Thoughts on time spent on one route at DL


Original Post
David Pagel · · Mequon · Joined Mar 2016 · Points: 70

I was out climbing the East Bluff yesterday around Two Pines and was hoping to jump on a certain route. Granted I did arrive in the later morning and there was a group already set up on the route (fair enough). So we climbed a different route and after a few hours went back and the same group was on the route. After climbing yet another route (now getting later into the afternoon) we ran out of time for the day. So this group basically stayed on the one route, climbing it maybe twice) throughout the entire day. Any thoughts? Should we have just asked them to move if they werent climbing? There are always other routes to climb but to be set on one route the entire day seems a bit excessive.

FrankPS · · Atascadero, CA · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 275

It does seem excessive to tie up one route all day. You could have casually asked, "Do you guys mind if we climb this once?" They might say no, but maybe they figured if someone wanted to climb it, they would ask. I do think it's inconsiderate to hog the route all day.

Ted Pinson · · Chicago, IL · Joined Jul 2014 · Points: 190

Haha, was it Peter's Project? I think we might have run into you, as I was hoping to get on it as well and remember the group. It seems like they had a really big group (mostly beginners) and only one rope, which is a dick move. I had the same thing happen to me once when a group was TR banging Lost Face...it seems to happen with all the classic moderates. Conversely, there was another (similar sized) group in the Pedastal/D'Arcy's area and they set a few ropes so more than one person could go at a time, AND offered to share ropes. We had a rope on Birch Tree and another group had Congratulations and Upper D set, and we all ended up getting on everything, which made for a great afternoon and is how things should work.

David Pagel · · Mequon · Joined Mar 2016 · Points: 70

Frank:
Personally I wasn't wild about the set they had made. Meaning I would've rather have set my own gear and rope. I wasn't necessarily comfortable asking them to move everything.

Ted:
Yeah that was us. Wasn't really planning on naming routes to single people out whoever it was on Peter's Project

Just in general, if someone's not on the route i dont have a problem with it, but just hanging out a very popular route all day seemed a little much.

Jacob Krenn · · La Valle, WI · Joined Aug 2008 · Points: 120

I've found that most folks/groups at the Lake are super friendly if approached in an equally friendly manner. A couple Saturday's ago, i took a new partner out for the afternoon. Seeing that the East Rampart "classics" were sewn up tight between TR groups and trad leaders, I managed to find "Easy Overhang", "Foreplay", and the entire Leaning Tower (despite the obnoxious teenagers bouldering in the vicinity, blasting "Afroman" at top volume, and having written "Eat My Ass" in chalk beside the trail; choice words ensued, albeit, not choice enough), to be free of traffic.

However, I really wanted my new partner to sample the greatness that is "Brinton's Crack". With a polite request, the party that had already set a TR on "Brinton's", gladly pulled their rope aside, and even gave us their blessing to use their anchor (provided I agreed not to epic on the lead).

The point of my rambling is, that I feel that the majority of the climbers/groups have no intentions to "steal" your chance to climb any given route, and a majority would be more than happy to share their rope/anchor if you asked nicely (inspect beforehand if competency is doubted).

I'd like to think that popular crags should have a friendly, communal feel to them, as opposed to a ("I'll pepper spray your dog", "I'll booty you're fixed ropes/gear", "I'll onsight your 2 year project", "I'll eat your PB&J", "I'll sell your crag baby to a nunnery"), kind of feel.

But, that's just like, my opinion man...

Ted Pinson · · Chicago, IL · Joined Jul 2014 · Points: 190
David Pagel wrote:Frank: Personally I wasn't wild about the set they had made. Meaning I would've rather have set my own gear and rope. I wasn't necessarily comfortable asking them to move everything. Ted: Yeah that was us. Wasn't really planning on naming routes to single people out whoever it was on Peter's Project Just in general, if someone's not on the route i dont have a problem with it, but just hanging out a very popular route all day seemed a little much.
Ah. Probably a good thought, although perhaps if they saw this thread they could either offer up an explanation and/or learn from the experience (it's happened before).
Woodchuck ATC · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 3,110

Guided groups ( for pay that is) with more than 4 climbers per one belaying instructor, really need to fine out of the way areas, OR get a second or third belayer out there to keep ropes moving. When finished on a route, it is really a must to get that rope down and make it obvious they are done, and open the route to others. You can't be called considerate' if you hold a route for an 8 hour day for your huge group. Explain to your clients that not everyone will get a chance on Every Climb set. They gotta make choices and the guides need to open up routes after no more than a couple hours of use to allow for fair use for all. Makes for good relations with rest of climbing community. Once they see your logo, the bad feedback will result as to your entire climbing services, possibly because of one inconsiderate guide who hogs routes in the classic, most popular areas. Best suggestion for bringing clients up to the East Ramparts or CCC trail area is: 2 clients, one guide, climb fast and move quickly to set up your next route, even ask AND offer to share ropes and space with those near you for maximum use. Just try to be part of the community with consideration for all. Especially now in a wonderful warm fall season when the hoards of weekend climbers are often at their height for the season.

Tradiban · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2004 · Points: 11,175

If no one is actively climbing it, then JUMP ON!

David Pagel · · Mequon · Joined Mar 2016 · Points: 70

This wasn't a guided group. There was a guided group next to us with one instructor and 3 other people and they were extremely considerate and kind to us in suggesting routes. And I am yet to be comfortable jumping on other peoples sets, at least the group who was on Peters at the time.

Seth Jones · · New Lenox, IL · Joined Feb 2015 · Points: 25
David Pagel wrote:This wasn't a guided group. There was a guided group next to us with one instructor and 3 other people and they were extremely considerate and kind to us in suggesting routes. And I am yet to be comfortable jumping on other peoples sets, at least the group who was on Peters at the time.
Sometimes using other people's ropes is the best way to get on the popular routes but if I don't trust the group, I just take a peek at their anchor to make sure it's all good before jumping on. I've also had good luck just asking other groups if I can either move their unused rope to the side temporarily or pull it while I lead on my rope and put theirs back when I'm done. If you approach groups with a good attitude and psych for the route, people are usually really cool.
Doug Hemken · · Madison, WI · Joined Oct 2004 · Points: 5,382

Definitely talk to them.

I usually try "We were hoping to get on this ... when do you think you might be done?" It helps if they will name a time.

If they offer you their rope, take at least a discrete look at it if you don't know them. Unless I am planning to lead, I usually take a look before I ask. If I don't like the set up, lately I offer to reset it for them (using their gear).

rgold · · Poughkeepsie, NY · Joined Feb 2008 · Points: 525

Fifty years ago we didn't have this problem. A half-century younger version of me on Peter's Project---looks as if maybe there will be a protection piece after all. (Note: nuts---and certainly cams---had yet to appear in the US.)

RG on Peter's Project 50 years ago...

Now that all elbow room has disappeared, anyone who ties up a climb for an entire day really should be sent to their room without dinner.

For a month.

Ted Pinson · · Chicago, IL · Joined Jul 2014 · Points: 190

Hah, too true. That's an awesome pic, Rich. Wait...did you put up Upper D without nuts/cams?! also, I think you may have forgotten a piton. ;)

Woodchuck ATC · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 3,110
David Pagel wrote:This wasn't a guided group. There was a guided group next to us with one instructor and 3 other people and they were extremely considerate and kind to us in suggesting routes. And I am yet to be comfortable jumping on other peoples sets, at least the group who was on Peters at the time.
Agree if I ask and allowed to use another rope set up, I always go up to check out the anchors and condition of the rope. Actually I do that before asking, just so not to change my mind and indicate I'm not happy with their anchors. If totally unsafe, I will suggest they re-check, as it it might have 'shifted' since the set it up. Otherwise I'll just ask to set my own and push theirs aside for our quick climbing use.
rgold · · Poughkeepsie, NY · Joined Feb 2008 · Points: 525
Ted Pinson wrote: Wait...did you put up Upper D without nuts/cams?!
Yes, Upper D with pitons. Tried it twice---the first time I fell off and pulled a piton, which I hadn't placed well because I was pumped. I had never top-roped it so didn't have any idea what to expect. The second time all went well.
T Roper · · DC,VA,NM,UT,CT,MA · Joined Mar 2006 · Points: 860

You just have to freak out like some homeless person with a screw loose to get them to move on, I've seen it work at Cathedral ledge NH before.

Mikeyy · · Glendale Heights, IL · Joined Jun 2016 · Points: 110

I was with Ted. As far as a group goes on afterthought: if it's one route and they are climbing non-stop that is alrite, although very annoying, they are actively using it. If it were a held up route, not being climbed or available to share is not. Several set routes by a group should be mandatory sharing. Also, if you are not with a decent size group maybe you should only set one route at a time anyway?

I think to add insult to injury were the rappelers. They were setting massive multiple point climbing-style anchors to rappel at the same time on Brinton's. Although they were friendly and offered to pull the ropes down and let us move their stuff when done, they were there too long messing with the anchors and dealing with rope snarl. What they should have done, is rapped off a tree with a retrievable anchor instead, as far as I understand that is how rappellers and canyoneers work, using retrievables off of natural pro and not full blown trad anchors for rock climbing falls.
They could have also done a bit of research where they were rapping specifically, but that's akin to keeping kayakers out of known fishing / breeding spots. Wishful thinking

Brian Carver · · Boulder, Co · Joined Jul 2015 · Points: 30

Leaders have "the right of way" at the lake. If I don't feel comfortable leading something then I figure I'll just have to wait. Useful motivation for harder climbing.

It also helps that most large groups are usually on 5.8's or less.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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