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Go Back   KOTR Forums > Climbing > Accidents & Injuries

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  #11  
Unread 10-25-2009, 09:53 PM
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skinsk skinsk is offline
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Bear--all good points, and each situation requires different considerations. . . almost case by case, because multiple factors are in play. Your dynamic belay examples were cringe-worthy. I had a pretty bad accident quite a long time ago due to slamming back into a bulge with too much rope out. I have a loss of flexibility in one ankle, and now (after snapping metatarcels hiking and being lowered) require a dynamic belay on overhangs where there's a chance of whipping back quickly into the rock, including a lot of artificial walls, including when I am panickedly yelling "take" . . . Miguel, Kim-lee and Mike come to mind) which is why I don't advocate one method over another (some small people catch big falls without a flinch! but this is a skill both learned and lucked-upon!). . . I look for a partner I trust (who has built that trust and who's paying attention to me and knows what they need to do-- which can be anything from a steady stream of beta, a few words of encouragement, and not making me think about the belay at all. . . )

I wouldn't tie tightly into anything. . . I need room to move (out of the way) more true at some crags than others (but I even need some wiggle room in a hanging belay). . . I need to be fairly comfortable. . . depending on the line and verbal communication, I want to see the climber. . .I like my daisy for this, but always have something to lengthen it. When no alternate exists, it's time to use experience and judgment. Scope the route. How would the climber fall at each point? Is there anything like a flake or ledge that the climber could hit with too much/too little rope? Has the climber tried it before? Where did he/she fall? Jess caught Kris at Kanhyon on the 5.12? coming out of the cave when he fell and the last clip--into an old piece of fixed webbing-- broke. . . but she was married to the guy. . . she'd built up to it and was ready!

In 25 years of belaying (knock on wood) I've never dropped anyone significantly nor ever had an injury. I am proud of that. However, having been on the bad side of some "loose belays" . . .I tend to be more cautious now, but thanks to some friends (many from Korea! some Korean!) realize that we all reach different levels of what's acceptable, like clipping into some god-awful anchor that's hanging by a rusty thread. I mostly err on the side of caution-- but I didn't always-- and sometimes that resulted in bad decisions! but usually not. Same as driving in Korea-- sometimes when you're here long enough, you start using the shoulder, double parking, doing things you've never do at home . . . fortunately there are lots of experienced and reliable climbers on KOTR who are willing to share what they know. . . and new people bringing new perspectives!

It's great to have a forum like this, though, so people can think about all the various options (and situations) in order to make good decisions (and read through the gruesome tales of lessons learned (for god's sake don't play with the snakes at yongseo!! or the snakes anywhere!!)! While much progress has been made on routes here, Korea is quite it's own scene, still seeped in tradition (large clubs) and strong passion . . . and it's strengths are enough to keep us here and get us stronger! So use good judgement, share what you know (and learn what you don't!) and practice what you used to know! Take care of your partner(s) but also know what you're doing and how to get yourself safe in the event of an emergency. (Do you have a plan to get to a hospital?)
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  #12  
Unread 10-28-2009, 10:55 PM
DomDoesKorea
 
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Being a whopping 118lbs. I have belayed many people up to twice my weight. If the first bolt is high enough. I usually don't tie into any anchor. That being said, I stand at a distance where I can instantly pop my feet against the rock when I am pulled up. My main climbing partner in New Hampshire was 162 lbs. and I caught many 10 to 15 foot falls with him. Yet, 2 weeks ago at Ganhyeon I anchored in with Dan Flanagen. I evaluate case by case. I consider these things every time I set up to belay:

* What is the fall potential/distance for the 2nd and 3d clips?
* How far up is the first bolt? (I don't want to get slammed into a low bolt)
* Am I going to get pulled around when taking a fall or lowering my partner, and be sliding around into other parties?

As for dynamic belay while anchored in; I use my body to catch the majority of the fall, by bracing my knees when my partner is looking like they're gonna come off. A foot of slack in front of the device and another foot and a half or so body dynamic belay are enough to prevent the slam that destroys ankles.

Hands up vs. hands down? For me, atc/reverso/tube device = hands down, gri-gri = hands up with a constant index & middle finger on the rope while feeding slack.

just my 20won...
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  #13  
Unread 10-29-2009, 09:10 AM
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mil-mil mil-mil is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skinsk
Can't argue with any of that. I might add, don't drink and belay. or sms.


Or pee, that's right. DAve i know you can't argue this right now but, just cause you are using a gri-gri does not mean you can take a piss while you are belaying someone. Yes this did happen to me at Munsu-San on that nice 11.D.
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  #14  
Unread 10-30-2009, 04:57 AM
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Oh GOD! the worst thing. . . worst than having to pee i the middle of a climb (when you can say "lower me") is having to pee when you're belaying. . . and-- no offense Dave-- it is much harder for a woman! I do believe earlier in my climbing career I had to do this once. . . quite easily before the gri-gri. . .
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  #15  
Unread 10-30-2009, 09:01 AM
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it wouldn't have been so bad aside from the fact he felt the need to hold his wang with both hands giveing me the ever so feared hands free gri-gri belay.
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  #16  
Unread 10-30-2009, 09:15 PM
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skinsk skinsk is offline
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hmm. . . Micheal, I always thought you guys had it easier, at least with us it's (generally) hands free or one handed!

What concerns me is how "in the open" that place is. . . with climbers and hikers walking by all week! And I still can't wait for a "Dave" belay again. . . I'll just make she he pees first!
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  #17  
Unread 11-10-2009, 01:44 PM
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GDog GDog is offline
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http://www.chockstone.org/TechTips/Mistakes.htm
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  #18  
Unread 11-10-2009, 11:31 PM
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CharlesCullen23 CharlesCullen23 is offline
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This was an excellent link. Thanks for posting it
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  #19  
Unread 11-11-2009, 12:18 AM
bhylenski bhylenski is offline
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Know your partner.

I am a 90kg man (200lbs) who often takes my wife (120lbs) on "rides of her life" at the climbing crag and have perfected various ways to make sport and multipitch routes safe for the two of us.

But there is no substitute for communication.

I only have one piece of advice....as the leader, you are responsible for yourself AND your belay! Many accidents occur do to belay error or gear error, but many of them could've been prevented by the leader. The leader is about to go out on the sharp end...so you are ultimately responsible for both parties. Be a bit anal, Check the belayer's biner, layout the rope check the rope sheath, rope core, rope length, knots, belay condition, etc. etc. But, whether you have 10 years more experience or 5 years less experience then your belayer, when you tie in, you take on the responsibility for both of your safety...so feel comfortable, when you leave the ground, that your BOTH safe.

Take the time to read a few books, check out some websites, we're not 12 anymore, getting an A in belay class and doing your research/homework IS COOL!
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