/ Help me impress

L Sean Studd - on 10 Nov 2016
Hi all !

Every year my girlfriend and her father go on an annual climb, this year they have invited me along but i don't know anything at all about climbing or how to behave or even where i would suggest going.

If anyone could offer some advice on how i should act or talk to her father just enough to be a part of the day, i really want to impress :P

Thank you to any help offered,
Sean
La benya - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

What kind of climbing? spouting lingo from the wrong subset will make you look more stupid that staying quiet.

Suggest the 'Peak', and make sure you say Peak and not Peaks as only real climbers know the difference.
Buy a down jacket and some brightly coloured trousers and perfect the art of standing around keeping warm.
If they ask you to climb, say you would love too, but you've popped an A2 pulley and cant.
Mention Nalle and his new boulder problem... that shows you're staying current
subtle on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Ask the father if the climb will have big jugs or will it only have little crimps as you prefer big jugs
stubbed on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Do you really want to go?
My Dad doesn't climb but I'm not sure I would have taken a boyfriend along with me and a regular partner. Unless you are a total natural you are not going to be very impressive and not sure how much fun it would be. There is potential for a good day out, but I have seen numerous times a couple where one is obviously a climber and the other isn't, and it looks painful.
abseil on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Hi Sean, my suggestion is - keep stressing to him that you're a beginner and haven't climbed before, and want to do something easy. Borrow some good boots. Bring sandwiches for everyone. I hope you have a great climb, and good luck.
gavmac on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Best way to impress is to NOT try really hard to impress.

Just be yourself, take an interest and be enthusiastic.
GrahamD - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Listen and learn. Don't pretend to be something you are not. Climbing is generally not a good place for bravado.
Valkyrie1968 - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to La benya:

> If they ask you to climb, say you would love too, but you've popped an A2 pulley and cant.

If you go with this, you run the risk of not being able to do enough to blend in well. So, if you do (or, to be fair, if you don't, as it can only help either way) make sure to compliment your girlfriend and her father on their climbing - "nice send dude" works well, and if you think that it's particularly impressive, a fist bump is probably in order. If it's really impressive, accompany this with a mouthed "pow" and a slowly-opening-hand-signifying-the-send-being-so-cool-that-it-just-blew-shit-up gesture. This kind of behaviour will make you seem like a properly old-school climber.

Some other thoughts:

If you're bouldering, or if someone is leading and hasn't yet placed a piece of protection, 'spotting' is useful - it means that if the climber falls, you can prevent them hitting their head if they fall over. Scream "spoons not forks" over and over, in a kind of mantra, so as to remind yourself that your fingers should be bent like a spoon, rather than straight like the tines of a fork.

If your girlfriend or her father are leading but haven't taken all of their gear with them, practice placing what's been left in the features of the rock at ground level, as this sort of engagement will really sell your interest in climbing. Some tips for this include: Make sure that placements are as far back in cracks as possible for maximum security; cams (which consist of semi-circular lobes that can be retracted using triggers) should be put in the snuggest cracks that you can find, so that the trigger is pulled all the way back and you still have to push/wiggle a little to get the cam in; slings aren't super useful, but if you drape them on ledges they can look quite nice and give dull, grey rock a bit of colour.

Climbers are quite a boisterous, un-PC lot, so if your girlfriend or her father are looking a little wobbly or nervous while climbing (happens quite a lot, as it can often be scary!), don't be afraid to encourage them with some banter - crude stereotyping based on race, gender, sexual orientation, political leaning, or social class is all good stuff, and will make everyone else at the crag laugh along with you.

Hope you have a great day!
mountain.martin - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

A climb could be anything from climbing Snowdon (which is a hill walk, that can in good weather be completed by most people with no equipment needed) to rock climb requiring specialist equipment and a fair bit of knowledge and experience to undertake safely.

Without going climbing yourself you will never learn enough to convince an experienced climber that you know what you doing and talking about if you are with them for a few hours in a climbing environment.

Either get yourself to a local climbing wall for a lesson or better, I would suggest, admit to them that you know very little about climbing but show an interest in learning. Most climbers are keen to pass on their experience and knowledge and if you come across as enthusiastic and willing to put some time in to learning this will put you in a good light.
Trangia - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

I agree with those who have said don't try to impress. First of all do you really want to do it? If not, then don't. If your GF thinks anything of you she will respect this, if she doesn't find yourself another girlfriend. Relationships are not about forcing each other to things they don't want to do.

If you do want to do it, come clean, tell hem you are a complete novice and you are putting yourself in their hands. Again if your GF thinks anything of you she would be a fool to take you outside of your comfort zone. Talk to her, tell her about your reservations, but tell her you are willing to give it a go and are trusting them.

As to where you go, let them decide, they are the climbers.

Again I emphasise - DON'T try to impress, be natural and let them guide you.

Good luck
mountain.martin - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

One other tip, change your profile name, unless you are a valuable race horse, but that would make rock climbing pretty tricky.

If her dad is a keen climber and frequents these forums he might be impressed that you are keen enough to post on here, but probably won't be so impressed that her daughter is going out with someone who thinks they are a stud.

La benya - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

> If anyone could offer some advice on how i should act or talk to her father just enough to be a part of the day, i really want to impress :P

oh.... and dont try too hard with the dad. he will never truly like you as deep down he knows you do unspeakable things to his precious daughter.

spend your effort on wooing the mum, thats where the power lies

yesbutnobutyesbut - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to La benya:

I reckon the OP is a wind up.
Scarab9 - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

I'd say don't try to impress. Just be yourself, don't expect to be capable of matching what they do and be ok with laughing at yourself if you feel you're doing badly. Assuming by 'climbing' they mean 'climbing' and not 'walking up stuff' or scrambling, climbing on rock requires specific techniques, muscles and tendon development to be good. You might think "I'm way stronger than my girlfriend" but she might prove otherwise at least in respect to climbing.

Layer up. It gets cold out when you're stood about, but you can get very warm when actually climbing at times so need to be adaptable.
Take some food and water and maybe a flask, though maybe ask what to take as you don't want to turn up with 24hrs of emergency rations and find out you're only nipping out for an hour.

If you are 'proper' climbing - listen to everything. Some of it will be important, some of it will just simply help.

Mostly - chill, enjoy, don't stress or overthink the day.

ps. if you've not met the dad before, he may welcome you at the door with an ice axe to jokingly scare you. This is normal.

Scarab9 - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

anyone else want to know who the dad is so we can see if it's a regular UKCer and start laughing now? :-D
Trangia - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to yesbutnobutyesbut:

> I reckon the OP is a wind up.

I did think that, but then I hope not. "Starting out" is the wrong forum for wind ups and trolls because it is intended for new comers who are unused to the wicked ways of some on these forums
Lusk - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

"Help me impress"

Who?
With a surname like yours, I'm sure she already is.
Indy - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Just say " I don't let go of which rope..." then 30 seconds later "..... remind me.... which rope???" repeat as needed.

Spend day in pub conserving energy for errrr other activities with girlfriend
Hat Dude on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Scarab9:

> anyone else want to know who the dad is so we can see if it's a regular UKCer and start laughing now? :-D

It's not me; in his wedding speech, my daughter's husband thanked me for not taking him climbing to prove himself.
JLS on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:
You will impress if you can create a new route and name it after your GF.

To do this you need to...

1) Get hold of some good masonry tools.
2) Go to Stannage Popular.
3) Find a blank looking section of the cliff that looks too tough to have ever been climbed before.
4) Carve out good foot and handholds in the rock the whole way up the climb.
5) If funds allow, consider installing fixed protection. A "Via Ferratta" style steel cable would be ideal however a nylon washing line strung out between some hammered in pegs would be cheaper and would suffice if you've done a good enough job making the hand and foot holds.
6) Add the new route on to the database on this site. (Be careful to spell your GF's name correctly.)
7) Upload and link photo's of the day out to the route in the database.

This will ensure a place in climbing history for your party.
Post edited at 14:58
ClimberEd - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

If you are totally serious.....

Assuming you actually want to climb, then be interested, whilst staying humble.
Don't pretend to know anything you don't, or try and show off. Accept that you will likely be crap at the actual climbing part.

You'll make a good impression (it sounds like this is what you are care about), by being cheery, helpful, enthusiastic and interested.
mike123 - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:
Absolulty all serious climbers wear a form of leg ware know as the " Ron hills" . They are the only form of acceptable legware and should preferably be partnered with an old Mot£rhead t shirt with holes and a thining fleece pullover made by a defunct company , with a very manly sounding name such as " ice warrior " , said fleece should have a few small burn marks a the front , try using a fine tipped soldering iron if you can't find a fleece with said suspicious burns . Next you face the big problem, Ron hills are traditionally worn very tight and as such leave very little to the imagination . Take a look in a mirror and ask yourself " is this impressive ?" , if the answer is no ( most common) then a judiciously placed sock will do the trick . You are now appropriately attired and your girlfipriends father will give you a slightly too firm handshake that he's been practicing for the Kendal film festival. Good luck with the damp problem under that bridge of yours.
Post edited at 15:06
GargoyleFeet - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Next time you see the father, ask him you're thinking about crags for the big day but before deciding you need to know what he's done on grit.

Thank you and good night.
birdie num num - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Buy some spandex tights and stuff a pair of rolled up boot socks in the jock.
abr1966 - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to JLS:

> You will impress if you can create a new route and name it after your GF.

> To do this you need to...

> 1) Get hold of some good masonry tools.

> 2) Go to Stannage Popular.

> 3) Find a blank looking section of the cliff that looks too tough to have ever been climbed before.

> 4) Carve out good foot and handholds in the rock the whole way up the climb.

> 5) If funds allow, consider installing fixed protection. A "Via Ferratta" style steel cable would be ideal however a nylon washing line strung out between some hammered in pegs would be cheaper and would suffice if you've done a good enough job making the hand and foot holds.

> 6) Add the new route on to the database on this site. (Be careful to spell your GF's name correctly.)

> 7) Upload and link photo's of the day out to the route in the database.

> This will ensure a place in climbing history for your party.

To the OP....Mr Studd....follow the above plan, it's the best advice on here.
If it's your girlfiends dad he'll be old school so don't talk about 'beta', 'send', 'hi-ball' or any other bouldering based tosh! Wear a flat cap and smoke roll ups continually and if you can roll a tab with one hand he'll be well impressed!
Rog Wilko on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Assuming this is genuine (and the L plate suggests it might be) I'd say that climbing is the last field in which to try to bullshit your way to any kind of acceptance. You'll be spotted by a real climber within micro-seconds.
birdie num num - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Oh, sorry, I see that's already been suggested by mike123. Great minds think alike.
A big nudger is always impressive for the lady folk, and it will intimidate her father
Greasy Prusiks on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Ask him what he's done on grit?
Greasy Prusiks on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Greasy Prusiks:

Sorry just seen its already been done.
ads.ukclimbing.com
Greasy Prusiks on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

OK so on a serious note Sean I have some genuine advice...

1. Relax. He's not going to judge you on your knowledge of climbing!

2. Don't dick about. There's bits of climbing that are serious and require you to take responsibility for another's well being. No one will be impressed if you don't handle this with appropriate respect.

3. It's fine to be scared. Climbing is scary and climbers get scared. Just remember that you are safe and that people will be far more impressed by you tackling a situation you find scary than just pretending you're not nervous.

Have a good trip!
Wsdconst - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

I've always found the best way to impress climbers is to take a pack of children's coloured chalks and while they're climbing doodle a massive mural to honour them and their skills at the base of the crag, probably best to wait while the second is climbing though so it's a total surprise when they come back down. Face fives are also popular too, which is basically a high five but you hit their face instead of their hand. Oh and remember to use lots of 90's surfer words like hang 10 and wipe out, these have become the "in" words these days.
Lion Bakes on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Turn up in your Spider-Man outfit and use your spider senses.

benp1 - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Be yourself, be keen to get involved and listen to what they're saying

Depending where you're going, take some good snacks and a flask of something nice - that's always goes down well with any outdoorsy person
luke obrien - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Get your lad out and nod knowingly
biped - on 10 Nov 2016
In reply to JLS:

> You will impress if you can create a new route and name it after your GF.

> To do this you need to...

> 1) Get hold of some good masonry tools.

> 2) Go to Stannage Popular.

> 3) Find a blank looking section of the cliff that looks too tough to have ever been climbed before.

> 4) Carve out good foot and handholds in the rock the whole way up the climb.

> 5) If funds allow, consider installing fixed protection. A "Via Ferratta" style steel cable would be ideal however a nylon washing line strung out between some hammered in pegs would be cheaper and would suffice if you've done a good enough job making the hand and foot holds.

> 6) Add the new route on to the database on this site. (Be careful to spell your GF's name correctly.)

> 7) Upload and link photo's of the day out to the route in the database.

> This will ensure a place in climbing history for your party.

This post will come back to haunt you in the form of a post entitled "Who just chipped a popular VS slab at Stanage WTF?" accompanied by links to some photos and followed by the internet version of the final scene of Frankenstein's Monster.
mike123 - on 11 Nov 2016
In reply to birdie num num:
> Oh, sorry, I see that's already been suggested by mike123. Great minds think alike.

i can honestly say that that's made my day.
Up there with getting on the chain (5957) amongst this years achievments.
Post edited at 08:19
GrahamD - on 11 Nov 2016
In reply to mike123:

Well no replies from OP, so its looking even more under the bridge than it first appeared. Unfortunately the etiquette of the "starting out" forum precludes me from calling it out. No qudos for taking advantage of the "starting out" amnesty on apparently daft questions, though.
Thelittlesthobo - on 11 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Lets get this right. Your girlfriends father has invited you to go climbing with them. Chances are he already knows you are a total novice.

I would be more concerned about all the opportunities he will have to get rid of the annoying boyfriend when he has you on the end of a rope. Any boy dating my daughter would need to be confident of soloing the route if I was on belay ;-)
Northern Star - on 11 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Haha donít do any of the following and you should be fine:

1. Asking to see your GFís rack in front of her father.
2. Pull the wrong sort of nuts out when asked.
3. Asking your GF if she would mind sharing some of her friends with you.

Gearwise, no need to bring your own protection, the father should be able to lend you his - heíll have used it many times before, be something of an expert and can show you how to position it safely into an appropriate crack. If the father lends you his helmet though, treat it with respect (donít bash it hard against a rock whatever you do).

Oh and if itís winter climbing (as there's now snow on the hills), remember if your GF shouts down asking for an "ice screw Ė right now baby" then please don't get your hopes up!

Good luck ;)
Thelittlesthobo - on 11 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

If he asks you what protection you have brought, flick a strip of rubbers to him and tell him you've got it covered
JJL - on 11 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Just go. Say you've never climbed.
.... and prepare for a fantastic day. It's a wonderful sport, and never better than in those first few visits.

They will love teaching you.
madmo2991 - on 11 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

The best thing you can do to impress is be safe, if you don't understand what you're being asked/told to do speak up, not doing so could be very serious.

Apart from that make sure you wear your gore tex in the pub afterwards no matter how warm and dry it is inside and do not under any circumstance talk about anything other than climbing, infact you don't even need to go to the crag just do this and you'll belong.
GrahamD - on 11 Nov 2016
In reply to madmo2991:

Actually, if you are going somewhere xtreme like Stanage, they will need the best kit. Getting a £350 Arctyrix anorak should impress.
foxjerk - on 11 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

say you often let his daughter hold your nuts? and you let your nuts hang close to your friends.

but for gods sake, don't say you enjoy clucking!
springfall2008 - on 11 Nov 2016
In reply to yesbutnobutyesbut:

Maybe it's just Zimpara;)
Dave Perry - on 11 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:
Stop for a dump half way up. Then tell them thats what you had to do on multi day climbs on El Capitan.
Post edited at 19:11
L Sean Studd - on 30 Nov 2016
In reply to mountain.martin:

it's actually my real name, causes this kind of problem all the time :')
elliott92 - on 30 Nov 2016
In reply to Sean Studd:

Whatever you do, just lead with the following punchline;

"dude I got layed last night. I'm ready to send some gnarly shit....... Dad."


Then go in for the high five.



Actually no. You got layed. You deserve a fist bump.


Good luck. Please report back.