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Half Rope Suggestions
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Oct 4, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: On the steep sport wall on the back side of Echo C...
I've only ever climbed with a single rope.
I'm starting to do longer routes that require me to carry an extra rope for rappels. Example 1: climbing just the chimney pitches of Epinephrine in Red Rock and rapping off. Example 2: doing long wandering alpine routes in the Eastern Sierra

From reading, I think what I want is a pair of half ropes. Which means I lead with two ropes tied to me, each is capable of holding a lead fall on it's own, and I can wander around clipping only one rope to strategically reduce rope drag.

My question is twofold:
1. From your experience, is this a good solution?
2. Any recommendations for 60m half ropes? I don't care about dry treatment. Lightweight is nice.
NeilB
From Tehachapi, CA
Joined Apr 9, 2014
47 points
Oct 4, 2016
I have a pair of Beal Cobras and I like them a lot. They are a bit beefier (heavier) than your average half ropes for ice use, but Beal claims they have sharp edge resistance and a tough(er) sheath. I've used them for multipitch rock, multipitch ice, alpine, and one of the pair for moderate mountaineering and alpine climbing. Kyle Tarry
From Portland, OR
Joined Mar 5, 2015
96 points
Oct 4, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Bucky
NeilB wrote:
My question is twofold: 1. From your experience, is this a good solution? .


Yes.

NeilB wrote:
2. Any recommendations for 60m half ropes? I don't care about dry treatment. Lightweight is nice.


Bluewater Excellence. I have owned probably 5 brands of double ropes and I keep coming back to the BW. Reasonable price, reasonable weight, and you will almost certainly end up retiring the rope because of age, not because its worn out (BW are the only half ropes I have every owned that I didn't retire because they wore out like other brands).
J. Albers
From Colorado
Joined Jul 11, 2008
2,235 points
Oct 4, 2016
I've been very happy with the Mammut Genesis 8.5mm. Now that being said they do now make ropes that can be 1/2 and twin rated and I would definitely look into a few of those. Major upside is that you have a lot more flexibility in how you clip and can either clip both through single pieces or alternate depending on terrain/hazards. I love my 1/2's but every once in a while I find myself wanting twins.

One other thing to consider is the sheath/core percentages. I really like a much higher sheath percentage that can handle more abrasion for the skinnier ropes with the idea that I don't really plan on falling on them. Lowers the number of falls they can take but makes them much less likely to get cut/worn through too fast.
Sam T.
From Denver, CO
Joined Oct 20, 2011
186 points
Oct 4, 2016
I have an 8mm mammut phoenix that I combine with a 9mm sterling nano (triple rated) when I need half rope technique. The only time I do this is on tenuous friction slabs, where any drag could be the difference between falling or not. If your route doesn't wander a lot I don't think the benefits of half rope technique outweigh the rope management shenanigan potential (I also prefer to lead in blocks, swapping leads rope management isn't bad).

If you want a set up to lead on half ropes I'd stick to the mid range, 8.4-8.8mm. These will have thicker sheathes and be easier to catch a lead fall on. Still consider using two biners with a regular tube device.
Nick Drake
From Newcastle, WA
Joined Jan 20, 2015
393 points
Oct 4, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Arrowhead to McHenrys
I have a set of the Phoenix's and they've held up great for two seasons of alpine rock and some light winter use. Being skinny lines they do get kinked/twisted easily making rope management a pain at times. VRP
From Denver, CO
Joined Jul 16, 2013
8 points
Oct 4, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: High Exposure
NeilB wrote:
1. From your experience, is this a good solution?


Yes.
But, if you are only occasionally going to use DRT and already own a thin single rope why not consider buying just one half rope?


NeilB wrote:
2. Any recommendations for 60m half ropes? I don't care about dry treatment. Lightweight is nice.


Currently own Mammut Genesis 8.5mm X 60m half ropes which I like a lot.
Previously had Beal 8.8mm x 60m. Don't remember the model. They were nice also.
wivanoff
Joined Mar 3, 2012
409 points
Oct 4, 2016
I climbed on doubles in Red Rock for years and enjoyed the experience- especially when doing new routes. I climbed on Bluewater Excellence lines and would highly recommend them. I also hear alot of great things about the Mammut Genesis lines.

That said, I prefer whenever possible to run a single line- doubles definitely have their advantages, but weight and just having 400' of rope on you is a drag alot of the time and I'm not a fan when trying to run fast and light.
John Wilder
From Las Vegas, NV
Joined Feb 1, 2004
2,462 points
Oct 4, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Berlin
Mammut Jay Eggleston
From Denver
Joined Feb 5, 2003
18,425 points
Administrator
Oct 4, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Mastigouche
I own a pair of Mammut 8mm Phoenix, great lightweight half ropes.

Previously had Sterling Duettos, great feel, tough rope.
and also the Mammut 8.5mm Genesis which were great to learn with and abuse.
Luc
From Montreal, Quebec
Joined Nov 27, 2006
8,841 points
Oct 5, 2016
Just picked up a pair of Edelweiss Oxygen 8.2 ropes from AlpenGlow for a very fair price. They have a great hand and seem quite durable (especially with their Unicore tech), but take that with a grain of salt because I haven't had them long. Reviews of other unicore ropes from Edelweiss are quite favorable, especially in durability. Idaho-Ian
Joined Jan 13, 2014
6 points
Oct 5, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Bucky
Idaho-Ian wrote:
Just picked up a pair of Edelweiss Oxygen 8.2 ropes from AlpenGlow for a very fair price. They have a great hand and seem quite durable (especially with their Unicore tech), but take that with a grain of salt because I haven't had them long. Reviews of other unicore ropes from Edelweiss are quite favorable, especially in durability.


Hopefully yours perform better than mine because I found them to degrade pretty quickly (the Oxygen and the Petzl Firefly are the only doubles I have owned that were retired because of degradation instead of age). Then again I owned a pair of Oxygen's maybe 8-9 years ago, so perhaps Edelweiss has upped their game.

Anyway, sorry to rain on your parade man....
J. Albers
From Colorado
Joined Jul 11, 2008
2,235 points
Oct 5, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Me eating a cliff bar walking back from Frankenste...
+1 for Mammut Genesis doubles

+1 for Bluewater.. Can't go wrong with either
Bill Kirby
From Baltimore Maryland
Joined Jul 21, 2012
449 points
Oct 5, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: On the steep sport wall on the back side of Echo C...
Thanks for the suggestions.
I'm thinking of springing for a couple of the Bluewater Excellence 60m, one blue, one red.
NeilB
From Tehachapi, CA
Joined Apr 9, 2014
47 points
Oct 5, 2016
J. Albers wrote:
Hopefully yours perform better than mine because I found them to degrade pretty quickly (the Oxygen and the Petzl Firefly are the only doubles I have owned that were retired because of degradation instead of age). Then again I owned a pair of Oxygen's maybe 8-9 years ago, so perhaps Edelweiss has upped their game. Anyway, sorry to rain on your parade man....


Interesting. These are definitely a new model (Oxygen ii).
It would be interesting to know what you mean by degrade. Do you mean the sheath just wore quickly? Or was there an actual degradation in performance?

Thanks
Idaho-Ian
Joined Jan 13, 2014
6 points
Oct 5, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Bucky
Idaho-Ian wrote:
Interesting. These are definitely a new model (Oxygen ii). It would be interesting to know what you mean by degrade. Do you mean the sheath just wore quickly? Or was there an actual degradation in performance? Thanks


The rope got super mushy, the sheath got fuzzy, and the rope got fat. Hopefully the fixed it!
J. Albers
From Colorado
Joined Jul 11, 2008
2,235 points
Oct 5, 2016
PMI Verglas 8.1mm X 60m Coral and Caribean colors Eric M Parks
From Campo, CA
Joined Jan 17, 2014
173 points
Oct 5, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Avatar
As per several comments here - if the need is only occasional, just buy 1 half rope and pair it with your existing lead rope in a half rope system.

I do this by choice frequently - we have very sharp rock where I climb most often, and it is reassuring to have 2 ropes, one of them single rated.
Alex Rogers
From Sydney, Australia
Joined Sep 9, 2010
39 points


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