/ Do you pull topropes when leading indoors?
Except there was a toprope still hanging on the route i was climbing and out of instinct i grabbed it and now have a nice burn across the palm of my hand to go with my sore foot from slamming into the wall.
Some walls i have climbed at let you take the top ropes down as long as you put them back up and some make you leave them up.
whats the norm near you? as following on from this i want to always pull them to save me from myself.
OK first off was it the walls top rope or one left in place by previous party? In the latter case I would definitely remove, asking the other party first if they were about. If the walls, then I'd ask the wall staff.
Personally I don't like the idea of a moving rope (the one I'm on) and a non-moving rope (the top rope) being through the top anchors at the same time when I'm lowering off. But that's just me...
I've been to walls where you have to pull the top rope down, which would be fine if there were two lower offs, oddly they all seem to only have one lower off, which means the process of replacing the rope is a little contrived (for example, clip their rope through the lower off, downclimb, lower off your last clip).
now at the top they have a big steel krab for the top rope and a snapgate for your lower off when leading as its only a small centre there are no lead only walls. so i think i may start a movement to be allowed to pull them again.
Why do you think that? There's no national chain or franchise. Each wall is owned or operated by an individual or council with their own procedures and methods and what might be ideal for a small council run wall of a few plywood sheets in an old squash hall would be completely unsuitable for, eg., Ratho, Westway or Awesome Walls.
I understand that different facilities have different requirements but you could argue that it is reasonably practicable for all of them to have a set way of lowering off
I always put the top ropes back up and so far when challenged by some
staff who are usually far less experienced and finally get it when its explained in simple terms its been ok.
Agree totallly, it's a perfectly reasonable thing to expect from what is a 3rd party service/facility provider. I'd actually been led to believe that all walls now needed to have a double lower-off of some kind.
I wanted to at the Manc climbing centre last week as there'd been a rope on the big OH wall unused for about 2 hours, However it turned out to be someone's and they said they were using it.....hmmm next time I'll just pull it.
Generally at walls that have two lower-offs you don't pull it, and walls that only have one you do, no?
Was the top-rope running through the same lower-off as you were planning to use or was it adjacent? If the former what were you planning to do at the top? As mentioned above, having one loaded and one non-loaded rope running through the same lower-off is a fundamentally bad idea.
Walls tend to be a bit reluctant to let you pull down in-situ top-ropes. From experience, despite promises to put back as found, often this task gets forgotten about, done poorly (gates not closed at top), or done dangerously (top-rope used as lead-rope or both ropes put through lower-off).
Perhaps this helps explain why most supervised commercial walls would prefer routes to be defined as either "lead" or "top-rope" and boundaries not blurred.
I personally,think you need to learn to fall off without the need to grab something, that something if not a rope, could do you even more damage than a bit of rope burn!
"Are you using that line?"
"You can top rope on our rope if you want"
Top ropes can be annoying but in my experience you leave them in place - Its a right faff to replace one any way. Also you don't thread your rope through the same lower off krab as the top rope.
I usually just hook the out of the way to one side or tension them away from the wall to a sandbag. Sometimes I'll pull them but only when the other options aren't available and I'm planning to take falls. I don't know or really care what the wall's policy is. The easier option is just to sue the toprope which is what I'd do four times out of five.
> "Are you using that line?"
> "You can top rope on our rope if you want"
I had almost the same words said to me once, quick as a flash I started to pull his rope down, whilst replying "Thanks for the offer to use your rope, I'll use it to lead as you were kind enough to offer". He never said anything else. Strangely enough, and would you believe it, I then had a few falls on it!
Is there not a risk, that if you pull it, you might not be able to finish the lead?
> Is there not a risk, that if you pull it, you might not be able to finish the lead?
I wouldn't be too bothered about that.
At a wall you usually find there is a mix of grades, so if you can't finish the route you intended to lead, most likely you can finish another one on the same or an adjacent line. Or bribe someone else with beer to do it for you.
 I've often led or top-roped an adjacent easier route to get a top rope on a harder route to give it a try but where I wouldn't have felt happy leading it, IYSWIM.
Don't think I'd lead on someone else's rope as I don't know its history or how well it's been looked after. Not even to prove a point ;)
"As mentioned above, having one loaded and one non-loaded rope running through the same lower-off is a fundamentally bad idea."
Agreed, though it doesn't stop some walls (notably PyB!) having theirs set up like that. I "corrected" it to top-rope in screwgate, snapgate for lower-off on one wall, and got told to go back up and put it back! (I did this on another line's top-rope rather than leading, as I wouldn't fancy being responsible for damaging the top-rope which could then have led to someone else getting injured).
I used to grab the rope (my own knot) when falling ...until climbing granite and I raped the back of my hand down the rock under the tension of the rope :( . It's only a false/imagined security anyway and a bad habit, best flight position is the falling cat- get your hands ready to brace against the rock if you are going to swing into it.
would it not be better to teach yourself to stop grabbing things when you fall?
before you do something daft like this (graphic pics of nasty injury)
Jazz hand flourish is the only way to fall :)
> I wouldn't be too bothered about that.
Sorry, not you specifically - more in the case of pulling the top rope, then failing to lead it.
Would leave the wall down a top-rope unless someone leads it...
> Jazz hand flourish is the only way to fall :)
indeed, nice and loose and relaxed, and ideally placed to fend off any unfortunately placed tufa that might like to make aquaintence with your head as you swing in at the end of the fall.
> Sorry, not you specifically - more in the case of pulling the top rope, then failing to lead it.
> Would leave the wall down a top-rope unless someone leads it...
If you read the post I was replying to it says 'his own rope...'. Different matter if it is the wall's own rope that is in-situ.
> Don't think I'd lead on someone else's rope as I don't know its history or how well it's been looked after. Not even to prove a point ;)
If I see someone eyeing up a route I'm about to set a top rope on I usually let them go first, just about everyone says they'll use my rope to leave a top rope in place. If it's outdoors I ask them to use my gear too, and they do that as well. No-one's ever said, sorry that's just too dodgy.
You mean provided you lead back up on them, of course ?
the blisters on my hand will hopefully stop me from doing it again anyway.
if it wasnt the walls actual top rope i would have pulled it for sure and either put it back up for whoevers it was or left it down to teach them a lesson for hogging the routes.
i would never put my rope through an anchor with a another rope through it as i know thats a bad idea.
I think i will just pull it from now on as its better to ask for forgiveness after doing what you want than asking for permission and not getting your own way.
merry christmas all
I think he was joking...
Sorry, yes, tongue in cheek.
Pulling down centre top ropes or leading on their ropes are both generally not popular with centres
If you do HAVE to remove a rope, ask the staff at the wall, we're climbers too, we know your pain and please ensure that it's correctly secured in place.
I'm fairly sure all the walls I've climbed at have separate leading and TR-ing areas. There are no insitu draws in the TR zones so the situation has never arisen, other than folk who've lead up a route, left their rope in place and walked off. In such circumstances I either try and find the owner (to ask if they're about to go back on it) or if I can't, pull the rope. Use it or lose it.
I think you have to pull top-ropes don't you? Otherwise they wouldn't be top-ropes!
The wall I work at we don't allow you to pull down our top ropes for the simple fact that we can not inspect how the top rope has been put back everytime. We have another snapgate next to our two snapgates for when you want to lead. This seems to be where the industry is heading, as more and more walls seem to be doing this.
And, after all, you did agree not to do it (remember the long form you signed promising to follow their rules to be able to climb there?)
Elsewhere on the site
Last year, Finn McCann wrote an article about climbing El Capitan with his terminally ill father Seamus, who had been... Read more
This streamlined, midweight thermal layer has an incredibly speedy moisture wicking ability and dries ultra fast if it gets... Read more
In tonight's Friday Night Video, we see Alex Honnold soloing Heaven 5.12d in Yosemite Valley. The route starts 3000ft above the... Read more
October 21, 2014 – Textile Exchange, a global nonprofit dedicated to sustainability in the apparel and textile industry,... Read more
The B.D.V. — short for Black Diamond Vertical — jacket and pants are Black Diamond’s most versatile climbing... Read more