Hi all, I'm looking at getting a clipstick in time for the weather picking up again. I'm currently at a loss as to which length to get, either the small or medium betastick. I'm looking at using it to work routes as well as clip high first bolts. I'm concerned the small might be a bit too small for clipping between bolts. Any experiences/opinions would be welcome
If you just want one for single pitch I'd get the medium. I've often used it at max extension and only once found it didn't reach the first bolt (it was Carbon Stage on the Slate), so I'm glad I didn't get the short version.
In addition if you remove the rivet that holds the head in place you cam then remove the head to allow it to easily fit in hold-alls when travelling and then re fix the head using an M4 bolt.
If you want one to take on multi pitch though I'd opt for the small as it can be thrown in a small bag or even clipped to a harness.
Not related to size but I'd strongly recommend considering the Pongoose Climber 1000:
It doesn't just clip but also clips rope and even unclips draws from bolts, all with ease. It also has a metal clip in point for a carabiner for when you take it up a route.
I also dropped mine from halfway up a route once (what a wally, thankfully no-one below as it was a baltic winter day) and it still works absolutely fine with no damage. Must have fallen 10+ metres.
Absolutely cracking bit of kit and I highly recommend it!
I've got the medium and several times I've had to extend it the full way and stand right up the rock to reach the next bolt, both mid-route and from the ground, so I'd not want the shorter version... after all it's useless if you can't reach the bolt!
People may/may not agree with this, but unless you're after something you can travel abroad with - or are particualrly weight conscious - then I'd just say to get the longest pole you can. I have never, ever regretted the ability to clip another draw in from the ground. Yes, they're a bit more unwieldy if you're using them whilst on route, but this doesn't really matter when you can clip two bolts further up (instead of one).
Hi Rob, I kind of agree with you - if you're not travelling then get the longest you can afford.
I went for the ultra-long BetaStick Evo and it's almost comically long at full extension (6.5m!!) BUT before you laugh too much, my logic is that if you don't need to fully extend it then you can use the thicker tubes only and it _should_ be more stable and less wobbly.
We're just getting into intermediate climbs and taking away the danger of decking on the first clip (or the second, or third or even clipping the anchor if it's a super hard but short route) just seems like a good option.
We've set up a bolt hanger on a big tree in the garden so we can practice clipping so we don't look like wallys at the crag the first time we try it for real.
The Pongoose kit looks good but I couldn't justify the higher cost.
> I went for the ultra-long BetaStick Evo and it's almost comically long at full extension (6.5m!!) BUT before you laugh too much, my logic is that if you don't need to fully extend it then you can use the thicker tubes only and it _should_ be more stable and less wobbly.
Funnily enough my main criticism of the BetaStick Evo was just how wobbly it is whilst fully extended, so that is a valid point (and one I should have mentioned previously) - thanks for raising.
I never thought of deconstructing to pack away. Thanks for the advice!
I haven't really considered the super long one, but I'm only likely to travel abroad once a year, if that. From what's been said above and what everyone else has said the longest stick seems the most useful. Thanks for the advice.
I have the monster Beta one. Its flipping ace!
If your clipsticking up a whole route it can be a bit of an unwieldy beast, but those super long clips outweigh the pain.
I have an older standard length one too but I never take that anywhere now.
Have two, one a beta standard for clipping first bolt and made a short version with a camera monopod matched with a superclip head 14" long for clipping bolt to bolt.
I have the short and a couple of my friends have the long. Having both at the crag can be useful. If you just get one then it really depends on what type of sports climbing you do.
If you are into mainly on sighting then a long stick let's you set up a few draws. If you are into projecting then a short stick is way better to carry up a route. It makes a massive difference in terms of not getting in your way. For projecting the long stick is overkill. Once you're hanging off a bolt on steep stuff you really aren't going to extend the stick 6 meters and try and clip two or three clips ahead.
With the shorter stick there have only been a couple of routes I've been on where the first bolt was too far off the ground. Best solution is to climb with tall people and get them to do the reachy bolts, or just do the old fashioned way and climb up to clip it. And for travelling the short stick is a no brainer.
I though Rob's review was really good. Worth reading if you haven't already.
As has been already mentioned. Unless you need to use it while travelling (by plane), get the longest one you can fit in yer car. This gives you the option of clipping even the highest (normal sport route) first bolt, but often even 2nd or 3rd (or at least place draws on 'em).
How ever, the long one will a nuisance to climb with (or clip stick stick yer way up), but then the nice short one (that fits in normal luggage) might not be long enough for all bolting...
And as has also been said, the less you need extend a clip stick the more stabile it will be. So a longer clip stick will always feel more stable than a shorter one when clipping the same bolt.
I have 2 clip sticks. The old Beta Stick Compact (nice when flying to Spain for some pre-clipping and often long enough to stick clip ones way to the anchor if needs to be) and the the extra long as the one we use at home (sometimes rather old school bolting, so 1st bolt 7m from the ground is not unheard of... and the darn full line is only in the 15m range).
> Have two, one a beta standard for clipping first bolt and made a short version with a camera monopod matched with a superclip head 14" long for clipping bolt to bolt.
Should have put the short one is 14" long extending to about 60" and only about 200 grams heavier than a Kong but more versatile.
Got the monopod secondhand from eBay so very cheap, superclip head had to come from superclip direct but you make up for less then £25
It depends if you want to go abroad with it - if you do then it is a struggle to pack a standard beta stick in hold baggage - possible but a struggle and my stick and my bag are showing the wear and tear from it. 6" shorter and it would be much sweeter (or if you could remove the head -> note to designers I should really drill out the pop rivet and replace with an R pin or similar).
If you don't want to fly with it then the biggest you can comfortable carry or put in your car.
Failing that a stick and some finger tape works nicely.
Alizee Dufraisse has climbed Proa con fin mas hulk extension (9a) in the Ali Baba Cave at Rodellar. It was her 3rd 9a after ticking La Reina Mora in 2012 and Estado Critico in 2017, both at Siurana.