5.0 from 3 votes
Feb 13, 2010
“Castleton-Rectory Highline, November 1st -3rd, 1999. 1,600ft. across, 450ft. above the ridge, over 1,500ft. above the parking lot. The Track Line arrived in the bed of a full size pick-up on a wooden spool that was 5ft. in diameter, it was a 3,000ft. 13mm static rope that required 7 people with extra large packs containing only the rope, to walk in a train up the cone. Each of the two Tag Lines was 1,800ft. of 11mm dynamic rope, plus over 900ft. of 8, 9, & 11mm messenger lines, not to mention hundreds of feet of personal climbing ropes and fixed route lines. There were 26 S.A.R. members, I was lucky, while 12 of us (6 on each tower) climbed the North Face of Castleton and Fine Jade on The Rectory for style points; we watched 14 others haul 2,000lbs. of gear up the cone to the towers bases. 4 of us got to cross, I was 2nd to go and was the only person to spend the night on both towers (3 days) without touching the ground. 1 day for hauling, climbing and preliminary staging. 1 day for construction and 2 people crossing. 1 day for 2 more to cross, destruction, and the down haul. All anchors were placed traditionally, there were NO bolts installed. All equipment was brought up the towers by human power using 3 to 1, and 5 to 1 pulley systems, including final tensioning. Dont you love numbers? Incidentally, just as we got the Track line in place, some dude in a single prop decided to fly between the towers. We had thought of this and just as we were ready to cut that beautiful, brand new 300lb. line, the pilot saw it and pulled up. This was all quite a sight for tourists and climbers down below and at night we sent strobes out on the line. Surreal. This was a Kootenay highline and can be found with other useful systems in the Technical Rescue Riggers Guide by Rick Lipke.