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Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!!
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bighigaz


Jan 3, 2013, 6:54 PM
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Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!!
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Sooooooo... today as the sun was setting my buddy and I took off up a nearby canyon that has a lot of climbing - bouldering, sport, trad, mixed, and ice. Up the canyon the temperature was almost dropping in to single digits, but not quite. We felt cold, but not unbearably so.

We approached a favorite climb - a 5.11 that we had been working on during the summer - and opted for a top rope this time around. The darkness and cold was part of the reason for a TR, but we were also trying something new.

I put on my climbing shoes, well aware of the cold that would soon set in. Then I did something I have never done before - leashed up and grabbed the handles of my first set of ice axes.

I honestly hadn't considered the potential ethical issues of dry tooling on an established route, but the rock was solid, and it was only a couple of minutes before I began to feel the flow - and the pump.

So there it is, my first experience on ice tools - and they didn't touch any ice. The route felt wonderful, and the climbing was exhilarating. It wasn't easy to trust my stance while pulling on small edges that didn't hit the nerves in my finger tips. I was constantly wary of scraping of the granite and swinging into the void - but it didn't happen. It was clean and new, and I will definitely be doing it again. It seems to me that this type of climbing is an excellent "off season" option for rock hounds like me that are aching for some vertical excitement without the strain and unknown terrain of vertical ice. Will I ever get on the ice? Maybe. But will I continue dry tooling at my local crags when the weather is too frigid for the fingers to endure? DEFINITELY.

And for all of you that are going to hound me for dry tooling on an established route, I apologize for today, and for every climb that awaits me this winter. I'll just assume ask for your forgiveness, rather than your permission - and I'll make sure to climb with "quiet tools" so that I don't damage the rock...

In short, it was badass, and I definitely want to do it again! Anyone want to join me?


(This post was edited by bighigaz on Jan 3, 2013, 7:00 PM)


Syd


Jan 3, 2013, 8:18 PM
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Re: [bighigaz] Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!! [In reply to]
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I've never even held an ice axe. Does it make a climbing route seem easier or harder and by how much ?


bighigaz


Jan 3, 2013, 8:31 PM
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Re: [Syd] Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!! [In reply to]
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I haven't decided yet... It's certainly easy to pull on smaller holds, but there is still a lot of insecurity with it - mainly because I can't feel the hold. But my "winter reach" just got 18 inches longer! I've been climbing since 1989, and this is the first time I've used an axe. Moved from the AZ desert to the Bitterroot Valley a few years ago, and have yet to do any vertical ice climbing. Vertical rock and summer alpine/mountaineering has been enough for me for the last two decades, but after getting a taste of dry tooling this afternoon, I'm really wanting to expand my horizons! It's like discovering climbing all over again, in a whole new medium of creativity. The only minor comparison I could make is perhaps the first time I tried aid climbing/hooking up a wall. Similar insecurities, but so much fun.

Happy new year!


gunkiemike


Jan 4, 2013, 2:54 AM
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Re: [bighigaz] Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!! [In reply to]
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Crampons probably scratch the rock more than the tools, esp. since there's often a lot of "treadmilling" going on with beginners' early efforts.


skellie


Jan 4, 2013, 9:57 AM
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Re: [bighigaz] Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!! [In reply to]
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Not cool. I hope you're joking.


marc801


Jan 4, 2013, 11:16 AM
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Re: [bighigaz] Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!! [In reply to]
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bighigaz wrote:
Sooooooo... today as the sun was setting my buddy and I took off up a nearby canyon that has a lot of climbing - bouldering, sport, trad, mixed, and ice. Up the canyon the temperature was almost dropping in to single digits, but not quite. We felt cold, but not unbearably so.

We approached a favorite climb - a 5.11 that we had been working on during the summer - and opted for a top rope this time around. The darkness and cold was part of the reason for a TR, but we were also trying something new.

I put on my climbing shoes, well aware of the cold that would soon set in. Then I did something I have never done before - leashed up and grabbed the handles of my first set of ice axes.

I honestly hadn't considered the potential ethical issues of dry tooling on an established route, but the rock was solid, and it was only a couple of minutes before I began to feel the flow - and the pump.

So there it is, my first experience on ice tools - and they didn't touch any ice. The route felt wonderful, and the climbing was exhilarating. It wasn't easy to trust my stance while pulling on small edges that didn't hit the nerves in my finger tips. I was constantly wary of scraping of the granite and swinging into the void - but it didn't happen. It was clean and new, and I will definitely be doing it again. It seems to me that this type of climbing is an excellent "off season" option for rock hounds like me that are aching for some vertical excitement without the strain and unknown terrain of vertical ice. Will I ever get on the ice? Maybe. But will I continue dry tooling at my local crags when the weather is too frigid for the fingers to endure? DEFINITELY.

And for all of you that are going to hound me for dry tooling on an established route, I apologize for today, and for every climb that awaits me this winter. I'll just assume ask for your forgiveness, rather than your permission - and I'll make sure to climb with "quiet tools" so that I don't damage the rock...

In short, it was badass, and I definitely want to do it again! Anyone want to join me?

You really need to rethink the bolded part of your post. Dry-tooling on established rock routes is totally unethical.
Just as a refresher:
style - only matters to your sense of accomplishment, but should be reported truthfully to others
ethics - something that is done or not done that affects anyone else who does the route.

What if your dry tooling pries off a key flake and turns the climb into a 5.14? What if it dislodges a block that leaves behind a bucket, reducing the crux to a 5.8? What if your crampons leave unsightly scars and scratches all over the route?

From the UK, but you get the point:
http://ukbouldering.com/...y_Tooling_Damage_Log

http://lakesbloc.blogspot.com/...ing-at-farleton.html

It's not that dry tooling is bad - just don't do it on established rock routes.


ObviousTroll


Jan 4, 2013, 2:59 PM
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Re: [bighigaz] Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!! [In reply to]
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Wow, I'd like to know why your buddy would bring you up to established rock if he was already and experienced ice climber. And if he wasn't experienced--then am I wrong to assume that you and your friend got some tools and then decided to go mark up your "local crag" because it doesn't matter what other people think?

Nah, none of that really matters to me, but what gets me the most is that you came online to make it other people's concern and seemingly brag about it.

What a dry tool.


bighigaz


Jan 4, 2013, 3:30 PM
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Re: [ObviousTroll] Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!! [In reply to]
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Wow, you actually mistook this for bragging? I honestly had no idea I had something to brag about... that's something. And you assumed I went with an experienced ice climber to some crag I had never been... ??? Clearly you don't have any reading comprehension, or true interest in climbing given your username. I'm reminded again why I have stopped posting on RC.com. Don't you worry, no holds were broken, and no rock was defaced. Well, that is to say, not by me... you might say the original route setter who drilled the holes and put in the bolts, and "cleaned" the route by pulling off all the loose rocks did all that - thank goodness, too, because it is an excellent route, with or without tools. I will continue to admire, revere, and respect the mountains, on every terrain, as I have done for decades - and I'll keep my excitement of new experiences to myself, because someone is always going to take issues with it. I don't choose to take issue with anyone - it's a waste of time. For the record, they are MY tools, not my climbing partners, and I've had them for about a year - but I had yet to use them on vertical terrain. I'm glad I did, and I certainly will again, dry or otherwise. Take care, and have fun trolling, "ObviousTroll."


bighigaz


Jan 4, 2013, 3:42 PM
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Re: [marc801] Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!! [In reply to]
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Marc, thanks for your response... You were much more "grown up" about it than "obvioustroll" - so I'll give you the same respect. I definitely see your point. This is a new "style" for me, and I'm pretty stoked about it. Stoked enough, I suppose, that I went at it like a gumby with his first set of draws and a new rope... I actually chose the route because I knew the holds were solid, and didn't want to deface the route. That said, there is plenty of climbing in the area that sees fingers and tools, depending on the season, so I will have to dig a little with the locals to see where they stand on dry tooling. The point of my post was to express excitement - it was unexpectedly fun, and a refreshing change of pace from any other style of climbing I have tried over the years. It opens up a lot of possibilities in mountaineering that I hadn't previously considered doing... And to ease your mind, we didn't deface the route, and although I said I hadn't considered the ethical ramifications, I DID consider the quality of the route, and was intent on leaving it as it was meant to be climbed. I'll be sure to choose my routes for this style more responsibly. We have plenty of mountains and a lot of rock in the area! Happy New Year, climb on.


atdrennen


Jan 4, 2013, 7:19 PM
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Re: [bighigaz] Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!! [In reply to]
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* Popcorn * :)


ObviousTroll


Jan 4, 2013, 8:35 PM
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Re: [bighigaz] Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!! [In reply to]
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bighigaz wrote:
Take care, and have fun trolling, "ObviousTroll."

Thanks for the well wishes.

And a word of advice:

Make sure you keep climbing at sunset. Less chance of other climbers being around while you dry tool established rock routes. Also; don't complain when I start dry tooling your house. I'll use quiet tools bro.


markcarlson


Jan 4, 2013, 9:11 PM
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Re: [bighigaz] Too Cold for the Tips - First Time Dry Tooling!!!!! [In reply to]
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Around here, in the pre- modern mixed climbing era, people started dry tooling sport routes for training when the ice was lacking. They quickly learned that it was not acceptable and created their own mixed and dry tooling crags, and have attracted visitors from around the world.

In the transition period, routes were scarred, holds accidentally broken, and emotions ran high.

You have the opportunity to learn from their mistakes and do not need to make them on your own. How will you feel when you are responsible for disfiguring a climb, or making it impossible for others to enjoy? If you have not done any damage, you should stop while you are ahead.

I do not mean that you should give it up, just find some rock that is not being used (preferably a new area) and dry tool there. Besides, why limit yourself to existing routes when you have over a foot more reach, and can hang on to the smallest of holds with ease?

Edit: Missed your last post somehow, good to hear you are going to ask around about dry-tooling.


(This post was edited by markcarlson on Jan 4, 2013, 9:14 PM)


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