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Multipitch Question


Daniel James · · 2018/19: Bristol, England · Joined Aug 2016 · Points: 125
Jared Chrysostom wrote:

Semi-noob here, and I would like to know the reasoning behind this. If you're about to climb a run-out, does it not make sense to do so with lots of rope in the system to mitigate FF in case you take a whip? Building an anchor just before the run-out sets you up for a fall onto that anchor if you blow it? 

I have definitely done #6 and built an anchor at the first good gear I found after a 30' runout. It didn't occur to me to build the anchor before it instead.

I'll add in a case F: If I am not sure I will have a good anchor before I run out of rope before a runout section. I'd hate to be tasked with downclimbing the runout or forcing a simulclimb on a runout face.

Bill Lawry · · New Mexico · Joined Apr 2006 · Points: 1,631

Forced simul-climbs:  not that anyone was saying otherwise or that we all must be of one minds; still ....

For me, I tend to think of an unexpected forced simul-climb with all the rope out between me and my partner as something to be avoided.

So many negatives tendency to have poor verbal communication;* tons of rope stretch if the leader falls;* potentially demanding of the leader to have exquisite judgment about whether the second could fall at any point during the simul-climbing.

For me, simul-climbing is something one normally does with about a half a rope length between you and your partner. 

And, sure, I’ve had the joy of forced unexpected simul-climbing at full rope length.  :)

ebmudder · · Bronx, NY · Joined Jul 2011 · Points: 50

One other point about relying on topos...as a new leader you may find you'll get off route on pitches where there's no obvious single line, and you will find the bolts/ledge/obvious belay is not there, and you either run out of rope or climb into a higher grade than you were expecting. You should have a good system in hand with your belayer for letting you know when you're running out of rope, so you are not forced to downclimb on desperate holds or flame out high above your last piece. There's no law of climbing that says you can't stop and build an anchor if you need to, or pass an established belay if you know there is a point further on you can belay from.

Greg D · · Here · Joined Apr 2006 · Points: 877

I imagine people suggesting the answer is "when you run out of rope" are being facetious.  In reality, running out of rope unplanned is a really bad idea.  You may find yourself in a really bad spot, maybe a bit runout, no gear near by, cruxing, rope drag.  And if your partner does nothing and you can't communicate because of wind, loud rivers, highways, etc, you are fucked.  

Now, if you and your partner plan ahead to simul climb, that is a different story.  But, even unplanned, a good-experienced partner should notice you are running out of rope and start to plan ahead for the possible simul climb.  This takes some time to start to clean up the anchor, removing some of the pieces, possibly stripping it down to just one good piece, shoes on, etc, while still belaying.  Not every partner knows to do this, especially if your partner less experienced.  Some climber won't budge until they are certain they are on belay.  

Notice I mentioned good-experienced climber.  There are not so good-experienced climbers as well.

Nkane 1 · · Berkeley, CA · Joined Jun 2013 · Points: 106
Jared Chrysostom wrote:

Semi-noob here, and I would like to know the reasoning behind this. If you're about to climb a run-out, does it not make sense to do so with lots of rope in the system to mitigate FF in case you take a whip? Building an anchor just before the run-out sets you up for a fall onto that anchor if you blow it? 

I have definitely done #6 and built an anchor at the first good gear I found after a 30' runout. It didn't occur to me to build the anchor before it instead.

One obvious reason to stop before the runout: then it will be your partner's lead!

Russ Keane · · Asheville, NC · Joined Feb 2013 · Points: 160

Great question, Jared!

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Trad Climbing
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