As a retired college prof, I'm pleased to see a student 1) having an instructor provide the opportunity to talk / write about a hobby / passion, 2) share information about a hobby that can be educational for the general public. There are so many misconceptions about action sports by most people. Keep up the good work, rankinesoccer! Enjoy your passions safely, and you can go far in the world. And, be thankful that you have a dad that can share some of the good time with you.
Thanks for the support! Fortunately my teacher did not realize that I was interested in rock climbing, because she stated after that she should not have allowed me to write this paper had she known. It does make researching much more enjoyable if you are interested in the subject you are discussing, so I had no problem procrastinating on this assignment. Enjoy your adventures as well!
I would think you probably learned a lot in researching this topic. As I am much more of a "hiker" getting to the top of high peaks than a technical rock climber, I have no great expertise to comment on the accuracy of your article, although it seemed pretty well done to me. It will be interesting to read what any rock climbing experts have to say about your findings.
Being a Phoenix, and much of the rest of Arizona, hiker in winter time, I note we have shared many vistas. The San Juan Mountains of SW Colorado, where I spend summers, have a lot of pretty good ones, too. With your interests, you have a lot of "natural highs" ahead in your life.
I'm much a much more experienced hiker than I am a rock climber. I have gotten more into rock climbing...I realized that rock climbing was an essential part of technical mountaineering. I read a lot about climbing, more than I probably climb. I learned a lot about the physics of climbing with fall factor and other things, most of which I didn't have space to explain in the paper. Arizona is a great state, and I am happy to call it home for most of the year; I spend the summer in Europe and Washington most years. I will have to head over to Colorado more, to climb a few Fourteeners.
It seems to me that your paper gave short shrift to the anti-bolt perspective. Mentioning in an off-hand fashion that bolts mar the rock and that some old folks think bolts are bad is not sufficient. Trad climbing and sport climbing are different "sports" in my opinion. One presents a more intellectual challenge, a give-and-take with fear, while the other is a more physical endeavor. To capture this aspect of climbing, why not include some reference to the respect the climbing community has for first ascentionists? For example, if the FA of a given route did it without bolts, then so it should remain. Not because it is safer, but because they established the route, and they should control its future.
In order to progress as a trad-climber, you have to make decisions as to what risks you are willing to take. If, for example, you are unwilling to do an 80-foot runout, you avoid certain climbs. For some people, a long runout presents a desirable mental challenge.
I don't think trad climbers who are opposed to bolts are necessarily wishing to exclude younger climbers, but rather recognize climbing as something different. Something dangerous and exciting that younger climbers should experience before paving over with steel.
I appreciate your point here. I would love to have had more space to explain more details of sport versus trad climbing, but I ran out of space. The paper needed to be 7 pages or fewer, and I wrote to the last line on the seventh page. Unfortunately some things had to be left out. In the future I will write a more in-depth paper than fully encompasses these topics. As a paper designed to be read by people who have never climbed, I feel that the paper does that job well. Given, there are some things that are simplified such as fall factor, dynamic versus static rope, etc...
I don't think that sport climbing and trad climbing are completely different sports, but they are distinct activities that fall under the umbrella of rock climbing, each with its own uniqueness and set of skills. As a cyclist, the same thing goes for different types of racing, from time trials, road races, and criteriums, to track cycling and brevets.
I agree that first ascensionists should decide the fate of routes.
Tell your teacher to log on to SP to see that not only did you fulfill her required assignment, you even had the initiative to take it a step farther and post it as a legitimate article on a fairly widely accepted climbing forum, and that you wanted it to be reviewed by members of the climbing community. Well done!
Thanks!!! I have published a couple trip reports hoping that they would be featured. This is the first piece of mine that was. I will ask my teacher to take a look.
Thanks for the read! I think you did a good job on the assignment, and you argued your point well. From a purely climbing article point of view, it may be a bit one-sided (in terms of bolting vs. trad climbing), but if I understood your assignment correctly, that was what was expected of you.
Keep up the good work, get good grades and climb even higher grades ;)
Thank you! The assignment was to argue a point, so it is one sided on purpose. While I was supposed to counter opposing arguments, the idea was to be a proponent of bolting in most places. I am not a big fan of sport climbing, my focus it to get into trad and alpine, but facts such as safety issues are easier to explain to novices and are more relatable to the masses for sport climbing. I hope to keep up my grades in school, and I especially hope to climb higher grades and higher mountains in interesting areas. Soon I will begin a comprehensive article about pro in rock climbing with just the facts and little opinion. I have exams to study for first.
As my cycling friends say, "keep the rubber side down." I think it can apply to climbing and hiking too. Enjoy your adventures.
"Forgive me, Father, for my sins, for I have placed bolts. If there is any consolation, I placed the bolts with a hammer and drill on lead. I have never committed the unforgivable and cowardly sin of placing bolts with an electric drill.
"For my penance, I promise never to bolt again, and I promise, oh heavenly Father, to kick anyone's ass who I catch placing bolts.
I was wondering for a few days what to reply to this. All I can say is that it is unnecessary. Not needed, not called for, not relevant.
I am honored that you spent a few days wondering about me, and I truly appreciate your considered response!
Another thing I hope that you learn in high school: if you don't want to hear the answer, then don't ask the question ("...give me some thoughts on your stand on this issue...) Dilligent studies (or the School of Hard Knocks) will accelerate your learning experience.
Your response was not actual facts and reasonable thoughts about this issue. If you are against bolting--state it. State your opinion and support it with facts. I asked for insightful views from people, not snide commentary without substance.