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Colorado Thief caught in the act at Smith


Tim Stich · · Colorado Springs, Colorado · Joined Jan 2001 · Points: 1,476

So quickdraw stealing is a sort of gateway drug to bolt stealing?

Scott McMahon · · Boulder, CO · Joined Feb 2006 · Points: 1,425
Stich wrote:So quickdraw stealing is a sort of gateway drug to bolt stealing?
Duh....how the heck can you hang your stolen draws without stolen bolts?? :o)
Mike Anderson · · Colorado Springs, CO · Joined Nov 2004 · Points: 3,130
Matthew P wrote:Possibly related, between the 28th and 29th of December, the Virgin River Gorge had some bolts stolen. The majority of them (8 or so) were taken from the first bolt of hung routes. A less-steep 13a (Space Race) had the entire route cleared. I assumed someone finished their project and cleaned it. After watching the vid here though, this route would be right up neck-beards style and easier to clean than a lot of routes here. In addition, VRG would be right on this neck-beards drive home if he went through vegas to utah.
That might be "Killis Howard" who lives in the Vegas area, he has been known to snag draws at the VRG.
EMT · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2008 · Points: 205

I think that local ethics are good for climbing really. I don't like seeing draws hanging for days on end, but in some areas it's the way it is. Sillly to over discuss the draw thing when it's the cliff base and cliff top veg. that is most obviously fucked up in some areas, and sometimes because of a lack of rap bolts

The thing that messes with my mind is how this guy could waste a day stealing draws at a place like smith, where the climbing in every grade is so good? I mean why would he not be climbing some of those fun routes? That's crazy.

Andrew Sharpe · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2009 · Points: 25
rockandice.com/component/co…

The video was posted on the Rock and Ice website.
Paul Tomlinson · · Bend · Joined Jan 2011 · Points: 0

After 8 pages of almost entirely cliche and predictable opinions, I remember why I don't frequent these sort of sites often. If it were not for the levity that the "Burbs" clip, "eat your beard" article, and a handful of other individual's clever witicisms provided, I would be hard pressed to say that this time spent was redeemable in any way.

Logically, you cannot argue that one should not leave his/her draws on the basis of fixed gear being an "eyesore", without concluding in addition that one should not leave bolts, hangers, chains, webbing, tat, rap rings, tents, cars, blah, blah... you get the picture. Therefore, if you are going to be a nazi about fixed draws, you better be consistent--your pack is mine if you leave the ground without it!

Pink-pointing/red-pointing/not-pointing--who cares! I have never met an admirable climber that got hung up on something so trivial and insignificant as another's decision of how to ascend a piece of rock. If another man sits, or stands when he pees, it doesn't affect me. And, please don't say that it blocks your ability to cleanly ascend a pitch in "good style". If you're such a purest, take the draw off the "fixed bolt", put your own draw on, and rejoice in the small contrived difficulty you've created in pursuit of "keeping it real".

Last issue, for those who defend the "thief" on the grounds of his community service to the park and its cleanliness... He was so flustered when he was descending the route that he accidently left his own two draws on the first two bolts. He is just another park "vandalizer" leaving fixed gear, but with a sweet hat and some good looking hair.

tenpins · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2007 · Points: 30
greenhorn wrote:.... but with a sweet hat and some good looking hair.
truly, the sole lesson to be taken.
Tim Pegg · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2009 · Points: 5
phillip wrote:Do you really not know to leave a line of draws alone? That you talk of booty-ing draws shows that you are not concerned with the visual impacts and are, in fact, a thief.
It's hardly theft if I booty a nut in Eldo. And I like free gear as much as the next guy. The rule you proposed was that "...a biner or two left on a highpoint of a route = booty.
However, someone's draws hanging on a route = NOT YOURS!"

I wanted to explore what I think was a flaw in your reasoning. That is, a quickdraw is two carabiners with some webbing, and you stated that qualifies as booty on the highpoint of a route. So, if I steal the top draw on a line, isn't that fair booty according to YOUR rules?

I have my own opinions on the matter of permanent draws, but I don't think they're so important. I think that our friend the leprechaun did was impolite, and I wouldn't booty a line of draws. But what I'm annoyed at is that rather than re-examine your ruleset, you called me a "klepto-gumby". I've never stolen anything in my life (unless that one booty-ed nut and a sling count), so you can spare me the klepto title.

Instead, what I wanted to do was explore exactly where someone crosses the line between fair play booty and what the community considers theft. The line isn't always well-demarcated. Since I've done enough climbing that I've had to bail, I can tell the difference between a line of draws and an abandoned carabiner. But the distinction between the two might not be obvious to someone just a little less seasoned than myself. I don't doubt that the leprechaun should know better, but the question in the case of honest people might be something like "when I find some gear left on a chunk of rock, when do I need to make an honest effort to find the owner?"

As for what to do with people like the leprechaun, find out how the relevant authority defines abandoned property in the Smith Rock State Park. If people like him are legally committing theft, drag them to a ranger. If they're not, don't leave your draws behind, or be prepared to patrol for wankers every day.
Jeremy Kasmann · · Denver, CO · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 0
Tim Pegg wrote: The line isn't always well-demarcated.
Actually, it is almost always obvious. What Phillip said makes sense.
Scott McMahon · · Boulder, CO · Joined Feb 2006 · Points: 1,425

Although...and take this with a grain of salt...the whole Trad= ok to take, sport = not ok is a HUGE double standard. Maybe because I'm more of a traddy, but a guy can't get a cam stuck for 1/2 day or have to bail, but draws can be left up forever? There isn't even enough time for a guy to go back up the next morning before someone steals "booties?" it. It's not like the person is really abandoning it, sort of like if your car breaks down.

Just an observation how we have two completely contrary sets of rules for "almost" the same thing. Kind of lame really....especially because trad gear usually costs a bit more than a $14 draw.

taylorpur · · vancouver, bc · Joined Jul 2010 · Points: 5
jeff walker wrote: interesting line of argument here. "if something of yours gets stolen it's your fault, you should have been more careful" -- this is the sort of rationale used by thieves to justify their actions. if this is the way you think, then you, too, are either a thief or potential thief since you believe it is the victim's fault that he got robbed. the "keebler elf" character in this video wasn't making an ethical statement, he was stealing. when you say that if you left your mountain bike at a trailhead and came back to find it gone, and that this wouldn't surprise you, are you also saying that the thief's actions are justified and that if you caught him in the act you wouldn't try to stop him from taking your bike? after all, you are the moron who left there so by your own argument you deserve to lose it. somehow i suspect you'd try to get your bike back.
i would not have to try to get my bike back because i would not leave it there in the first place. until the world is a wonderful utopia where every one respects other peoples property i will continue to look after my belongings rather then leave them unattended for any one to take.

im saying be responsible for your own gear, don't cry to me that some one stole your stuff that you left behind.
Tim Pegg · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2009 · Points: 5
Jeremy Kasmann wrote: Actually, it is almost always obvious. What Phillip said makes sense.
You obviously read my whole post. Also, "almost always" isn't always.

Edit: Scott- I had the same kind of thing in mind, but I really don't want to wander into "trad v. sport" territory.
Scott McMahon · · Boulder, CO · Joined Feb 2006 · Points: 1,425
Tim Pegg wrote: Edit: Scott- I had the same kind of thing in mind, but I really don't want to wander into "trad v. sport" territory.
Yeah I've resisted myself, but it cracks me up a crag is filled with draws and a cam is gone in a second in Eldo.
jackkelly00 · · new hampshire · Joined Apr 2009 · Points: 295

He is now a wanted man. If he ever wants to climb again, he will have to shave his well groomed neck beard and ditch his sweet hat.

Chris Plesko · · Westminster, CO · Joined Oct 2007 · Points: 485

There are places where trad gear is left insitu while people work a route. I won't say where but the lines are hard enough to access that no one is going to be pulling it down on rap and it's accepted that it stays up.

Scott McMahon · · Boulder, CO · Joined Feb 2006 · Points: 1,425
Chris Plesko wrote:There are places where trad gear is left insitu while people work a route. I won't say where but the lines are hard enough to access that no one is going to be pulling it down on rap and it's accepted that it stays up.
Yeah I'm sure Matt Wilder has a couple hidden up in the flats.. Routes I wouldn't want to rap, let alone climb!
thomas ellis · · abq · Joined Oct 2009 · Points: 1,690

The reason trad gear gets snatched up so fast is really just a product of weak poorly defined ethics among climbers whom rant constantly about ethics. I am not in any way trying to imply sport climbers are much better. People are assholes and climbers are people.

jeff walker · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2007 · Points: 0
taylorpur wrote: i would not have to try to get my bike back because i would not leave it there in the first place. until the world is a wonderful utopia where every one respects other peoples property i will continue to look after my belongings rather then leave them unattended for any one to take. im saying be responsible for your own gear, don't cry to me that some one stole your stuff that you left behind.
encouraging people to take responsibility for the choices they make is one thing, but judging them as having "asked for it" because some dirtbag took advantage of them is simply bullshit. the argument that "they deserve it" because they were careless is the rationale thieves use to justify their thievery. the world will never become a "wonderful utopia" as long as people like you are willing to help the thief justify his behavior.
chris Kalous · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2006 · Points: 615

First of all, why haven't all the aid climbers disappeared into the tar pits by now like dinosaurs. This is what happens when you let them just roam free.

Second: this sounds like a bunch of kids trying to hammer out the rules to kick the can or something. Only children want ethics to be black and white, no negotiation, what works here and now will work everywhere and always. The only rule is don't be an asshole. For example:

This guy stealing draws: asshole.

Aiding up any free route that is too hard for you just to take gear: asshole, no, I take that back, just sad and lonely

Taking a skanky draw that is a few bolts up and obviously a bail-off: not an asshole.

Pulling bolts, hangers, or chains off a route: asshole

Pulling bolts and hangers off a piece of shite that the community has decided is a waste of space and an eye-sore: not an asshole

Leaving draws up on yer proj regardless of the grade at a sport area: not and asshole

Leaving unsightly pre-placed gear or ropes up at a known trad area: asshole

Leaving pre-placed gear up on a your new route that is in the middle of no-where while you work it: not an asshole

Fixed mini-traxion ropes left on classic or popular routes: asshole

Mini-traxion ropes left out of clear site on the Amazing Obscuro Dome: well, actually, you are still probably an asshole and need to find some friends.

Leaving up fixed ropes for your personal photograper/videographer: professional asshole

Leaving behind fixed ropes in an emergency or accident: not an asshole (but you oughta try and go get them)

Pulling obviously (because you live there and have talked with anyone who would know and have been looking at them for 5 years) abandoned and rotten and dangerous draws off a route: not an asshole

Threading a fixed anchor that has biners so you can take them or pulling all but one piece out of a fixed anchor: asshole (and idiot)

Finding half somebody's rack strung out on a pitch after a rain storm and NOT making an effort to post a note or talk to the local shop, etc.: asshole

Keeping said rack after a reasonable and satisfying attempt by you to find the defendant: not an asshole

Lying to the face of said party about having gear or refusing to return it: greedy asshole in need of a beating

Pulling an unknown bail anchor: not an asshole

Pulling an unknown piece that somebody stuck: not an asshole

Pulling a piece that a party above you left and NOT offering it back at the next common belay or back in camp: asshole

Pulling a piece that belongs to somebody you know (even barely, even if you don't like him/her) and not offering it back at your convenience: asshole (this one will get a "yeah, but...", but, sorry, you are an asshole)

Doing anything that in yer gut makes you feel like a dick: well?

If in your next breathe you have to start some convoluted defense of your actions: hmmm?

But, sometimes doing what you want may require you to be an asshole. New routing tactics, for example, often infringe on others in many ways. Accept it, minimize it, and if somebody confronts you don't launch into a tirade about how rad you are and what a gumby he is. Instead, apologize, explain why its necessary, and how you will do this or that to make it right. A decent person sprouts from the ashes of an asshole.

Just do the right thing. You don't need an ethics manual rolled up in your back pocket to check. We have all crossed the asshole line, and gleefully pulled so and so's stuck gear while mumbling "gumby" under our breathe, but was that junky cam worth our fleeting ego trip? What makes you feel better is "hey, slim, I managed to get yer cam out of Vigorous Vaj up on the Gargantua, want it back?" He or she might say no anyway.

And if fixed draws bum you out, so should bolts, and so don't go sport climbing (you are also gonna need a time machine). Eldo awaits- just try to ignore all the tat hanging off the fixed pins and slung horns and trees...

Finally, the golden circle- be cool to those you meet out there, they just might be pulling traction on yer broken femur a few minutes later while you wail like, well, an asshole.

Will Butler · · Boulder, CO · Joined Sep 2005 · Points: 55

Those are the rules alright.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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