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where can I set up my tope rope? rules and etiquette??
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bjjmoore


Feb 25, 2014, 7:27 PM
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where can I set up my tope rope? rules and etiquette??
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I am wondering what is the proper procedure for top roping outdoors in the wild?

Mainly what I want to know is where am I aloud to set up a top rope and climb? Do I need to find places specifically designated for top roping or can I pretty much just set up my top rope wherever I can safely and efficiently do so? For example, could I essentially set up my top rope on a route that has been laid out for lead climbing and climb there?


shockabuku


Feb 25, 2014, 8:18 PM
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Re: [bjjmoore] where can I set up my tope rope? rules and etiquette?? [In reply to]
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bjjmoore wrote:
I am wondering what is the proper procedure for top roping outdoors in the wild?

Mainly what I want to know is where am I aloud to set up a top rope and climb? Do I need to find places specifically designated for top roping or can I pretty much just set up my top rope wherever I can safely and efficiently do so? For example, could I essentially set up my top rope on a route that has been laid out for lead climbing and climb there?

You can use routes set for lead climbing to top rope. Some areas you can use the existing anchors, some areas want you to use your own hardware to toprope through so you don't contribute to excessive wear of the existing hardware. Best to ask people who are familiar with the area.


Whitewalls


Feb 26, 2014, 12:29 AM
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Re: [bjjmoore] where can I set up my tope rope? rules and etiquette?? [In reply to]
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Pretty much anywhere you can lead. Anchors obviously need to be good. I have seen other climbers on busy routes getting upset by people top roping, but it was because they had pretty much hogged the route all day, meaning no-one else could climb it.


sbaclimber


Feb 26, 2014, 3:50 AM
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Re: [bjjmoore] where can I set up my tope rope? rules and etiquette?? [In reply to]
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Definitely talk to somebody familiar with the area (or find the info elsewhere).
Although it probably won't apply to an area where you are looking to climb, there are in fact some areas where toproping is not allowed.
....and some areas where toproping is allowed, but you are only allowed to set up "from below". (i.e. you have to lead first)


lena_chita
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Feb 26, 2014, 4:50 AM
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Re: [bjjmoore] where can I set up my tope rope? rules and etiquette?? [In reply to]
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bjjmoore wrote:
I am wondering what is the proper procedure for top roping outdoors in the wild?

Mainly what I want to know is where am I aloud to set up a top rope and climb? Do I need to find places specifically designated for top roping or can I pretty much just set up my top rope wherever I can safely and efficiently do so? For example, could I essentially set up my top rope on a route that has been laid out for lead climbing and climb there?

Rules vary from location to location, so you should check with the locals. For example, there is an area near me where toproping is the ONLY type of climbing allowed-- no bolts, and no gear leading. And toprope anchors have to be set up off trees, installing bolts is not allowed.

In general, any single-pitch route with bolted anchors, whether it is sport or trad, can be toproped, if you can get to the anchors safely.

But this is where etiquette comes in. If you go to a popular area, and set up toprope on the most popular route at the area, and then occupy it for the whole day, you will be seen as rude. You cannot "reserve" a route for extended period of time by hanging the toprope on the route and claiming it as yours. If your group is not actively climbing on the route, and there are other people who want to climb the route, you should let them take a turn.


dagibbs


Feb 26, 2014, 7:44 AM
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Re: [bjjmoore] where can I set up my tope rope? rules and etiquette?? [In reply to]
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Unless an area has specific rules that forbid top-roping, then it is generally ok.

For many areas, though, top-of-cliff access is inconvenient, dangerous, or impossible. (e.g. Owens River Gorge, California. Most of the climbs are single-pitch, ending part-way-up the side of the gorge, at anchors. You can't just hike/walk/scramble to the anchors to setup a top-rope. But, if someone has lead the climb, then others top-roping is fine.)

At some others, cliff-top access may be doable, but against the rules. The Gatineau park near Ottawa, Canada, has rules like this. For ecological reasons, to protect the cliff-top eco-system, top-of-cliff access is forbidden. Mount Nemo, in the Halton Conservation area near Toronto, Canada has similar rules.

Generally speaking, if there is existing gear for anchors, it is recommended to setup the top-rope using your own gear, so that the wear goes on your own (removable, easily replaceable) rather than the existing fixed (hard to remove/replace) gear.

Also, it is consider bad style most places to leave a top-rope on a climb for an extended period of time when other groups may want to lead that climb, and the local style/ethics in many places does give lead-climbing preference over top-rope climbing.

If setting up a rope from above, be especially careful to make sure nobody is below you, and doubly-careful to make sure nobody is already leading the route you want to climb.


bjjmoore


Feb 26, 2014, 1:07 PM
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Re: [bjjmoore] where can I set up my tope rope? rules and etiquette?? [In reply to]
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Wow, thanks so much for all of the replies everyone!

I have been looking all over for an answer to my question with no luck. My girlfriend and I just started climbing and have only been in gyms so far. We are excited to get out and climb outdoors but we are in no way ready to start leading and I wasn't sure exactly how to go about the top roping. This gives me a great place to start and I will keep searching for information.

Again, thanks so much for all the help!


dagibbs


Feb 27, 2014, 7:44 AM
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bjjmoore wrote:
Wow, thanks so much for all of the replies everyone!

I have been looking all over for an answer to my question with no luck. My girlfriend and I just started climbing and have only been in gyms so far. We are excited to get out and climb outdoors but we are in no way ready to start leading and I wasn't sure exactly how to go about the top roping. This gives me a great place to start and I will keep searching for information.

Again, thanks so much for all the help!

If you have not setup top-ropes before, I would strongly suggest having someone experienced teach you how. Your gym may offer a course, or there may be a local guiding company where you could hire a guide, or maybe you can find someone experienced willing to take you out for a day and show you the ropes.

Setting up a top-rope isn't all the complicated -- it should be easily learnable in a couple of hours to half a day. But it is life-critical and worth spending the time & money to learn the skills properly.

Then, you have to figure out which of your local crags have top-of-cliff access for setting up top ropes. For that, you may be able to find the information from online database (here, mountainproject.com, thecrag.com, supertopo.com, etc), talking to locals at your gym or local climbing equipment store, or asking on this, or a more local climbing forum.


(This post was edited by dagibbs on Feb 28, 2014, 11:35 AM)


bjjmoore


Feb 28, 2014, 11:18 AM
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Re: [dagibbs] where can I set up my tope rope? rules and etiquette?? [In reply to]
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No I haven't done it yet but I was a contractor for over ten years and I feel like that gives me a small head start because I know the tools and general aspects of weight distribution and architecture.

I have been researching a lot and I plan to also take a class when I find one.

As far as finding the areas I plan on talking to locals and researching a lot more. Thank you for the reply!


marc801


Feb 28, 2014, 11:31 AM
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Re: [bjjmoore] where can I set up my tope rope? rules and etiquette?? [In reply to]
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bjjmoore wrote:
No I haven't done it yet but I was a contractor for over ten years and I feel like that gives me a small head start because I know the tools and general aspects of weight distribution and architecture.
Um, no, it doesn't...not really.


dorienc


Mar 26, 2014, 7:18 PM
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Re: [bjjmoore] where can I set up my tope rope? rules and etiquette?? [In reply to]
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Where do you live? Or where are you planning on climbing? People on the forum can steer you to a suitable area; for example, I'm in northern Illinois, and Devil's Lake is about 2 hours away with a lot of good TR and traditional lead, but absolutely no bolted routes. Down in Southern Illinois, is Jackson Falls - full of bolts, but as someone else pointed out, the ethos is ground up to protect the cliff tops.


shimanilami


Mar 27, 2014, 12:35 PM
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If by "in the wild" you mean outdoors, then it is easiest to climb at established climbing crags. It's cleaner. It's safer. And it's usually not illegal.

If by "in the wild", you mean in the wilderness where no one's climbed before, then you should check the local regulations or with whomever owns the land. You don't want to get cited. Or shot. Because that would suck.


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