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releasable rappel set-up
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By mike526
From schaumburg
Feb 5, 2013
Took A top rope guiding course last october ANd have been going over the things that i've learned. Was wondering if anyone had any info or good pictures as to this set up. Also was wondering how often you may use a releasable rappel if at all.

Thanks

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By The Stoned Master
Administrator
From Pennsylvania
Feb 5, 2013
Day Lily.
Can you describe the system? I don't know what exactly you mean.

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By wivanoff
Feb 5, 2013
High Exposure
See page 2
www.petzl.com/files/all/en/activities/sport/tech-tips-canyon>>>

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By mike526
From schaumburg
Feb 5, 2013
WEll basically you would tie a munter mule off the anchor and have someone rap on the single line. While you as a belayer would have the option of popping the mule knot if something where to happen during the rap and be able to lower the climber off a munter hitch if need be.

I was shown a few ways to do this and cant remember exacetly the entire setup.

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By Jared Garfield
Feb 5, 2013
Romancing the Stone
I really only use them when I'm out guiding. They are nice when you have very inexperienced climbers and you need to worry about things like hair getting stuck in a belay device or your climber getting clothing stuck. They other time I use them is if for some reason I have to send them over terrain that may be difficult to rappel from, in which case it is nice to know I can always just have them pop their belay device off and get lowered.

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By Jake Jones
From Richmond, VA
Feb 5, 2013
Me and the offspring walking back to the car after a day of cragging.
re·pel
/riˈpel/Verb
1.Drive or force (an attack or attacker) back or away.
2.(of a magnetic pole or electric field) Force (something similarly magnetized or charged) away from itself.
Synonyms
repulse - reject - repudiate - fight off \



rap·pel intransitive verb \rə-ˈpel, ra-\
rap·pelled also rap·peledrap·pel·ling also rap·pel·ing
Definition of RAPPEL
: to descend (as from a cliff) by sliding down a rope passed under one thigh, across the body, and over the opposite shoulder or through a special friction device
— rappel noun

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By mike526
From schaumburg
Feb 5, 2013
wivanoff thanks for the link.

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By Crag Dweller
From New York, NY
Feb 5, 2013
My navigator keeps me from getting lost
Another depiction of the munter mule - www.animatedknots.com/muntermule/index.php

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By wivanoff
Feb 5, 2013
High Exposure
mike526 wrote:
...Also was wondering how often you may use a releasable rappel if at all. Thanks


Maybe a guide would use it. Or someone teaching rappelling to noobs in case one got stuck. I doubt if climbers use this as a matter of course.

I can think of one instance: a long rappel/lower with two ropes tied together so that others in the party would not have to pass a knot on rappel. Connection knot is just below Munter-Mule. Rappeller goes down first rope and remains tied to the end. Belayer releases the Munter-Mule and lowers rappeller the rest of the way down.

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By Guy Keesee
From Moorpark, CA
Feb 5, 2013
Big Boulder, just a bit downhill from Temple of Kali. Alabama Hills, CA.
Please don't die.....

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By J Antin
From Denver, CO
Feb 5, 2013
First morning at Indian Creek!!!
Jared Garfield wrote:
I really only use them when I'm out guiding. They are nice when you have very inexperienced climbers and you need to worry about things like hair getting stuck in a belay device or your climber getting clothing stuck. They other time I use them is if for some reason I have to send them over terrain that may be difficult to rappel from, in which case it is nice to know I can always just have them pop their belay device off and get lowered.


I assume this is what the OP is referring to....

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By rging
From Salt Lake City, Ut
Feb 5, 2013
CoR
Serves two purposes. One as a block for rappeling on a single line for long rappels where you are possibly using a pull cord. The other is contingency where you could lower a person for various reasons like the rope isn't all the way down, hair or clothing stuck etc... The one pictures shows a figure 8 rigged as a block. If you need to switch to lower you can unwrap once and it is then set up as if you were rappelling using a figure 8 (but in this case at the top for lowering).

This is very common in canyoneering and you can get plenty of detailed techniques at Bogley or the yahoo canyoneering message group.

A more common use would be something called a joker. Looks like two figure 8s together. This allows both lines to be used (one person is rigging while one is rappelling) if you have a large group to speed things up. It also prevents someone from accidentally going off the wrong side of the block to their death. You have contingency on both strands with this setup. A device called a totem sold by Rich Carlson of the ACA is commonly used for this setup.

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By mike526
From schaumburg
Feb 5, 2013
yes j Antin that is what i'm referring to now maybe someone can refresh my memory. I thought when i took the guide course we did this using only one rope not two, but can't picture how this works. With two ropes i can picture it one rope would be your rappel line the other your safety. I just could have sworn we did it with one and if so not understanding how they were ties in and rappeling on the same line.

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By cdec
From SLC and Moab, ut
Feb 5, 2013
You probably used one rope. The rap has to be less than half the rope length. Work from the middle fixing one side for the rap and the other for the belay.

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By Marty C
Feb 5, 2013
You can do this "releasable rappel" using either two ropes or one rope (for rappels for less than 1/2 rope length).

If using one rope, tie releasable munter/mule at just shy of 1/2 way point of rope, and have climber rappel on a single strand. The other 1/2 of rope is tied off to anchor and the end of the rope is tied to the rappeller/climber and used to back up the climber on rappel and if necessary lower/belay the climber.

This technique is seldom used/needed; used mostly for very inexperienced
rappelers who might get their clothes/hair caught in their device and being inexperienced unable to correct the situation.

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By wivanoff
Feb 6, 2013
High Exposure
mike526 wrote:
Took A top rope guiding course last october...

mike526 wrote:
.. maybe someone can refresh my memory. I thought when i took the guide course we did this using only one rope not two, but can't picture how this works....


It's good that you're asking questions and trying to fully understand how to do something. I hope you keep asking.

But, were there no handouts in your course? Didn't you get some kind of manual or reference book to take home? Didn't you take any pictures of the setups? Did they have you practice any of those setups? After the course did they tell you that you were now certified to guide TR?

You took a "guiding course" and you have to come to the interwebs to ask how to do something they taught? I'm sorry, mike526, I'm not trying to be a doosh but I would ask for my money back.

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By Gunkiemike
Feb 6, 2013
Jared Garfield wrote:
I really only use them when I'm out guiding. They are nice when you have very inexperienced climbers and you need to worry about things like hair getting stuck in a belay device or your climber getting clothing stuck. They other time I use them is if for some reason I have to send them over terrain that may be difficult to rappel from, in which case it is nice to know I can always just have them pop their belay device off and get lowered.


Assuming you have them tied into a second rope.

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By Gunkiemike
Feb 6, 2013
Mike - the thing you need to remember - and PRACTICE - is to fix the rap line with a munter mule rather than a hard (unreleasable) knot. The likely exam scenario is that a rapping client gets something hopelessly sucked into the ATC. You need to be able to release the weighted rap line and take their weight on the second rope, at which point they can pull their hair/clothing/nipple ring out of the device and then either they resume the rappel or, more likely, you lower them to the ground. Therefore you may only need 10' of extra rope above the munter. But - THIS IS IMPORTANT (i.e. you will fail the test if you don't do this)- you must have the rap rope above the munter clipped into the anchor so that there is NO WAY you could let the end of the rope go as you lower the client. In guidespeak this is called "closing the sytem".

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By Christopher Gibson
From Frisco, Texas
Feb 6, 2013
Live to Work not Work to Live.  We Love Our Jobs!!!
Dont forget to load the munter in the direction of the rappel before tying the mule hitch.

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By cdec
From SLC and Moab, ut
Feb 6, 2013
We use it everyday all summer in Moab on our canyoneering trips. This set-up probably gets rigged 2500-3000 times a summer by my guides.
Prevention is the key, making sure hair is tied back and shirts are tucked in keeps us from having to actually "use" the system.
That being said someone does get something stuck in the belay device once or twice a summer.

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