn to climb the right way.


(This post was edited by johnwesely on Aug 12, 2011, 3:51 AM)


Partner j_ung


Aug 12, 2011, 4:29 AM
Post #5 of 13 (3048 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Nov 21, 2003
Posts: 18689

Re: [justing_z71] Linville gorge am I skilled enough? [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

I wouldn't, if I were you. It's a better idea to start your trad climbing on single-pitch routes, where you don't have manage multi-pitch transitions.


naitch


Aug 12, 2011, 4:43 AM
Post #6 of 13 (3043 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Apr 17, 2002
Posts: 535

Re: [justing_z71] Linville gorge am I skilled enough? [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

If you haven't lead trad before you don't "know" how to use gear. Big difference between experiential knowledge and book/head knowledge. A backcountry crag is not a good place to do your first lead - just not wise in my opinion. You say you climb 5.9. What's that mean? Gym, TR? Sport?


noell


Aug 12, 2011, 8:49 AM
Post #7 of 13 (2982 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Apr 17, 2003
Posts: 313

Re: [justing_z71] Linville gorge am I skilled enough? [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

My recommendation would be to go with someone that has climbed trad before and learn by doing.


rsmillbern


Aug 12, 2011, 9:28 AM
Post #8 of 13 (2957 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Sep 29, 2005
Posts: 318

Re: [justing_z71] Linville gorge am I skilled enough? [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

I will second almost everything said here. Start trad with someone who has some experience, or hire a guide. Linville is awesome, and a great place to learn trad (this is where I did), but I would strongly recommend starting slow.


thatguyat99


Aug 12, 2011, 11:35 AM
Post #9 of 13 (2920 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Aug 24, 2008
Posts: 121

Re: [justing_z71] Linville gorge am I skilled enough? [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

Linville Gorge is a good place to learn but probably not the best place to do your first ever trad lead. As said before, the routes there are almost all multi pitch. Whether it's 5.5 or not, it sounds as if you have never built an anchor, done a hanging belay, or know how to manage rope and gear on a multipitch trad route. Plus the remoteness of the Gorge and route finding as well the approaches to the climbs. This area is more adventurous than the local sport climbing crag.

I suggest finding someone that knows trad and do some single pitch stuff. If you have to go Linville then go with someone who has climbed there and knows trad. Enjoy and learn.


justing_z71


Aug 12, 2011, 12:17 PM
Post #10 of 13 (2908 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Aug 11, 2011
Posts: 3

Re: [naitch] Linville gorge am I skilled enough? [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

naitch wrote:
If you haven't lead trad before you don't "know" how to use gear. Big difference between experiential knowledge and book/head knowledge. A backcountry crag is not a good place to do your first lead - just not wise in my opinion. You say you climb 5.9. What's that mean? Gym, TR? Sport?

Sport


scrapedape


Aug 13, 2011, 9:00 AM
Post #11 of 13 (2868 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Jun 23, 2004
Posts: 2392

Re: [justing_z71] Linville gorge am I skilled enough? [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

justing_z71 wrote:
Ok me and a couple of friends were thinking of visiting linville gorge. But none of us have ever climbed with trad gear. Most of us have climbed routes only up to 5.9 but LG has some routes rated at 5.5 or so that I assume we could try. Would our lack of experience with trad gear keep us from being able to climb here?

A lack of experience with trad gear certainly can't stop you from climbing there. But it may not be the most prudent thing to do, for a couple of reasons. First, it's questionable whether it is ever a good idea to try to teach yourself how to place gear and manage the belay system. You can search around this forum for a lot of advice on ways to learn these skills before you get out on lead, but I think most folks would agree that the preferred approach is to learn by following someone who already knows what he or she is doing.

Second, Linville is a somewhat remote setting. Parts of it could fairly be called wilderness - rough trail access and spotty or nonexistent cell phone service. Even Table Rock is an hour's drive from the nearest real town.

Finally, from what I recall, the protection opportunities are not always abundant. One thing you want in your early leads is not just easy climbing, but plenty of places to place gear.

The grades on the easier routes at Linville are typical for NC, which is to say neither sandbagged nor soft. However I can't speak to how stiff the grades are at your local sport crag, so 5.9 there may not be comparable to 5.9 at Linville. I think a safe number is indeed about 4 number grades below your limit. You have to realize that when you are learning to lead, you are essentially free soloing.


rtwilli4


Aug 13, 2011, 9:22 AM
Post #12 of 13 (2860 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Feb 14, 2008
Posts: 1867

Re: [justing_z71] Linville gorge am I skilled enough? [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

I'll add just one more thing. If you aren't used to being out in the back country, you'll quickly get lost in Linville. Not horribly so, but enough to substantially shorten your amount of climbing time. Linville isn't really THAT far away from civ, but it's far enough to be mentioned. If you have some sort of problem, be it with climbing, approaching or descending, rescue is slow, if available at all.

Getting familiar w/ bush-whacking, route finding and descent options are all things to do before you head into the gorge, even if it is just Table Rock. And it sounds like you should add "learn how to climb" to last list before getting on the Mummy, Daddy or the Prow or any other 5.5's you've seen on the internet.


horseshoe


Aug 13, 2011, 4:00 PM
Post #13 of 13 (2800 views)
Shortcut

Registered: Nov 14, 2007
Posts: 41

Re: [rtwilli4] Linville gorge am I skilled enough? [In reply to]
Report this Post
Average: avg_1 avg_2 avg_3 avg_4 avg_5 (0 ratings)  
Can't Post

rtwilli4 wrote:
I'll add just one more thing. If you aren't used to being out in the back country, you'll quickly get lost in Linville. Not horribly so, but enough to substantially shorten your amount of climbing time. Linville isn't really THAT far away from civ, but it's far enough to be mentioned. If you have some sort of problem, be it with climbing, approaching or descending, rescue is slow, if available at all.

Getting familiar w/ bush-whacking, route finding and descent options are all things to do before you head into the gorge, even if it is just Table Rock. And it sounds like you should add "learn how to climb" to last list before getting on the Mummy, Daddy or the Prow or any other 5.5's you've seen on the internet.

Yes, it is very easy to get lost in the Gorge--especially for a first time visitor! It is also easy to get on the wrong route and/or to get lost on a route. It is often difficult to hear your belayer. Thunder storms can develop very quickly--and depending on your location you may have very little warning.

The Gorge is a great place to climb--it just requires a well-developed skill set for trail finding, route finding, self rescue, etc.


Forums : Climbing Information : Regional Discussions

 


Search for (options)

Log In:

Username:
Password: Remember me:

Go Register
Go Lost Password?



Follow us on Twiter Become a Fan on Facebook