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Cleaning Short Lower-Outs Without Leaving Slings v.2
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By Mark Hudon
Aug 24, 2012
On the North America Wall in 1977.

If you set up a Fifi hook like shown in the photo below, you can attach yourself to the cord coming from its bottom with a Munter, secured with a Mule while you are cutting the tat off the fixed gear. The line coming from the top of the Fifi is a little bit longer and it is attached to your harness with a knot and a biner.
Once you’re done cleaning the tat, pop the Mule and lower yourself out (my cord is about 12 feet long) till you slide off the end of the cord. The cord attached to the top of the Fifi will pull it off the piece and the whole rig will end up dangling from your harness.

Easy, fast and safe.


Easy, Fast and Safe.
Easy, Fast and Safe.


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By Zappatista
Aug 25, 2012
Book me, officer.

Mark, you are a fountain of big wall trickery. I learn from every post of yours. I can't say that about anyone else's dreck, not even my own.

Pretty inspiring stuff you've been putting out. Keep up the good work, brother. Thanks for the effort to put stuff like this out there.


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By Jason Todd
From Ranchester, WY
Aug 25, 2012
Moss

Mark, Thanks (again) for the tips. It is a valuable service you are doing and many of us appreciate it.

Hope you send Lost in America in the finest style.


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By Mark Hudon
Aug 25, 2012
On the North America Wall in 1977.

Many thanks.


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By Mark Hudon
Aug 25, 2012
On the North America Wall in 1977.

I just figured out a way to do this without the lower out cord or a long catch cord. Hold on a sec, I have to go test it out....

oops, no, can't do it.

I thought that you could attach a cord to the top of the fifi and then to the rope with a Klemhiest knot. Once you were done lowering out, I thought you could pull the rope and pop the fifi off the piece. You can't do this because the rope is actively running through the loop or biner on the fifi for your lower out, it's not static like you would need for the Klemhiest.

You don't need the pull cord if you are willing to untie from the rope and tie the end to the top of the Fifi, you could then lower out as far as you want and then pull the fifi off. You would be still be attached to the rope with your jugs AND your back up knot.


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By DrApnea
From Salt Lake City, UT
Dec 29, 2013

Bump just because this is a great idea and I must have missed it come through MP last year.


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By Keith Earley
From Boulder, Colorado
Dec 29, 2013
Unknown at Golden Cliffs

Since this was bumped, can you (or someone else) explain the directionality of this setup? in the picture, are you lowering yourself out to the right side?


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By Mark Hudon
Dec 29, 2013
On the North America Wall in 1977.

Yes, you would be lowering out to the right. Since then though, I've simplified and made safer the technique.

Simply go with a 25 foot piece of 5mil, thread it through the eye of whatever you are lowering out from, a bolt, a pin, a fixed nut, anything. Run it back to another biner on your belay loop, tying into it with a Munter and a half hitch over all the cords to secure them.

Use your tat knife to cut away the useless tat, loosen the half hitch and lower yourself out. When you reach the end of the 5mil, simply let it go and pull it through the piece.

Lower out from an anchor. There was a series of hook moves off the anchor that would have caused the second to have to leave a sling.
Lower out from an anchor. There was a series of hook moves off the anchor that would have caused the second to have to leave a sling.


The Munter Hitch before tying it off with a Mule or Half Hitches.
The Munter Hitch before tying it off with a Mule or Half Hitches.


Obviously you're not going to clean any large pendulum or lower out but for the odd tat cleaning effort and small lower outs, this method rocks. I was able to make my life a whole hell of a lot easier last fall cleaning the Atlantic Ocean Wall roof using this method. I could hold myself into the rock using the cord and clean a move or two ahead, and then lower myself out and jug up.


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By DrApnea
From Salt Lake City, UT
Dec 29, 2013

Does it lower out well through skinny wire though? Say some old small micronut, bashie, etc
That's why I though the fifi trick was interesting but if you say it works I will give it a try


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By Mark Hudon
Dec 29, 2013
On the North America Wall in 1977.

Yes, it works fine through very thin wire.

Me, Max Jones and Cheyne Lempe have used this technique on five or six wall now and all love it. I recommended it to a team going up on Lost in America last spring and they loved it also.

If you are creative with it, it can really make cleaning some difficult pitches a breeze.


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By DrApnea
From Salt Lake City, UT
Dec 29, 2013

Any reason why are you clipping 2 carabiners in a row before your hitch in those pictures rather than just one?


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By Mark Hudon
Dec 30, 2013
On the North America Wall in 1977.

The bottom biner has the loop of 5 mil clipped to it and since I'll be letting the Munter slip under a load, I didn't want the cords to rub against each other and maybe melt or get tangled. I don't think it would every be a real big deal but I'm just sort of like that.


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