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Why FAs don't matter...


Original Post
Tradiban · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2004 · Points: 11,455

For the record I purposely refuse to post the FA on any route, here's why:

-The FA of most routes is simply a function of right place at the right time. Who's to say that you, dear reader, wouldn't be the person with the gumption to climb something first had you been born in the 40s?

-The posting on the FA simply leads to the false notion that the FA owns the rock. This leads to chaos and confusion regarding the routes future.

-As seen here on MP many FAs get their self worth wrapped up in what they climbed first. This is unhealthy for the "community" and the FA themselves.

What is important is that a route is marked climbed or un-climbed, the person or persons involved are of no consequence. This policy will help progress the sport into the future instead of being stuck in the past and held captive by personal ego.

Slartibartfast · · Magrathea · Joined Jun 2013 · Points: 0

Somebody's feeling confident after their Vertical Adventures thread.

Jaren Watson · · Idaho · Joined May 2010 · Points: 2,033

One aspect missing from your argument is that knowing who is the FA can yield relevant and useful information for subsequent climbers.

For example, at the City, if I get on a climb FA’ed by Dave Bingham, I anticipate and prepare for a significantly different experience than if the route was FA’ed by Kevin Pogue.

That has nothing to do with anyone’s ego, but it very much informs my decision making and preparation.

Chris Hatzai · · Bend, OR · Joined Sep 2015 · Points: 516

Opinions i guess.. as a climber and developer who seeks out first ascents as my main passion for climbing at this moment in time, my opinion is that too it doesn’t really matter who gets the credit, but it is nice to give props to the person putting in the work to allow you to climb said route...

Just knowing how much work it is installing routes gives you a different opinion i guess... kinda like eating at a fancy restaurant and never seeing the back of the house operations. Once you finally experience both first hand, things somehow change.

Kinda like when i was a baker. Customers are stokedddd when they’re eating your freshly made breads right out of the oven.. if they only saw just hours earlier how much my beat up climber hands were just all up in there dough...haha, it’s what ya don’t see

Justin Winger · · Wheat Ridge · Joined Jul 2008 · Points: 10
Tradiban wrote: For the record I purposely refuse to post the FA on any route, here's why:

-The FA of most routes is simply a function of right place at the right time. Who's to say that you, dear reader, wouldn't be the person with the gumption to climb something first had you been born in the 40s?

-The posting on the FA simply leads to the false notion that the FA owns the rock. This leads to chaos and confusion regarding the routes future.

-As seen here on MP many FAs get their self worth wrapped up in what they climbed first. This is unhealthy for the "community" and the FA themselves.

What is important is that a route is marked climbed or un-climbed, the person or persons involved are of no consequence. This policy will help progress the sport into the future instead of being stuck in the past and held captive by personal ego.T
The first post you have ever made I actually agree with. And also the fact that say your in the front range of Colorado. Nothing you put up that isnt harder than 5.13 at this point is an fa.
Joe De Luca · · yucca valley · Joined Oct 2012 · Points: 127

I personally like to know who the f a party was on the route I'm getting on due to the fact some people are notorious for sketchy ass climbs and total sandbag grades, plus it's keeping the history alive. Ps not trying to start an argument just my personal opinion

Lena chita · · OH · Joined Mar 2011 · Points: 806

I'd like to see this sort of hypothetical future come to pass, just to see how it works out. I don't for a second think that it would.

And for me personally, there are bolters whose work I very much appreciate, and I'm happy that they get recognition they deserve. there are also bolters whose routes are almost universally unpleasant for me, due to their bolt placements, regardless of how awesome the climbing movement is on the route, and I'd like to know ahead of time when I'm getting on the routes bolted by these people. So there is some value for me in knowing the FA's. 

Tradiban · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2004 · Points: 11,455
Jaren Watson wrote: One aspect missing from your argument is that knowing who is the FA can yield relevant and useful information for subsequent climbers.

For example, at the City, if I get on a climb FA’ed by Dave Bingham, I anticipate and prepare for a significantly different experience than if the route was FA’ed by Kevin Pogue.

That has nothing to do with anyone’s ego, but it very much informs my decision making and preparation.

Heard this one before but I think it's a pretty weak counter-point. The correlation of the FA and the "experience" is more about the style and context the route was put up in than the person who put it up. 

Besides, I would argue that a person skipping bolting stances is simply climbing the route incorrectly and focussing on impressing others with their runouts.

Edit: Answers to "Jaren" posts below.

Saying that there's not alot of people who want to put up routes is just your perception to enforce your opinion.

More importantly, you need to separate the person from the FA. There's still FAs they just don't revolve around the person. If FAs were truly doing something for the community and not themselves they should have no problem remaining anonymous.
Jaren Watson · · Idaho · Joined May 2010 · Points: 2,033

Oh, I should add, I don’t agree that most FA’s are merely an issue of right place/right time.

The overwhelming majority of climbers have neither the inclination nor the work ethic required to develop routes. Most people just want to go outside and climb rocks. This isn’t a bad thing, but to assert that available rock is limited to a privileged few is, I believe, inaccurate.

Jaren Watson · · Idaho · Joined May 2010 · Points: 2,033
Tradiban wrote:

Heard this one before but I think it's a pretty weak counter-point. The correlation of the FA and the "experience" is more about the style and context the route was put up in than the person who put it up. 

Besides, I would argue that a person skipping bolting stances is simply climbing the route incorrectly and focussing on impressing others with their runouts.

Your counter to my counter doesn’t counter my counter. In fact, it supports my claim. Namely, that the FA matters.

Alex R · · Golden · Joined May 2015 · Points: 16

None of the "pro FA" points so far are actually even in support of giving recognition to FAs. They are actually in support of giving recognition to the route developer. Most of the time, but not always, the FA is the same as the route developer. I think if any recognition should be given for a route, it should be given to the route developers, for all the reasons given so far. A focus on the FA takes recognition away from where it is actually deserved.

ETA: After thinking about this some more, I think the FA should be considered an important part of route development. So the FA should get recognition, just under the banner of route developer with any other developers who were also involved regardless if they did or even could send the route.

Glenn Schuler · · Monument, Co. · Joined Jun 2006 · Points: 1,320
Tradiban wrote: For the record I purposely refuse to post the FA on any route, here's why:

Nobody gives AF that you don't give AF about FA's.

Brother Numsie · · Nepal · Joined Jan 2006 · Points: 905

Collectivist garbage.
All of the major advancements in the sport were pushed forward by individuals.
Want to stagnate and stifle innovation? Then adopt a Collectivist approach.

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

Can't we all get along?

Jaren Watson · · Idaho · Joined May 2010 · Points: 2,033
Brother Numsie wrote: Collectivist garbage.
All of the major advancements in the sport were pushed forward by individuals.
Want to stagnate and stifle innovation? Then adopt a Collectivist approach.

Yes, an injection of Randian philosophy will right the Tradiban ship.

Brother Numsie · · Nepal · Joined Jan 2006 · Points: 905
Jaren Watson wrote:

Yes, an injection of Randian philosophy will right the Tradiban ship.


I can't stand Objectivism/Objectivists either, but the cancer of collectivist thought is far worse.

don'tchuffonme · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2014 · Points: 25
Tradiban wrote: For the record I purposely refuse to post the FA on any route, here's why:

-The FA of most routes is simply a function of right place at the right time. Who's to say that you, dear reader, wouldn't be the person with the gumption to climb something first had you been born in the 40s?

-The posting on the FA simply leads to the false notion that the FA owns the rock. This leads to chaos and confusion regarding the routes future.

-As seen here on MP many FAs get their self worth wrapped up in what they climbed first. This is unhealthy for the "community" and the FA themselves.

What is important is that a route is marked climbed or un-climbed
Why does that matter?  If there is no glory in being first, and if anyone, by your rules, can alter any route at any time to fit their level of risk (which is really what this bullshit thread is about in the first place- you just wanted someone else to get there eventually so you didn't have to state it outright and get shit for it), then it doesn't matter if it is marked "climbed or unclimbed".  There is still plenty of danger, loose rock, etc. etc. on routes that have been climbed plenty of times and for plenty of years.  So marking it does nothing.  It's a pointless assertion on your part to cover up what this thread is really about.
, the person or persons involved are of no consequence.
This isn't true- however, in your world, if you had things your way, it would be of no consequence.  Don't like that runout?  throw in some bolts.  Don't want to have to learn how to place gear?  Throw in some bolts.  That is the only scenario in which the FA and persons involved is of no consequence.
 This policy will help progress the sport into the future instead of being stuck in the past and held captive by personal ego.
LOL.

Here's why FAs should matter- not necessarily who put them up, but the style in which a route is established:  

If everyone respected the style in which a route was put up first, you'd minimize the bullshit bolt wars that have closed crags, started fights and permanently scarred who knows how much rock.  Under YOUR preferred fantasy land rules, anyone could alter the rock at any time.  The only thing remotely keeping people from doing that now, is that some of us still respect the style in which routes are established by the FA.  If there is no benchmark to go by, then if I don't like a route, and if I'm scared of falling more than 20 feet, I can just go bolt the shit out of it.  And conversely, if someone doesn't like that I did that, or doesn't like that a route got established with bolts every six feet, they can just go rip them out.  Who cares that the rock will ending up looking like the buildings in downtown Aleppo, right?  As long as we're not being held captive in the past.

What. A load.  Of horseshit.


Tradiban · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2004 · Points: 11,455
don'tchuffonme wrote: Why does that matter?  If there is no glory in being first, and if anyone, by your rules, can alter any route at any time to fit their level of risk (which is really what this bullshit thread is about in the first place- you just wanted someone else to get there eventually so you didn't have to state it outright and get shit for it), then it doesn't matter if it is marked "climbed or unclimbed".  There is still plenty of danger, loose rock, etc. etc. on routes that have been climbed plenty of times and for plenty of years.  So marking it does nothing.  It's a pointless assertion on your part to cover up what this thread is really about.
This isn't true- however, in your world, if you had things your way, it would be of no consequence.  Don't like that runout?  throw in some bolts.  Don't want to have to learn how to place gear?  Throw in some bolts.  That is the only scenario in which the FA and persons involved is of no consequence.
LOL.

Here's why FAs should matter- not necessarily who put them up, but the style in which a route is established:  

If everyone respected the style in which a route was put up first, you'd minimize the bullshit bolt wars that have closed crags, started fights and permanently scarred who knows how much rock.  Under YOUR preferred fantasy land rules, anyone could alter the rock at any time.  The only thing remotely keeping people from doing that now, is that some of us still respect the style in which routes are established by the FA.  If there is no benchmark to go by, then if I don't like a route, and if I'm scared of falling more than 20 feet, I can just go bolt the shit out of it.  And conversely, if someone doesn't like that I did that, or doesn't like that a route got established with bolts every six feet, they can just go rip them out.  Who cares that the rock will ending up looking like the buildings in downtown Aleppo, right?  As long as we're not being held captive in the past.

What. A load.  Of horseshit.


You mis-read my post. The style of the FA is what matters, not the person. This allows for improvement in the future under the guidelines of the style of ascent.

don'tchuffonme · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2014 · Points: 25
Tradiban wrote:

You mis-read my post. The style of the FA is what matters, not the person. This allows for improvement in the future under the guidelines of the style of ascent.

Nah man.  After seeing your stance in virtually every other thread that's even remotely related to this topic, I know what you mean.

"-The posting on the FA simply leads to the false notion that the FA owns the rock. This leads to chaos and confusion regarding the routes future."

The FA doesn't own the rock.  But if the style matters, what improvements would be/could be made?  You're a little bit foggy here.  If you're talking about throwing in a bolt where a piton once was, I'm all for it.  Replacing a piton with another piton, just introducing more scarring and expansion of whatever crack the piton is in just because the FA did it that way is dumb.  But if a route gets cobwebs because some hardman went up it and ran it out and the pro is sparse, does "the route's future" mean that because someone decides it doesn't get climbed enough that fixed protection should be added to it?  I have a feeling that's what you're referring to, without actually wanting to say it.

But not to worry man, my reading comprehension and memory is spot on.  So by all means, go into detail.  Explain what you mean by your vague statements so there is no confusion and everyone knows exactly what you're talking about.  If it's just names, then I agree to a point, but I personally like knowing who did what and when, and there are plenty of FAs out there that are completely void of ego.  And there are some that are driven by it.  Removing names isn't really going to change that, and your campaign here on an internet forum isn't likely to change the way things have been done for the last century or so.  You're not just going to remove hubris and pride from human character and erase a time-honored tradition with just a simple forum post.  This is MP brah.  Not Hogwarts.
Ted Pinson · · Chicago, IL · Joined Jul 2014 · Points: 195

We’re all here right now, so why aren’t we climbing Silence?

Guy Keesee · · Moorpark, CA · Joined Mar 2008 · Points: 311
Ted Pinson wrote: We’re all here right now, so why aren’t we climbing Silence?

It’s Monday morning Ted, I’m still in bed! 

Tradiban is just trolling.
Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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