/ catalunya multipitch question

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johnboy87 - on 10 Oct 2013
I'm currently going to catalunya in a week and have nbeen looking at many sectors, one of them being terradets sector smoking with a possability of doing route smoking. it's a 215 6a multipitch with 7 pitches. The question is that i only have a 60mtr rope with pitches possibly/more than likely exceeding 30mtr.I'm bothered that if in any case of a retreat once i pass 30 mtr's, i will not be able to lower to the belay.

One of the options that i came up with was wo climb on 2 ropes,both 60mtr's long and if neccesary tie off and abseil down one of them? I would like any other thoughts/ideas if possable :)

one other thing, how spaced are the bolts because i've heard mixed reviews.
Thanx :)
Morgan Woods - on 11 Oct 2013
In reply to johnboy87:

climbing on 2 single 60's is hard work with the extra weight. On a lot of euro multi pitch the bolts are close together where there is a distinct crux. Anyway if it's 7 pitches over 215m then the average will be about 30m so no issue. If some are longer maybe just take an extra maillon in the unlikely event of retreat.
Morgan Woods - on 11 Oct 2013
Morgan Woods - on 11 Oct 2013
In reply to johnboy87:

and:

http://www.rallyterradets.com/wp-content/uploads/viasmoking.jpg

looks like the longer pitches have cruxes in the middle.
Andy Manthorpe on 11 Oct 2013
In reply to johnboy87: I think you should be ok. I'm thinking about when I climbed it, and recall that the difficulties on pitch 2 and 4 were about mid pitch. With the longest of these pitches being 35 metres, you should be well past the cruxes, before you run out of rope for a lower off.

I think we did the 5+ variation on P5, but don't have my guidebook with me at the moment to check. I'll check it this evening or tomorrow.

Andy
johnboy87 - on 11 Oct 2013
thanks guys, will save my weight on the plane :)
johnboy87 - on 11 Oct 2013
one other thing, as it seems to be the norm in the uk but do people bother with clip sticks in catalunya?
Alun - on 11 Oct 2013
In reply to johnboy87:
> one other thing, as it seems to be the norm in the uk but do people bother with clip sticks in catalunya?

They are much less popular than you might expect. I've never seen one in a shop here, and when I've taken mine out to the crag it gets strange looks (with even the occasional slightly hostile mumbling, as if I were somehow "not worthy of the route". Which, in fairness, isn't a bad point!).
Pete O'Donovan - on 11 Oct 2013
In reply to Alun:
> (In reply to johnboy87)
> [...]

Quite a few of my 'older' buddies in Lleida province use them, though usually just for clipping the first or second bolt above a dodgy landing, rather than (as sometimes happens in the UK) pre-clipping a complete route to set up a top-rope.

Though not an habitual user (despite having broken both heels due to a ground-fall, with screws and plates still in situ) I have not encountered any anti-stick-clip sentiment.

I've seen lots of home-grown devices around, as well as a commercially available model based on a walking pole, but it seems the new 'best seller' (currently only available from the Goma 2 shop in Cornudella) is the Sheffield-made 'BetaStick'.

Pete.

cv
>
> They are much less popular than you might expect. I've never seen one in a shop here, and when I've taken mine out to the crag it gets strange looks (with even the occasional slightly hostile mumbling, as if I were somehow "not worthy of the route". Which, in fairness, isn't a bad point!).

Pete O'Donovan - on 11 Oct 2013
In reply to johnboy87:

If you're using the 'Lleida Climbs' guidebook, individual pitch lengths are not detailed — the assumption being that teams attempting multi-pitch routes will either have a 70m single rope or double 50m 8.5/9s — both sufficient for rappel descents.

Re your original post: if you can't do a particular move on a particular pitch (maximum 35m in length) the chances are that with a doubled 60m rope you're fine for getting back down to the previous belay from a leave-behind krab or maillon.

However, if for whatever reason you have to rappel from one belay to another you might find that a 60m rope doesn't quite reach!

The brilliant route 'Smoking' is pretty typical of multi-pitch face routes established in the late 80's and early 90’s in that it feels tough for the grade these days – technical climbing on small edges for the fingers and polished footholds.

Have fun!

Pete.
LeeWood - on 11 Oct 2013
In reply to johnboy87: I might retain a favorable memory of this route but for an overly heavy rucsac; lean out to counter the polish but quadruple your finger strength. 6b is normally well within my grade and I was on the soft end when the physics caught up with me.

Weedling - on 12 Oct 2013
In reply to johnboy87: Climbed my first big multipitch last month in cataluña (Rampes Invertes in Vilanova de Meia) only to find that the last two pitches were pretty much all trad (bolted belays and a few bolts on the line i think). A couple of friends out here say that a lot of the multipitches out here require a half-rack.

If you have some routes in mind then google its name along with ´Escalada´ and you´ll usually get someones blog post with more detailed information on each pitch. then google translate :)

This is pretty useful also ... http://escalatroncs.wordpress.com/

Good luck
Ian Parsons - on 12 Oct 2013
In reply to Weedling:

To be fair, the guide specifies under the heading "Material" - ie gear - "nuts, useful on the last two pitches, the rest is equipped". It's also often possible to get an idea by comparing the number of bolts on your chosen route with the number on neighbouring routes; eg #8 Rampes Invertides (225m) 35 parabolts, #9 Migranya Profunda (185m) 60 spits.

Good effort; it's quite a big, intimidating cliff for a first route of that sort of length!
Weedling - on 12 Oct 2013
In reply to Ian Parsons:

Thanks Ian, but which guide are you referencing? no such info in Lleida climbs :(

And to those of you who have done a fair amount of multipitch here, would you agree its wise to take some trad gear too? how common is it to find partially or unbolted pitches etc? ..

sorry for hijack, but still relevant :)

Thanks
Ian Parsons - on 13 Oct 2013
In reply to Weedling:

Sorry, yes - should have been more specific. We were there in September 2007 and were using the then current volume - as far as I'm aware - of "Vilanova de Meia y zonas cercanas" by Luis Alfonso and Xavier Buxo; I can't actually find a publication date on my copy. As far as I remember I bought it in the UK before the trip, although I'm sure it would have been available on sale locally had I not already had it. From the few routes we did I'd say it was pretty good at briefly highlighting anything important one needed to know, and its precise description of the type and quantity of in situ gear - parabolts, spits, buriles, clavos, etc - gave one a good basis for selection between, for instance, a well-bolted modern technical exercise and a more traditional outing with a variety of aging esoteria plus whatever else you could manage to place! This, of course, is the sort of detail that the definitive local guide can offer which a selective guide to a larger overall area will often struggle to provide. Having said that, I would still - without a doubt - buy Pod's book as well were I going back tomorrow.
Pete O'Donovan - on 13 Oct 2013
In reply to Weedling:

Congratulations on your first big multi-pitch.

'Rampes Invertides' is one of only three long climbs on Roca dels Arcs that I haven't personally done myself, but when compiling 'Lleida Climbs' I was assured by local friends that if you'd managed the lower (harder) pitches without problem, the last couple of pitches were OK with just the in-situ gear.

I've since heard (and you back this up) that they are actually pretty scary without a bit of additional gear. Consequently, the second edition of the 'Lleida Climbs' guide will describe both 'Rampes Invertides' and the neighbouring route ''Lleida' (which shares the final pitches) as 'Semi-Equipada'. A third route included on Roca dels Arcs — 'Camel' will also be similarly classified.

Cheers,

Pete.

Weedling - on 13 Oct 2013
In reply to Pete O'Donovan:

Thank you both for the info

Pete, i think if we had not had some extra gear forced upon us by concerned friends we would have ended up retreating. But at least now i know that this is the exception, not the rule :)
Pete O'Donovan - on 13 Oct 2013
In reply to Weedling:

Really glad it worked out OK for you.

As far as I know, the three routes mentioned in my previous response are the only routes in the Lleida Climbs book that need gear, but it's a general rule that on a route featuring, say, crux pitches of 6b, those pitches will have the bolt protection spaced far closer together than on the easier pitches. Once you get down to IV or V you could be looking at some pretty long run-outs.

By the way, if you ever go back to Vilanova de Meià don't miss 'Necronomicón'(6a) — a bit shorter than 'Rampes Invertides' but offering superb quality climbing and great positions.

Pete.
harold walmsley - on 13 Oct 2013
>difficulties on pitch 2 and 4 were about mid pitch. With the longest of these pitches being 35 metres, you should be well past the cruxes, before you run out of rope for a lower off.
>

But if you fail on p2 a single 60 m rope may not allow you to ab off without faffing about on intermediate bolts if p1 is more than 30 m (plus a little stretch) and if you fail on p4, p1, 2 and 3 all need to be less than 30 m ish.
johnboy87 - on 14 Oct 2013
thats what i thought, looks like a'll be taking two ropes :)
ecotom - on 14 Oct 2013
In reply to Pete O'Donovan:

Hi Pete,

I'm the "concerned friend" that gave Weedling some gear! Having done "Musical Express" I would definitely recommend putting what you said above about the minimal bolting of easier non-crux pitches into the preamble of the Vila Nova de Meià guide. I found the last couple of pitches quite spicy especially as the first bolt was often quite a way off the belay.

Great guide book though, has given us many happy days climbing!

Tom

PS: Climbed the first pitch of "Gran bavard" at Coll de Nargo the other evening. The belay appeared to be two parabolts with no chain or Maillon. I managed to work my way across to a parallel belay and lower-off. I dont know if I failed to find the correct belay or if some routes are equipped like this and you need to ab specific lines.
LeeWood - on 14 Oct 2013
In reply to ecotom: Gran Bavard: snap. No generalisation possible in this case (in my experience).
ecotom - on 14 Oct 2013
In reply to LeeWood:

Typical! Trust me to choose it for a "we can squeeze one more in before it gets dark...oh no where is the lower off...maybe I can see a different one over there in the gathering gloom" type situation.
LeeWood - on 15 Oct 2013
In reply to ecotom: then thats doubly bizarre - we also did it in gathering gloom
Pete O'Donovan - on 15 Oct 2013
In reply to ecotom:

Hi Tom,

Many thanks for the input.

Re 'Gran Bavard' in Coll de Nargó: in the Lleida Guidebook, multi-pitch routes on which rappel descents are possible have an "R" next to the name in the route tables. Gran Bavard doesn't have the symbol, which is why you couldn't find a lower-off set-up at the top of the first pitch!

Presumably you traversed right to the belay at the top of the first pitch of 'Del Manelet' (which IS equipped for rappel)?

Cheers,

Pete.
ecotom - on 15 Oct 2013
In reply to Pete O'Donovan:

D'oh! That would explain it! I guess I can add failing to read the guidebook properly to my list of bad decisions that evening!

Cheers,

Tom
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tmawer - on 15 Oct 2013
In reply to johnboy87:

Hi Johnboy, I did this in Feb 2012 and put a brief comment in my Log book (it's down as Smokin on UKC data base) about how hard it was and the spaced bolting. A brilliant route but way harder than "standard" 6a+ single pitch routes I have done on other crags in the area, and with run outs that scared an old man like me!

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