/ Sport Climb taboo

This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.
Liam187 - on 26 Aug 2012
I'm new to climbing so please forgive my ignorance.....why is there no sports routes in the UK!?!? Why are people so against sport climbing?

A friend told me that some people even take down sport routes that are put up because they feel everyone should climb trad, is this true?
mark_wellin - on 26 Aug 2012
In reply to Liam187:
forgiven, there are, they aren't, they do on occasion but no, not really
highclimber - on 26 Aug 2012
In reply to Liam187: you are mistaken. there is sport climbing in the uk. what we have in the UK are ethics preventing the development of sport clmbing where it is not necessary such as on grirstone where it is possible to place one's own removable protection.

On the continent they are a little bit more relaxed about the whole 'ethics' part.
John_Hat - on 26 Aug 2012
In reply to highclimber:
> (In reply to Liam187) you are mistaken. there is sport climbing in the uk. what we have in the UK are ethics preventing the development of sport clmbing where it is not necessary such as on grirstone where it is possible to place one's own removable protection.
>
> On the continent they are a little bit more relaxed about the whole 'ethics' part.

^^ What he said.

There's actually quite a lot of sport climbing around, especially on limestone.
highclimber - on 26 Aug 2012
In reply to John_Hat: Just realised I should have worded my final sentence as

> On the continent they are a little bit more 'relaxed' about the whole ethics part.
Kemics - on 26 Aug 2012
In reply to highclimber:

mostly because euro-lime would lend it's self very poorly to trad climbs. We're lucky we have the rock we do (or cursed....?) :)
UKC Forums - on 27 Aug 2012
This thread was started in the ROCKTALK forum and has now been moved.
Please could you try and post in the correct forum, it makes life easier for both users and moderators.

Starting Out - A forum for asking questions, whether you are deciding to get into climbing or have just started and need something explained. UKClimbing.com is visited by many experienced climbers, including climbing and mountaineering guides, who will gladly help out. Please check the UKClimbing FAQs before posting. If you post here and received rude or condescending replies then please contact the moderators

More Forum descriptions - http://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/info/forums.html
davidbeynon - on 27 Aug 2012
In reply to Liam187:

I heard that it was because expansion bolts were invented to destroy british climbing by an alliance between Napoleon Bonaparte and Satan.

It is worth noting I am very gullible and The person who told me was drunk.
Jon Stewart - on 27 Aug 2012
In reply to Liam187:

Sport and trad coexist fairly peacefully in the UK.

But if I find anyone bolting my trad crags, I'll f^cking murder them. They can take their sh!tty soulless overhanging limstestone that I'm not strong enough to climb and shove it up their (collective) arse. Or I might train on it to make me a better climber - but it's just for training, honest, I don't like it.

You see it's all very complicated.
Kemics - on 27 Aug 2012
In reply to Jon Stewart:

That's why trad climbers chop bolts, otherwise they'd have to admit they're not good enough to climb the route :P
davidbeynon - on 28 Aug 2012
In reply to Kemics:

I thought sport climbers put in bolts rather than admit they weren't brave enough to do the route.
Pekkie - on 28 Aug 2012
In reply to davidbeynon:
>
> 'I thought sport climbers put in bolts rather than admit they weren't brave enough to do the route.'

Not been climbing long have you?

bpmclimb - on 28 Aug 2012
In reply to Liam187:
> I'm new to climbing so please forgive my ignorance.....why is there no sports routes in the UK!?!? Why are people so against sport climbing?

If you're new to climbing, how come you're starting with such an anti-trad position? Something wrong with trad climbing? Why not gain some experience and then let your preferences evolve naturally.

Ramblin dave - on 28 Aug 2012
In reply to Liam187:
Also, we need more sports crags because people learn to climb on bolted routes at climbing walls and it would be unreasonable to expect outdoor climbing to be any different. This is also why there's a strong lobby to install roofs, comfy sofas and soundsystems at all major crags.
Lukem6 - on 28 Aug 2012
In reply to Ramblin dave: maybe we could add climbing holds to something like downhill racer? you could change the climb every couple of days. Maybe if we just drilled a grid of holes we could leave a box of holds at the bottom. Kinda make your own way up.
john arran - on 28 Aug 2012
In reply to lm610:

Anyone who wanted to could always still climb it on 'features' so what's the problem?
john arran - on 28 Aug 2012
In reply to john arran:

Just realised this is posted in the Starting Out forum so maybe satire isn't really appropriate. For anyone reading this who is genuinely confused as to why there aren't more easy sport routes around it's due largely to a combination of history, environmental responsibility and sporting challenge.

History has given us plenty of trad routes on virtually all of the accessible quality crags, which would be effectively destroyed if they ever were to be bolted. Environmentally the trad ethic of leaving nothing (or as little as possible) in place is on the whole sustainable and non-destructive. And from a sporting perspective the natural availability (or otherwise) of trad gear gives another aspect to the climbing game, in addition to the physical and technical challenge. The great majority of easier climbs in Britain can easily be top-roped if a purely physical and technical challenge is wanted, so there would be precious little advantage in installing and maintaining bolts to make them completely safe, regardless of the many other negative consequences of doing so. Nevertheless a number of (mainly limestone) crags have been equipped as sport crags, generally ones with little potential for trad gear, and the coexistence of sport and trad climbing in the UK is actually a wonderful example of multiple use harmony.
MaranaF - on 28 Aug 2012
In reply to bpmclimb:

Where did you get the impression that he was anti-trad?
A lot of new climbers start off on indoor climbing walls and then progress to outside. Maybe its a wild guess but I'm thinking that's what Liam is doing.
Traditional climbing gear is expensive. You need to build up a 'trad rack' and learn how to use it. Moving from sports climbing to trad climbing is a big investment and so I would suggest that unless you have plenty of money to spare, know of a good trad climber that is willing to teach you and absolutely know that climbing is 'your thing', stick with sports climbing for the time being.
jkarran - on 28 Aug 2012
In reply to Liam187:

> I'm new to climbing so please forgive my ignorance.....why is there no sports routes in the UK!?!?

There are loads, where have you looked?

> Why are people so against sport climbing?

They're not.

> A friend told me that some people even take down sport routes that are put up because they feel everyone should climb trad, is this true?

Partially. Where and when sport development has been deemed inappropriate routes have been stripped.
jk
Ramblin dave - on 28 Aug 2012
In reply to MaranaF:
> (In reply to bpmclimb)
>
> Where did you get the impression that he was anti-trad?
> A lot of new climbers start off on indoor climbing walls and then progress to outside. Maybe its a wild guess but I'm thinking that's what Liam is doing.
> Traditional climbing gear is expensive. You need to build up a 'trad rack' and learn how to use it. Moving from sports climbing to trad climbing is a big investment and so I would suggest that unless you have plenty of money to spare, know of a good trad climber that is willing to teach you and absolutely know that climbing is 'your thing', stick with sports climbing for the time being.


This is why no-one in the UK climbed outdoors before the mid-80s.


ads.ukclimbing.com
GrahamD - on 28 Aug 2012
In reply to MaranaF:
> (In reply to bpmclimb)

> Traditional climbing gear is expensive. You need to build up a 'trad rack' and learn how to use it.

No it isn't expensive - relatively. By the time you have your harness (50 ish), shoes (100 ish), rope (100 ish)and a set of quickdraws (50 ish) the additional outlay of 60 for a full set of wires (all you need to start trad) is not huge. Its even less if you join a club and start off trad climbing with people who already have a rack.

60 is one tank of fuel which you will use on your first trip anywhere remotely distant from your home.
bpmclimb - on 28 Aug 2012
In reply to MaranaF:
> (In reply to bpmclimb)
>

To be frank, the OP is too new to the world of outdoor climbing to be meaningfully pro or anti anything; however, it did sound to me that he'd inherited a distinctly anti-trad outlook from somewhere.

There's nothing wrong with progressing from indoor to outdoor sport and then to trad, but neither is there anything wrong with going straight to trad climbing, whether from indoor climbing or from no climbing at all. A lot of UK climbers still get into it this way. FWIW I climbed indoor and trad for years before I touched an outdoor bolt.

Regarding your point about expense, techniques, etc., I think you are overstating your case. If you are equipped for sport leading you already have much of what you need for trad - you just need a few nuts, a couple of hexes, couple of slings and crabs to get started. And that's if you're intending to lead from the outset - many climbers will get their first trad adventures seconding routes, the gear usually belonging to the leader.

Jamie B - on 29 Aug 2012
In reply to MaranaF:

> Traditional climbing gear is expensive. You need to build up a 'trad rack' and learn how to use it. Moving from sports climbing to trad climbing is a big investment and so I would suggest that unless you have plenty of money to spare, know of a good trad climber that is willing to teach you and absolutely know that climbing is 'your thing', stick with sports climbing for the time being.

I disagree with this contention. All you need to start trad-climbing is a harness, shoes, nut key and belay device. Oh yes, and a mate who climbs already and who can help you get started. That's what I did, then bought rack and ropes in stages as finances allowed. I was a self-supporting mature student at the time, so the poverty argument doesn't wash I'm afraid.

Sport climbing is fun, but it is not an essential stepping-stone between indoor and trad. For many it can turn into a blind alley.

Jon Stewart - on 29 Aug 2012
In reply to GrahamD:
> (In reply to MaranaF)
> [...]
>
> [...]
>
> No it isn't expensive - relatively.

Agreed. You can spend years climbing on other people's ropes and gear. Build it up slowly.
GrahamD - on 29 Aug 2012
In reply to Jamie Bankhead:

> Sport climbing is fun, but it is not an essential stepping-stone between indoor and trad. For many it can turn into a blind alley.

If not a complete blind alley, it can still put an uneccessary physcological barrier in the way of getting a broader range of climbing skills.

MaranaF - on 30 Aug 2012
In reply to bpmclimb:
We looked at putting a trad rack together a little while back and well, we couldn't afford it but then my partner and me spend entire summers cycling, hiking and climbing in other lands (we only work winters) so we don't have a lot of spare cash. The other thing was instruction. Because we sports climb we tend to get in with the sports climbers and boulderers which means trad instruction comes with a price tag.
A lot of people who sports climb at fairly high levels, freak out and drop down a number of levels when they start trad climbing because suddenly their life is dependent on their equipment and not some bolt in the rock that could be dodgy! Some people give it a go but quickly decide its not for them. They then have gear they don't want and probably can't sell because most people don't trust second hand gear.
I do think btw, any sports climber climbing abroad should carry the minimum trad gear for back up because some of those bolts are old and rusty.


I get what you are saying about moving outside but that works both ways. Up until recently I hadn't ever been on a climbing wall but I had spent years doing free solo on crags and later, after admiring the more adventurous acrobats, I moved on to sports.
I only progressed to indoors when I found myself in a place with no rock and I have to admit I found indoors much tougher than rock! Its a very individual thing. I have met people who have climbed indoors for years but never been on rock and the other way round.
Howard J - on 30 Aug 2012
In reply to MaranaF: You say you can't afford a trad rack and yet you can afford to take the summers off to travel? As someone has pointed out, you can get set of rocks for under 50.

Instruction? If you sports climb you already know about rope handling and belaying. Trad seems to be viewed as a great mystery by sports climbers, but placing gear is not rocket science, and probably more intuitive than re-threading at the top of a sports route. You find a crack in the rock and choose a piece of wedge-shaped metal which fits. It's usually fairly obvious whether it's in well or not. What makes it difficult is that you may not be in a very comfortable or safe position while you try to get the right sized piece in. Experiment placing gear at ground level, and then try a few easy climbs until you're confident with your placements. Think about the direction of any pull and be prepared to extend placements to reduce rope drag.

If you want to 'try before you buy' then find a local climbing club and get yourself taken out by more experienced climbers.
a lakeland climber on 30 Aug 2012
In reply to MaranaF:

You don't have to get everything at once!

Assuming you have a reasonable sports rack, let's say a dozen quickdraws and a sling with a screwgate krab or two to handle threading lower-offs then the following might be a way to proceed.

The first item on this page http://www.needlesports.com/Catalogue/Rock-Climbing-Equipment/Wires-Nuts/Standard-Wires is for a set of Wild Country Rocks at 49. A short (5) and a long sling (8.50) and let's add a single cam - the DMM cams are good value at 40. Sum total = 102.50

Now if your regular climbing partner gets something similar then you've got up to 24 potential gear placements when you head up a route.

I have to admit that I've masses of gear, but it's been accumulated over the years: an extra wire here; a new cam there. A lot of the gear was bought duing a time when I was in and out of work, I just got bits as and when I could afford them.

ALC
Bruce Hooker - on 30 Aug 2012
In reply to highclimber:

> On the continent they are a little bit more relaxed about the whole 'ethics' part.

So relaxed in fact that they have completely trashed their cliffs for future generations :-)
Bruce Hooker - on 30 Aug 2012
In reply to MaranaF:

> Traditional climbing gear is expensive.

Are climbing walls free? I've never been to one as I fear for my eternal soul but I've heard that they cost several pounds per session. On the other hand proper climbing on proper rock is free... and if you've climbed indoor or on bolted routes you already possess the gear, just add a few nuts - homemade are free, bought they aren't that expensive, and off you go.
GrahamD - on 30 Aug 2012
In reply to highclimber:

> On the continent they are a little bit more relaxed about the whole 'ethics' part.

Don't forget that Eire, East Germany and the Czech Republic are 'on the continent' and they take their ethics far more seriously than the UK does.
fresteros - on 30 Aug 2012
Howard J - on 30 Aug 2012
In reply to a lakeland climber:
> (In reply to MaranaF)
>
> The first item on this page http://www.needlesports.com/Catalogue/Rock-Climbing-Equipment/Wires-Nuts/Standard-Wires is for a set of Wild Country Rocks at 49. A short (5) and a long sling (8.50) and let's add a single cam - the DMM cams are good value at 40. Sum total = 102.50
>
I'd forget the cam and go for more Rocks and perhaps some hexes. Either way, you could certainly get an adequate starter rack for around 100, and that's between the two of you.
Sean Kelly - on 30 Aug 2012
In reply to Liam187: The real reason is that the UK has Ken Wilson and the Continent doesn't!
tom_in_edinburgh - on 30 Aug 2012
In reply to Howard J:
> (In reply to a lakeland climber)
> [...]
> I'd forget the cam and go for more Rocks and perhaps some hexes. Either way, you could certainly get an adequate starter rack for around 100, and that's between the two of you.

I just put together a starter rack and it was closer to 400.
100 for a set of DMM nuts and hexes.
100 for 10 Quickdraws
100 for a 60m rope.
100 worth of bits and pieces - helmet, screwgates, crabs to rack the nuts/hexes, various slings and a rope bag to carry all the stuff.



a lakeland climber on 30 Aug 2012
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh:

In my original post I said I assumed that the OP had a sports rack, I.e. quickdraws and a rope. Since you tend to climb in pairs you can split the purchase of the initial rack between you hence the 100 figure which is per climber. Knock off your 100 for quickdraws (how many do you need?) and 100 for the rope and you are down to 200 which by my calculations when you divide by two gives you 100.

ALC
tom_in_edinburgh - on 30 Aug 2012
In reply to a lakeland climber:
> (In reply to tom_in_edinburgh)
>
Agreed. It's 400 if you start from scratch and buy everything yourself or 100 if you start with sport climbing gear and can split the cost with someone else.

10 quickdraws because the price is better in sets of 5 and as long as you are buying QDs you may as well get enough for easy sport.




MaranaF - on 31 Aug 2012
In reply to a lakeland climber:

and everyone else who has replied directly to me. Thanks guys, you are inspirational (and Im not being sarcastic)
There can always be excuses and I'm good at making them!
Howard J - on 01 Sep 2012
In reply to Liam187: I agree with Lakelandclimber. The question was about moving into trad from sport, and my estimate assumed you already have the basics for sport - rope, quickdraws, krabs and maybe a couple of slings. You don't need massive amounts of gear to begin with, although you'll probably keep adding to it.

You don't really need a rope bag for trad, as you'll be coiling the ropes at the top of the climb. That's not to say they can't sometimes be useful on muddy or wet ground, but you're more likely to use it for sport/indoors where you'll pull the ropes down into the bag ready to move to the next route. Definitely an optional extra imo.
Niall - on 01 Sep 2012
In reply to GrahamD:
> (In reply to highclimber)
>
> [...]
>
> Don't forget that Eire, (....) are 'on the continent' and they take their ethics far more seriously than the UK does.

??? Are you still using that pre-cambrian atlas dude?
AJM - on 01 Sep 2012
In reply to GrahamD:

I suppose its also worth pointing out that sport climbing, whilst it has different ethics to trad climbing, has ethics that climbers will take just as strictly as trad climbing ethics are taken (rigidly adhered to by some, totally ignored by others in both cases).
collywob - on 02 Sep 2012
In reply to Niall: Eire is Irish for Ireland. Maybe just using an Irish map / education?
GrahamD - on 03 Sep 2012
In reply to Niall:

> ??? Are you still using that pre-cambrian atlas dude?

Have the brought out a new one ?

davidbeynon - on 03 Sep 2012
In reply to GrahamD:

I used to have an ancient greek Atlas. It was really good for holding things.
nealh - on 03 Sep 2012
In reply to DemolitionRed: you want expensive try kite surfing for a hoot, thats expensive!
davidbeynon - on 05 Sep 2012
In reply to nealh:

I have been window shopping for sea kayaks lately. If I bought one they would need to throw in a longer car!
Niall - on 11 Sep 2012
In reply to GrahamD:
> (In reply to Niall)
>
> [...]
>
> Have the brought out a new one ?

Heh, yep, it's an island now :-)

This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.