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Learn basic aid while I can't free climb?
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askidmore81


Mar 9, 2011, 8:42 AM
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Learn basic aid while I can't free climb?
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I'm thinking about learning the basics of aid while I'm out of commission for free climbing. A couple months ago I dislocated a my right ring finger and the doctor has told me it will be several months before I can climb on it again.

I can't stand the thought of missing that much of the season so I'm considering learning how to aid climb. I should be clear, I'm not looking to dive into big wall, just learn the mechanics of aid and enjoy some time on the rock. While I can't put real weight on the injured finger I can do all the day to day things with it and can weight the other digits just fine.

If I decide to give this a go there are a couple top rope routes around that I would play on so risk is pretty minimal. I'm not a terribly strong climber but I love the technical side of climbing and aid has always held appeal for that reason.

This brings me to my first question, would aid climbing put significantly less stress on my finger than free climbing? Which parts of the aid process would I have to watch out for in this respect?

And the second question, would someone be kind enough to point me towards some literature to get me started and make a more informed decision?


potreroed


Mar 9, 2011, 9:45 AM
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Re: [askidmore81] Learn basic aid while I can't free climb? [In reply to]
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In general on aid you're pulling with a closed fist position so you should be OK--if you're careful.

The best advice I could give someone starting on aid would be to purchase and learn to use an adjustable fi-fi hook.


csproul


Mar 9, 2011, 9:58 AM
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Re: [askidmore81] Learn basic aid while I can't free climb? [In reply to]
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Not a resource for answering your finger question, but I have found Chris Mac's online ho-to book helpful for me learning aid.

http://www.supertopo.com/...-Contents/a139n.html


billcoe_


Mar 9, 2011, 10:59 AM
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Re: [askidmore81] Learn basic aid while I can't free climb? [In reply to]
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I'd tape the hell out of that finger. I once popped a piece on aid and as I flew through the air my finger whacked hard on a ledge that was so small I had not noticed it before. Holy crap it hurt.

Certainly top rope aiding will eliminate or reduce that chance if that is what you are thinking there. Aiding in general will give you a real good feel for pro and what pieces will hold and where.

As you like the technical side of things I'd encourage you to proceed, you'll dig the hell out of it - just take a few precautions, wrap that finger well first of course, but use a hero loop instead of a biner to grab a hold of. You'll figure it out. Look at this pic below. Do you see how Misty Mt put a loop up on top in the pic below? You can slide your hand up in that top loop and with out using your fingers at all just let your wrist be used instead of using your fingers to grab a hold and keep yourself in as you walk up the aid ladders...? Did that make sense?



Have fun!


saymurphy


Mar 10, 2011, 8:09 AM
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Re: [askidmore81] Learn basic aid while I can't free climb? [In reply to]
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Either Long & Middendorf's book or Jared Ogden's book are great ways to learn. I used the latter to start solo aiding when all my partners were out for a couple of weeks. I bought Ogden's book and then realized that my library had Long's book, so had a chance to compare them. The basic movements are the same; you can't go wrong with either book.


askidmore81


Mar 10, 2011, 3:55 PM
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Re: [askidmore81] Learn basic aid while I can't free climb? [In reply to]
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Thanks for the advise everyone. The more I look into aid the more I think it'll suit me. Well, I guess I'm adding a couple books to the library and some more gear to the rack.


caughtinside


Mar 10, 2011, 4:34 PM
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Re: [askidmore81] Learn basic aid while I can't free climb? [In reply to]
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I learned how to aid when I ripped some tendons in my hand and couldn't climb. I just used the grigri and solo aided several short 5.10 and 5.11 cracks on weekdays.

learning to aid solo is nice because you're slow when you start and I didn't want to bore the crap out of a belayer.


lithiummetalman


Mar 10, 2011, 5:02 PM
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Re: [askidmore81] Learn basic aid while I can't free climb? [In reply to]
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Huge fan of adjustable daisies, have fun!


askidmore81


Mar 11, 2011, 5:50 AM
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Re: [caughtinside] Learn basic aid while I can't free climb? [In reply to]
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caughtinside wrote:
I learned how to aid when I ripped some tendons in my hand and couldn't climb. I just used the grigri and solo aided several short 5.10 and 5.11 cracks on weekdays.

learning to aid solo is nice because you're slow when you start and I didn't want to bore the crap out of a belayer.

That's the plan, I snagged a first gen GriGri on SAC the other day. The local gym has a line of anchors I can get started on to learn the basic sequence then I'll head out after work to play on the real stuff.


rocknice2


Mar 14, 2011, 4:17 PM
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Re: [askidmore81] Learn basic aid while I can't free climb? [In reply to]
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askidmore81 do you have a rack or are you planning to just aid in the gym? Or on sport climbs?


milesenoell


Mar 14, 2011, 6:14 PM
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Re: [billcoe_] Learn basic aid while I can't free climb? [In reply to]
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billcoe_ wrote:
Do you see how Misty Mt put a loop up on top in the pic below? You can slide your hand up in that top loop and with out using your fingers at all just let your wrist be used instead of using your fingers to grab a hold and keep yourself in as you walk up the aid ladders...? Did that make sense?

Have fun!

I haven't tried that. Is that a grip you use occasionally?


askidmore81


Mar 15, 2011, 7:06 AM
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Re: [rocknice2] Learn basic aid while I can't free climb? [In reply to]
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While my climbing so far has been TR, I have acquired a selection of basic pro: a set of nuts, a couple C4s and a hand full of draws that I bought for a summit bid last summer. The route was going to be pretty exposed and we wanted the option of setting up a running belay in hairy spots. Unfortunately we got turned around by a hail/thunderstorm and had to bail. I also have a couple hooks on in the mail to play with.

I don't plan on doing much aid in the gym, just enough to figure out the logistical steps of the process. Then I'll head outside and start cramming stoppers in the rock. Someone else touched on this before, but this will give me a good way of learning how to place protection as I do want to move into some sport and trad this summer.


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