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Topic - What is it with all the abseiling?

Richard Alderton - on 28 Jul 2013
This thought came to me yesterday, as some idiot chucked a pair of ab ropes straight onto the head of my mate as he was on the crux. No shout of 'below'; no warning.

When I started climbing in the 90s if you were abseiling, it meant one of two things. Either you were French, or you were having an epic. Nowadays, it seems everyone's at it.

- Don't fancy the underwhelming top pitch?
- Can't be arsed to walk down?
- It's started spitting?
- Climbing with a weaker partner who can't second but still want that hard lead?

Meh. Just ab off.

Nothing inherently wrong with abbing, of course (although I do think it has a slight hint of unsport about it), but please put some thought into it. It's natural to finish a route and make to ab straight back down it because that's they way you've come. But as well as trashing a route and/ or tangling with other climbers, it may not be the best line to take anyway.

This particularly affects climbers who, like me, operate in the easier grades, where 'the ab line' (if there is such a thing) coincides with a classic easy route.

And - for the love of God - please shout BELOW, *and* wait for any response before you chuck the rope.
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