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Big scary loose rock at Taylors Falls
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By Petah
From minneapolis/st.paul
Jul 22, 2014
Autumn Brew Review 2009
20Jul14
20Jul14




There is a big loose block at the top of the Piece of Pie/Piece of Cake routes on the Minnesota Strip at Taylors Falls. The Minnesota Climbers Association has been informed and I trust they will be in contact with the park administration to remedy the situation. But in the mean time, be careful out there..

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By Robbie Mackley
From Tucson, AZ
Jul 22, 2014
Me and Holden at the "Matterhorn"
Are you pointing to the large seemingly detached, block with the green sling running over it or the one seemingly held in by some dirt with the nut under it? Or both?
Hope it stays put until properly dealt with.

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By Petah
From minneapolis/st.paul
Jul 23, 2014
Autumn Brew Review 2009
It's just the one being pointed at. The blocks that I have the nut in are both bomber.

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By Kyler R
From SLC
Jul 23, 2014
Castleton Tower
I'd be more worried about that nut on the green webbing pulling out of the block than the other block falling off unprovoked.

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By SeanFoster
Jul 23, 2014
Shovel Point, North Shore, MN
This turns out to be the same rock MCA was alerted to earlier in the season. TF park manager, Ron, doesn't want to take action on it. The person that communicated with him summed it up like this: "Ron has that attitude that every rock is loose, and it's a matter of how loose and how imminent the danger is. It was evaluated on 2 levels. Will dumb kids try to push it off, and will climbers use it as an anchor. It seems out of the way enough that kids will not notice it, and any competent climber will not anchor to it. Ron's default is not to mess with the rocks unless he needs to."

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By Bill Shubert
From Lexington, MA
Jul 23, 2014
Me on Kamakaze 5.10a (Ozone)
Is it loose enough that a climber grabbing at it hoping for a handhold could bring it down? If so then I'd have to disagree with Ron. I don't think your belayer's helmet is going to save anybody if that thing lands on their head.

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By Keithb00ne
From Las Vegas, NV
Jul 23, 2014
Grand Teton
So, why don't climbers do a controlled trundle and take care of the problem?

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By Tommy Layback
From Sheridan, WY
Jul 23, 2014
Tom on Cloud Peak, Bighorn Mtns, WY.  Blacktooth and Mount Woolsey in the background.
That nut placement would result in a failing grade on an AMGA exam. Never place pro (active or passive) against detached blocks, especially blocks that small.

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By Sarah K
From Lyons, CO
Jul 23, 2014
Summit of Devils Tower.
Tommy Layback wrote:
That nut placement would result in a failing grade on an AMGA exam. Never place pro (active or passive) against detached blocks, especially blocks that small.


I believe those blocks are attached very well in the vertical direction. They aren't as detached as they appear in the photo.

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By SeanFoster
Jul 23, 2014
Shovel Point, North Shore, MN
Keithb00ne wrote:
So, why don't climbers do a controlled trundle and take care of the problem?


That rock has been there for a long time.

I replied earlier as a board member of the MCA going through channels that we have established to work with the park service. We have a long history of working in conjunction with the DNR and over the past two years, that relationship has grown stronger and more beneficial to both parties.

I'm communicating what the park service had to say about the rock. MCA stands behind the park's wishes.

Climbers can do with that information what they will.

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By Kyler R
From SLC
Jul 23, 2014
Castleton Tower
Here is an idea...

I'm not sure what the local laws and regulations are on the trundling of rocks, but say a climber had an "accident" while climbing the route at say 10pm at night when no one is around.

Problem solved with a bomber excuse about it being late and climbing by headlamp and ACCIDENTALLY grabbing the wrong rock.

Where I'm from its certainly not commonplace for boulders to get trundled, but it happens more than some might think, we do have the advantage of many of the newer climbs being far away from people.

Not sure of your situation out there but if it's truly a concern of yours, push it off in the night.

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By M Sprague
Administrator
From New England
Jul 23, 2014
Lichen head. Me, with my usual weatherbeaten, lichen covered look from scrubbing a new route.
Is this some situation where there is a campground or ranger hut right below? If not, what is the big deal? Somebody goes up super early in the AM before anybody else is there, absolutely makes sure there is nobody even vaguely in range and drops it with a crowbar and checks the other stuff around it (it looks like more than that one block should go) What is the big deal? I don't get when people feel they need to contact authorities for every little thing like a spinning bolt hanger or loose rock. Just be safe, sensible, discreet, and do it!
OK, if you really don't know how to do it or have the means, than let others know who do.

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By Chris treggE
Administrator
From Madison, WI
Jul 23, 2014
This problem haunted my dreams for 6 years after failing to send in 2008.  Finally got throw a heel over the lip jug -- now I can sleep.  Photo Darin Limvere.
M Sprague wrote:
Just be safe, sensible, discreet, and do it!


This. Just keep in mind that rocks bounce and explode in unpredictable ways. I nearly killed my good friend and belayer a few years ago when a purposefully trundled large rock took an errant bounce off another rock at the base of the climb. Lesson learned.

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By M Sprague
Administrator
From New England
Jul 23, 2014
Lichen head. Me, with my usual weatherbeaten, lichen covered look from scrubbing a new route.
Very true, and a falling rock generates a lot of power to shoot shrapnel very far.
Make sure your spotters are WAY away, behind cover and not peeking around a boulder to watch the show. They wont have time to duck

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By Morgan Patterson
Administrator
Jul 23, 2014
Stoked...
M Sprague wrote:
They wont have time to duck


Ain't that right!!! And imo looks like both those need to go! I probably wouldn't not have placed that nut...

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By Kyler R
From SLC
Jul 23, 2014
Castleton Tower
Chris treggE wrote:
This. Just keep in mind that rocks bounce and explode in unpredictable ways. I nearly killed my good friend and belayer a few years ago when a purposefully trundled large rock took an errant bounce off another rock at the base of the climb. Lesson learned.


That's why your belayer comes up as well and you make you anchor well above the rock and rap down to it. You only ever trundle rocks on lead if it is an absolute must!

Trundling is a good way to sever your rope and as you saw, potentially kill your belayer.

I agree with a previous comment, why did anyone even contact the DNR? Unless there is a parking lot, ranger station or road directly underneath it come early or late and knock it off.

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By SeanFoster
Jul 23, 2014
Shovel Point, North Shore, MN
Kyler R wrote:
why did anyone even contact the DNR?


The DNR was contacted because the issue was brought to the MCA. We have a working relationship with DNR, so we contacted them. They gave their opinion, so MCA won't be trundling that rock. MCA is a small, volunteer operation. MCA is not the end all be all of Minnesota climbing.

To your other point, the rock wouldn't be trundled on lead. It can be reached by hiking to the top of that crag. Being anchored in from above that position would be wise, though. Spotters on the ground would be important, as this is a very touristy area and is busy many days of the week.

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By Pontoon
From Minneapolis, Minnesota
Jul 23, 2014
Potentially stating the obvious but trundled rocks can bounce a long ways. Depending on how it bounces it could maybe get to the river before stopping so be very careful you don't hurt someone.

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By Peter L Scott
Jul 24, 2014
Do we really need to announce this to the world. It's a small busy park,closely watched. No need for a 4 page discussion. A small group of folks go up before dawn on a Tues. morning. Make sure no one's around the base. At dawn crow bar the f'ing thing off. Take responsibility for maintenance of your area. No offense Sean, I understand your position and your hint.

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By Tab Yaj
From Minneapolis, MN
Jul 30, 2014
Spring, 2014.
Spring, 2014.

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