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Anchoring a rappel to a tree. Is this acceptable?
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trailrun.one


May 21, 2012, 4:42 PM
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Anchoring a rappel to a tree. Is this acceptable?
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I’m relatively new to climbing. After a day of climbing I had set up a rappel, anchoring it around a couple of trees using a clove hitch backed up with a bowline. It was a solid anchor in my opinion. A pair of climbers were walking by and the guy put his hands on his hips and said to his girl friend. “That type of knot hurts the trees”

Is this acceptable? I have seen the local guides set this type of thing up for a class. ( I think is was the same knot )

I guess a climber has a responsibility to help keep the climbing area as they found it or better condition and that would include keeping the trees healthy. Where should one draw the line here? It was a National Recreation Area and the trees most likely are a “protected resource” What do you think?


socalclimber


May 21, 2012, 7:12 PM
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Re: [trailrun.one] Anchoring a rappel to a tree. Is this acceptable? [In reply to]
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As far as I'm concerned, if you have no other option, then use the tree. If you have other options, then pick those first.

Out of curiosity, did you ask the other climber if he had any recommendations for the tree tie off that would have worked better in his opinion?

Just because a guide did it that way does not necessarily make it right. There are lot's of guides who do very questionable things.

I see it all the time out here in Joshua Tree.

Regardless of a state part, national park etc, do your best to not trash vegetation.


patto


May 21, 2012, 7:54 PM
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Re: [trailrun.one] Anchoring a rappel to a tree. Is this acceptable? [In reply to]
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Rigging using trees should be avoided in popular areas. Too much use will kill trees. Especially if you are pulling rappels.


socalclimber


May 21, 2012, 8:44 PM
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Re: [patto] Anchoring a rappel to a tree. Is this acceptable? [In reply to]
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I would argue in favor of placing rap anchors if trees are the only other option. Especially in areas of high use.

That is as long as there is not some bolt ban or permit required to place bolts.


majid_sabet


May 21, 2012, 9:35 PM
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Re: [trailrun.one] Anchoring a rappel to a tree. Is this acceptable? [In reply to]
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trailrun.one wrote:
I’m relatively new to climbing. After a day of climbing I had set up a rappel, anchoring it around a couple of trees using a clove hitch backed up with a bowline. It was a solid anchor in my opinion. A pair of climbers were walking by and the guy put his hands on his hips and said to his girl friend. “That type of knot hurts the trees”

Is this acceptable? I have seen the local guides set this type of thing up for a class. ( I think is was the same knot )

I guess a climber has a responsibility to help keep the climbing area as they found it or better condition and that would include keeping the trees healthy. Where should one draw the line here? It was a National Recreation Area and the trees most likely are a “protected resource” What do you think?


get proper instruction on how to set up an anchor.


mike-f


May 29, 2012, 1:43 PM
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Re: [trailrun.one] Anchoring a rappel to a tree. Is this acceptable? [In reply to]
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Tapes or slings are usually a better choice than rope for a tree anchor: they spread the load and are cheaper to replace. You say "anchoring it around a couple of trees using a clove hitch backed up with a bowline" - is that a clove-hitch round each tree? It's not enough information to give a definitive answer. A clove-hitch is useful in that it is easily repositioned or adjusted, however, he probably saw it as 'strangling' the tree and it would certainly be a problem if the rope was sliding round the trunk. Some people use a barrier such as an old piece of carpet to protect the tree.

There are whole books devoted to anchors, and it's well to learn how forces can be dramatically multiplied by poor placement. This video has some useful methods for anchoring to a single tree:
http://www.ehow.com/video_2353747_anchor-tree-top-rope-rock.html , but it would be a good idea to do some research or take further advice. Have a look at some slackline websites, they generally have good tips for protecting the tree.


josephfazioli


Jun 4, 2012, 11:36 AM
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Re: [mike-f] Anchoring a rappel to a tree. Is this acceptable? [In reply to]
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You can use a fat piece of webbing- 2" tubular maybe- and two rap rings with a retrieval line to rap with little damage to the tree and without leaving behind any hardware. I prefer to sling around a huge rock or something similar.


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