Friday, July 3, 2009

Top Rope Solo Thoughts - Part 1

Weather in Utah has been crappy with daily rain in the eve, so I can barely mow the lawn, let alone go out climbing.

I had a great epic survival story on Liberty Ridge on Rainier last week, so I'm still in catchup mode - eating like a pig and not gaining weight (for a while anyway) and suffering as I get back into working out. Went to the chiropractor yesterday and getting a massage today - yay!

So I'm sitting around thinking about my techniques for toprope solos in the past. I normally tie off the top at the middle of the rope, with two strands hanging, and use one strand as my belay strand, and the other as my backup strand.

Experimenting in Alaska during my training program with Alaska Mountaineering School, I got to wondering if maybe I should just loop the rope through the anchor rig and tie off on my harness, so I am essentially belaying myself normally.

PRO: tied in, more rope in the system for more dynamic fall catching

CON: rope management, 2:1 disadvantage in pulling rope through the belay device, rope management

Additionally, I got to thinking about experimenting with a weight on the end of the belay side of the rope to keep it semi-tight for better BRD feeding - maybe I'll try that soon to see how I feel about that - of course, that would only work with the top tied off.

Well, more later. Maybe I'll get out sometime this week.