/ How to (best) ascend half ropes

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Juan S on 16 May 2017
How do people ascend half ropes? Say I have a reverso, prusiks and a micro-traxion. I wouldn't have a gri-gri or jumars (I'm thinking using the kit I'd have while doing multipitch with half ropes).

One possibility would be the reverso as the waist prusik and a prusik loop for the foot. Would it better/easier to use the micro-traxion on one of the ropes as the foot prusik?
valjean - on 16 May 2017
In reply to Juan S:

given what equipment you've listed, id go with using 2 prusiks.

ive done it with a prusik and a guide plate/reverso..... its feels like a really good idea until you get higher up. having to lift the weight of 25-60 metres of rope up in order to unload your belay device is a pain, wont do it again.

two devices/prusiks on two strands assuming you are prusiking up to sort out an abseil gone wrong would lock up both devices and wouldnt work.

two devices/prusiks, on separate strands,for the second to bypass a hard section could work

id keep it simple, 2 prusiks for sure if using half ropes
if using a single, then bring your emergency device for ascending/hauling

Robin Woodward - on 16 May 2017
In reply to Juan S:
Depending what/why/how long, I'd probably either do as you suggest (reverso and prussik), or if for a long distance/over sharp edges above and you're on belay or your ropes are isolated I might consider ascending one rope with the reverso or prussik and micro traxion whilst either being belayed up on the other rope (assuming you can be isolated from the system/tied off on the belay and then Italian hitched on your spare line) or clove hitching this as a backup. This would mean you don't run the risk of cutting both ropes by repeated sawing over an edge. Also makes a transition back to climbing again (e.g. if you're trying to get past something/back on route after a fall on second) a bit less traumatic (one rope is already tight allowing you to get off the ascending line for your partner to pull up the slack).

If you're ab'ing down and then decide you're in the wrong place though, it's so quick and easy to change your reverso into ascending/guide mode and whack your spare prussik above this for your foot loop that it seems the easiest option.
Post edited at 17:59
SenzuBean - on 16 May 2017
In reply to Juan S:

After trying an ascent of the rope with a reverso - I probably would never go back to using two prusiks.

1) Attach a prusik a few cms below full-reach, and use a sling to create a foot-loop at about knee-height (here in Canada we use an untied cordelette for both the prusik + footloop, bringing one arm of the cord through the harness and tying a small knot, and then another knot at knee-height for the foot-loop.
2) Bring tight.
3) Attach the reverso to your belay loop in guide mode.
4) Prusik as per normal, remembering to pull rope through the reverso during the standup stage.
valjean - on 16 May 2017
In reply to SenzuBean:

out of curiosity how long of a session was it?

ive done it with an atc guide and a megajul, 55 meters and about 30 meters.

it was awesome for the first bit, once you have a lot of rope below you, this "remembering to pull rope through the reverso during the standup stage." felt a lot harder than releasing a prussik, pushing it up, loading it.

one option i guess is to coil the rope below you and clip it to yourself, but that is still weight you are carrying that you dont have to.
SenzuBean - on 16 May 2017
In reply to valjean:

> out of curiosity how long of a session was it? ive done it with an atc guide and a megajul, 55 meters and about 30 meters.it was awesome for the first bit, once you have a lot of rope below you, this "remembering to pull rope through the reverso during the standup stage." felt a lot harder than releasing a prussik, pushing it up, loading it.one option i guess is to coil the rope below you and clip it to yourself, but that is still weight you are carrying that you dont have to.

I think I only went up about 10 metres up a slab, which would've taken me about 2 minutes or less (it was so fast as to be enjoyable!). Previously I've used the 'UK' method in 'Mountain Skills Handbook' and it took me probably 5-6 minutes to reach 5 metres in height (although to be fair, this was freehanging).

If I can find a 55m length to ascend - I will give it a go. ;)
Kevster - on 16 May 2017
In reply to valjean:

Whenever I've ascended a rope more recently, I've used a pulley type syestem. Makes the take in easier, and the going up easier.
I find Prusiks hateful to use and worse to trust on their own.
Juan S on 17 May 2017
In reply to valjean:

Thanks for all the replies. So the consensus seems to be no need to carry a micro-traxion when using half ropes.

In terms of having to drag the rope weight: that seems unavoidable to me if you use a back-up knot.
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Rock to Fakey - on 17 May 2017
In reply to valjean:
> out of curiosity how long of a session was it? ive done it with an atc guide and a megajul, 55 meters and about 30 meters.it was awesome for the first bit, once you have a lot of rope below you...... one option i guess is to coil the rope below you and clip it to yourself, but that is still weight you are carrying that you dont have to.

Sure u done it with a megajul? They are really hard to pull rope through to ascend, aren't they?

Could you coil the rope and attach it to a sling on prussik just above your weighted prussik?

I'd say u haven't had enough replies for a consensus yet.
Post edited at 12:07
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