/ Ring Barking in the Lakes

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MarkRoe - on 19 Nov 2012
I'm writing a dissertation which looks into the damage caused by climbers building retrievable abseils directly round crag top trees. I am specifically researching Lake District crags. If anyone knows of any Lake District crag where this practice is common, or where there are trees which have damaged bark because of this practice, I would greatly appreciate the information.

Just to clarify, this is a non judgmental piece of work where no fingers will be pointed. I'm not looking to place blame on any person or group of people, just to identify the size of the problem and look into solutions.

Thanks
Mark
GrahamD - on 19 Nov 2012
In reply to MarkRoe:

Not strictly the Lakes, but you could look at the top of Trowbarrow main wall.
DaveAtkinson - on 19 Nov 2012
In reply to MarkRoe:
Shepherds Crag
Sergeant crag slabs
Goat crag
Reecastle (one tree)
Falcon (one or two trees)
Quayfoot
Hodgeclose
Armathwaite
Lankyman - on 19 Nov 2012
In reply to GrahamD:
> (In reply to MarkRoe)
>
> Not strictly the Lakes, but you could look at the top of Trowbarrow main wall.

Why here (and Main Wall in particular), Graham? In my time climbing there I've never witnessed this. You'd need a very long rope to try it on Main Wall and also run the risk of shredding it on the edge or bringing down lots of loose. I'm involved with the group that manages the place and we often cut back the trees (top and bottom) to improve access to the routes and open up the rock faces.
yeti on 19 Nov 2012
In reply to MarkRoe:

once threaded a rope round a hefty root, mate was about to climb, heard this buzzing noise, yep wasp nest, iv'e never untied myself so fast
sadly it happened at chatsworth...
Exile - on 19 Nov 2012
In reply to GrahamD:
> (In reply to MarkRoe)
>
> Not strictly the Lakes, but you could look at the top of Trowbarrow main wall.

I haven't seen any on the top of Main Wall, but there is a good example of what you are looking for at the top of Izzy the Push on Red Wall; people looping their rope over it to shunt the route and then retreaving the rope by pulling it down.

GrahamD - on 19 Nov 2012
In reply to Karl Lunt:

You have email
scottie390 - on 19 Nov 2012
solution is to leave a permnament abseil anchor, ie some insitu tat with a mallion, this eliminates the abrasion caused by pulling ropes. sory if it sounds obvious but it is a really obvious solution to a pretty non existent problem.
Rick Graham on 19 Nov 2012
In reply to DaveAtkinson:
> (In reply to MarkRoe)
> Shepherds Crag
> Sergeant crag slabs
> Goat crag
> Reecastle (one tree)
> Falcon (one or two trees)

A few historical comments on the above crags.

Quite a few trees at Shepherds are on their last legs because the root system is so eroded from climbers walking nearby.

The Sergeant Crag "tree" used to be fairly suspect when we first visited the crag just after Asphasia was climbed. Only been back twice since, I find the climbing pretty boring.

Both Goat and Falcon Lower used to have large convenient trees ( c 3 metre girth ! ) for abbing. Both collapsed early 80's . Its frightening how unsubstantial some root systems are.

The tree on Reecastle was unsafe in the late 80's, it has now recovered and appears quite strong.



Steve Crowe - on 19 Nov 2012
In reply to MarkRoe:
I am also aware of trees being successfully planted/transplanted near the top of crags
peteJ23 - on 19 Nov 2012
In my experience more damage is caused to trees at the bottom or on the way up routes by climbers "getting trees out of the way.."

The holly tree at the bottom of Black Chipper Brimham is a good example.
Jonny2vests - on 20 Nov 2012
In reply to MarkRoe:
> ...just to identify the size of the problem and look into solutions.
>
> Thanks
> Mark

I'd be interested to know whether it is a problem at all beyond the visual eyesore. Make sure you post us a link to the dissy once you're done.
DaveAtkinson - on 20 Nov 2012
In reply to jonny2vests:

Its a problem to the trees being used for abseils and the use of fixed slings improves things and keeps the trees healthy for others to use.

However, I do think climbers are over sensitive about trees and vegetation. Many crag trees are now becoming a problem and really could do with being removed. Crack widening and even crag collapse could be the result of tree growth. I'm not advocating a free for all but many trees could be beneficially removed with the land owner's permission.
Jonny2vests - on 20 Nov 2012
In reply to DaveAtkinson:
> (In reply to jonny2vests)
>
> Its a problem to the trees being used for abseils

Is it though? As climbers we presume that to be the case, but is there any science showing that? To kill a tree from ring barking you need cut a strip all the way through the bark, all the way round the trunk. I've never seen an ab tree like that.
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MarkRoe - on 21 Nov 2012
Thanks guys, time for me to go and do some fieldwork.
As requested, I'll post a link to the completed study on forums when it's done, and when I have a Bsc (touch wood).

:)

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