/ improve trad lead climbing

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adamarkley - on 08 Nov 2012
hi all,

lead quite a few mountain routes mostly from grade 3 to v.diff and one severe but now looking to get into trad climbing at crags more too, any tips?
GrahamD - on 08 Nov 2012
In reply to adamarkley:

Yes, just go and do it and enjoy ! its easy to overcomplicate things in your mind.
CMcBain - on 08 Nov 2012
In reply to adamarkley:

Half the battle is getting yourself on the route in the first place, once your on it you'll be fine. Remembering this has worked for me quite well as of late!
JimboWizbo - on 08 Nov 2012
In reply to adamarkley: If you can climb with someone who leads a few grades harder you'll get a feel for how comfortable you are on those moves. Can't beat just getting on it though!
martinph78 on 08 Nov 2012
In reply to adamarkley: As above, you just gotta go out and do it.

Practice placing gear at ground level so you can feel how it works, then try placing gear whilst on a top rope, then climbing the route again clipping the pre-placed gear. The biggest difference for leading (I've found anyway) is time spent placing gear suddenly makes routes feel MUCH longer.

I'm getting better at selecting and placing gear first time but that just comes with practice.

Enjoy :)
adamarkley - on 08 Nov 2012
In reply to Martin1978:

yeah the severe route semmed to take ages to lead. but good advice
needvert on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to adamarkley:

They say clean aid is a good way to learn how to place gear...Per route you'll probably place far more too, especially if you're bad at high stepping.
Jon Stewart - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to adamarkley: I started leading at this time of year, and was amazed by how hard it was. My advice is to go bouldering all winter, and get the rack out in spring when you'll be a better climber and won't be freezing your arse off.
EeeByGum - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to adamarkley:
> (In reply to Martin1978)
>
> yeah the severe route semmed to take ages to lead. but good advice

Good point. Remember that climbing is about climbing, not placing gear so practice makes perfect and reduces faff which means you get to do more climbing.
Bulls Crack - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to Jon Stewart:
> (In reply to adamarkley) I started leading at this time of year, and was amazed by how hard it was. My advice is to go bouldering all winter, and get the rack out in spring when you'll be a better climber and won't be freezing your arse off.

Apprently, according to athread on here a couple of weeks ago, there's no such thing as a climbing season - just wrong clothing or something

Clearly bollox
deacondeacon - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to Bulls Crack: For you there might be a season but for others there isn't, and theres plenty of people who will only touch grit (yep I know grit isn't the only rock type) once the frost has arrived.
Jon has about one week in the spring and one week in the autumn when the conditions are perfect and at all other times moans that it's too hot, midgey and greasy or too cold, windy and green. All of his comments are just a ruse to keep the crags quieter for himself.

op: Jons advice is good though, get out there, do loads of bouldering for the winter and only get the rope out on nice bluesky days when theres no wind. Your belayer will appreciate it.
the power - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to adamarkley:
> hi all,
>
> lead quite a few mountain routes mostly from grade 3 to v.diff and one severe but now looking to get into trad climbing at crags more too, any tips?

only way is to get out and try it,if you have lead v.diff mountain routes its only the same but not as high
scottie390 - on 09 Nov 2012
Davies Top Tip for improving your leading (as passed down to me from a Mr Bankhead), if you improve your gear placement and place more gear, your grades will improve.

Got to say it worked for me, quite quickly as well!
Monk - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to adamarkley:

Where are you based? Do you have rock local to you? If so, it is worth going out on days that are a bit damp, taking your rack, and practicing placing gear. Take a long sling, clip it to the gear you have placed then stand in it. Being able to place gear quickly and efficiently (and trusting it) is most of the battle when it comes to trad leading. On days when the weather is nice, just get out and try climbing some stuff. Getting on routes is the best way to get better at climbing them. And getting stronger by bouldering and fitter by sport climbing (both warmer options than trad in colder months) is also useful - that way if you know that you can 5b moves every time on a boulder and can climb 6a on sport every time, you KNOW that you can climb the VS 4c you are looking at.
Jon Stewart - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to deacondeacon:

> Jon has about one week in the spring and one week in the autumn when the conditions are perfect and at all other times moans that it's too hot, midgey and greasy or too cold, windy and green. All of his comments are just a ruse to keep the crags quieter for himself.

The thing about Deacon's advice is that he thinks that if it's not Stanage then you may as well not bother. He has a point, but not when it's hot and midgey, when he should be at Gogarth or at least Chee Tor. And I don't know who's belaying him up at High Neb on freezing, windy days when I'm doing a couple of hour's bouldering at the most shetltered crag around, but I pity the fool.


deacondeacon - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to Jon Stewart: Yep, the bouldering pad has come out of its hibernation and is beginning to be used in anger. The autumn has been mild though and there's still some trad to be done on the odd windless days.
Give me a shout if you've got a day off when it's dry. you can show me this sheltered bouldering nirvana.
Jon Stewart - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to deacondeacon:

Days off are v rare these days. Thursday afternoons can be good. However, the sheltered bouldering nirvana is, unfortunately, Shipley Glen. It's aesthetically flawed, but the climbing is honestly absolutely awesome. If you like the sound of highball crimpy walls around V5 (my favourite thing ever, as far as bouldering is concerned) there are some classics at The Glen. Also the best barndoory highball V3/4 arete anywhere. Plus one classic 7a/+ that I'm yet to try - needs a spotter. The traverses are always sopping btw.

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