/ UKC logbook: falling, resting and dogging

LeeWood - on 21 Jul 2016
When I go to log a route I note several styles to categorise my lead ascent, among which are redpoint/headpoint, repeat, ground up and flash with beta. I barely understand the difference between some of these.

I do however see a clear difference between styles of ascent when I have
a) fallen but done all the moves - putting in the effort and risk to climb between pro
and
b) dogged a route: grabbed a quickdraw, used gear to actually move up - a route I clearly could never have hoped to onsight.

BUT in logbook categories I have no choice in distinguishing these 2 latter styles. This is not v satisfactory. My solution is to choose onsight and append various notes.

How do other folk treat this issue and couldn't we have seperate cats - given those other choices which are (almost) meaningless to me/many ???
1poundSOCKS - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:
> How do other folk treat this issue

Not very seriously.

But seriously, if I weight the rope it's dogged. Or would be. I only bother to log stuff I get up clean these days anyway.

EDIT: RP/HP - I got it clean after I practiced the moves (usually on TR), maybe after falling off and weighting the rope. GU - I got it clean after I fell off previously, but lowered without practice. Flash with Beta - like an OS, but with beta!!!
Post edited at 15:08
Tyler - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:
If it's a free route and you pulled on draws etc. then either DNF as you didn't do it or award yourself an aid grade
(In truth they're both dogged and there's no need to make a distinction between different types of failure)
Post edited at 15:12
planetmarshall on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to Tyler:

> ...there's no need to make a distinction between different types of failure

Harsh but fair.

galpinos on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

Dogged and dogged with notes to explain why i am such a failure/an abysmal failure depending on whether i pulled on the gear or not.
humptydumpty - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to Tyler:

> (In truth they're both dogged and there's no need to make a distinction between different types of failure)

Falling off is better than pulling on gear.
Dogwatch - on 21 Jul 2016
I advise against telling your family, co-workers or significant other that you've been out dogging, as it may be misunderstood.

DerwentDiluted - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

Falling, resting and dogging?

Is that an Essex triathlon?
LeeWood - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to galpinos:

Dogging is often witnessed on french crags: pick a route thats well beyond you, climb to bolt, clip in and hang on. Repeat until you top out.

The opposite end of the spectrum is someone trying hard until they fall. Get back on, work out what was wrong and finish without ever touching quickdraw or gear. Clearly - this merits distinction.

So - what name can we give it ?
LakesWinter on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

They're both failure, it's just that example 2 is closer to success than example 1.
birdie num num - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

I think to summarise, you can't log anything.
Because you're a failure.
galpinos on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

Option 1 - Dogged with note "worked route draw to draw - still a lot of work to do before I'll get this clean"

Option 2 - Dogged with note "fell of at fourth bolt, worked out sequence then led through to the top clean. Hopefully tick next time"

LeeWood - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to galpinos:

Apparently there are diverse options - but if 'all' those folk who benefit from the 'meaningless' categories can split the definitions of style in which they climb, then I think it reasonable for us (the majority) to have an extra category - especially as the dogged choice ends up as a RED 'x' on the crag page - this is quite intolerable !!

I shall continue to use 'onsight' or 'with beta' cats plus supplementary notes.
JLS on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:
You do what you like, but you are likely to get more respect from your fellow climbers if you just say you "dogged it". What you are proposing would be much like a footballer saying, "I scored a goal. It was just wide of the post." Happy climbing.

Ps if this is troll... Nice.
Post edited at 21:18
adamkitson - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

Your definitions in the op are wrong. Dogged is when you rest on the rope/gear during an ascent, regardless of if this was intentional or due to a fall. Pulling on gear to make progress doesn't really have a catagory as you haven't climbed all of the route. "Doing all the moves" but with falls and rests is dogged. Claiming "onsight" denotes successfully sending the whole route without falling or resting on your first attempt and without beta. With beta but on the first attempt with no falling or resting, flashed. Dogging the route however many times and for what ever reason makes your subsequent clean send a redpoint.
LeeWood - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to JLS:

Glib comments - easy to say about folk you don't know.
JLS on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

Seriously? You gone in a huff over that post?

LeeWood - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to adamkitson:

Thanks for this clarification.

> regardless of if this was intentional or due to a fall

This apparently is the convention which I dispute. Time and opportunity are not eternal for some of us mortals and the redpoint may never happen. The convention therefore devalues our efforts in our 1st (and perhaps only) ascent in a) being bold enough to take a fall and b) getting back on and topping out in free-climb.
Fraser on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

You're asking for ever more detailed micro-classifications which isn't necessary IMO. You either tick the route or you don't. Anything else isn't necessary. Next we'll have to log it as 'foot-slipped' or 'pulled off a block' just to excuse an unsuccessful climb.
adamkitson - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

It's just a series of names used to describe the type of ascent though. Wouldn't having it any other way devalue the effort and skill of someone who truly onsights a route if onsight is also used for someone who fell all the way up? Everyone who can climb can redpoint and can onsight, just the grades at which they do these things are probably a few apart. Those that onsight 6a and redpoint 6b+ are no lesser than those with a higher number, it simply describes the level of climbing.

I can run a marathon in world record time, as long as I take a 10 minute rest every mile. Kind of the same as claiming onsight if you've rested on the rope. Pulling on gear, as I said before, isn't free climbing at all.

LeeWood - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to Fraser:

Perhaps you're right. I could quit selecting those style options and just consult my notes.

PS. I'm not bargaining here merely for my own skin - when I directly observe a mate putting the effort in he gets my respect ( folk who for some reason cannot do this get my sympathy ) . The UKC logbook system cannot convey this evidence - and I doubt if anyone consults it for other than massed statistics anyway.
true dat on 21 Jul 2016 - host-80-43-79-71.as13285.net
In reply to LeeWood:

Its not an ascent if you fall off on the route at any point.... It's a fail. So if you dont go back and redpoint it, youve not done it, however hard you triedf. This is facts innit.
LeeWood - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to Fraser:

> just to excuse an unsuccessful climb.

How about a fresh definition for Succesful Climb: topped out, no-one injured and all parties in good humour.

Michael Gordon - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

I used to think of what you describe as 'onsight', with the main thing being that you just turned up and went for it without prior knowledge/practice, and that to have done the route properly you managed all the moves free. But doing the whole route clean (as opposed to just the moves) feels so different and so much more satisfying, and the term nowadays implies this also.

To be honest if you manage a route like this but doubt you could do it clean, you may be surprised how far a little work on the route will get you. If however the main barrier is time then too bad - if you don't invest it you don't get results! But it's up to you how hung up you want to be on definitions. If it's something hard for you then quick abseil inspection followed by a failed attempt (fall) followed by a successful attempt could be pretty cool. Or starting up something hard without prior knowledge, doing it with a couple of rests then returning for a clean lead. Both would end up in the red/headpoint category but don't really feel like it.
Michael Gordon - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> How about a fresh definition for Succesful Climb: topped out, no-one injured and all parties in good humour.

Fair dos I think on a big multipitch. For a wee outcrop you've got to be a bit more strict!
Michael Gordon - on 21 Jul 2016
In reply to true dat:

> Its not an ascent if you fall off on the route at any point.... It's a fail. So if you dont go back and redpoint it, youve not done it, however hard you triedf. This is facts innit.

If you get to the top it's definitely an ascent!

(just not necessarily in good style)
LeeWood - on 22 Jul 2016
In reply to Michael Gordon:
Exactly. I do not forget issues on single pitch ascent and will return given time and opportunity - so long as the climbing is good quality. Some multi-pitch outings are bluemoon occasions. There could be a fall or an point of aid on one pitch alone - or several, and only you know honestly what you could/should have done, but if you topped out then the day will (and should) live in memory as a success.

In the end - for 99% of us the logbooks are for personal record - only. So - back to my earlier point - you want to see a green tick or a red cross agaisnt an otherwise memorable occasion. I've got a name-cat for it 'Free-Top'. What do you think ??
Post edited at 07:17
galpinos on 22 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

As you said, it's your logbook so you can do what you want.

For UK routes, it'd go in as dogged for me. For big routes in the mountains, maybe not. If I'd just done Divine Providence and had to pull on gear on the crux 7c pitch I wouldn't consider it a dogged ascent, it'd be "french free". I guess I'd log it as Alt Lead with no extra descriptor and would write in the notes that I'd had to aid the crux.

Each to their own but I don't think we need even more options in the logbooks.
Nick Russell on 22 Jul 2016
In reply to adamkitson:
> I can run a marathon in world record time, as long as I take a 10 minute rest every mile.

Impressive! I'd struggle to run one mile in 4:41, never mind 26 of them with only 10 minutes rest in between!

Of course, I understand the point you're trying to make :p
Ally Smith on 22 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

Both are failed on-sights
Fredt on 22 Jul 2016
In reply to true dat:

> Its not an ascent if you fall off on the route at any point.... It's a fail. So if you dont go back and redpoint it, youve not done it, however hard you triedf. This is facts innit.

Well, even if I fall off, or dog, or top rope, or weight gear, then its still an ascent to me. and its only a fail if I can't get up it by any means.
I know how I did it, and I don't give a toss if anyone else wants to judge me.
Its not a competition you know.
LeeWood - on 22 Jul 2016
In reply to galpinos:

> Each to their own but I don't think we need even more options in the logbooks.

I like the idea of feeling succesful more frequently - and perhaps others might also. Being able to log my succeses accurately would encourage me and others to use the system - and more traffic makes the forum go round. But clearly you don't have this perspective. I know a lot of climbers who have no use for the logbook system - why is that I wonder?
Wide_Mouth_Frog - on 22 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> The opposite end of the spectrum is someone trying hard until they fall. Get back on, work out what was wrong and finish without ever touching quickdraw or gear. Clearly - this merits distinction.

> So - what name can we give it ?

Soloing?
Kevster - on 22 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

I'd like to see a "holiday tick" option in the log book

You know, when you fail on sight, but know next time it'd go clean, but you can't be bothered to waste the skin/time/energy/belayer etcetc. In favour of doing another route, just like when on holiday really.
LeeWood - on 23 Jul 2016
In reply to Kevster:

Parallel lines

I have no problems with the ideal of onsight - which I aspire to at all times. However outside of onsight there are degrees of success - of which topping out having done all the moves - rates high on my list. A failure to onsight is not a failure to climb - 'send' a route.

> skin/time/energy/belayer etcetc.

All of these factors are real and valid for the common man, and not just when on holiday. Time doesn't last forever.
adamkitson - on 23 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

Why not just log the route as dogged? Why is there an issue with this? It doesn't mean "failed", it means topped with rests/falls on the rope which is what you're saying there should be a catagory for. There is, dogged.

Is there some sort of negative stigma attached to dogging a route that I don't know about? The term means you topped out.
LeeWood - on 23 Jul 2016
In reply to adamkitson:

> It doesn't mean "failed",

Lpgbook presentation is unambiguous in this respect; you get a green tick if you're a good boy - and a red cross for not trying hard enough
HookySam on 24 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

Hi Lee,

When we've climbed together, I have only ever logged climbs that have been done cleanly and all those have been logged using the 'onsight', 'redpoint' or 'repeated' categories.. In my little world, the only things worth logging are successful climbs.. All the failures are etched in my mind and I don't need the UKC logbook to remember them.. In time they'll all (or most of them) make it into the logbook as a redpoint..

There is no style other than 'clean' ;)

Hope to see you around the Ariege soon.

Sam
LeeWood - on 24 Jul 2016
In reply to HookySam:

Hello Sam, So thts how you cunningly avoid little red x's ;) Interesting that you see things so balck and white. I'm sure some folks only bother to log their 'showpiece' climbs - we could clean it all up and have only 'onsight".

I wonder how many folk tick that ground-up cat - I couldn't find any stats. I wonder how many folks don't bother to use the logbooks at all - in view of the strong prevailing ethic.

I've just had more time to think about this while weeding the carrots - the objective is to leave all carrots in place and remove all the weeds. Now, if I accidentally pull a carrot - or by negligence leave a weed - have I failed?



stp - on 24 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> I like the idea of feeling succesful more frequently

The only way for that is to be more successful frequently. Changing the log book system can't possibly help you.

If you don't like failing then either pick easier routes or keep working on the ones you've failed on till you do them.

Fishmate - on 24 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

So, if by chance, you actually climb a route clean, first go, with no prior knowledge, falls or rests you would presumably log that as onsight. How would you differentiate that from the unclean, failed onsight attempts you also record as onsight?

Apologies if I misunderstand you but it sounds like you want to wear stripes you haven't earned. Successful climbing is largely about accepting repeated failure. Embrace it. Dave Mac dogs routes, so does Sharma. Add yourself to that list and be an honest climber. It tends to get you more respect and broaden your climbing options which is what we all want, I guess.
stp - on 24 Jul 2016
In reply to adamkitson:

> It doesn't mean "failed", it means topped with rests/falls

We're talking about free climbing and resting on the rope is a form of aid so it's most definitely a fail.
stp - on 24 Jul 2016
In reply to Fredt:

> Well, even if I fall off, or dog, or top rope, or weight gear, then its still an ascent to me. and its only a fail if I can't get up it by any means.

It's a fail because it's a free route and you've failed to free climb it.

I've got up Rainshadow using a fixed rope and jumars but I'm hardly going to log that as an ascent in my log book.



> I know how I did it, and I don't give a toss if anyone else wants to judge me.

> Its not a competition you know.

If you're dishonest about what you claim people are bound to judge you.
Michael Gordon - on 24 Jul 2016
In reply to stp:

Whether something is a 'fail' or not depends what your goal was when you decided to attempt the route. If your goal was an onsight and you ended up doing it with rests, then it is a failed onsight (obviously). But is the whole experience a fail? Depends how much you still got out of it despite it being imperfect.

If the goal is to get up the route by any means then to manage that is hardly a fail. Bit different stick clipping your way up a sport route, but on a long trad pitch with bold climbing the odd rest may be disappointing but is unlikely to render the overall experience a failure. Same goes for a tricky multipitch.
LeeWood - on 24 Jul 2016
In reply to Fishmate:

Yes you have definately misunderstood me.

When I climb my first aim is to onsight. On vatious other priorities I want to top out, stay safe and get down safely without loosing any gear. And do it all in good humour. Oh - and enjoy being outoors / in the mountains.

If I fail to onsight, I may still succeed in all those other goals and count the day a success. I may even feel ready to return and redpoint any pitch I failed to onsight, having done all the moves. Voila - a new suggestion for this category 'Redpoint-Ready'. This is quite a distinction from resting without falling and / or not learning the route.

I would tick Onsight and append notes on such an occasion (possibly misleading the 1000's who come to peruse my logbook ...) because I counted the ascent a success. Ask yourself 'Is it easier to onsight a route, OR to push to your limits - and get back on?' If you only ever onsight its likely you are not stretching yourself. A fall in action is commendable, not least because it enables you extend those limits.
LeeWood - on 24 Jul 2016
In reply to stp:

> I've got up Rainshadow using a fixed rope and jumars but I'm hardly going to log that as an ascent in my log book.

Well recognised. This will not bring you closer to redpoint - and quite different from working every move after a fall. It also shows disinterest in the acutal climbing - which is fundamental attitude.

In fact, other folk might aid any move on a pitch and still wish to call it a success - if there principal goal was to top out (especially relevant to multipitch / alpine environments. Why can"t we choose how to categorise our routes as failure/success ? There are plenty of different criteria to suit each individual and the differeing circumstances which a day brings along.
Fredt on 24 Jul 2016
In reply to stp:

> It's a fail because it's a free route and you've failed to free climb it.
Who says a free route has to be climbed free?

> I've got up Rainshadow using a fixed rope and jumars but I'm hardly going to log that as an ascent in my log book.
Well done you.

> If you're dishonest about what you claim people are bound to judge you.
Who's being dishonest? And who the hell is judging me?

HookySam on 24 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

Hi Lee,

If "the objective is to leave all carrots in place and remove all the weeds" then what criteria should be used to define succeeding in your objective? For me it would be all carrots in place and all weeds removed (though on a big multi-pitch I may pull on the occasional weed ;) ).. I'd view anything else as failure.. But that's just me.. My logbook is hidden and acts as a purely personal record of what I've climbed cleanly.. It helps me analyse year on year if I'm improving within the criteria that I've set myself.

All the best - Sam

Billg - on 24 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood: Pushing yourself is always commendable . When you do the chance of an onsight ascent gets less but a successfull onsight at your limit is far sweeter than an easy tick. However....
The definitions are well established. An onsight can only be claimed when gear or rope are not weighted. Finishing a route after a fall or rest is dogged. You could then comment in your notes about the number of falls or rests you took or how close you came to an onsight.
I realise that I'm repeating many other folks points but you are trying to rewrite the climbing dictionary so you don't get a nasty red mark!!


LeeWood - on 25 Jul 2016
In reply to Billg:

I don't want a red mark, true, but neither do I wish to tick onsight. I want other options.

How about an ORANGE 'T' for topped out ??

UKC definition for dogged is broad: "dogged" got to the top, somehow! falls, rests, pulling on gear, etc -
- this implies anything from a single fall and then climbing to top OR
- aiding as necessary.

Tell me for this extreme example: You go do a 20-multipitch climb and fall on just one pitch. The rest of your leads are onsight. How do you regard and document (in UKC) success on this climb ??
ads.ukclimbing.com
Michael Gordon - on 25 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

I thought there was just a 'lead' or 'alt lead' option without having to choose onsight?
andrewmcleod - on 25 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:
> Tell me for this extreme example: You go do a 20-multipitch climb and fall on just one pitch. The rest of your leads are onsight. How do you regard and document (in UKC) success on this climb ??

If you repeated that pitch clean, you climbed the route ground up. Log as such, and comment on the details.
If you dogged that pitch, you dogged the route. Log as such, and comment on the details.

Easy :P

PS UKC definition for 'dogged' is indeed broad because the myriad ways in which you can fail are broad. Conversely there are only a small number of ways to succeed (O/S, GU, flash, RP). I really don't see what is gained by adding additional options to precisely detail your failure (given that you can add a comment if you feel the need), nor a need to indicate different colours for 'dogged' or 'did not finish', given that both are failures? (although the latter may, in certain circumstances, preserve hope for the later onsight).
Post edited at 11:17
springfall2008 - on 28 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

I must admit if it's a sports route I tend to try and climb routes outside my normal grade, so I'd be happy to get up the route with a few falls or rests as opposed to bailing on a Mallion. I don't see much difference between this and a ground up other than you take the trouble to climb it again cleanly - but who can be arsed when their are more routes to climb? ;)

For a Trad climb, I think the definition is fair (red X if you weighted gear).
LeeWood - on 29 Jul 2016
In reply to springfall2008:

Fair enough. Success may be subjective, not rule bound.

Anyway, very interresting to hear different views on this issue. We don't strictly need new cats on UKC. As Michael Gordon suggests - you can select Lead but not the sub-cats for style - which will get you a green tick.

I'll quit with final propositions - should someone decide to pamper us anarchists.

'Freestyle' success: got up the route in undefined manner (esp appropriate for multipitch/alpine)
'Redpoint Ready' or 'Free Topout' success: took falls but worked all the moves (esp appropriate if unlikely to return).

Only you know how much effort has been put in and what the circumstances of the day were.
springfall2008 - on 31 Jul 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> I don't want a red mark, true, but neither do I wish to tick onsight. I want other options.

> How about an ORANGE 'T' for topped out ??

That would be nice, only just so it's easy to see which climbs your completed and which you didn't from the crag view.
Michael Gordon - on 31 Jul 2016
In reply to springfall2008:

Yes I guess that makes sense. Green for clean; Orange for got to the top; Red for retreat/failure (i.e. didn't get to the top); Black for major epic involving storms, injury, benightment and calling out of rescue services.
Scotch Bingington - on 31 Jul 2016
In reply to Fraser:

> Next we'll have to log it as 'foot-slipped' or 'pulled off a block' just to excuse an unsuccessful climb.

Hey! A year or so ago I climbed a route and almost at the top pulled off a breeze block sized lump of rock which launched me off backwards. I instinctively held on to it. Due to the funnelling nature of the route it's just as well - if I'd dropped it I'd have wiped out my belayer (and myself as collateral damage). Having disposed of the large lump (not me, the rock) I reclimbed the route to its conclusion and claim the on sight. Wrong? Probably - I don't care! (witnessed by one of the UKs top climbers btw - adds nothing to the anecdote but I can't resist a bit of reflected glory).

stp - on 02 Sep 2016
In reply to Michael Gordon:
> Whether something is a 'fail' or not depends what your goal was when you decided to attempt the route.

Well obviously there could no end of personal goals relating to ascending a route in one form or another. Some people might want to climb a route naked. Others might want to climb it at night etc. etc.. It would be impossible and pointless to cover these in the login section. But UKC sensibly assumes the goal is to free climb the route, a goal that is true for the vast majority of climbers.

Also the grade of a route is for a free ascent. So if UKC gave a successful ascent every time someone climbed a route with rests their logbook grades could end up being completely wrong. An E3 climber could climb a sustained E5 or E6 with rests but be a long way ever free climbing the route without such aid. In their logbook section their max grade climbed would then be E5 even though they're incapable of climbing that grade.
Post edited at 16:22
LakesWinter on 02 Sep 2016
In reply to Michael Gordon:

> Yes I guess that makes sense. Green for clean; Orange for got to the top; Red for retreat/failure (i.e. didn't get to the top); Black for major epic involving storms, injury, benightment and calling out of rescue services.

No, because it is better to lower off and come back another day than dog to the top. Dogging to the top = fail = haven't done the route. Saying otherwise, or saying I did it with a rest is lying to yourself and believing it. Lets just be honest - when we've failed on a route it doesn't make us bad people or failures at life or anything but the facts remain that if I sit on gear I've failed, whether I like that or not.
Michael Gordon - on 02 Sep 2016
In reply to LakesWinter:

> No, because it is better to lower off and come back another day than dog to the top. Dogging to the top = fail = haven't done the route.

I shall remember that next time I'm seven pitches up a route and near the top.

Lord_ash2000 - on 02 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:
I don't see why anyone want would want to publicly log routes they haven't completed yet. Who cares?
Post edited at 18:01
LakesWinter on 02 Sep 2016
In reply to Michael Gordon:

Yep, that's right!
springfall2008 - on 02 Sep 2016
In reply to Lord_ash2000:

You are assuming the log is there for a public reason, most people log routes for their own benefit.
Lord_ash2000 - on 03 Sep 2016
In reply to springfall2008:

Well either or. I can't see why you'd log a route you failed to climb, you only need remember the routes you've done. Maybe I should buy a guide to a crag I've never been to and log every route as NC (not climbed) jus so I've got a nice comprehensive list of all the routes I havn't done in the event I ever go.
springfall2008 - on 03 Sep 2016
In reply to Lord_ash2000:

> Well either or. I can't see why you'd log a route you failed to climb, you only need remember the routes you've done. Maybe I should buy a guide to a crag I've never been to and log every route as NC (not climbed) jus so I've got a nice comprehensive list of all the routes I havn't done in the event I ever go.

Sorry that's nonsense, there is a big difference between a route you climbed to the top with falls/rests, a route you didn't finish and a route you didn't start.

Heck, I can DNF 9a but if I could top a 9a with 100 falls/rests I'd be dreaming!
Billg - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to springfall2008:

We obviously do need a few new categories. .... on sight, then, lightly dogged, dogged a fair bit, dogged, heavily dogged and finally.... used a clip stick.

Goucho on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

F*cking hell, this thread is like a bunch of accountants discussing how many columns there should be on an Excel spreadsheet for travel expenses.
Robert Durran - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> How about a fresh definition for Succesful Climb: topped out, no-one injured and all parties in good humour.

FFS......... Next you'll be telling us your failure makes you a better climber than someone who onsight solos the route because you were having more fun.
springfall2008 - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:

Nope, but it makes you a better climber than someone who didn't try the route or DNF'ed it!
Robert Durran - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to springfall2008:

No it doesn't.
LeeWood - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:

The problem with success is that its all relative. You could easily onsight F7a, while a (normally) 6c climber would struggle to do so. If the latter gets to the top with one fall, while you cruise - which will have tried harder and have the greater satisfaction for this same route - and for which one will topping out be a greater success ?
Goucho on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> The problem with success is that its all relative. You could easily onsight F7a, while a (normally) 6c climber would struggle to do so. If the latter gets to the top with one fall, while you cruise - which will have tried harder and have the greater satisfaction for this same route - and for which one will topping out be a greater success ?

Personally speaking, I get far more satisfaction onsighting a route in good style, than dogging the crap out of a route. And sorry to shatter the urban myth, but not falling off doesn't mean you aren't trying hard enough.

Fraser on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

> And sorry to shatter the urban myth, but not falling off doesn't mean you aren't trying hard enough.

Go on, I'm listening....

LeeWood - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

... typical of the average UKC forum thread you contribute to then
Robert Durran - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> The problem with success is that its all relative. You could easily onsight F7a, while a (normally) 6c climber would struggle to do so. If the latter gets to the top with one fall, while you cruise - which will have tried harder and have the greater satisfaction for this same route - and for which one will topping out be a greater success ?

I fail to see how this means that the better climber is the one who frigs their way to the top of a route which is too hard for them rather than admitting defaet and bailing out. Obviously I'm not a better climber than Adam Ondra because I can piss up 6c's while he struggles to onsight 9a's.
Goucho on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> ... typical of the average UKC forum thread you contribute to then

You need to save these gags up for the next Accountants Conference.
Goucho on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Fraser:

> Go on, I'm listening....

Care to expand on this?
Michael Gordon - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

I'd hardly describe "getting to the top with one fall" as "dogging the crap out of a route".
LeeWood - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:

There's a subtlety here you're missing - success for most of us UKC climbers - is something personally reckoned. We're not Adam Ondra so we don't need the world's approval. I never attempted to define 'the best climber' - but redefine what is to me personally - success.
Fraser on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

> Care to expand on this?

I was hoping you would explain your assertion that "...not falling off doesn't mean you aren't trying hard enough."
Michael Gordon - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Fraser:

He'll say he's got to E6 without falling off, as per usual. But it ignores the fact that to never fall off, by definition, requires one to nearly always have something in reserve. And who knows what he may have achieved had he tried (safe) routes where this reserve was not an option.
Goucho on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Fraser:

> I was hoping you would explain your assertion that "...not falling off doesn't mean you aren't trying hard enough."

Well falling off can prove that you're not trying hard enough to not fall off.

Of course I can only speak from personal experience, and evidence of the people I've climbed with over the years, but you can fall off while climbing within your limit, and not fall off while climbing at it.
Robert Durran - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> There's a subtlety here you're missing - success for most of us UKC climbers - is something personally reckoned. We're not Adam Ondra so we don't need the world's approval. I never attempted to define 'the best climber' - but redefine what is to me personally - success.

Precisely, and if you think it makes you more "successful" and, I presume, therefore better at climbing, to frig your way to the top of a route which is too hard you rather than accept defeat and bail out, then I think you are deluding yourself.

It was you who brought comparison between two climbers into it so I only mentioned Adam Ondra to show how absurd it was to do so.

Goucho on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Michael Gordon:
> He'll say he's got to E6 without falling off, as per usual. But it ignores the fact that to never fall off, by definition, requires one to nearly always have something in reserve. And who knows what he may have achieved had he tried (safe) routes where this reserve was not an option.

No I won't actually. And I have been in positions where I've had nothing whatsoever in reserve and been at my absolute limit, but managed to not fall off. I've also been on routes within my limits where for one reason or another, I've made a bollocks of a move and fallen off.

My point, is that this 'one size fits all' bollocks that your only trying hard when you're falling off, is just that, bollocks.
Post edited at 21:33
jimjimjim on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

My misses went dogging once, car came back looking like it'd crashed into an ice cream van.......I'll get me coat
Fraser on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:
Don't you think you might have been concentrating so hard to not fall off that you stopped trying to press on to your *actual* limit? And what did you do after not falling off?

I really don't understand why you claim that you are at your limit yet can't manage one more move yet still don't fall off. It makes no sense to me and I'd hoped you could explain why it does to you.

Edit: I should just add that I agree you can fall off when not trying your hardest.
Post edited at 22:08
Robert Durran - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Fraser:

I always took it to mean, with respect to onsighting, that if you try harder routes you will inevitably fall off most of them but will sometimes hit a route right and get the odd harder grade tick. And, with respect to redpointing, that you'll only tick the highest grade of which you're capable by trying something that takes a massive siege.

But it's a bit of a silly saying because obviously often the only reason you don't fall off is because you tried very, very hard not to do so.
tom_in_edinburgh - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:
How should one log this one on UKC?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GvVoO5cKiSk

Dogged, DNF with an explanatory note?
Post edited at 22:32
Robert Durran - on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh:

Best not to log it at all because climbing in Monument Valley is illegal.
Goucho on 11 Sep 2016
In reply to Fraser:

> Don't you think you might have been concentrating so hard to not fall off that you stopped trying to press on to your *actual* limit? And what did you do after not falling off?

I got to the top of the route and lit a fag.

> I really don't understand why you claim that you are at your limit yet can't manage one more move yet still don't fall off. It makes no sense to me and I'd hoped you could explain why it does to you.

I never said anything like this?

The problem here us I think, that you're only seeing 'limit' in 'physical' terms - perfectly understandable if your background is predominately sport.

But with trad, 'limit' can mean things other than physical, such as technical - you can have fingers like skyhooks and the power of Samson, but if you can't read the sequence? - and of course what is in my opinion the biggest limiter, psychological and emotional.

I've seen people's grades shrink in direct coralation with the increasing gaps between runners, or snappy rock. Routes which are very delecate, highly technical and balancy - especially if in a serious position - can stop someone dead in their tracks even when it's well within the grade zone that person normally climbs.

We've all seen people cranking out 7a indoors, throw wobblers and bail from a HVS outdoors.

Climbers are all different. Some thrive on bold serious routes, yet get shut down by bomb proof routes, and visa versa. And the really good climbers thrive on both. Often climbers operate at different limits depending on these variables - my grade on off vertical bold routes, is higher than on overhanging pumpy power fests - which brings me back to my original point, which is that the one size fits all statement that if you're not falling off you're not fulfilling your potential, is still bollocks, because it presumes that all climbers are the same, which is plainly also bollocks.



LeeWood - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Precisely, and if you think it makes you more "successful" and, I presume, therefore better at climbing, to frig your way to the top of a route which is too hard you rather than accept defeat and bail out, then I think you are deluding yourself.

Same issue again - but thats fine - we are different people who see it from different perspectives. You are very competitive and will only ever see success as hard fact (numbers), which allows you to evaluate and compare success w r t The World.

You're also a splitter. You keep coming back to 'dogging the hell out of'. If I fail badly on a route - many points of aid/rest/falls - then its clear in my mind that I am nowhere close - and thats clearly a fail. Reciproc with one fall I may be sure that this was a route well feasible for my capablity - with just a bit of fine tuning (technique/hold-knowledge).


Michael Gordon - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

I think talking about a 'mental limit' doesn't really work here. I mean I could do a nasty E1 5a chop route and claim I was near my mental limit but would recognise I was no-where near my physical (which includes technical) limit which is what people usually mean when they talk about climbing at one's limit. To really climb near the line it would usually be something well protected (but occasionally something nasty which you've just got committed on).
Goucho on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Michael Gordon:
> I think talking about a 'mental limit' doesn't really work here. I mean I could do a nasty E1 5a chop route and claim I was near my mental limit but would recognise I was no-where near my physical (which includes technical) limit which is what people usually mean when they talk about climbing at one's limit. To really climb near the line it would usually be something well protected (but occasionally something nasty which you've just got committed on).

Mental limit doesn't work if you're determined to keep using just one way of measuring limit - the technical/physical.

If you are nowhere near your technical limit, it's plainly not a chop route, as you're not likely to fall off. A chop route is a chop route when you are up at your limit, and a fall is a possibility.

There's another thread discussing John Redhead. He is a classic case of how big the 'mental limit' factor is. There were many climbers doing stuff just as technically and physically hard - maybe technically harder even - yet remind me again who's routes were - and still are - the least repeated, and the reason why?

I think you might find its that inconvenient 'mental' limit aspect again?
Post edited at 08:37
Robert Durran - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:
> Mental limit doesn't work if you're determined to keep using just one way of measuring limit - the technical/physical.

The "if you're not falling, you're not trying" clearly doesn't apply to trad climbing in any sense; you might as well say "if you're not dead, you weren't trying". The phrase, when unqualified, is just a silly sport climbing thing.
Post edited at 08:54
Robert Durran - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> You are very competitive and will only ever see success as hard fact (numbers), which allows you to evaluate and compare success w r t The World.

Nonsense. I simply see success as climbing the route cleanly. If I do, I succeed. If I don't I fail. Nothing to do with anybody else.
Goucho on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:

> The "if you're not falling, you're not trying" clearly doesn't apply to trad climbing in any sense; you might as well say "if you're not dead, you weren't trying". The phrase, when unqualified, is just a silly sport climbing thing.

Completely agree. Hence why most people's sport and trad grades are seldom the same.
Fraser on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:

> The "if you're not falling, you're not trying" clearly doesn't apply to trad climbing in any sense; you might as well say "if you're not dead, you weren't trying". The phrase, when unqualified, is just a silly sport climbing thing.

In your words, that's nonsense.
Robert Durran - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Fraser:

> In your words, that's nonsense.

Which words? Where?
ActionSte on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to humptydumpty:

> Falling off is better than pulling on gear.

Come on humpty dumpty, you should know better by now.

In seriousness though, id say that depends entirely on how good the gear is below you. Ive grabbed hold of gear that i didnt have enough juice left to clip into because i knew fine well the gear bellow me was garbage, certainly wouldnt have wanted to fall in that scenario
Fraser on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Which words? Where?

Your use of the word 'nonsense' at 8:51 this morning.
ads.ukclimbing.com
Fraser on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

> I got to the top of the route and lit a fag.

Did you rest, take a break then continue to the top, or just "hang in there" (mentally & physically) and finish the route cleanly?

> The problem here us I think, that you're only seeing 'limit' in 'physical' terms - perfectly understandable if your background is predominately sport.

It's not how I'm "seeing it", I just think that climbers generally don't fall off due to mental weakness, it's virtually always due to physical weakness. Otherwise, rather than falling, most people I'd say *stop* at their last bit of gear and consider the upcoming moves and either continue or bail. This happens on both trad and sport.

> But with trad, 'limit' can mean things other than physical, such as technical - you can have fingers like skyhooks and the power of Samson, but if you can't read the sequence? - and of course what is in my opinion the biggest limiter, psychological and emotional.

Either way, whether it's mental or physical, if you don't press on despite the upcoming moves, you're not going to the max and trying your hardest. (again, be that mentally or physically). You either succeed and complete the route, or you fail and fall, or hang on your last bit of gear/at the current bolt. You seem to be deliberately obtuse or you fail to understand what both of us are saying.





Goucho on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Fraser:

> Did you rest, take a break then continue to the top, or just "hang in there" (mentally & physically) and finish the route cleanly?

The latter - which is what 'pushing yourself' is really all about.

> It's not how I'm "seeing it", I just think that climbers generally don't fall off due to mental weakness, it's virtually always due to physical weakness. Otherwise, rather than falling, most people I'd say *stop* at their last bit of gear and consider the upcoming moves and either continue or bail. This happens on both trad and sport.

I didn't say people fall off due to mental weakness, I said people often don't really push themselves because they're held back by the 'mental' barrier not the physical or technical one.

> Either way, whether it's mental or physical, if you don't press on despite the upcoming moves, you're not going to the max and trying your hardest. (again, be that mentally or physically). You either succeed and complete the route, or you fail and fall, or hang on your last bit of gear/at the current bolt. You seem to be deliberately obtuse or you fail to understand what both of us are saying.

You are being deliberately obtuse in not separating the mental aspects of trad with the physical.

Let me put it another way, the grade most people can lead on well protected safe routes (irrespective of whether it's onsight or worked), is higher than the grade they can lead on poorly protected serious routes. So is that because they're not pushing it physically or mentally?

If you don't understand that big aspect of trad, then you don't understand trad. But I've got a funny feeling you're coming at all of this from a sport mentality?



Fraser on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

What kicked off this side-bar to the main thread was your earlier comment that "... not falling off doesn't mean you aren't trying hard enough." My assertion was that, irrespective of whether your climbing trad or sport, or you back off due to physical or mental limitations, you're not trying the hardest you possibly can if you don't go to the point of falling off. If you keep going, you either fall or you succeed. If you don't keep going, you aren't trying your hardest. And if you succeed, you could, in all probability, have done something harder. Nothing more - nothing less.

And with that, I'm out. This discussion is getting predictably circular and as such, I see no benefit in contributing further.
LeeWood - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to ActionSte:

Agreed there's no respect for someone who knew the gear was bad and still took the fall - so the whole debate is less evident with trad. But, however wild it may sometimes seem we regularly watch the grade pushers - in both sport and trad - take a whanger in their stride. Its a v liberating experience - confirming theoretical trust in the system.
Robert Durran - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Fraser:
> Your use of the word 'nonsense' at 8:51 this morning.

Ah, I see. I assumed you were accusing me of contradicting myself rather than just using a word I had also used at some other time in a different context ;-)

And "nonsense" is one word, singular, not words, plural!
Post edited at 14:03
Goucho on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Fraser:

> And with that, I'm out. This discussion is getting predictably circular and as such, I see no benefit in contributing further.

Good decision.

springfall2008 - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:

Cool, so I'm just as good a climber as someone who takes a rest and tops out on a F9a - I can DNF F9a's all day long!
Robert Durran - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to springfall2008:

> Cool, so I'm just as good a climber as someone who takes a rest and tops out on a F9a - I can DNF F9a's all day long!

Oh FFS......... Please read what I wrote.....

If you frig your way to the top of a route it does not make you a better climber than bailing off the same route. Same route, same person.
Michael Gordon - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

Saying it's not a good idea to fall off serious poorly protected routes would be stating the bloody obvious. The phrase 'if you're not falling off, you're not trying hard enough' clearly is not intended to relate to those routes but to routes where you actually can afford to fall off (again stating the bloody obvious). So a bit silly to bring up those types of routes really.

Getting back to what the phrase relates to (those routes where you actually can afford to fall off), as they are safe these routes tend to be physically difficult for their E grade. Of course it is possible to climb a hard route at or near your physical limit without falling off but in practice for every one of these successful ascents there will be a few unsuccessful ones (i.e. involving a fall) - if this wasn't the case then the routes cannot be at one's physical limit, by definition!

Someone who never falls off nearly always climbs with something in reserve - I don't see how you could argue otherwise.
Michael Gordon - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

A chop route is a chop route regardless of grade. Does anyone do these types of routes while at their physical limit? Very few!
Goucho on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Michael Gordon:
> A chop route is a chop route regardless of grade. Does anyone do these types of routes while at their physical limit? Very few!

So what your saying, is that any route with poor or an absence of protection is a chop route?

F*ck me, there's a lot of them about then isn't there, starting as low in the grade as Hard Severe?
Post edited at 18:33
Goucho on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Michael Gordon:

> Saying it's not a good idea to fall off serious poorly protected routes would be stating the bloody obvious. The phrase 'if you're not falling off, you're not trying hard enough' clearly is not intended to relate to those routes but to routes where you actually can afford to fall off (again stating the bloody obvious). So a bit silly to bring up those types of routes really.

No it isn't, but it is an inconvenient truth for your argument.

> Getting back to what the phrase relates to (those routes where you actually can afford to fall off), as they are safe these routes tend to be physically difficult for their E grade. Of course it is possible to climb a hard route at or near your physical limit without falling off but in practice for every one of these successful ascents there will be a few unsuccessful ones (i.e. involving a fall) - if this wasn't the case then the routes cannot be at one's physical limit, by definition!

Once more you cherry pick your route criteria to plug the hole in your argument.

> Someone who never falls off nearly always climbs with something in reserve - I don't see how you could argue otherwise.

Who said anything about never falling off ffs. I said, that falling off a trad route doesn't mean you're giving it everything, anymore than not falling off means you aren't. Falling off a serious route isn't really an option, whereas you can spend all day falling off a safe route. Doing the latter might in fact prove that it's easier to fall than really fight, dig deep and really push your limits?

LeeWood - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

> Doing the latter might in fact prove that it's easier to fall than really fight, dig deep and really push your limits?

I can see this both ways. But even personal honesty is vulnerable here. I remember for years doing occasional moves/sequences where I thought (imagined) 'that was close' - before I got comfortable with falling, pushed up 2-3 grades - and found new thresholds of operation. The adage 'a miss is as good as a mile' applies in the inverse, ie. if you did the move you were capable however close it felt. But you can only test the possible by risking all at times.

andrewmcleod - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

> We've all seen people cranking out 7a indoors, throw wobblers and bail from a HVS outdoors.

Funny how you always see comments like this, but you never see 'they have climbed E1 outside, but can't get up a 6b+ indoors' despite the 6b+ probably being the easier achievement...

or is it not easier, but simply different?
Goucho on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to andrewmcleod:

> Funny how you always see comments like this, but you never see 'they have climbed E1 outside, but can't get up a 6b+ indoors' despite the 6b+ probably being the easier achievement...

> or is it not easier, but simply different?

I'm pretty crap on indoor walls, primarily because I only occasionally use them, and when I do, I use them primarily for stamina training - I'm more than aware of how knackered my fingers elbows and shoulders are these days
Michael Gordon - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

> So what your saying, is that any route with poor or an absence of protection is a chop route?

> F*ck me, there's a lot of them about then isn't there, starting as low in the grade as Hard Severe?

I actually hadn't considered this question before my previous reply so haven't really formed a strong view but I guess, theoretically, yes. I have certainly used the term in relation to E1s and it's hard to see why it wouldn't apply lower down the scale also. Obviously Hard Severe is not going to trouble as many folk but I guess a terribly loose one could feel like a chop route.
Goucho on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> I can see this both ways. But even personal honesty is vulnerable here. I remember for years doing occasional moves/sequences where I thought (imagined) 'that was close' - before I got comfortable with falling, pushed up 2-3 grades - and found new thresholds of operation. The adage 'a miss is as good as a mile' applies in the inverse, ie. if you did the move you were capable however close it felt. But you can only test the possible by risking all at times.

When I did Bastille at High Tor, I was at my absolute limit to such a degree, that when I finally got to the top, my fingers and arms were so knackered it was over 20 minutes before I'd recovered enough to even rig the belay, and another 15 minutes before I could actually safely pull the rope through the stitch plate. I was still struggling to pick my pint up in the pub 2 hours later. If that's not pushing to my limit, I don't know what is? Although I will conceded that the sketchy nature of the gear on 2 crucial sections meant I was probably driven on by fear and adrenaline. Same story with The Cad actually.
Michael Gordon - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Fraser:

> What kicked off this side-bar to the main thread was your earlier comment that "... not falling off doesn't mean you aren't trying hard enough." My assertion was that, irrespective of whether your climbing trad or sport, or you back off due to physical or mental limitations, you're not trying the hardest you possibly can if you don't go to the point of falling off. If you keep going, you either fall or you succeed. If you don't keep going, you aren't trying your hardest. And if you succeed, you could, in all probability, have done something harder. Nothing more - nothing less.

> And with that, I'm out. This discussion is getting predictably circular and as such, I see no benefit in contributing further.

+1 (to both paragraphs!)
Robert Durran - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to andrewmcleod:

> Funny how you always see comments like this, but you never see 'they have climbed E1 outside, but can't get up a 6b+ indoors' despite the 6b+ probably being the easier achievement...

But it is not uncommon among "proper" climbers who know how to climb actual rock.

LeeWood - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:

Perhaps your body was telling you *not* to pick up that pint ;)

In fact I think you have unusual physiology (but to be sure we're all different). Most climbers who operate at this level are only able to do so because of trained-in speedy recovery rate. Headgame ?
Robert Durran - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:
> In fact I think you have unusual physiology

I suspect it is more the nature of trad climbing, where an onsight at your limit can be a prolonged and utterly draining war of attrition which seems very hard to replicate on bolts however hard you are trying; a hard redpoint will almost certainly be a sprint in comparison, and if you are onsighting at your limit on bolts you should be gambling on committing to sequences as if on redpoint.
Post edited at 21:29
andrewmcleod - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:
> But it is not uncommon among "proper" climbers who know how to climb actual rock.

I agree, which is why it is odd that the mockery is only one-way... why is it that outdoor climbers feel the need to point this out but you never hear it the other way round? Just interested in the psychology :P

PS I picked those grades based roughly on myself as I have comfortably or less comfortably done a few outdoor E1s but will quite happily bail off a 6b+ indoors because I am just too scared! To me something like Satan's Slip isn't remotely scary - I have sufficient gear in (albeit spaced), won't hit the ground, and just won't fall off because I can just gently take my time. Whereas a steep 6b+ indoors involving a non-reversible move from a crimp to another crimp around the level of the bolt is basically a non-starter... I have got to sort my falling-off head out at some point
Post edited at 21:31
Goucho on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> Perhaps your body was telling you *not* to pick up that pint ;)

> In fact I think you have unusual physiology (but to be sure we're all different). Most climbers who operate at this level are only able to do so because of trained-in speedy recovery rate. Headgame ?

I don't think I have, but I suppose my headgame is quite good.

I tend to find when onsighting up near my limit, especially on a route which is a bit bold in sections, and when it's a route I really want to climb, that when it starts getting hard, the adrenalin and endorphins kick in and dig out an extra gear.

Or put it another way, you'll run a much faster time for the 100 metres if you're being chased by a pack of snarling Doberman's, than a group of old ladies waving umbrellas

Robert Durran - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to andrewmcleod:

> I agree, which is why it is odd that the mockery is only one-way... why is it that outdoor climbers feel the need to point this out but you never hear it the other way round? Just interested in the psychology :P

Because outdoor and indoor climbing are not equal; one is the real thing, and one is just training. Obviously what matters is the real thing, not the training, so some, perhaps cruelly, see it as fair game to mock those who fail to convert their training into the real thing.
andrewmcleod - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Goucho:
> Or put it another way, you'll run a much faster time for the 100 metres if you're being chased by a pack of snarling Doberman's, than a group of old ladies waving umbrellas

I bet Usain Bolt would run almost exactly as fast whether he was being chased by a pack of snarling Dobermans or a group of old ladies waving umbrellas that he really just wanted to get away from (possibly even faster from the latter because the former might throw off his concentration) because he will already be operating at virtually his physical limit.

Training to operate at your absolute limit, on demand, must be an important part of many sports.
Post edited at 23:57
andrewmcleod - on 12 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:
I shouldn't respond to such obvious baiting, but... :P

The hobby of rock climbing, indoors or outdoors is a totally pointless activity, except for a) the enjoyment it brings and b) the physical health benefits.

Therefore to denigrate indoors as mere 'training' for the pointless activity of outdoor climbing when it can provide just as much of a) and possibly even more of b) is clearly erroneous. Some people will prefer indoors to outdoors. You don't get to tell people that they _should_ enjoy something more than something else because it is naturally a personal thing! Some people like a breadth of activity, some like a single focus of activity.

There is nothing 'real' about outdoor climbing (at least no more or less real than indoor).

PS I know this thread is going off-topic but the original topic was silly anyway...
Post edited at 23:57
Robert Durran - on 13 Sep 2016
In reply to andrewmcleod:

> You don't get to tell people that they _should_ enjoy something more than something else because it is naturally a personal thing!

I didn't tell anybody what they should enjoy. If some people enjoy training more than the climbing that's ok. I enjoy both.

> There is nothing 'real' about outdoor climbing (at least no more or less real than indoor).

Except that it happens on, well, real rock.
Michael Gordon - on 13 Sep 2016
In reply to andrewmcleod:

The best times in sprinting (or anything else) are achieved when there's a strong field. If one guy is miles better than everyone else he's not going to go for broke. If there are 4 brilliant runners they are likely to all produce faster times than the one brilliant runner amongst lesser competition. Strong competition produces personal best performances in competitive sport.
La benya - on 13 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:
Sometimes I wonder if you work really hard at coming across as a tit on here or whether it just flows naturally.
Robert Durran - on 13 Sep 2016
In reply to La benya:

> Sometimes I wonder if you work really hard at coming across as a tit on here or whether it just flows naturally.

I think you might be confusing my attempt to answer the question as to why people more often get mocked for having an indoor grade disproportionately higher than their outdoor grade rather than vice versa for actually mocking them myself, which I have not done. As for my assertion that climbing on rock is "real" climbing but that indoor climbing is training, well, I think that is a perfectly reasonable and defensible point of view - and if you wish to take issue with it sensibly, feel free to do so. As I said, I do both and enjoy both. I know quite a few people who climb mostly indoors and I don't have any issues with them.

The people I see as "tits" on here are those who lack the ability or will to understand what people are saying and respond with intelligence or wit.

BarrySW19 on 13 Sep 2016
In reply to springfall2008:

> Nope, but it makes you a better climber than someone who didn't try the route or DNF'ed it!

That's strange - I heard the best climber was the one having the most fun.
springfall2008 - on 13 Sep 2016
In reply to BarrySW19:

> That's strange - I heard the best climber was the one having the most fun.

I think it depends on how one defines best.

For me the "best" climbs are the ones I enjoyed most and I really don't care how the route was climbed.

Perhaps for some people it's a competition, and if they enjoy that it's fine too.
birdie num num - on 13 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:
Style is such a worry.
A century ago, whatever way you got up it would have been deemed a success.
Rules and regulations of style threaten to spoil your experience
andrewmcleod - on 13 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:
> I didn't tell anybody what they should enjoy. If some people enjoy training more than the climbing that's ok. I enjoy both.

Denigrating indoor climbing as 'training' is both potentially wrong and derogatory; at least that is how many see it.

If you argue that you are indoor climbing is training in order to become good at indoor climbing (not the same as 'training' in the circuit board sense which is not designed to get you at circuit boards but to get you strong for climbing, for example) then outdoor climbing is also training - you are training to get better at outdoor climbing (or indoor climbing, or whatever).

If you are competing in a competition indoors, then you are definitely not training by most standards (unless the competition itself is simply practice for another competition).

For you, indoor climbing may be training - your primary aim may be improvement outdoors. For me it is just fun, and if it is training it is no more or less training than my trad bimblings.

As for the word 'real', yes I agree that applying 'rock climbing' to indoor climbing is a bit of a misnomer, but if you restrict yourself to 'climbing' then you have 'real' outdoor climbing on 'real' rock and 'real' indoor climbing on 'real' plastic.
Post edited at 23:45
Robert Durran - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to andrewmcleod:
> Denigrating indoor climbing as 'training' is both potentially wrong and derogatory; at least that is how many see it.

I'm not denigrating it; training is important to many, often great fun, and often crucial to improvement. I do a lot of it myself and I can get very psyched for it and very psyched for particular indoor routes as training goals. Nothing wrong with training.

> If you are competing in a competition indoors, then you are definitely not training by most standards.

Fair enough

> As for the word 'real', yes I agree that applying 'rock climbing' to indoor climbing is a bit of a misnomer, but if you restrict yourself to 'climbing' then you have 'real' outdoor climbing on 'real' rock and 'real' indoor climbing on 'real' plastic.

In that case I'd be interested to know what indoor climbing is not real. Fake plastic?
Post edited at 00:06
Robert Durran - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to springfall2008:

> I think it depends on how one defines best.

I actually think it depends on knowing what the word "best" means


LeeWood - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:

> I actually think it depends on knowing what the word "best" means

Exactly. Success and best are suvjective forus 99% who are not trying to rate at national or world level.
Robert Durran - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> Exactly. Success and best are suvjective forus 99% who are not trying to rate at national or world level.

No, it is not subjective what "best climber" means; it is the one who is best at climbing - that is what the word means! Though if you tried to decide who the best climber actually was, you could argue about the exact criteria used. But they would definitely be to do with things like hardest route(s) climbed and so on and definitely not anything to do with having the most fun (obviously.......).
stp - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> Success and best are suvjective forus 99% who are not trying to rate at national or world level.

There's nothing subjective about what constitutes a free ascent. You either rested/pulled on the gear or you did not. There's nothing subjective about a successful onsight or flash or redpoint. Success and failure are very black and white and that was one of the primary reasons British climbers adopted those styles in the first place.

I'm surprised that people are still struggling with this.

tom_in_edinburgh - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to stp:

> I'm surprised that people are still struggling with this.

It's not just in climbing people struggle with this. I once got a CV at work where under qualifications the guy had BA Hons Cantab (failed).



stp - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to andrewmcleod:

All rock climbing is just training for 'the real thing'; which is getting to the summit of very large mountains (preferably in the Himalayas).
LeeWood - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:

So first you say there is only one best - then you admit it depends on the criteria. Thas what I call subjectivity ;)
LeeWood - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to stp:

Agreed - a free ascent is just that. But if the ascent was not free - it need not stop your efforts being a success. I'm surprised people are still struggling with this ;)
Robert Durran - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> So first you say there is only one best - then you admit it depends on the criteria. Thas what I call subjectivity ;)

Only in a very limited sense. It still has to be about being good at climbing and not about having fun, failing hilariously, ending up with the worst injuries, pissing off real climbers by hogging routes on a top rope or anything else obviously irrelevant to anyone capable of understanding simple language.
AlanLittle - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:

>> Funny how you always see comments like this, but you never see 'they have climbed E1 outside, but can't get up a 6b+ indoors' despite the 6b+ probably being the easier achievement...

> But it is not uncommon among "proper" climbers who know how to climb actual rock.

I have redpointed (one, soft) 7a+ on rock, and a handful of 7a's. The hardest I have ever managed on plastic is 6c, once.

Am I a "proper" climber? Great.
stp - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> But if the ascent was not free - it need not stop your efforts being a success.

Only if it's an aid route. That's covered by a separate grading system which better describes the difficulties of that style (A1, A2, A3 etc.).

If it's a free route and you didn't free climb it then you've failed to tick the route.

Occasional routes have a short aided section but are otherwise free. These are described as one point of aid, or maybe two points which means you can pull on just one piece or two etc. So provided you limited your aid points to the number given that too would count as a success.
stp - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to AlanLittle:

I think that's a pretty common phenomenon, climbers finding indoor routes harder, grade for grade, than outdoors. Maybe it's this dent to the ego that leads to the claim that it's not 'proper' climbing.
Robert Durran - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to stp:

> If it's a free route and you didn't free climb it then you've failed to tick the route.

Only if you set out to do it free. If you set it to aid it, then it could be described as a success.


Robert Durran - on 14 Sep 2016
In reply to AlanLittle:

> I have redpointed (one, soft) 7a+ on rock, and a handful of 7a's. The hardest I have ever managed on plastic is 6c, once.

Maybe the routes are harshly graded on your local wall. Maybe you are more motivated outside. Maybe you pick outdoor routes which suits your strengths. Could be many reasons.

> Am I a "proper" climber?

As long as you see your failure on the indoor 6c's as merely part of the training process ;-)

LeeWood - on 15 Sep 2016
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Only if you set out to do it free. If you set it to aid it, then it could be described as a success.

I see a crack opening up here. Onsight is v demanding and I rarely presume to know the outcome - towards the limits of my known grade capability. So - a common philosophy would be 'I want to free this but otherwise get up it anywhich way' - both options are covered.

ads.ukclimbing.com
LakesWinter on 15 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

But only one of those options equates to having done the route - doing it without sitting on or pulling on the gear. It's ok to fail and come back another time!!! In fact, onsighting near my limit there's always a fair chance of not doing it and if I do do it I'm likely to only just manage it.
Robert Durran - on 15 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> I see a crack opening up here. Onsight is v demanding and I rarely presume to know the outcome - towards the limits of my known grade capability. So - a common philosophy would be 'I want to free this but otherwise get up it anywhich way' - both options are covered.

No problem with that. If you do what you set out to do then it is fair enough to call it a success.
LeeWood - on 15 Sep 2016
In reply to LakesWinter:

> It's ok to fail and come back another time!!!

For me at least, there are many instances where I might never get the chance to return:

> on longer multipitch routes it may not be appropriate to back off a pitch and re-attempt; opportunities to do some of these routes doesn't come often

> not having the right partner

> climbing away on holiday

In general I am well motivated to return and clean-up on something tricky - but if I didn't like the route I prefer variety and would go try something new.
LakesWinter on 19 Sep 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

> For me at least, there are many instances where I might never get the chance to return:

That's ok as well, it just means that you tried and failed on a route - happens all the time and isn't the end of the world.

LeeWood - on 19 Sep 2016
In reply to LakesWinter:

and your opinion is fine too - but note 'I failed to free (possibly) one move on (possibly) one pitch of a route; the whole outing was a SUCESSS
andy007 - on 23 Nov 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

Just read this a few months late.... but as a thought... if I climb multipitch , where I climb for a bit and then hang on some gear and rest before climbing on, then this must be 'dogged' according to some of the reasoning on here!!!

Need to buy a longer rope then if I am to onsight everything properly - Any offers to carry the rope for me?
Michael Gordon - on 23 Nov 2016
In reply to andy007:

You could certainly use that argument for hanging belays.
LeeWood - on 24 Nov 2016
In reply to andy007:

And even if you have a longer rope it is possible you mis-read the route and take an incorrect stance where routes cross or in close proximity.

Whatever - exercise srupulous honesty when filling out your logbook - the UKC forum police are sure to find you out and exposure won't leave a smell of roses ;)

[ memorial allusion to Leonard Cohen's 'Jazz Police' ]

RockSteady on 24 Nov 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

I think it's fine for anyone to define their own version of success. But the UKC logbooks should reflect the prevailing ethics of the community as a whole, which are fairly well defined.

'Free' ascents
Onsight: Climbed the route to the top climbing every move cleanly without falls or resting on the rope or on gear without prior knowledge of the route except gleaned from the guidebook and looking at it.
Flash (i.e. with beta): Climbed the route to the top climbing every move cleanly without falls or resting on the rope or on gear with prior knowledge of the route from watching others or videos or being given information on the moves but without have tried any moves previously
Redpoint: Climbed the route to the top climbing every move cleanly without falls or resting on the rope or on gear having previously practiced the route including falls, resting etc.
Ground up: A sub-type of redpoint where you haven't practiced the whole route so that the higher sections are flash or onsight.

Anything else isn't a successful 'free' ascent, but might be a successful ascent i.e. if you pull on gear or stood on someone else's shoulders you aided.

Dogged: Where you fell, or rested on the rope or a piece of gear before continuing. A failed 'free' ascent.
DNF: Could not get to the top, a failed ascent.

Different people obviously see ethics of different ascents differently - you clearly place a premium on someone trying and failing to free the moves on their first try and therefore falling being more worthy than someone who has not fallen but who has aided. I've seen a party of climbers use a clipstick to put gear into a sport route then cleanly redpoint it being criticised as 'cheaters' by a team who subsequently repeatedly fell on the same route and 'climbed' it pulling on draws and standing on bolts.

This thread illustrates how some climbers think boldness and mental strength is the be-all and end-all, whereas others value the physical difficulty more. Usually these climbers break down into ones who are bolder than they are strong, and others who are stronger than they are bold. Everyone always thinks their way is best
james.slater - on 24 Nov 2016
In reply to LeeWood:

This whole thread has made my brain melt, but for what its worth, these are my category descriptors... (I need to write these down just for myself after the variations upon variations mentioned here!) They are not right or wrong, but personal judgements (feel free to pick them apart, I dont really care)

Onsight - Climb a route with no prior knowledge (except a guidebook description. Go on then, I know someone wants to argue this point!), get to the top first go with no falls or resting on gear. I will claim an onsight for a sport route if I put the draws in on the lead, or if the draws have been placed by somebody else.

Ground up - Fall off a route on the onsight attempt. Lower to the ground, pull the ropes, but leave gear. Climb the route on a subsequent attempt, with no falls or resting on gear.

Beta flash - Climb a route ground to top, with no falls or rests, but knowing information about the route, specifically anything to do with crucial gear placements, crux location etc. OR, if I fell off whilst attempting an onsight, stripped my gear and came back another day to do it first go. If on this second day i still fell off, I would attempt to ground up it again.

Headpoint - Abseil a route and check gear placements or rock quality, or fixed gear etc. But DONT do any moves on the top rope. This could technically be used on trad or sport, but I would always just go bolt to bolt on a sport route, and redpoint it. I dont tend to focus on onsighting with single pitch sport routes.

Redpoint - For a trad route, abseil line, climb line on top rope, work out gear placements, basically anything I can do to make the route as safe as I want it to be (plenty of arguments to be had here too, go for it...). For a sport route, basically anytime I do the route with no falls, having gone bolt to bolt, or fallen on an onsight or whatever. If I fall on a sport route onsight, I will usually just finish it by going bolt to bolt, and try and climb it clean after that, thus skipping the ground up stage and going straight to redpoint.

Dogging - Fall off on an onsight, but finish the route without lowering down. Some will see this as a valid ascent, thats fine. But I dont. N.B, this also counts if I weight the gear whilst resting. I consider both of these to be dogging. If i were to do either of these and then climb the route clean, it would be a redpoint, regardless of the initial intention. The opportunity for a ground up has been lost once youve pulled back onto the rock.

There are others which I dont really use:

Yoyo ing - Fall off on an onsight, lower down but dont pull the ropes. Then climb it on a subsequent attempt. (I will always go for a ground up attempt in this case). Again some people would claim this is an ascent, personal preference I guess and again the opportunity for a ground up has been lost once youve pulled back onto the rock.

If i fall off on a multipitch/big wall then in theory i would still claim a ground up or redpoint if I lowered back to the last belay, pulled the ropes etc, but depending on time/weather I would just yoyo it, or dog it, or french free it. But I would claim the style for the whole route as the 'worst' pitch. I.e if i onsight every pitch except one, where I fell off and then carried on climbing, it would be dogged. However my multipitch ethics tend to be less strict, and would still tell somebody that I made an ascent of 'route x' even if i dogged a pitch or two. I would just be honest about what I did and if you dont accept it, then good for you.

Done.
james.slater - on 24 Nov 2016
In reply to RockSteady:

You beat me to the giant summing up post (I had to take a work break halfway through mine, so didnt know you had already posted ;-) ) Seems like we are on the same page though, nice to know Im not alone!
Michael Gordon - on 24 Nov 2016
In reply to james.slater:

Headpointing usually (always?) involves working the moves. Just abbing the line to check gear placements is not in my opinion headpointing - it is leading the route after abseil inspection. Basically headpointing is similar to redpointing but for trad (though the term does tend to imply the more serious routes).
springfall2008 - on 24 Nov 2016
I fully agree with your definitions

> Dogged: Where you fell, or rested on the rope or a piece of gear before continuing. A failed 'free' ascent.

> DNF: Could not get to the top, a failed ascent.

But I would argue there is more value to Dogged than DNF, although some have argued it makes no difference as both is a failure.

Why, well anyone can DNF a 9a but most people here could only dream of a Dogged 9a!
Graeme Hammond - on 24 Nov 2016
In reply to james.slater:
good summery if you knew what a headpoint and redpoints are and the difference between them. What you describe as headpoint would be a flash and what you describe as a redpoint is a headpoint!!

this quote from the ukc style page describes them easily

"redpointing" is a term typically used by sport climbers to refer to a final clean lead of a route (with or without the quickdraws already placed), after practicing it on a top-rope or with rests/falls. "headpointing" is the same thing but for trad climbs, and the gear is not normally pre-placed.

edit: also from http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/help.html#style explains all the styles available on ukc
O/S - Clean onsight: - no falls/rests, no prior knowledge of the climb
β - Clean with beta: - no falls/rests, but prior knowledge about holds, protection, etc
G/U - Clean ground up: - possible falls, but each attempt was from the ground
rpt - Repeat ascent: - no falls/rests, repeating a climb that you've done in the past
RP - Clean after practice: - (worked)"headpointing" / "redpointing" / working a climb which may include top-roping it or resting on gear, before doing a final clean ascent
Dog With falls/rests: - "dogged" got to the top, somehow! falls, rests, pulling on gear, etc
DNF - Did not finish: - didn't make it to the top
Post edited at 20:46
springfall2008 - on 24 Nov 2016

> Dog With falls/rests: - "dogged" got to the top, somehow! falls, rests, pulling on gear, etc

I think this should be split up, with falls/rests vs pulled on gear (aid climb) is a different thing.

Perhaps it needs an Aided category?

Would also like this to be a orange X or similar, so you can tell the difference between Dogged and DNF when reviewing your logbook.

> DNF - Did not finish: - didn't make it to the top

james.slater - on 25 Nov 2016
In reply to Michael Gordon:

Fair enough, headpointing for working trad, redpointing for working sport routes. I didnt realise the split was so black and white between the disciplines. Thanks for enlightening me! Maybe the logbooks could change the RP style to HP for trad routes. Not a big deal but would just be more accurate.
james.slater - on 25 Nov 2016
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

Understood, as I said, those are the terms ive used to describe my ascents over the years, but thanks for putting me right.
I do think there should be a distinction on ukc between climbing a route first go, knowing all the information about it, and actually having personally inspected the gear/rock moves, but without actually practising any moves. So is that the difference between a beta flash, and a flash? Or is the abseil inspection a style on its own?
Michael Gordon - on 26 Nov 2016
In reply to james.slater:

I guess that's the difference between flashed and 'flashed after abseil inspection'. Some might just call it the former but the latter seems more clear/honest.