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Thread: Basic climbing equipment for AT
09-20-2012, 07:58 AM #1Registered User
- Join Date
- Jan 2009
Basic climbing equipment for AT
Missed a few exciting couloirs last season because of access - nothing really gnarly but you'd want a rope involved.
What is the basic climbing equipment you'd want for theese situations? No "real" climbing involved but might involve a short rappell/belay.
09-20-2012, 08:06 AM #2
Atc, prusik cord, harness, some cord for your anchor that you don't mind leaving behind once you are in. At least one locking carabiner. Rope, you shouldn't need a dynamic cord for this. Experience rappelling in "safe" situations. I'm probably missing some things.
09-20-2012, 08:15 AM #3Registered Abuser
- Join Date
- Jan 2010
Get a nice small harness and a belay device. If there are no existing anchors you'll be building your own, so add cord/webbing and whatever your local rock type likes to eat. For a skiing rope I like skinny as possible, 7.whatever. I use a 60m cut in half so my buddy can enjoy carrying a rope too. 30m is nice for glacier slogging too.
09-20-2012, 08:21 AM #4Registered User
- Join Date
- Jan 2011
Anchor hardware if nothing natural is available (screws, chocks etc), perhaps crampons.
09-20-2012, 08:30 AM #5
You talking about going up or just rappelling in? Different sets of equipment.
09-20-2012, 10:23 AM #6
If your climbing and not going top down you hopefully already know (roughly) what you need to climb safety. Bring extras since there is no gear shop halfway up a route. Godd news is, If you run out of gear, getting back down is straight forward. (most times)
Top down is a different animal and where you can really get yourself into trouble without the right gear. Being familar with the route and area can let you cut down on gear but is not a fail safe.
I usually have a 30m 8mm dynamic line, a set of stoppers, a screw or 2 and a Vthread tool, Couple slings and acc. cord, Harness/belay device/biner on familiar routes with very short raps.
Anything with longer/unknown distance raps or possibly multiple raps the kits grows alot and includes prussiks, more and different rock pro, more webbing/acc. cord, More screws, more rope, a daisy chain, sometimes you get lucky enough to have to bring a whole trad rack
Have fun and learn how to build anchors/lead/rapel/etc in a safe, close to the road place. The alpine is no place to try and figure it out.
Edit: You also probably want crampons and an ice ax or ice tool(s) but I assume yuo already knew that.
09-20-2012, 10:34 AM #7
re: crampons in the PNW
or boot crampons?
which would you buy first for best value?go ahead and huck the cornice anywhere!
09-20-2012, 10:35 AM #8
The usual step would be from boot packing with ski poles to climbing unroped with crampons and an ice axe. The next step would usually be roped climbing with a mix of running belays and belayed pitches. After that things turn into more mountaineering than ski mountaineering. If you have the skills, you already know what you need. If you don't...
09-20-2012, 10:45 AM #9
Ski Crampons: These allow you to skin in somewhat marginal conditions. Basically, really firm snow/ice where you might not get enough traction with just skins. There have been times on windswept ridges where I've really wished I carried ski crampons.
Crampons: These let you boot up in firmer conditions where you wouldn't want to post-hole with just ski boots. The crampons will definitely let you walk up steep chutes/ridges in conditions, that you won't be comfortable with just post-holing.
Crampons will probably let you extend the range of what you can climb/ski more. Ski crampons would let you skin stuff that you might otherwise not have enough traction on, but that you could definitely climb with crampons (thought it would be a lot more effort).
09-20-2012, 10:52 AM #10
09-20-2012, 10:55 AM #11
09-20-2012, 11:16 AM #12Registered User
- Join Date
- Jan 2009
It'll be up AND down. My experience is from rock climbing (going up iow) and glacier use. Can use some gear from that kit but want it as light as possible.
So far on the list:
- Beal Rando 30m
- 1-3 lockingbiners (dmm phantom)
- 1-3 quick draws (camp 23 nano express are sexy)
- Camp Alp 95 Harnes
- 5 or 6mm acc. cord
- Singing rock Shuttle
Again: the setup is mainly for safety in places where you'd think twice about going in without.
09-20-2012, 11:21 AM #13
OP, hook up with some experienced responsible mountaineers. Questions re a specific item of gear is cool on the Internet, but if you're asking questions at such a basic level, somebody ought to actually show and teach you.
Last edited by Big Steve; 09-20-2012 at 11:56 AM.
09-20-2012, 11:36 AM #14
Down is fairly easy - slings, biners/links, rope (you can used static for rappel only shots), harness, ATC, something to rap off. Take rock pro, screws, V thread tool as appropriate for the project.
Up, add pro - screws, pickets, stoppers, cams, slings and biners as appropriate.
Now, if you're talking glacier use then you'll want a couple of pickets, ascenders &/or prusiks, some screws, maybe a pulley and Tiblocs, slings and 'biners, and a lot of instruction and practice.
I don't see crampons or ice tools in your list. First things first.
Edit: and what BS said about getting mentors and instruction.
09-20-2012, 11:50 AM #15
Buy a copy of "Freedom of the Hills" and read it
09-20-2012, 11:53 AM #16
09-20-2012, 12:03 PM #17
09-20-2012, 12:08 PM #18Registered User
"Alpine rock and steep, deep powder are what I seek, and I will always find solace there." - Bean Bowers
- Join Date
- Sep 2010
shroom put it best: "Man, you're one biased motherfucker."
09-20-2012, 12:19 PM #19
I think he meant "down is easy" in terms of getting geared up. But see my comments re rapping in static lines, the reality that bouncing does occur and the resultant big forces on anchor with static lines. Why not carry dynamic line (e.g., Ice Floss) anyway? Who knows, you might need to set up a belay.
One test of experience: Experienced alpinists look for ways to avoid raps and, if rapping is the best alternative, they check, double check and triple check their anchors. By contrast, novices are usually eager to rap rather than downclimb.
Yup, Long's book on anchors is very good.
09-20-2012, 12:33 PM #20
09-20-2012, 12:45 PM #21
09-20-2012, 12:47 PM #22
my own current thoughts have been, if the ascent requires crampons (whichever ones), i'm probably not skiing those conditions on the descent...but i'm willing to go find appropriate training if it opens up new doors.
OP, sorry for the threadjack!go ahead and huck the cornice anywhere!
09-20-2012, 12:54 PM #23
acinpdx, don't take it personally. As Brit notes, the overlap where you could use either harscheisen or boot crampons is very limited. It's not a matter of one or the other. And you'd be surprised how many spring tours set up for harscheisen or pons on the ascent and skiing on the descent.
MS, what device are you using to rap on 6mm perlon? I've rapped on 7mm perlon with an ATC XP, and it seemed right at its limit. I didn't like it. I've also rapped on 6mm perlon using the biner twist method but that really twists up the perlon. I suppose you could do the biner brake bar method for a 6mm, but that requires carrying extra biners that weigh more than the savings carrying the lighter line.
Anyway, I did an analysis last year when I was assessing my gear. 7.7mm dynamic twin Ice Floss is 38g/m. 7mm perlon is 33g/m. So, we're talking around 5 oz. delta for 30m rope, 10 oz. for a 60m (or two 30m). It was an easy choice for me because we already have c. 200m total of Ice Floss ropes in the group (two 60m and one odd length some dumbshit stepped on the rope with crampons), and it made no sense to buy a bunch of 7mm perlon for rap only to save a few ounces. If I'm on a route where I might need to rap, there's almost always an equal likelihood that I might need to belay.
Last edited by Big Steve; 09-20-2012 at 02:34 PM.
09-20-2012, 01:06 PM #24
09-20-2012, 01:10 PM #25
Whether you need them or would be better with boot crampons though depends on what you're doing.
I'd suggest getting ski crampons first especially if you're new to ski touring. But it sounds likely you'll need both soon? Which AT bindings are you using?