UKC

Practice for rope climbing using a tree set up

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 UKClimber2021 01 Mar 2021

I hope this is clear enough for some advice but if not please let me know so I can try and explain better. So this is building up to taking my girls on to joining a climbing club and to get more in to climbing in general on rock faces/quarries etc..., at the moment we use a 15m tree to practice climbing in our garden, all equipment is permanently placed, so subject to weathering. Set up is as follows - (I have a photo but cannot post as I'm not currently a UKC Supporter)

120cm, 16mm nylong sling around thick V in trunk approx 10m up, using 2 locking carabiners opposite and opposed.

10mm thick 30m dynamic rope is fed through these carabiners and at the bottom I use a simple belay device as well as the girls just using foot and attached to harness/carabiner prusik loops.

(There are 2 of these set ups with 2x 30m dynamic ropes)

So this is the set up duplicated so both my daughters can play on the ropes separately. 2 types of climb are currently carried out.

The first is - a. Daughter Dbl figure-8 tied in to harness, I lead rope from the bottom as they climb up using prusik's, 1 prusik attached to harness, second is a foot loop and they climb up as high as they're happy to, we then unclip prusiks and I rappel them down using belay device. (Now I have a second rope I can now allow 1 daughter to climb up using one rope set up, and I can figure-8 them in from the other rope as a safety)

The second type is b. they prusik themselves up using both strands of rope, and I'm just teaching them how to use a belay device and they use the belay to rappel themselves down. (After detaching themselves from the prusik)

Questions -

Are the double sling / 2x carabiners per set up strong enough for this type of climbing at the top of the tree as anchors?

I am also getting them to keep a prusik knot above the belay device so as they rappel down there is the secondary safety there in case something happens to their brake hand, they keep their right hand above this and keep it loose whilst they rappel if this makes sense. I have seen the method of extending the belay and having the "3rd hand" below the belay device but far enough away so they do not come in to contact.

Is it possible to allow both of them to climb simultaneously with just me at the bottom using a belay device secured to me? Or should you only look after one climber at a time, as I've heard/seen multi-climbers be led by one belayer ?

If there's any other set up that may appear safer please let me know, just not 100% sure this is okay and if the double slings/carabiner is sufficient. Any advice greatly appreciated and if any clarification is required please let me know. Thanks again.

In reply to UKClimber2021:

I’m not quite 100% clear on exactly what you are doing as the climbing activity.

The set up of a sling over the tree branch sounds fine as long as you recognise that the strength is limited by how good the branch is and that slings left out in the elements degrade quickly (basically it isn’t ideal to leave them in place for long periods).

It isn’t quite clear to me if you are talking about your daughters climbing the tree or climbing the rope (with the prussiks). It would also be useful to know how roughly old daughter are, what is appropriate for a teenager might not be for a 9 year old.

Whether they are climbing the tree or the rope, running then rope directly through the carabiner/sling set up with someone competent belaying is the safest and simplest solution. Any abseiling/ascending practice with prussiks should be backed up, they can and do slip.

Essentially it should look something like this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5kTsLaw0Vk&

Post edited at 16:50
 jkarran 01 Mar 2021
In reply to UKClimber2021:

> Are the double sling / 2x carabiners per set up strong enough for this type of climbing at the top of the tree as anchors?

Assuming it's climbing kit and you haven't used it in an abnormal manner, yes it's strong enough. It will age somewhat unpredictably in a tree.

> Is it possible to allow both of them to climb simultaneously with just me at the bottom using a belay device secured to me? Or should you only look after one climber at a time, as I've heard/seen multi-climbers be led by one belayer ?

You've lost me slightly with your set-up and what you want to achieve.

I think your daughters are climbing the ropes not the tree and you want to be able to let the ropes (with daughters) down independently under your control from the ground? I also assume you're roughly twice as heavy as a daughter.

You could use a standard two slot tube type belay device (ATC, Reverso etc, I'm not familiar with the modern crop) but most tend to jam up a bit under load so paying out one rope could prove a bit awkward especially with fat ropes.

Or you could rig the ropes each with an Italian hitch at the top (will probably work best with one locking HMS krab per rope, not two. You can then control the ropes from the ground by hand To be honest, unless you planned to tie them off to a ground anchor then release them one at a time, I wouldn't, the risk is losing control of the other rope while you're paying one out.

> If there's any other set up that may appear safer please let me know, just not 100% sure this is okay and if the double slings/carabiner is sufficient. Any advice greatly appreciated and if any clarification is required please let me know. Thanks again.

The safest set-up is probably one daughter at a time climbing a fixed (but releasable from the ground) rope while independently belayed from the ground on another rope having a similar fall line. The most appropriate set-up has to take into account what you're trying to achieve and how familiar and comfortable everyone is with the various equipment techniques employed.

jk

Post edited at 16:55
 UKClimber2021 01 Mar 2021
In reply to Alex Riley:

Sorry for any misunderstanding from my side. So daughters are 7 &  9, I am heavier than them and they are climbing the ropes not the tree. The set up is just in/around the tree. 

> I’m not quite 100% clear on exactly what you are doing as the climbing activity.

> The set up of a sling over the tree branch sounds fine as long as you recognise that the strength is limited by how good the branch is and that slings left out in the elements degrade quickly (basically it isn’t ideal to leave them in place for long periods).

Understood the branches appear strong, and are from what I can tell thick enough, I am changing the sling position so there is one sling on separate branches. The slings are left because they are 12-15m up and would take a lot of effort to climb up each time and set up, but having said that if they aren't likely to last longer than a year then I will have to take the effort over the safety unless there is another way of anchoring at the top.

> It isn’t quite clear to me if you are talking about your daughters climbing the tree or climbing the rope (with the prussiks). It would also be useful to know how roughly old daughter are, what is appropriate for a teenager might not be for a 9 year old.

Daughters are climbing the ropes, using the tree to gain the height with the anchors at the top. (7 & 9yrs old)

> Whether they are climbing the tree or the rope, running then rope directly through the carabiner/sling set up with someone competent belaying is the safest and simplest solution. Any abseiling/ascending practice with prussiks should be backed up, they can and do slip.

Noted, I will therefore continue as I have before, with the secondary rope fixed to their harness with a double Figure-8 and can belay from the bottom, and they can climb the second rope freely.

> Essentially it should look something like this:

So this is basically how I have it set up, double carabiner at the top but my anchor is a sling not a metal bolt/chain as it's at the top of a tree. But I notice there is no secondary safety on this set up. This is what I'm essentially doing but they are using this single rope also to climb up, I saw it being done in this way at an expo once. The rope was thrown over a tree branch, both strands were then tied together using a Prusik loop for the climber to be attached and a foot loop, and then they climbed up and down using the Prusik. All I'm trying to add in is the additional safety of another rope attached to them if anything were to happen to the rope they were climbing up/down.

Thank you for your advice. Appreciate it.

Post edited at 17:46
 UKClimber2021 01 Mar 2021
In reply to jkarran:

> Assuming it's climbing kit and you haven't used it in an abnormal manner, yes it's strong enough. It will age somewhat unpredictably in a tree.

I am currently using brand new Slings/carabiners (DMM/Edelweiss/Beal/Simond/Mammut manufacturers)

> You've lost me slightly with your set-up and what you want to achieve.

> I think your daughters are climbing the ropes not the tree and you want to be able to let the ropes (with daughters) down independently under your control from the ground? I also assume you're roughly twice as heavy as a daughter.

> You could use a standard two slot tube type belay device (ATC, Reverso etc, I'm not familiar with the modern crop) but most tend to jam up a bit under load so paying out one rope could prove a bit awkward especially with fat ropes.

I am using a double belay, a Black Diamond ATC-XP Belay/rappel, now I understand why the double rope method would be better still and to just work with 1 child at a time.

> Or you could rig the ropes each with an Italian hitch at the top (will probably work best with one locking HMS krab per rope, not two. You can then control the ropes from the ground by hand To be honest, unless you planned to tie them off to a ground anchor then release them one at a time, I wouldn't, the risk is losing control of the other rope while you're paying one out.

> The safest set-up is probably one daughter at a time climbing a fixed (but releasable from the ground) rope while independently belayed from the ground on another rope having a similar fall line. The most appropriate set-up has to take into account what you're trying to achieve and how familiar and comfortable everyone is with the various equipment techniques employed.

> jk

I will continue to have the child secured to harness using dbl Figure-8 and using my belay, and they are free to climb the other rope set up using the prusiks and then I can allow them to descend using my belay. I was just trying to work out for them how they could ascend the rope and descend the rope themselves safely. The tree is merely to gain the height for them to get up off the ground.

Thanks for your help, appreciated.

 Snyggapa 01 Mar 2021
In reply to UKClimber2021:

If they are doing it on their own be really bloody careful that there is no way that anything can get trapped in the belay device like hair or other ornamental flappy bits like fingers or clothing as you really don't want to be on your own at the bottom with someone 10m above you with their body parts jammed in an ATC and their body weight hanging off of it.

 Jamie Wakeham 01 Mar 2021
In reply to UKClimber2021:

>...I was just trying to work out for them how they could ascend the rope and descend the rope themselves safely.

Be aware that what you are describing here - ascending a rope on prusiks, then converting to abseil on your own belay plate to control your own descent, is reasonably advanced.  I teach it as part of a ropework course aimed at university club climbers who already have a fair bit of leading experience under their belts, and even then it's in the 'optional extras' part of the course rather then core learning.  They absolutely do not need to know how to do this prior to joining a climbing club - if they can do up harnesses and tie a fig 8 then they are already ahead of the game!

I'm not saying don't teach them how to do this, but do it low down.  If they get confused during the transition, and they're then stuck unable to get their weight off the prusik 10m above the ground, you really want to be able to release the rope they are on to get them down (or, better, just reach up and carry them yourself, assuming you are strong enough to do so).

 GrahamD 02 Mar 2021
In reply to UKClimber2021:

This sounds like a great fun thing to be doing, especially at the moment, but it's certainly not a requirement to getting into climbing on rock !

Without being too much of a wet blanket, your biggest difficulty might be finding a club that will officially take minors.  It's not a trivial thing to do for a totally volunteer run club and many won't, unfortunately. 

In reply to UKClimber2021:

I think this is completely off-beam, and may even put them off climbing to some extent. As someone who spent years tree-climbing in London parks (when unable, because of work, to get to crags ... nearest, SE Sandstone) I used to do hard 'bouldering' (as well as big, serious climbs to the top) on the trunks of trees below the first main branches. I used to called it 'bole-dering'. The snag is that very few trees are suitably rocklike, offering enough holds - usually knobs, pockets and rounded cracks. So you have to search a lot - perhaps only one in 50 or even 100 will be suitable. The quite rare, large hornbeam is the most rocklike of all trees. But you may find some gnarly old one that's covered with holds, suitable for children to try climbing/traversing on, quite close to the ground (safe jumping distance). You wouldn't need any kind of bouldering mat because you could 'spot' them/ catch them easily, being small and lightweight. Again, if you live near the Peak/Pennines you may find a suitable gritstone bridge wall that offers enough large holds to be climbable/traversable a foot or two off the ground. Again, they're quite rare/difficult to find. But if you do, I think this or a tree would be much more suitable than messing about with complex rope maneouvres that have little to do with climbing as such. Just my opinion; I'm sure a large majority may disagree with me.

Post edited at 08:19
 UKClimber2021 02 Mar 2021
In reply to GrahamD:

Thank you Graham, I'll do some phoning around and see what the deal is. Sorry if this is misunderstood, I'm not trying to do this to try and get in to climbing clubs, it is purely they love climbing the tree and making swings, so I decided to teach them a little bit about knots and climbing. Reason why the set up is so high is to give the "pendulum effect of swinging" as they mess around more than "Let's climb to 10-12m up the tree"

I've just duplicated something I saw with a Climbing company at a Music Festival, where they had a rope slung over a tree and the kids were all climbing up and down with prusik knots on the double strands together. I'm maybe taking it one step further (and possibly too far at this stage) on showing them how they could also come down using a belay. (and all safety is followed as I mention with the third hand and far enough away from the Belay and hair/hands out of the way and they do this very slowly from approx 2-3m up at the moment)

They're really very competent kids (nearly 8 & 10yr olds now) but completely understand and appreciate everyones advice/reserve on proceeding with something I have some experience when I was a child, and have done a lot of reading and watching. safety is absolutely 100% my focus.

I guess I'm just asking questions about the equipment / set up because it still feels strange, more than the complexities that perhaps may come from teaching someone so young, but they do get it and understand it, it is all done down low.

Thanks again for your advice.

 UKClimber2021 02 Mar 2021
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

Hi Gordon, thanks also for your advice. The idea came from seeing this set up at a festival from a climbing company, we have thought about putting some rock climbing holds into the tree but it has a preservation order against it so hesitant to do this, so they can get used to "climbing". But it really is just a bit of fun mixed in with teaching them some knots, and climbing basics. We don't necessarily need to go hunting for the bouldering areas around the place, there is a bouldering set up close by so will go and check this out also, but it really was about checking that this equipment is suitable / set up correctly. Even though I have read all about the kN strength etc.... they aren't going to be experiencing any Force 1 or Force 2 type falls because they're not going close to the anchor point and they're not doing the type of climbing where this would be experienced.

Thanks again, of course 100% safety is the main focus and will not be doing anything stupid or rash, they're my kids and want to keep them safe for sure. thank you.

 UKClimber2021 02 Mar 2021
In reply to Jamie Wakeham:

Hi Jamie, Thank you also for your input, appreciate it. They can do up their harnesses, they check and cross check and do the dbl figure-8 each time correctly. All is low down at the moment. I suppose my question is will the nylon slings and double carabiner set up be sufficient, purely to hold them and me? There are no forces to be experienced like climbing with quick draws and going above your anchor point, they are literally there to take their weight (and mine) whilst climbing up and down a rope. I know no one can say it's 100% but I just figured doubling up the set up with the 2 Nylon 16mm x 120cm slings, plus 2 locking carabiners set up opposite and opposed, and the equipment is checked twice a year, and I will now change the slings and carabiners each year, if this would be more often than not an acceptable set up. Of course, the belaying etc...can be done lower down and practiced as I know this is one of the main reasons for accidents in climbing.

Thanks again all, really appreciate it..

 jkarran 02 Mar 2021
In reply to UKClimber2021:

The sort of thing you have them doing works the same on a single strand or two parallel strands.

If you're belaying them while they climb/abseil the main risk is them getting stuck for one reason or another out of your reach on their rope, for that reason it really want's to be releasable from the ground. Keep it simple, single strand from a releasable ground anchor up and over the top krab.

If you're not belaying them (I'd strongly recommend some other form of back-up as safeguard against mistakes or slips) you'll need to be able to lower the rope they're climbing under control in case they get stuck on it. An Italian hitch at the top krab is simple and effective.

How much climbing/rope experience do you have, without wishing to sound rude it doesn't sound like much? Rigging ropes and teaching skills at that height you want to be sure you're understanding the issues, not just copying.

Worth a thought too is whether they can climb into the tree at any point from their rope, how you'll get them down if they freak out or get the ropes tangled.

New climbing equipment (used conventionally) is very very strong, in most situations it doesn't need a second thought, it's the potentially risky situations it lets you get into that need most consideration.

jk

Post edited at 11:00
 jkarran 02 Mar 2021
In reply to UKClimber2021:

> Hi Jamie, Thank you also for your input, appreciate it. They can do up their harnesses, they check and cross check and do the dbl figure-8 each time correctly. All is low down at the moment. I suppose my question is will the nylon slings and double carabiner set up be sufficient, purely to hold them and me?

The only reason you're not getting a clear simple yes it's ok (by far the most probable answer) is because of the possibility you've used the kit inappropriately which we can't know for sure from your description. Even then it would very probably be strong enough in this role (but it would need addressing).

Slings left out in the weather aren't ideal, though the tree canopy should keep the summer sun off they do chafe and you can get insect damage, a second sling made of knotted rope as a loose back-up would be belt and braces.

jk

 UKClimber2021 02 Mar 2021
In reply to jkarran:

> The sort of thing you have them doing works the same on a single strand or two parallel strands.

> If you're belaying them while they climb/abseil the main risk is them getting stuck for one reason or another out of your reach on their rope, for that reason it really want's to be releasable from the ground. Keep it simple, single strand from a releasable ground anchor up and over the top krab.

I'm not sure I follow this point, single strand from a releasable ground anchor up and over the top. In the link someone sent me, this is almost exactly what I am doing, but instead of it being against a wall it's up and over a very thick trunk in a tree. Can I assume the difference in this set up, as you refer to being releasable from the ground, is the belayer at the bottom or someone else can climb the wall to release? Otherwise I do not see the difference in this set up and my set up?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5kTsLaw0Vk&

> If you're not belaying them (I'd strongly recommend some other form of back-up as safeguard against mistakes or slips) you'll need to be able to lower the rope they're climbing under control in case they get stuck on it. An Italian hitch at the top krab is simple and effective.

I will be belaying them, but when I am not, I am not sure of the need for the Italian/Munter hitch at the top through the carabiner though. If they are just climbing up and down using a prusik loop, and get stuck, I can climb up with the second rope that is fitted in the tree. I cannot send photos as I am not "A supporter" it appears, but perhaps photos could reduce the questions being asked here.

> How much climbing/rope experience do you have, without wishing to sound rude it doesn't sound like much? Rigging ropes and teaching skills at that height you want to be sure you're understanding the issues, not just copying.

I climbed for about 5 years from 10-15 off and on over near Bristol and Wales, and messed around with ropes all my life camping, and from some boating, but I am not a "fully experienced climber", but I know and understand the basics.

> Worth a thought too is whether they can climb into the tree at any point from their rope, how you'll get them down if they freak out or get the ropes tangled.

There is a small inset in the tree which they can get into, and I can climb up as I did when I first set up the slings at the top of the tree, and there is a second rope now close by in the same set up (through 2 slings, through 2 locking carabiners)

> Climbing equipment (used conventionally) is very very strong, in most situations it doesn't need a second thought, it's the potentially risky situations it lets you get into that need most consideration.

> jk

Thank you again for your input, it is very appreciated. I completely understand everyone's comments and take them all on board. I did read this after posting my question, which is almost the opposite to what I'm being told. I 100% understand that these people doing this are probably more experienced than me and are not expecting their children to do everything themselves. I will be safe with the kids, my question is really about the equipment and ensuring this is strong/safe enough, if used in the correct manner. Simply put, are the slings/carabiners strong enough to just simply take the weight of the children and myself, and as they are in the outdoors if it is sensible to change the slings/carabiners once a year or more often. 

https://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/starting_out/what_age_for_kids_to_start_climbing-478065

This is essentially what I am trying to replicate from a climbing club at a festival I went to

https://www.into-the-trees.co.uk/#mpf-popup@https://www.into-the-trees.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/EF2018_PeteHolmes_0167_HR-1-e1530644779359.jpg|1231|59511099ee6fe

Post edited at 11:14
 jkarran 02 Mar 2021
In reply to UKClimber2021:

Ok, I think there's some confusion between the rope you're using to belay the climber and the rope the girls are climbing. Bottom rope belaying is shown in the video linked above and that's fine. Each rope (belay rope and climb rope) wants to have it's own anchor in the tree. A climbing sling and locking krab would be appropriate.

Never run the moving belay rope through the same krab as the fixed climbing rope.

I'm more focused on the rope the girls are climbing, you need to be able to get the rope your girl is climbing down with them on it. That's what I mean by making it releasable from a ground anchor. If they get hung up on the rope (for example getting a load of hair or a clothing jammed in a belay device) you need to be able to let it and them down. This does happen and it's surprisingly debilitating, don't expect you'll be able to talk them down, I've got my beard tangled while abseiling before now and it was a real problem.

It is quite possible to safely ascend a single rope without a second belay rope. If your girls get to that point you need to be able to let the climbing rope down under control (rather than just cutting it free in an emergency). In that scenario the Italian hitch at the top helps you control the rope as you lower the stuck/tangled climber.

Sorry if I'm labouring some of this, there's scope for confusion both ways and there are easy mistakes to make.

jk

Post edited at 11:30
 UKClimber2021 02 Mar 2021
In reply to jkarran:

Thanks again. So for now, perhaps I will leave the "Belay" aspect out of this and just have them climb up and down the rope, and I will attach the second rope (Which is going through a separate set of slings and carabiners; each rope is anchored through at least a 20-25cm v set trunk at the top of the tree and 2 slings & locking carabiners, they are both separate from each other in this respect)

I can then get them to detach themselves from the rope they climb up removing the Prusik knots (Understand these "can" become tight) and then I can lower them down using my belay attached to me from the secondary rope.

Not sure if this link is working but essentially this is the set up, this was run by a climbing company at a festival. I'm just making sure that the double sling/carabiner is safety enough, and that the longevity of the slings/carabiners/rope will last at least a year being left outdoors, so I can replace if need be each year. Thanks again, much appreciated.

https://www.into-the-trees.co.uk/#mpf-popup@https://www.into-the-trees.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/EF2018_PeteHolmes_0167_HR-1-e1530644779359.jpg|1231|59511099ee6fe

I suppose my only confusion (and it may not be possible to explain fully in words on here) is this set up.

"It is quite possible to safely ascend a single rope without a second belay rope. If your girls get to that point you need to be able to let the climbing rope down under control (rather than just cutting it free in an emergency). In that scenario the Italian hitch at the top helps you control the rope as you lower the stuck/tangled climber."

If they are already using a single rope or even if I am attached to them with a figure-8, if they have issues removing the prusik then I wouldn't be able to lower them down because the prusik will be stopping them? The rope they would be attached to is looped through a carabiner at the top, I'm not sure how it would help with the Italian hitch at the top, in either scenario they are connected via the prusik?

Post edited at 12:46
 jkarran 02 Mar 2021
In reply to UKClimber2021:

> If they are already using a single rope or even if I am attached to them with a figure-8, if they have issues removing the prusik then I wouldn't be able to lower them down because the prusik will be stopping them? The rope they would be attached to is looped through a carabiner at the top, I'm not sure how it would help with the Italian hitch at the top, in either scenario they are connected via the prusik?

Ok, sorry, I appreciate the confusion is just growing and I'm not quite sure why.

The link sort of works there's a brief clip of kids ascending single ropes.

Firstly given they're young kids you do want a separate belay you control, that's a good idea and we'll assume it's in place for the rest of the discussion. That works like the climbing wall top-rope set-up shown in the vid linked above and doesn't impact rigging the rope they climb, it's rigged separately.

Next focus on the rope your girl will climb, the climbing rope. Consider the drastic/absurd scenario where someone climbs most of the way up, well out of reach then is knocked out cold, say by a falling squirrel*. How do you get them down? You need to somehow release the rope they're hanging on from the tree then lower them, either using your second belay rope or simply lower the rope they're hung up on. The simple way to achieve that is to have that climbing rope run up, through a krab in the tree and back down to a ground anchor (eg tree roots). Tie it off at the ground anchor with a knot you can reach and release under load.

*fingers/hair painfully stuck in abseil devices or jammed Prussiks are more likely than kamikaze squirrel

If instead of simply passing the climbing rope through the krab at the top you put an Italian hitch there you can lower that rope smoothly under load from the ground without any other kit once it's released from the ground anchor. There are other ways of achieving that, putting the Italian hitch at the ground anchor as part of the tie-off is another good option.

Being able to let the climbing rope down smoothly is belt and braces, simply being able to release it is all you actually need given you'll have the kid on belay on another rope but bear in mind how many hands you'll need.

To address you point about material strength, new climbing kit is strong, 10kN is roughly equivalent to hanging 1000kg, 1 Ton and it should be rated at least 22kN on its strong axis. Nobody can tell you absolutely that your set-up is safe because it's eminently possible to abuse most gear in an unsafe manner and it does degrade with use/exposure. It's impossible to say how long you can safely leave it rigged, generally it's pretty tough and can stand some time out in the open but if it flaps in the wind between you rigging it and next using it or if it's upset a nest of ants it could already be unsafe. Sorry, it's one of those things you need to keep an eye on and use your judgement with. Loosely backing up things like in-situ slings with different materials (rope is more durable than tape generally) is a good idea, being loose they don't wear in use and kit that degrades at different rates provides redundancy giving you early warning when it's inspected.

Where there is always someone present and able to quickly ascend (ideally a separate nearby rope) to render assistance then releasable ropes aren't essential but that doesn't quite sound like your set-up hence me suggesting you rig it so you're able to let the climbing ropes down from the floor

Perhaps you could put a picture somewhere else and link to it?

jk

Post edited at 13:40
 UKClimber2021 02 Mar 2021
In reply to jkarran:

https://ibb.co/nDsMGCD this link shows the harness connected to locking carabiner (may not be locked in this photo) connected to prusik loop which slides up, and the foot loop below. I have the harness/child connected separately on the purple rope connected to me/my belay. As you can see, if there was an issue, it wouldn't be possible to lower the child down as the top/bottom prusik would stop this, from what I can work out. It shows the 2 separate ropes looped through carabiners and slings. the green on the left is currently through 3 carabiners and 2 slings (2 carabiners on 1 sling, 1 carabiner on the second sling) the purple rope is currently through 1 Beal Orange sling and 2 carabiners (all carabiners are locking)

https://ibb.co/PcdGBS3 shows the set up I saw from a climbing company at a festival, literally the same as what I have set up, no redundancy or second rope connected to the climber, and these kids were just using a prusik loop top and bottom to go up and down. I understand I was adding in the "belay" aspect, so let's remove this for now.
https://ibb.co/HYHtXD7 this link shows the belay and carabiner and slings at the top  of the tree. 

I hope this now shows in more detail and hope that this is all "safe" if I do not add in the belay aspect with the kids doing it themselves The photos will delete after 3 days.

Post edited at 14:56
 jkarran 02 Mar 2021
In reply to UKClimber2021:

Wow, the festival set-up is a bit odd to say the least. I wouldn't do it like that myself other than in extremis, unless I'm mistaken they're hanging from just one prussik with progress provided by a foot in another. I presume the ropes are doubled so the kids can grab them easier, can't think why else it'd be like that. I certainly wouldn't rig that as an activity for others but perhaps I'm missing something.

Adding the second purple belay rope addresses one of the two concerns, falling. Still, if your kid gets snarled up with the lime rope you can't get it and them down. I'd want to address that.

Also it's hard to see but it looks like you have the slings larks footed around your branches, that's less strong than folding the sling over the branch and clipping both hanging loops together. It's good enough for this but not ideal and it can cause rapid wear.

Nice tree by the way.

jk

 BuzyG 02 Mar 2021
In reply to UKClimber2021:

Good to see the photos of the set up.  Nothing is ever 100% safe climbing.  A number of comments that I agree with on the lime rope.   Namely that if the girls get snagged high up on that rope, then you don't appear to have a simple safe plan to get them unsnagged and down.  Your only obvious solution would seem to be lock off the belay. Climb up yourself and unsnag them. Then climb back down again, unlock the belay and lower them down.  If there was a third rope and a second belayer that could be done safely. But you don't have that. So it would be down to you as a stressed parent to climb up and do that un-aided.

 UKClimber2021 02 Mar 2021
In reply to jkarran:

Thanks again. And thank you regarding the slings. I will readdress these and reloop them around and clip in as you suggest. 
thank you all for taking the time to look at this, and happy safe climbing everyone. 


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