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ben87


Oct 12, 2004, 7:22 AM
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first lead fall
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I was climbing at peterskill yesterday, and took my first lead fall. I was most of the way up the psycho crack wall (on the left hand side). I didn't really realize I was going to fall. I knew I was in a tough section and was having trouble finding a good route..... then, I think my foot slipped, and it was all over before I had a chance to think about it. I was about two or three feet above my last piece--- a #2 or #3 Camalot, I think....

anyway, it was definitly a rush, and not that big a deal. I was sorta just like, "huh. that was little crazy." After that, I finished the climb without too much trouble.

-Ben


olejeff


Oct 12, 2004, 8:16 AM
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ahhhh...The gunks in the fall. Beautiful. Welcome to the wonderful world of falling. Those first few falls make you a better climber. Keep those placements solid..and keep climbing.


mgr


Oct 12, 2004, 1:02 PM
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I going to be leading soon. I going to be scared of falling. Would it be beneficial to take a couple practice falls on good gear?


cedk


Oct 12, 2004, 1:16 PM
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I wouldn't worry about it.
Tarzan never falls.

Him strong climber.


Partner j_ung


Oct 12, 2004, 1:47 PM
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In reply to:
I wouldn't worry about it.
Tarzan never falls.

Him strong climber.

:lol: :lol: :lol:


iclimblilrocks


Oct 12, 2004, 2:39 PM
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To whome ever asked if it would be good to take a practice fall.. I say yes, If you know how to fall properly and what it feels like before you take that 30' whipper you will not be COMPLETELY freaking out... Next time im on lead im going to perposly let go and take a fall, just so I know what im in for with leading.... just make sure you dont take a fall on rock that is going to tear you to peice's or slab.....

safe climbing, jacob


brutusofwyde


Oct 12, 2004, 6:22 PM
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To whome ever asked if it would be good to take a practice fall.. I say yes, If you know how to fall properly and what it feels like before you take that 30' whipper you will not be COMPLETELY freaking out... Next time im on lead im going to perposly let go and take a fall, just so I know what im in for with leading.... just make sure you dont take a fall on rock that is going to tear you to peice's or slab.....

safe climbing, jacob


Are you going to let go and "perposly" take a fall on your home depot utility rope?

Don't fall (TM). It's a BIG DEAL (TM). You could DIE (TM).

Brutus of Wyde
Old Climbers' Home
Oakland, California


treesail


Oct 12, 2004, 6:37 PM
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I going to be leading soon. I going to be scared of falling. Would it be beneficial to take a couple practice falls on good gear?

Hell yeah. Take a bunch. Bigger and bigger.


rendog


Oct 12, 2004, 9:02 PM
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In reply to:
I going to be leading soon. I going to be scared of falling. Would it be beneficial to take a couple practice falls on good gear?

Hell yeah. Take a bunch. Bigger and bigger.

i do it all the time mostly on *gasp* sport, but then it's a "controlled atmosphere" (making quotation marks with fingers)

I took my biggest lead fall on gear on the weekend in Indian Creek... like a 25 footer and if i hadn't taken those falls previously, then i probably wouldn't have gotten back on and sent the biatch.

good fun man


jt512


Oct 12, 2004, 9:36 PM
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Next time im on lead...

...which will be his 4th time on lead ever, so consider that this adivce to take practice lead falls is coming from a beginner who has yet to take one.

Practice falls have their place, but not in the context of a beginning trad leader on a beginning trad lead.

-Jay


rendog


Oct 12, 2004, 9:42 PM
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Practice falls have their place, but not in the context of a beginning trad leader on a beginning trad lead

-Jay

true enough... like I said I fell many times on sport routes just to get the feeling of falling first


ascender30


Oct 12, 2004, 10:01 PM
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Purposely falling....anathema to climbing.

Try bungee jumping, or skydiving.

It might sound obvious, but I suggest you get in the mindset of: NEVER FALL. Cultivate that healthy fear of falling that you have. Nurse it and let it be your guide. You should pay close attention and be keenly afraid of anything along the route which might cause you to fall and, if so, be injured. Short of rockfall/weather (in the hands of the gods), it's pretty darn hard to get hurt if you never fall.



mmmmmmmmmm...anathema...just rolls off the ol' tongue


climbsomething


Oct 12, 2004, 10:04 PM
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To whome ever asked if it would be good to take a practice fall.. I say yes, If you know how to fall properly and what it feels like before you take that 30' whipper you will not be COMPLETELY freaking out... Next time im on lead im going to perposly let go and take a fall, just so I know what im in for with leading.... just make sure you dont take a fall on rock that is going to tear you to peice's or slab.....

safe climbing, jacob
Do YOU know how to fall properly?

You're not qualified to be giving advice. How many times do we have to tell you that? For your sake more than anybody else's, really, you need to abandon the idea that you know that much about climbing. A little learning is a dangerous thing.


reprieve


Oct 12, 2004, 10:25 PM
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i don't think a fear a falling is a good thing. personally, i climb much better when i am focused on going up rather than scared of going down.


elvislegs


Oct 12, 2004, 10:46 PM
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climbsomething, why put asunder what darwin hath wrought?

naw sayn?


cliffmonkey2003


Oct 12, 2004, 11:43 PM
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i don't think a fear a falling is a good thing. personally, i climb much better when i am focused on going up rather than scared of going down.

I bet you'll fall a lot harder too. I'm not real experienced in trad, I'm a beginner too, but I've taken one really big fall. I know how it feels and as soon as I'm over my injury, I'm gonna hop back on the horse and lead again. Why did I fall? I was an invincible teenager, and I didn't think about what I could do to prevent a big fall. Instead, I took my mind off of safety, focused on climbing and took a fall that could've easily turned me into a vegetable for the rest of my days. Take it from me, nothing prepares you for a big fall. Your time is best spent figuring ways to prevent that fall.


gullwing19


Oct 13, 2004, 12:43 AM
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well that sums it up. thread over.


reprieve


Oct 13, 2004, 7:19 AM
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In reply to:
i don't think a fear a falling is a good thing. personally, i climb much better when i am focused on going up rather than scared of going down.

I bet you'll fall a lot harder too. I'm not real experienced in trad, I'm a beginner too, but I've taken one really big fall. I know how it feels and as soon as I'm over my injury, I'm gonna hop back on the horse and lead again. Why did I fall? I was an invincible teenager, and I didn't think about what I could do to prevent a big fall. Instead, I took my mind off of safety, focused on climbing and took a fall that could've easily turned me into a vegetable for the rest of my days. Take it from me, nothing prepares you for a big fall. Your time is best spent figuring ways to prevent that fall.

hey buddy, i've taken my share of falls. there's a difference between taking your mind off safety and being afraid of falling


ben87


Oct 13, 2004, 9:06 AM
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ahhhh...The gunks in the fall. Beautiful.

yes -- it was one of the finest days I've spent out of doors in a while. :D also the Peterskill area totally sucked -- my recommendation to all climbers is that they skip the whole area. :wink:

intentional lead falls..... I agree with whoever suggested trying to avoid falling as much as you possibly can. That's been my approach. I've tried to climb conservatively and avoid falling. I've tried to judge as wisely as I can how far I should push my limits--- knowing that if I climb hard, I will probably fall occasionally, and I want to be as well protected for that as possible.

It seems like sport might be the place for practice lead falls -- with lots of rope out and several bolts clipped on a steep route, it should be a pretty safe proposition (you'll still take some life out of your rope though). But I still think I wouldn't do it.


caughtinside


Oct 13, 2004, 9:14 AM
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I love the idea of 'practice falls.'

So that's what I've been doing all this time! Practising! I'll have to keep that one in the ole' excuse bank.

*Note* My few hundred falls have been 99% on sport. I think taking practice falls on gear is DUM.


brutusofwyde


Oct 13, 2004, 10:27 AM
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I love the idea of 'practice falls.'

So that's what I've been doing all this time! Practising! I'll have to keep that one in the ole' excuse bank.

*Note* My few hundred falls have been 99% on sport. I think taking practice falls on gear is DUM.

Naah. Everyone should take the advice of iclimblilrocks. After all, if you're not a quadraplegic, you're not really trying.

:roll:

I approach gym climbing and cragging as practice for what I consider the "real thing." For me, the "real thing" (TM) is heading up a route that has never been climbed before, with only classic tools such as hammer, hand drill, cams, pins, and nuts, way out in a wilderness setting where the nearest help is days away and cell phone coverage just doesn't reach. In such a setting, Falling is not a real intelligent option.

That being said, (although generalizations are just that: generalizations, and It Depends (TM)) falling on most trad climbs involves serious risk of injury. The majority of trad climbs, particularly in the "lower" grades, (i.e. 5.9 or below) are less than vertical. Serious injury or death can result from such falls.

I took a top-roped fall on Crack-a-go-go at Cookie Cliff in Yosemite Valley (5.11 something, but still slightly less than vertical). Rope stretch allowed me to fall just far enough that my foot caught on a hold, resulting in a sprained ankle. Result: 6 weeks time-out.

There is an art to falling safely. That skill can be learned, but it is best not learned on TRAD.

Brutus


Partner coylec


Oct 13, 2004, 12:23 PM
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If you're not comfortable with the idea of falling on any gear you've placed, you have a problem. Of course, there is always the exception: that tiny nut or marginal placement that is mainly to route the rope and may hold a fall.

What is the point of placing gear if it is not going to catch a fall? Just bring all that stuff for show?

If you can't set gear that will hold a fall, you have no business trad climbing.

coylec


retard


Oct 13, 2004, 3:50 PM
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[quote="brutusofwyde"]
In reply to:
To whome ever asked if it would be good to take a practice fall.. I say yes, If you know how to fall properly and what it feels like before you take that 30' whipper you will not be COMPLETELY freaking out... Next time im on lead im going to perposly let go and take a fall, just so I know what im in for with leading.... just make sure you dont take a fall on rock that is going to tear you to peice's or slab.....

safe climbing, jacob


Are you going to let go and "perposly" take a fall on your home depot utility rope?

Don't fall (TM). It's a BIG DEAL (TM). You could DIE (TM).

I think he ment in a controlled enviroment, and probably on good bolts.... Mabey we should find out if he heard the information from someone experianced or if he pulled it out of his ass, I have read alot of his posts and I think that most of them are pulled out of his ass, all except the ones that are giving information.

I belive that takeing a controlled fall when you are still new to leading will get you ready for longer and farther falls...


brutusofwyde


Oct 15, 2004, 7:40 AM
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If you're not comfortable with the idea of falling on any gear you've placed, you have a problem.

Absolutely. And usually that problem involves a 30-foot runout, a bad landing, and loose rock, 3 days before help arrives, and/or other issues. In such situations, don't fall. It is best to recognize any time you are straying into the zone where you are in essence soloing, whether you be roped or not, whether the issue be runout, poor pro, or your belayer momentarily taking her attention off of you and taking care of some other problem, whether the climbing be at your limit or something you could stroll, hands in your pockets, whether you be climbing up to take care of a snagged rappel rope or momentarily straying into an unexpected 5th class section on a descent that was supposed to be "trivial."

In reply to:
Of course, there is always the exception: that tiny nut or marginal placement that is mainly to route the rope and may hold a fall.

The reality of trad climbing is that good pro near hard moves is often the best we can hope for, and this is regardless of any attendant "R" or "X" footnote that may be in the guidebook. There is far more to the art of trad climbing than simply placing good gear and pulling down hard: And each of those are separate skills: Something as simple as an error in routefinding can put you into a situation where you are at the limits of your skill in both areas. Finding yourself in this situation without the presence of mind to recognize it, and other, equally important, skills to deal with it, invites disaster.

In reply to:
What is the point of placing gear if it is not going to catch a fall? Just bring all that stuff for show?

Last time I checked, hanging on gear and hanging on the rope was considered aid climbing. Except in France.

In reply to:
If you can't set gear that will hold a fall, you have no business trad climbing.

Absolutely no argument from me there.

Brutus of Wyde
Old Climbers' Home
Oakland, California


dirtineye


Oct 15, 2004, 10:15 AM
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Falling may or may not be dangerous, but falling in a fearful panic is definately dangerous.


If you are going to PRACTICE falling on trad gear, be sure you make an ANCHOR to fall on, and it is a good idea to back up your falling on pro from above as well. You can fall on a single piece, but make sure it is backed up from above with a SRENE anchor)

Even when practicing falling on bolts, you want to back up your falling bolt from above, not below.

THe basic principle is, two bomber pieces of pro, one is backup from above for bolts, and more for trad, (Back up trad from above and below) if you are practicing leader falls.

Inspect your gear after every fall. You have to climb back up to and above it anyway, so check it out.

The point is, you are there to practice falling, so you will take a number of falls to get it right.

What you don't want to do, as a beginner especially, is lead up something really difficult for you, stick in a piece, and fall on it. There is a bit of art to route selection for falling practice as well as general safe climbing, and as Brutus said, low angle or blocky ledgy beginner routes are often more dangerous to fall on than something more vertical. Find yourself a near vertical juggy easily protectable climb to practice falling on at first, and go from there.

A large part of falling practice as well as falling in the wild (haha) is Fall Cconsequnce Awareness.

There is a big difference in knowing how to fall and knowing when you really shouldn't. Fear of falling is not a good thing, but thinking a fall is no big deal in a generic way is not good either. Some fall situations are really bad, others are not. YO uahve to learn the difference. IF you do fall, you need to have the ability, the training, and the awareness to make the best of a bad deal, especially if it is in one of those bad situations.

Get Arno's book The Rock Warrior's Way, and read the sections on falling with special attention.

I guess if I had to put it all in a nutshell, I'd say that how you react during the fall makes all the difference.

You have to be relaxed and meet the wall with your feet, knees bent and ready to absorb the impact, hands up, elbows bent and also ready to meet the wall and keep your head and upper body off the wall. Irregular features demand quick and correct reactions, so again Fall Consequence Awareness is important.

Short unexpected or unplanned falls are the hardest to deal with, because you have less time to react. As long as the gear is good (again assuming no ledge or groundfall consequences), a longer fall gives you more time to get ready for your landing. A six foot fall out of a layback or upside down onto a ledge or the ground is very hard to deal with, for example.

Arno actually teaches falling, he really knows what he's doing, so if you ever get the chance, get with him, it's worth it.

Since a lot of beginners seem to be considering ths falling on gear thing, make damned sure you know how to place solid gear and that you are a good judge of rock quality BEFORE you try this.

Make sure you hang correctly in your harness, because when you start falling, you will soon know for sure if your waist belt is too low on your hips, because if it is, you will find yourself upside down.

Everything above assumes that you have a good belayer. Climbing is a team sport.

AND remember, you read this on the internet. Be responsible for yourself.

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