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What happened to trad climbing?

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What happened to trad climbing?

Postby graham » Sat Feb 06, 2010 6:44 pm

I'm looking for a new rope for trad rock work and was surprised that the Mammut Rope Guide DOES NOT offer any suggestions for a trad rope.
http://www.mammut.ch/images/Seilfibel_E_030617.pdf

How could a company like Mammut overlook such a “traditional” aspect of rock climbing :?:

-ps, any suggestions on a good trad rope would be appreciated
Last edited by graham on Sat Feb 06, 2010 8:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby catullus » Sat Feb 06, 2010 7:19 pm

Trad's there; they just broke it up into a few different categories: Alpine Rock Climbing, Mountaineering, and Big Wall Climbing. I'm not sure if "sport" mountaineering exists anywhere, but I sure hope not.
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Postby kiwiw » Sat Feb 06, 2010 7:23 pm

there's a difference?
a ropes a ropes a rope. pretty much any rope will work for trad climbing, if your looking for general trad cragging a 60 or 70M 10.5-11 mill will be plenty durable, if you want to climb hard and/or alpine a lightweight 9.5 60M will work for you. if you want to be able to make full raps twin or half ropes. I get anything that's cheap. I've seen some petzl fuse's (9.4) for $150 for 70M both here and on steep and cheap. I personally own 3 ropes, 2 50M half and 1 60 11. my friends have skinnier singles for multipitch when I want to go light or when I want to push myself.
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Postby graham » Sat Feb 06, 2010 7:53 pm

I guess I’m surprised that Mammut has almost every climbing category listed, expect for trad climbing......it seemed very conspicuous by its absence. Just say’n :?
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Postby Dow Williams » Sat Feb 06, 2010 8:28 pm

graham wrote:I guess I’m surprised that Mammut has almost every climbing category listed, expect for trad climbing......it seemed very conspicuous by its absence. Just say’n :?


Part of that could be attributed to doubles....doubles are used for trad and ice. The majority of doubles are sold for trad as there are more trad climbers than waterfall ice climbers. Even aid climbers prefer thicker single's with drag lines so they don't buy many of the doubles. Doing serious trad routes (committing, route finding, stiffer grades), you should opt for doubles. My favorite rock doubles are the Edelweiss Sharps, 8.5. My favorite ice are the Beal Ice Lines, 8.1. My favorite alpine doubles (long and often glaciated approaches to a big rock route) are the Mammut Phoenix, 8.0. I own and climb on all three sets and have for years now. Many long trad routes rappels/exits require double ropes. They might not call that their trad category, but it might as well be.
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Postby ksolem » Sat Feb 06, 2010 8:40 pm

I second Dow on the Edelweiss Sharps. Excellent ropes. And yes, for any big trad climbs, especially where weather is a factor and retreat is a possibility doubles are the way to go.

A couple years ago I had worn out my third set of Edelweiss Stratos 8.5's and ordered a new set. They arrived and I started using them. Something was very wrong though. Every belay was a full on snarlfest as these new ropes were seemingly designed to tangle. I complained to the online retailer Gear Express, and to their credit they took back the used ropes and sent me a new pair of the Sharps which are great.
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Postby graham » Sat Feb 06, 2010 9:21 pm

Thanks Dow & Kris for the suggestions. I’ll look at the Edelweiss cords.

I hadn’t considered using doubles, cuz I don’t think I’ve every seen anyone one use doubles at TahQ, Suicide, Josh, etc. My trad world maybe limited, but all the climbers I know use a single between the mid9s and mid10s mm for trad work.
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Postby ksolem » Sat Feb 06, 2010 10:29 pm

Yeah Tahquitz, Suicide, Josh you can do fine on most routes with one cord. But I've done a lot of routes in those places with doubles. The second and third pitches of The Vampire run so nicely with doubles.

Here's a case where I am leading a hard dangerous single pitch route (Seamstress, at Courtright) using double ropes and two belayers. This is to help avoid a groundfall if I peel while pulling up slack to clip. One belayer feeds slack, the other catches my ass.
Image
photo Guy Keesee 1990.

We did that a lot at Dome Rock too on the spicy testpieces. Etude at Suicide goes nicely with doubles too.

It was Herb Laeger that got me to start with doubles. At first it seems like a pain, but when you get it dialed in it's great.

Doubles do weigh a bit more than a modern single. Usually I don't feel this because they're clipped through a bunch of gear, and the drag in less, but on a long straight steep pitch (think: Devil's Tower) the extra weight can be a factor at the end of a long hard pitch.
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Postby Dow Williams » Sun Feb 07, 2010 1:50 am

Sounds like you are better off with a single Graham. I was just referencing why a rope manufacturer might not have a "trad" grouping of ropes versus just the assumption that goes with doubles. When you travel around a bit, you will find that many of us refer to single pitch climbing as cragging, whether placing gear or clipping bolts. If somebody says they want to go for a "trad" climb, many of us make the assumption someone is talking about an all day route, but again that depends on where you live and climb the most. I think the terminology and particularly how folks use it flows from area to area do doubt. Cheers
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Postby OJ Loenneker » Sun Feb 07, 2010 5:24 am

catullus wrote: I'm not sure if "sport" mountaineering exists anywhere, but I sure hope not.


It does. Infinite Bliss on Mt. Garfield.
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Postby Dow Williams » Sun Feb 07, 2010 3:18 pm

that is an excellent trip report!

This young lady's trip report never made the front page of SP last year? Wonder what the hell the criteria is?
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Postby CClaude » Sun Feb 07, 2010 4:12 pm

Personally, unless you are doing alpine routes, most of the time I go with single ropes, but then again, my cragging rope is a 70m x 9.4mm and my multipitch rope is a 70m x 9.1mm. For long routes in Red Rocks (ie: Rainbow Wall, OR) its more then sufficient. I hope to make a couple trips to Zion for long routes and for doing them free its just the ticket.
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Postby Dow Williams » Sun Feb 07, 2010 4:26 pm

CClaude wrote:Personally, unless you are doing alpine routes, most of the time I go with single ropes, but then again, my cragging rope is a 70m x 9.4mm and my multipitch rope is a 70m x 9.1mm. For long routes in Red Rocks (ie: Rainbow Wall, OR) its more then sufficient. I hope to make a couple trips to Zion for long routes and for doing them free its just the ticket.


Of course I own a single lightweight 70 as well Chuck..FYI...a ton of routes from Red Rocks to Zion to Moab require double rope raps. Of course they slap an alpine grade on these routes but I consider them rock routes in the traditional since. My wife and I saw a young man leading Birdland last week (we were climbing Rawlpindi)...he led on two thick singles...then he did a mountaineers coil (?) on each pitch with one, and brought his parter up on the other....every pitch....not everyone climbs enough to justify doubles...but I do see this this sort of thing a lot, on easy common routes, Crimson Chrysalis, etc. I have seen the 2nd dragging a 60m single through cracks and chimneys, I guess because they saw this done on big walls!
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Postby ksolem » Sun Feb 07, 2010 7:44 pm

I climb a lot in The Needles, where you need two ropes to get off many of the climbs. I've seen several times when the second was trailing the rope and it got caught in a crack or flake. That kind of screws things up.

Leading with two single ropes is not for me on anything difficult. Doubles are the way to go, there.

So for me, I do a lot of cragging with a single, usually about 9.8, and longer routes with double 8.5's. I don't care for the 70m deal (seems like a lot of extra rope without the added flexibility of doubles,) but as Dow and Claude say I'm sure there are places where they work really well.
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Postby Charles » Mon Feb 08, 2010 12:10 pm

catullus wrote:Trad's there; they just broke it up into a few different categories: Alpine Rock Climbing, Mountaineering, and Big Wall Climbing. I'm not sure if "sport" mountaineering exists anywhere, but I sure hope not.

Why not?
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