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Best way to rope solo
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Jan 15, 2013
Curious on the best way to rope solo with or with out specialized gear i did it which a clove hitch and a prussic tying into my anchor but its a pain. Any thoughts? Brasky
Joined Jul 9, 2012
1 points
Jan 15, 2013
Many ways to skin this cat and a lot of threads exist on this, so you if you search a bit you'll probably find lots of ideas. Assuming you're talking about toprope soloing, I do the following.

-Put a knot in the middle of the rope where you clip the top anchor to create to independant strands.
-Use a Cinch on one side and an Ushba ascender on the other side.
-Ball up some rope at the bottom or tie on a pack or something to add weight and help the rope feed.
-Try not to fall on it, instead set down gently. I've read that falling on the Ushba might damage the rope. Haven't had that happen first hand, but I can see the potential.
-Usually no need to mess with it while climbing because the ropes feed pretty well.
-Lower by holding the Ushba lower than the Cinch in one hand and working the lever on the Cinch with the other hand.

This system works well, but be careful.

You're gonna die.
Superclimber
Joined Mar 7, 2009
1,481 points
Jan 16, 2013
petzl.com/en/outdoor/product-e... bearbreeder
Joined Mar 1, 2009
3,068 points
Jan 16, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: girl40
Brasky wrote:
Curious on the best way to rope solo with or with out specialized gear i did it which a clove hitch and a prussic tying into my anchor but its a pain. Any thoughts?


For anyone discussing rope solo, the first thing you need to do is distinguish between TR soloing, Aid soloing, and Free lead rope soloing.
Healyje
From PDX
Joined Jan 31, 2006
226 points
Administrator
Jan 16, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Me and the offspring walking back to the car after...
All the information you could ever want- and by the same folks that would answer your question here anyways. CLICK HERE Jake Jones
From Richmond, VA
Joined Jul 30, 2011
1,231 points
Jan 16, 2013
I was interested in lead soloing. I used a clove hitch and just rolled it out on a 5.5 but it was pretty iced up and a real hassel to stop and roll out the clove with one hand and then i had to down climb to retrieve my gear because the bolted anchors were on the otherside of the pillar. This was all in effort to climb a namesake climb in durango and well worth it but just looking for any helpful tips best devices whatever thanks for the help Brasky
Joined Jul 9, 2012
1 points
Jan 16, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Wall Street, Moab, UT
There are probably some other threads on this site about lead rope soloing, and most of them probably contain stuff about the Soloist, the Silent Partner, and modified Gri-Gri. The cheapest way to do it is with a Gri-Gri, and the safest way to use one of those is with the mod for keeping it upright combined with a chest harness. I just use an un-modified Gri-Gri with a regular harness, but I also use a one way pulley (Petzl MiniTraxion) to feed the rope from my pack into the Gri-Gri so it doesn't go into lock mode from the weight of the rope as I move upward. I also use a steel locker on the first bolt, since it gets jacked around (and possibly cross-loaded) a lot more than it would on a regular lead with a belayer.

I don't use this system on anything real difficult- if you want to lead solo on hard stuff I'd suggest using one of the safer setups designed for it. Or find a belayer- I've heard climbing is getting popular these days...
Peter Stokes
From Them Thar Hills
Joined Apr 30, 2009
152 points
Jan 16, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Mt Minsi, PA
I've been considering top-rope soloing at a nearby cliff. I like the two rope method (device on one rope, clipping knots on a 2nd rope) illustrated on the petzl link. At the same time, I feel pretty lame going out to climb by myself. Michael C
From New Jersey
Joined Jun 9, 2011
374 points
Jan 16, 2013
I top solo all the time with the micro trax with that det up i use a chain reactor. I love it i get out and climb when evr I want and on sunny das you can usually hop on other peoples ropes. if your trying the top rope solo be careful because you always have a weighted strand and if your doing anything with a roof that strand is gana be sitting on the lip weighted moving back and forth a recipe for disaster. Brasky
Joined Jul 9, 2012
1 points
Jan 16, 2013
Also if you take a fall with the mini on the rope will it cut the sheath? or worse the rope or does the force get taken by the gri gri I dont think i quite understand your setup Brasky
Joined Jul 9, 2012
1 points
Jan 16, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Wall Street, Moab, UT
When I fall on lead solo, the MiniTrax doesn't damage the rope because it's on the feed side- the Gri-Gri takes the fall load. To prevent the Gri-Gri from locking up I have to pull enough rope through the pulley to make the next move, which leaves a significant loop of rope that can get in the way if I'm not careful. Again, not the best way to climb, so I usually use this setup to get up to the anchors on something easier in order to setup a toprope solo on something harder. I also only do this on bolted routes- it's sketch enough that I don't need to make things any worse by also relying on gear placements. If you're not sure about how to do this it's a good idea to practice somewhere safe (or relatively safe) while you figure out what works and what doesn't. Peter Stokes
From Them Thar Hills
Joined Apr 30, 2009
152 points
Jan 16, 2013
Ok that makes sense i did a similair set up with a prussik and a clove hitch I rolled out the clove enough to make the next move and then slid the prussik I did it on a 5.5 ~ 5.6 trad climb but it was only a single pitch to bolts. But I like the idea with the gri gri Brasky
Joined Jul 9, 2012
1 points
Administrator
Jan 16, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Artist Tears P3
If you are going to solo lead climb on a regular basis, at least spend a couple hundred bucks and buy a device that is designed for the job. Your life is worth that. I use a silent partner. Works like a charm. John McNamee
From Littleton, CO
Joined Jul 29, 2002
1,929 points
Jan 16, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: KenR below Wahoo gullies
One advantage of the Silent Partner for leading is that if I discover I've gotten off the route, it's straightforward to down-climb with it (and manually feed the rope thru it the "wrong" way each time I get a good stance while down-climbing -- to reduce the amount of slack).

I don't know any other device that is not a big pain to feed the rope thru the "other" way when you decide to climb down instead of up.

If I'm on interesting rock (which else would I be soloing?) often I find down-climbing to be another dimension of enjoying it and mastering it. With the Silent Partner it's easy to down-climb to clean, instead of rappeling.

Traversing sections -- With the Silent Partner it's straightforward to first lead the traversing section in the forward direction, and then go back in the reverse direction to remove the anchor, and then forward again to clean.

Ken
kenr
Joined Oct 29, 2010
7,293 points
Sep 18, 2015
Since this is a new-ish thread about lead roped soloing and I'm particularly interested in HEALYJE's methods, I'm gonna tag onto this thread in hopes he responds :) I've come across many of his posts on multiple forums but I don't think he ever addressed the following. Of course responses from others are welcome too.

Scenario is... multipitch, every pitch longer than half the rope length, rope feeding out of backpack, Eddy (or similar).

What are the steps for transitioning into rapping in order to clean?
I've done both toprope solos and single pitch rope solos, and now trying to visualize what multipitch looks like. One example of the key steps might be:

1) Establish anchors.
2) Pull remaining rope out of backpack.
3) Fix rope on anchors.
4) Flip Eddy and rap.
5) Toprope solo, using microtraxions (or similar).
6) Adjust anchors for next pitch.

This involves multiple devices (Eddy, microtraxionis), multiple changeovers, and a bunch of re-organizing at the top of every pitch, so I'm wondering if this is par for the course or if there is a more efficient way. Much thanks.
Legion
Joined Oct 13, 2010
92 points
Sep 25, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: girl40
Legion wrote:
What are the steps for transitioning into rapping in order to clean?


Sorry, missed this...

Finishing lead
(all but the seconding usually happens in under ten minutes if I'm building an anchor, five if I'm clipping an existing one)
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

  • Build multi-directional anchor
  • Clip anchor with leash (PAS)
  • Tie rope off on anchor / powerpoint with the slack loop coming out of the pack
  • Take backpack off and hang it from the anchor with a draw
  • Flip the Eddy around on the rope for rapping (triple check it)
  • Double check everything
  • Unclip leash
  • Rap lead line
  • Second and clean pitch

Finishing seconding
(Usually happens in under ten minutes)
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

  • Clip anchor with leash
  • Remove Eddy from rope (leave hanging on my belay loop with the clamshell case open)
  • Unclip the rope from the anchor (while otherwise insuring you don't drop it [like standing on it])
  • Restack rope in pack
  • Attach end of rope to anchor
  • Clip one side of a Screamer on anchor
  • Tie alpine butterfly about three feet out from the anchor and clip it to the other side of the screamer
  • Put on pack
  • Reattach Eddy to rope (triple check it)
  • Re-rack gear
  • Adjust starting rope loop slack from pack to appropriate / comfortable length for starting moves
  • Double check everything
  • Unclip leash
  • Climb

Notes:

  • I often run pitches together. There is a five-pitch 5.9 out here I do a lot and do it in three pitches running 1-2 & 4-5 together.

  • On multi-pitch I always put two overhand knots in the first eighteen inches of rope before starting to stack it in the pack.

  • I don't actually stack the rope directly into the pack, but rather into an old A5 rope bag which I then place it in the pack. And when I stack the rope in the rope bag I do it so in small loops with my hands repeatedly and alternately traveling over the distance of like a foot at a time - i.e.:

Rock Climbing Photo: A5 rope bag and rope stacking technique
A5 rope bag and rope stacking technique
Healyje
From PDX
Joined Jan 31, 2006
226 points
Sep 25, 2015
climbing.com/skill/solo-toprop... Jim Fox
From Westminster, CO
Joined Jun 16, 2014
73 points
Sep 26, 2015
Healyje wrote:
Sorry, missed this...

I understand you've been busy on another thread :)

Thanks for the detailed description. I think the 2 details you helped clarify are...

1. Upon finishing seconding, you totally unclip the fixed line and reset it as an anchor for leading the next pitch. I was just wondering if there was a more efficient way, but it seems like you just gotta reset the rope.

2. You toprope off your Eddy, as opposed to a different device. I suppose the hassle of pulling in slack while toproping (as opposed to cruising up smoothly on microtraxions) is not a big deal given you just led it!

Thanks again for the clarification.
Legion
Joined Oct 13, 2010
92 points
Sep 26, 2015
This guy does a great job


I know some people who use the Soloist on vertical climbs but they say it is not safe for overhanging routes.

Lead rope solo
I use the Silent Partner which keeps the clove hitch large enough it doesn't bind. At the top of the pitch, I rappel and use my anchor side of the rope to pull me back into the wall to retrieve gear. I never use a back up system, it's redundant as it is, and it has taken me years to become efficient enough to actually use rope soloing as an efficient and enjoyable training method.

Top rope/seconding rope solo
I use a C.A.M.P. goblin as my only device. On a single pitch climb, I simply tie the sharp end of the rope off to a tree/rock then attach my device to the opposing side along with a ballast to keep the rope somewhat taught. Upon finishing, I rappel on a single side of the rope coming out of the anchors which stretches the rope enough to release the tension on the ballast below me.
On a multipitch route, I have to climb each pitch twice to retrieve gear so before rappeling for the second, I tie the rope off to the anchors so that I can ascend on a single line.

BLAH BLAH BLAH, if you really want to rope solo, figure it out yourself XD
Andrew Wood
Joined Jul 26, 2015
65 points
Sep 26, 2015
Rock Climbing Photo: girl40
Legion wrote:
1. Upon finishing seconding, you totally unclip the fixed line and reset it as an anchor for leading the next pitch. I was just wondering if there was a more efficient way, but it seems like you just gotta reset the rope.


I unclip the line but don't 'reset it' rather I just re-stack it back into the rope bag and pack so I can lead the next pitch. Can't really think of any alternatives to that which would be consistent with the system / Eddy or with the way I'm interested in climbing.

Legion wrote:
2. You toprope off your Eddy, as opposed to a different device. I suppose the hassle of pulling in slack while toproping (as opposed to cruising up smoothly on microtraxions) is not a big deal given you just led it!


After enough mileage you just get used to it all and don't even think about it. Also, at about half a pitch the Eddy just starts running on its own. To be honest I never even thought about switching hardware for seconding until you mentioned it here.
I guess for myself I strive to move fast and efficiently and being able to rap to the previous anchor and immediately second the pitch without any ado is an important part of that. I also don't like the idea of being off the rope yet again at that point. For me the trade offs involved with swapping out devices for smoother seconding wouldn't be worth it.


Andrew Wood wrote:
BLAH BLAH BLAH, if you really want to rope solo, figure it out yourself XD


Yep, sorting out what works for yourself is ultimately what it's all about.
Healyje
From PDX
Joined Jan 31, 2006
226 points


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