/ A chance to decide our own ethics! snakes/ladders/tunnels

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wilkie14c - on 07 Jul 2013
The ethics of trad, sport, winter etc etc have not only been discussed to death but pretty much settled and accepted now. Here is a rare chance to decide our own ethics on this unique 'route' - snakes and ladders (and tunnels)

I was reading through the many comments users have left and must admit to chuckling to myself as many claim the 'solo'. FFS if you ain't abbing or climbing a ladder its a walk! Can you solo a ladder then? I always thought that was the only way to climb a ladder. Is a abb a 'solo' too? Many admit to aiding the chain and to be honest I think this is the way on this route. It is usually a wet weather day out so aiding is really the fastest and probably safest way up. I aided it, 2 x 120 slings simply larks footed to the links and kept moving them up. SL&T is a route where it is best to keep moving on through and not one for burning yourself out attempting to 'lead on sight' a bloody chain LOL!
I've no idea what the bridge of death is like now but after all the rain last summer but I'm pretty sure I wouldn't go across again. The space below it was created by landslide in the first place so it was unstable to begin with and maybe we should declare it unjustifiable and amend the route/grade accordingly.
My proposed ethic for the route:
Solo everything <walks and abbs!> aid the chain, walk past the B.O.D. For the full tick no stickies allowed and no headtorches unless the route is done at night. <you'd still take one with you though obviously>
downgraded to VS with 3 very unique stars <downgrade from HVS as the chain has recently been tied off and omitting the B.O.D>
Anyone see the picture of Mordor in this weeks top ten? Brilliant atmosphere.
Oh yea, the route:
http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/c.php?i=137559

Let ethic war begin :-)
BossHog - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to wilkie14c: Done this 'route' 3 times now! On my last go I did the 'Bridge of Death' its sturdy but very scarey the whole thing bounces! We 'Solo'd' everything but i agree its a pissin ladder!

The Bridge of Death is definately the highlight tho for the buzz so if you havent done it, you dont deserve the tick ;)
Double Knee Bar - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to BossHog: The bridge looks in a much worse state than when we did it two years ago (and I wimped out then) I wouldn't touch it with a barge pole.
Blue Straggler - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to wilkie14c:
>
>
> Can you solo a ladder then? I always thought that was the only way to climb a ladder.

Have you not done "moving together" on a ladder e.g. the ones up to the Refuge de Couvercle?
gd303uk - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to wilkie14c: I was looking at the brdge of death last year, just standing by it, with the huge cracks in the ground at both ends is the worrying bit, let alone the bridge, even roped up , I dont think it would save you with a few tons of slate dragging you into Twll mawr . I would still do it, wearing a nappy. I think you should get the tick with doing it though. I reckon any way snakes is done is acceptable its a good laugh and better in a wet day.
Graeme Hammond - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to wilkie14c:

the sad thing is going to be when someone/people die when the bridge fails, I will never do it again.
gd303uk - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to gd303uk: typed on an small screen, I meant to say "you should still get the tick without doing the bridge".
Jonny2vests - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to wilkie14c:

You can solo it if you do unattached to someone else. That's all solo means after all.
wilkie14c - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Blue Straggler:
> (In reply to wilkie14c)
> [...]
>
> Have you not done "moving together" on a ladder e.g. the ones up to the Refuge de Couvercle?

no chance mate, too dangerous IMO as if you can't trust yourself to not fall off then the chance is there for your mate to fall off too, thus pulling you off with him. Same in winter climbing I guess, either you feel safe doing it or safer not doing it. Its understanding the risks of both and making your mind up
wilkie14c - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to gd303uk:
> (In reply to gd303uk) typed on an small screen, I meant to say "you should still get the tick without doing the bridge".

Yes I think so, VS for the route. No bride though, its unjustifiable IMO. Only thing a rope is going to do is make your body easier to find!
Graeme Hammond - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to wilkie14c:
> (In reply to gd303uk)
> [...]
>
> Yes I think so, VS for the route. No bride though, its unjustifiable IMO. Only thing a rope is going to do is make your body easier to find!

when I did it as part of a large party about 10? Someone had led the bridge before i'd got to the top of the last ladder given the que. They place one or maybe two slings on the way across. It was decided these would be removed by the first 2nd and not re-clipped so not to drag anyone down with the bridge should the bridge fail. We also set up a back belay so if the bridge failed hopefully the climber might be left suspended between the two ropes. So the rope may be of some use if the anchors held/weren't pulled down the hole as these were also attached to part of the track further back from the edge.

lewk_c on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to wilkie14c:
Last time we did it we were contemplating the bridge when the sound of tons of slate sliding into Tyll Mywr filled the air. Suffice to say that brown trousers ensued as we opted to walk around.
Blue Straggler - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to wilkie14c:
> No bride though, its unjustifiable IMO.

Mrs Blanchie didn't fancy it?
gd303uk - on 10 Jul 2013
In reply to gd303uk: the reason I think the bridge doesn't have to count for the tick is this,
It is not a question of whether your climbing skills are up to the job to crawl across a dodgy ladder/track that is in serious chance of falling into the big hole, not doing it doesn't mean you can't climb that grade, just that you have more common sense than someone that would, not that you are a better or worse climber. snakes and ladders isn't about your climbing skills , it's a day out , an adventure through the quarries that's worth doing on a poor day as much as a good day. Saying all that I am stupid enough to want to do it still.
dutybooty - on 10 Jul 2013
In reply to wilkie14c: Ive done the route twice. The first time without the bridge, second time with.

I'd say the day out is awesome, but the bridge really makes the route. You spend the whole way thinking about it, the time you're doing it fear is through the roof. It just has that certain something. It really made to route to me.

That said, I will never do the bridge again. It's stupid and completely unjustifiable. But if I hadn't done the bridge? I'd be dissappojnted I hadn't.

On other notes, I think the chain should be freed, it's quite easily doable! The first time I did it in the snow. however, if someone was to aid it, who cares?

Ropes or solo? Well who really cares?

To be frank, the whole snakes and ladders experience is about the experience, the situation and the views! Who really cares about ethics on a man made route in a man made quarry.

To anyone that's done the route, I believe your style was the correct one.

To anyone that hasn't, do it, however you may want to, you'll regret it if you don't.
BossHog - on 12 Jul 2013
In reply to gd303uk: Hahaa no climbing skills required just balls! So worth it, that bridge has got years in it yet
BossHog - on 12 Jul 2013
In reply to dutybooty: This sums it up well, I will never do it again but I would have the urge to do it if i hadnt already!!
gingerwolf - on 13 Jul 2013
In reply to wilkie14c: I "led" the chain when doing this "route", placing quickdraws into the chain and clipping the rope into it.
Was quite easy doing it this way. The subsequent team members toproped it!

The bridge of death is scary - we sent the team member with a death-wish across first anyway, and then set up a line to clip ourselves into whilst walking across.
I can't vouch for it's sturdiness now though!
HVS for leading the chain, due to the thugginess! :P
wilkie14c - on 13 Jul 2013
In reply to gingerwolf:

> HVS for leading the chain, due to the thugginess! :P

It it tough, I'll not deny that. I found the rungs too small to get a decent hand hold and too 'nippy' for just finger tips. It were raining too so just aided it. Got a shock at the top though, it wasn't tied off then, just hooked over a spike :-/
ian Ll-J - on 13 Jul 2013
In reply to wilkie14c: Back in the day (80's early 90's) everyone used to solo the chain...the thought of giving it a grade or even leading it would have been laughable.
ads.ukclimbing.com
ex0 - on 13 Jul 2013
In reply to wilkie14c:

I've done S&L a couple times this year, this pic is from 11 weeks ago:-

http://lulw.tf/bridge.jpg

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