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Partner cracklover


Sep 26, 2007, 7:36 AM
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Re: [chossmonkey] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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chossmonkey wrote:
dingus wrote:
Trad. Its not just a rack of widgets.

DMT
Its funny how people confuse gear climbing with trad climbing.

While I wouldn't be as strict with my definitions as some here. Working the piss out a route and then leading it with gear is certainly not "trad climbing". Its climbing on gear, or "gear climbing".

Well it's not like it's some mysterious type of climbing with no name or category. How long has the term "Headpointing" been around?

GO


azrockclimber


Sep 26, 2007, 8:13 AM
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Re: [cracklover] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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cracklover wrote:
chossmonkey wrote:
dingus wrote:
Trad. Its not just a rack of widgets.

DMT
Its funny how people confuse gear climbing with trad climbing.

While I wouldn't be as strict with my definitions as some here. Working the piss out a route and then leading it with gear is certainly not "trad climbing". Its climbing on gear, or "gear climbing".

Well it's not like it's some mysterious type of climbing with no name or category. How long has the term "Headpointing" been around?

GO

Headpointing.....what does that mean?

I think I need to hang out with trendy sport climbers more..... for the lingo

maybe it's a good thing i don't know what that means.Wink


Partner camhead


Sep 26, 2007, 8:20 AM
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Re: [jt512] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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jt512 wrote:
I'm curious as to how retrobolting a route that was once free-soloed changes the history of the route.

Jay


and I'm curious as to how Thomas Kincaid "touching up" the Mona Lisa changes the history of the Mona Lisa.

although, you have to admit that hard traditional climbing today (yes, even in the strictest sense of the definition) has improved drastically because of sport climbing fitness.



oh, and headpointing is simply toproping a route before leading it. Sometimes done once, sometimes done dozens of times, on well-protected or x-rated climbs; doesn't matter.


dingus


Sep 26, 2007, 8:45 AM
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Re: [cracklover] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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cracklover wrote:
dingus wrote:
cracklover wrote:
But what's harder to do is to say what a traditional climb is for those who come after the FA.

As long as subsequent parties don't retrobolt it, its quite irrelevant WHAT they call it I guess.

A tadding we will go. Hi ho.

DMT

I dunno what tadding is.

And Dingus, you know perfectly well that there are sport climbs that were bolted from the bottom up. So you're simply choosing to bury your head in the sand and ignore half the meaning of the word.

Your choice, of course.

GO

I'm perfectly at peace with sport climbing.

But the essence of trad is ground up. You can cite any exception you care to... doesn't change that reality.

DMT


paintrain


Sep 26, 2007, 8:50 AM
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Re: [rockprodigy] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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rockprodigy wrote:
My understainding is that "back in the day", there was no "trad climbing", just "climbing". Therefore, the term "trad" is a modern word used to describe a certain style used at a point in time and region in the past.

So there can't be a single definition, we can only describe how things were done in certain places at certain times. Several people have pointed out how Bachar's own exploits don't fit the term "trad" based on different possible variations of the definition.

I'm also amused that you quoted John Bachar. Clearly he is an amazing, pioneering climber, but he was and is a radical. His views don't represent a consensus.

What exactly would be the difference between a "mixed" ascent and hangdogging? Isn't that the same thing? Actually, I don't care about the answer to that question, I just want to point out that not all great climbers are great at formulating ideology, and it seems like that single shortcoming causes a lot of conflict in our sport. A case in point is the Delicate Arch fiasco.

Well summed up.

So much is a time frame of reference. Then it turns into semantics about which tactic during which time frame is being used to define "trad".

To degrade into semantics (if we want to go off DMT's post) True "trad" is Onsight, ground up, First Ascent only. No prior knowledge and no preplaced gear from the First ascentionist.

But in the end it is just semantics. Astroman was put up in non "trad" style. How many attempts did the north face of the Eiger receive before it was climbed? Did Heckmair et al have any beta? Not a pure onsight?

It should just be redefined as gear climbing. Give up on the notion of "Trad" climbing.

PT


dingus


Sep 26, 2007, 9:11 AM
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Re: [paintrain] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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paintrain wrote:
Give up on the notion of "Trad" climbing.

PT

Ultimately I reckon I don't care what the children call it so long as they don't use their lazy word parsing to justify retrobolting.

But the first step to forgetting the past is to loose the language.

The essence of trad is ground up. That is the simple truth of the matter. Now the exceptions will continue to be cited by those insisting on specific definitions. Whatever.

DMT


k.l.k


Sep 26, 2007, 9:25 AM
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Re: [dingus] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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dingus wrote:
I'm perfectly at peace with sport climbing.

But the essence of trad is ground up. You can cite any exception you care to... doesn't change that reality.

DMT

Good luck with that word, "essence." It's even more slippery than "trad." The problem with making "ground-up" the "essence" of "trad" is that there are so very many counter-examples. Many of Bachar's most famous routes in JTree; tons of Gill routes all over the country; a random bolt ladder up any line so long as it begins on the ground. The use of expansion bolts on Shiprock-- and on many big walls in the Dolomites --in the 1930s was extremely controversial and widely denounced, especially by leading British climbers as a desecration of alpine tradition. Today those routes are part of the tradition.

So far as semantics are concerned, there is not too much any of us can do about the usage of the word. Due to the sheer numbers of gym and sport climbers, the use of "trad" as a synonym for "gear" climbing is almost certainly going to continue.

The one place where it's not "just semantics" is when it becomes an issue for land managers. An obvious example: The NPS ban on power drills in much of Yosemite. The Sierra Club and others pressed for the ban (my understanding is that Higgins was one of the actors). But hand-drilling of bolts, in certain contexts, was judged a "historic" use and thus allowed.

"When I use a word, it means exactly what I want it to mean, no more and no less."-- Humpty Dumpty


Partner cracklover


Sep 26, 2007, 9:52 AM
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Re: [dingus] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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Has nothing to do with exceptions. Has to do with looking at it from another angle that helps shed more light. But s'okay, Dingus, you don't get it, and you don't wanna. That's cool.

GO


microbarn


Sep 26, 2007, 10:06 AM
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Re: [dingus] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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dingus wrote:
The essence of trad is ground up. That is the simple truth of the matter. Now the exceptions will continue to be cited by those insisting on specific definitions. Whatever.

DMT

All of the sudden you are tired of the same argument too? What exactly did you expect?


NSFW


Sep 26, 2007, 10:09 AM
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Re: [azrockclimber] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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azrockclimber wrote:
cracklover wrote:
chossmonkey wrote:
dingus wrote:
Trad. Its not just a rack of widgets.

DMT
Its funny how people confuse gear climbing with trad climbing.

While I wouldn't be as strict with my definitions as some here. Working the piss out a route and then leading it with gear is certainly not "trad climbing". Its climbing on gear, or "gear climbing".

Well it's not like it's some mysterious type of climbing with no name or category. How long has the term "Headpointing" been around?

GO

Headpointing.....what does that mean?

I think I need to hang out with trendy sport climbers more..... for the lingo

I don't think there's much headpointing going on in the sport climbing world. At least, I hope not.


caughtinside


Sep 26, 2007, 10:10 AM
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Re: [NSFW] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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NSFW wrote:
azrockclimber wrote:
cracklover wrote:
chossmonkey wrote:
dingus wrote:
Trad. Its not just a rack of widgets.

DMT
Its funny how people confuse gear climbing with trad climbing.

While I wouldn't be as strict with my definitions as some here. Working the piss out a route and then leading it with gear is certainly not "trad climbing". Its climbing on gear, or "gear climbing".

Well it's not like it's some mysterious type of climbing with no name or category. How long has the term "Headpointing" been around?

GO

Headpointing.....what does that mean?

I think I need to hang out with trendy sport climbers more..... for the lingo

I don't think there's much headpointing going on in the sport climbing world. At least, I hope not.

Not so much headpointing, but plenty of meatbombing.


dingus


Sep 26, 2007, 10:12 AM
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Re: [microbarn] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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To me these things are analog. If folks get the feel for the essence of the matter it will be reflected in their language. Yall keep going digital on me, trying to nail down this precise rule book thing.

I sheet on your rule books!

And I know the entire ground up thing is a mystery to a lot of short crag climbers. I can understand eastern confusion. Its easier to appreciate trad at the base of a thousand foot unclimbed cliff. The mystery of the term is felt in the pit of the stomach then.

What made you think I'm tired of it mb?

I'll BE BACK. So parse on gentlemen!

DMT


NSFW


Sep 26, 2007, 10:16 AM
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Re: [caughtinside] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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caughtinside wrote:
NSFW wrote:
azrockclimber wrote:
cracklover wrote:
chossmonkey wrote:
dingus wrote:
Trad. Its not just a rack of widgets.

DMT
Its funny how people confuse gear climbing with trad climbing.

While I wouldn't be as strict with my definitions as some here. Working the piss out a route and then leading it with gear is certainly not "trad climbing". Its climbing on gear, or "gear climbing".

Well it's not like it's some mysterious type of climbing with no name or category. How long has the term "Headpointing" been around?

GO

Headpointing.....what does that mean?

I think I need to hang out with trendy sport climbers more..... for the lingo

I don't think there's much headpointing going on in the sport climbing world. At least, I hope not.

Not so much headpointing, but plenty of meatbombing.

I thought spurt clmbrz clip lotza bults to avoid teh meatbomb?


caughtinside


Sep 26, 2007, 10:19 AM
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Re: [NSFW] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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NSFW wrote:
caughtinside wrote:
NSFW wrote:
azrockclimber wrote:
cracklover wrote:
chossmonkey wrote:
dingus wrote:
Trad. Its not just a rack of widgets.

DMT
Its funny how people confuse gear climbing with trad climbing.

While I wouldn't be as strict with my definitions as some here. Working the piss out a route and then leading it with gear is certainly not "trad climbing". Its climbing on gear, or "gear climbing".

Well it's not like it's some mysterious type of climbing with no name or category. How long has the term "Headpointing" been around?

GO

Headpointing.....what does that mean?

I think I need to hang out with trendy sport climbers more..... for the lingo

I don't think there's much headpointing going on in the sport climbing world. At least, I hope not.

Not so much headpointing, but plenty of meatbombing.

I thought spurt clmbrz clip lotza bults to avoid teh meatbomb?

True, but sometimes the climb is inadequately ticked and redpoint sequences are botched, resulting in meatbomb.


microbarn


Sep 26, 2007, 10:55 AM
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Re: [dingus] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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dingus wrote:
What made you think I'm tired of it mb?

I quoted the sentences that give me the impression you are tired of it. Cutting down the quote from above:

In reply to:
Now the exceptions will continue to be cited by those insisting on specific definitions. Whatever.

"Whatever" is implying to me that you are tired of arguing one way or the other. If you aren't tired of arguing then you are tired of listening. I am failing to see another interpretation.

PS, for the record I don't care what you call it, and I usually try to fit my usage to the audience of people I am addressing. I don't make my audience conform to my definitions. If the audience is mixed, then I will try to make it clear by context. Rarely does it ever matter.


k.l.k


Sep 26, 2007, 11:14 AM
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Re: [dingus] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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Actually, Dingus, I believe that we've come to page three because you did propose a precise fixed definition of "trad" which then ran into the usual objections. In my case, that both the word and the practices have histories and that you will play hell trying to fix either of them in place.

The fixing that matters will be done by the land managers.

And the meatbombz have already begun which is never a good sign.


Partner cracklover


Sep 26, 2007, 11:19 AM
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Re: [dingus] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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dingus wrote:
To me these things are analog. If folks get the feel for the essence of the matter it will be reflected in their language. Yall keep going digital on me, trying to nail down this precise rule book thing.

Nonsense. You're the one with the rulebook. I'm trying to arrive at a more nuanced interpretation which you reject out of hand saying: "the master has spoken - all ye take heed."

Okay - fine, your master has spoken. Go ahead and keep master-bating Mr Bachar. Unless someone has something genuinely new to add to the topic, I'm done with this thread.

GO


blueeyedclimber


Sep 26, 2007, 11:20 AM
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k.l.k wrote:
"When I use a word, it means exactly what I want it to mean, no more and no less."-- Humpty Dumpty

Thread done. If a word isn't cemented into a dictionary, then it is open to interpretation by the user, and often misinterpreted by the listener based on their own understanding of the word. This thread has indeed "had a great fall."

Josh


rockprodigy


Sep 26, 2007, 11:35 AM
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Re: [dingus] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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dingus wrote:

The essence of trad is ground up....

DMT

Dingus, you're cherry picking now. The definition you quoted from Bachar was "...groundup, onsight (free, aid or mixed)"

I don't disagree with your "essence", but I disagree with your tactics. If you want to debate the essence of "trad climbing", lets debate, but don't name drop a guy like Bachar, then cherry-pick out his definition.


onceahardman


Sep 26, 2007, 12:46 PM
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Dare I try to tie this all together?

(apologies for those who know this history)

TRADITION has changed. originally, "gentlemen" would hire guides, who tied in their clients, and climbed in a style we would now call "4th class". (not to imply early climbers were not bold, or did not do climbs which were difficult)

in europe, and eventually in the USA, intermediate protection came into being, in the early 1900s Germany using jammed knots. later, in Great Britain, chockstones, (real stones), were used and tied off. Germany soon had cemented-in ring bolts (RINGEN), used as both belays, and intermediate protection points, always placed from free stances on lead.

as an aside, in germany, the use of a shoulder stand was not considered "aid". "two men are one attacking unit"-fritz weissner

USA pitoncraft may well have started in 1931, on the north ridge of grand teton.

intermediate protection, at this point, was considered controversial, and the ethic was "the leader does not fall". (NOT "must not fall").

during WW2, nylon ropes were invented, and the real possibility of catching a leader fall became evident. pitoncraft spread quickly, leading to destruction of the rock, and the subsequent change to chocks (etc) for protection.


so the definition of TRAD really has changed. but the ETHIC contains the following:

1) ground up
2) no pre-inspection from a rappel rope or top rope
3) no pre-placed protection
4) all protection placed on lead


in addition, the ETHIC of traditional FREE climbing contains the following:

1)no top rope inspection of holds or gear placement
2)no weighting the rope, you must then lower to the ground and pull the gear and try again, or its not "free".
3) no retro-placement of fixed gear, except to replace broken or otherwise inferior quality gear.
4)all protection placed free on lead, UNLESS freeing an old aid line with fixed protection.

now, dont get me wrong. i LIKE sport climbing, and i have had a blast sieging. but bad style is different from good style.

i'm sure others will add to my lists. have at it!


(This post was edited by onceahardman on Sep 26, 2007, 1:27 PM)


notapplicable


Sep 26, 2007, 8:29 PM
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Through a series of happy accidents last week I found my self climbing closer to a pure trad style than I ever have.

On a trip to Seneca Thur. - Sat. I forgot my quide book at home and after borrowing one from a friend I stopped to visit on the way out, I left that one sitting on his kitchen table. We climbed all day Thur. on 4 hours sleep, after which my partner was tired and wanted to take Fri. off. So I woke up late straped on the camel pack, grabbed the chalk bag and shoes and head out barefoot, sans guide. 2/3 of what I climbed was onsite and I just cruised along, resting on ledges when I wanted, backing down when needed and pretty much had the place to myself. I had no idea what I climbed untill Tue. when I had a chance to sit down and look it up.

At its most basic "trad" is ground up free climbing on gear but I think by and large "trad" is an intangible and I'm OK with that. As soon as you try and require that a certain style or gear be involved, you loose a little of what is so powerful about it.


paintrain


Sep 26, 2007, 9:25 PM
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It was a good summary. But it is a question of tactics, not ethics.

Ethics are a set of moral principles (and that, this is not). This is simply a choice of style. Who the arbiter of good vs bad style is one of personal choice not dictum.

Your examples were based on what was technically possible and feasible for the day. The tactics changed without too much stink because of the improved gear and techniques (were the piton drivers in 1931 referred to as "sport climbers" by the Traditional gentleman climbers?). Pushing into 5th class terrain required new tactics from the old gentleman's game, but we look on it now as "traditional".

"Trad" climbing is placing one's own gear while ascending a climb to protect oneself. That is the only real common thread I see. Ground up was out of necessity, not necessarily a choice of style for many of these ascents.

When did "free" climbing even become a term? Discreet tension on gear was an accepted ascent tactic at one time in this history. Seems we posthumously tack free onto old climbing tactics in general before there was even a distinction.


dingus


Sep 26, 2007, 10:39 PM
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Re: [rockprodigy] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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rockprodigy wrote:
dingus wrote:

The essence of trad is ground up....

DMT

Dingus, you're cherry picking now. The definition you quoted from Bachar was "...groundup, onsight (free, aid or mixed)"

I don't disagree with your "essence", but I disagree with your tactics. If you want to debate the essence of "trad climbing", lets debate, but don't name drop a guy like Bachar, then cherry-pick out his definition.

I didn't say I agreed with bachar. I do put more faith in his reference of what trad meant back in the day, than my own.

DMT


dingus


Sep 26, 2007, 10:48 PM
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Re: [cracklover] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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cracklover wrote:
I'm trying to arrive at a more nuanced interpretation

Good for you. Nuance away. Instead of picking my posts apart, how about writing those nuances down and stating your own... in one go. Lay it out there.

I'll post my opinions because they are my own. They're not bachar's, they're not yours. they're mine. I've thought about it alot.

I don't really need yours but I'll entertain them anyway, should you care to post them.

Cheers
DMT


dingus


Sep 27, 2007, 1:20 AM
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Re: [paintrain] What is traditional free climbing? [In reply to]
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paintrain wrote:
Ground up was out of necessity, not necessarily a choice of style for many of these ascents.

I don't agree. From Robbins and Kamps to Higgins and Clevenger, take to the extreme by Erickson, the ground up ethic was stout and purposeful. You're doing those dudes' styles a disservice to suggest they would have top-downed their great climbs had they only known how.

Cheers though
DMT

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