/ Top rope leading, the way ahead.

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SCrossley on 27 Oct 2013
This weekend I and others have tested a new technique which we call "Top rope leading" this involves placing a nut with a Clip Stick, only nuts at the moment but we are working on placing Cams hopefully with BMC funding.
Once the nut is placed we then clip with a quick draw and the rope. We believe that this is the ultimate development of British Trad climbing, preserving the ethic of leader place protection whilst totally eliminating risk. At the moment we see it being of more use on single pitch routes but hope that with time and a long enough clipstick routes such as Indian Face and Agags Groove could be possible, with no risk to the climber. Exciting times.
sjc
pamph - on 27 Oct 2013
In reply to sjc: On longer routes the fitting of a small video camera on the end of the clip stick with a remote screen fitted to your helmet would ensure that the placement could be seen therefore eliminating any doubt of the security of the nut, or indeed, cam.
SCrossley on 27 Oct 2013
In reply to pamph:
Excellent idea, I shall put this to the development team.
Mountain Spirit - on 27 Oct 2013
In reply to sjc:

Awesome idea!

Love it!
Mountain Spirit - on 27 Oct 2013
In reply to pamph:

Loving it!
teh_mark - on 27 Oct 2013
In reply to sjc:

Brilliant. You could eliminate headpointing overnight.
pec on 27 Oct 2013
In reply to sjc: This reminds of climbing Embankment 3 at Millstone. I put a cam in above my head for every move until the peg. I only went above gear for the last few feet after the peg. I called it leading on a top rope at the time.
ice.solo - on 27 Oct 2013
In reply to sjc:


long enough clip stick and you only need one nut too. good idea.
SCrossley on 27 Oct 2013
In reply to ice.solo: Yes, minimal cost, minimal danger.
pebbles - on 27 Oct 2013
In reply to pamph: I think the use of a video camera is definately a good addition, and since it permits the holds and placements to be viewed indetail from the ground rather than by any form of cheating such as abseil inspection definately preserves the trad onsight ethic
The Lemming - on 28 Oct 2013
In reply to sjc:

how about replacing the stick with a quadcopter?

The quad could have a small camera and raspberry pi computer to memorise the route. you could even down load routes into the quad copter. That way new routes could be safely protected before you step off the ground.
Misha - on 28 Oct 2013
In reply to everyone:
In case you thought sjc was joking, have a look at this video. I've got a suspicion that this will revolutionalise climbing as we know it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2bUH5Bo4WV4
Misha - on 28 Oct 2013
In reply to Misha:
And here is part 2

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BOs6ZgoBvGc

Look forward to seeing this being practised on the crags. On grit you'd have to place only two or three bits of gear in this way and you'll be at the top in no time!
JuneBob on 28 Oct 2013
In reply to sjc:
Side-runners are good, but I prefer to place a top-runner when leading.
krikoman - on 28 Oct 2013
In reply to sjc: you need a clipstick on your nuts.
LeeWood - on 28 Oct 2013
In reply to sjc: but you'd need a v long stick for Indian face?
LeeWood - on 28 Oct 2013
In reply to Misha: well I can share the spriit of humour presented. Looks useful for straight off-the-ground use but I can't believe it could get much further on anything but moderate climbing. Imagine hanging onto F6c/7a crimps while performing all that ??
Misha - on 28 Oct 2013
In reply to LeeWood:
Yes but think about the positive training effects of having to hang on for ages with one hand while fiddling the clip stick and gear with the other. Also, there are routes with ledges where the dangerous climbing is above the ledge, for example the crux run out of Right Wall is above the girdle ledge on the Cromlech. Top rope leading would solve the scary run out issue! I might try it next year as have been wanting to do Right Wall for a while but have been put off by the thought of falling onto the ledge.
Misha - on 28 Oct 2013
In reply to LeeWood:
Yeah wouldn't work for Indian Face, would need the helibot idea for that but I think using mechanically propelled props is not on. It's important to maintain the trad ethic, you know.
ice.solo - on 28 Oct 2013
In reply to sjc:

in a japanese climbing museum once i saw a thing some japanese had taken to the alps in the 1890s and caused a stir.
it was a long (+/- 5m) wooden pole with a brass ring at one end and a brass pointy section at the base. apparently you threaded a rope thru it and leant it against the rock then climbed, belayed thru the brass ring. keep moving it up pitch by pitch.

didnt look too light, so manybe your modern version will debug the problems.
ads.ukclimbing.com
Misha - on 28 Oct 2013
In reply to ice.solo:
Ah, I now know where Stanage Pole came from!
climbEdclimb - on 29 Oct 2013
In reply to sjc: This is a new and important step forward into the realm of trad climbing. Not only this but the safety this shall bring will be revolutionary. Such techniques could be utilised on routes such as Seams the Same or Ethos
Misha - on 30 Oct 2013
In reply to climbEdclimb:
Another case in point is the Dervish with its initial run out. Sorted! BUT you must have both feet at least a bit off the ground as otherwise there's no leading involved. Thinking about, might be a bit hard to hang on to those starting crimps on the Dervish for long - but better than busting an ankle falling off higher up.
SCrossley on 30 Oct 2013
In reply to Misha:
Maybe indoor walls could set up cracks so we can practice the technique without the RISK of getting cold or too far away from a Latte.
Alun - on 30 Oct 2013
In reply to sjc:
You jest but I once saw a chap at Stoney doing this with an 'improvised' clip-stick (aka a long branch and some finger-tape).
Michael Gordon - on 30 Oct 2013
In reply to Alun:

I thought Pete Whittaker's use of bamboo was quite clever. (not as a clip-stick but to enable an extender to be clipped)

Not aware of any other examples of folk doing this sort of thing on route (as opposed to from the ground or hanging from a bolt), but no doubt there have been some!
cragtyke - on 30 Oct 2013
Misha - on 30 Oct 2013
In reply to cragtyke:
They aren't leading though, are they? Bog standard top roping, nothing to write home about.
cragtyke - on 30 Oct 2013
In reply to Misha: No there's some leading at about 1.35 in, with clipstick action as well.

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