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talons05


Dec 26, 2002, 2:55 AM
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Funk - I definately see where you're coming from. My state has TONS of traditionally protected face climbs - pockets, knobs, etc. can all be placement opportunities. Also, every crack you get on isn't just a straight-in splitter. Try some off-widths, try some roof cracks, and definitely try some funky routes that mix crack sizes, go to flakes, etc...

A.W.


kalcario


Dec 26, 2002, 3:47 AM
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I started climbing in the 70's, there was no such thing as sport until 86 or so. At first I was dead set against it, I remember one of my favorite analogies was that climbing was like a crossword puzzle, did you figure it out by yourself and solve the puzzle (placing gear ground up) or did you look at the answers in the back and cheat (rap in and place the gear). The thing that eventually sold me on sport was the feeling of freedom, which was the thing that attracted me to climbing in the first place. Realizing that we were free from carrying this s*it around, we don't have to buy it, we don't have to place it and take it out, we don't have to worry about losing it or dropping it or it getting stolen or stuck, repairing trigger wires...once you started sport climbing you realized you'd been carrying around this ball and chain all these years and it was like being released from prison, suddenly we're free! And sport climbing is really the natural extension of what drove my involvement in the sport, namely, what's the hardest, longest thing you can do in one push from the ground. To me, the bottom line is, does dicking around with gear really make you a better *climber*...I mean you get good at placing the gear after a while, but so what?

I also am of the opinion that granite crack climbing is 1 dimensional, there really are only 3 variables, crack size, straight in or corner, and angle of the wall. There's rarely anything sequential to figure out, the movement is ad nauseum repetitive, and the gear is almost always bomber and goes in anywhere.

But if you don't learn it and become competent at it, you will never do El Cap, which is the dream of climbers all over the world (except here in Cali where roped climbing is regarded as a joke and ethically corrupt compared to the "purity" of bouldering) and you are denying yourself the greatest experience that the sport of rock climbing has to offer. So even though I just sport climb now, I always encourage beginners to focus on trad at first and see if it's for them, instead of blindly following whatever fad is prevalent. Which at the moment is bouldering.



pirateclimber


Dec 26, 2002, 5:01 AM
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I'm not a hard climber... I don't claim to know half of what there is to know about climbing... I still get really nervous before any lead,.. But there is just a feeling you get during and that remains well after finishing a multi-pitch trad line that you will never feel in any other form of climbing. Just you, a good friend, and a hella load of pro hundreds of feet off the deck... Isn't that why you climb? Something to strive for anyway.


smileyface


Dec 26, 2002, 5:28 AM
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talons05


Dec 27, 2002, 6:46 AM
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If anyone wants to see some more super-sweet southern trad climbs (Such as rradam's of "Right To Flight" at Mt. Magazine...) Check out the Jan. Issue of Rock and Ice magazine. There is a great feature section on Arkansas climbing. Then let me know when you're coming for a visit!

A.W.


mesomorf


Dec 28, 2002, 1:25 AM
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>kalcario

>I also am of the opinion that granite
>crack climbing is 1 dimensional, there
>really are only 3 variables, crack
>size, straight in or corner, and angle
>of the wall.

That's 3 dimensions then.

There's also the potential factors of water coming out of the crack, plants growing in the crack, animals living in the crack...

>There's rarely anything sequential to
>figure out,

Transitions between crack sizes, maybe. And I've always found the transition from "power" climbing to "finesse" climbing to be a challenge.

>the movement is ad nauseum repetitive,

Often that is the challenge. How to keep climbing the same move for 100 feet or more. How to keep your ankles from giving out. How to keep offwidthing despite having your shoulder ground into hamburger.

Personally I enjoy the body mechanics of crack climbing.

>and the gear is almost always bomber
>and goes in anywhere.

Assuming you have enough pieces of the right size to keep your mind cool. And the rock quality sometimes does not allow good placements anywhere. On Wingate, you don't dare get too run out (ever hear of "tracking"?). But we were discussing granite.

Sometimes you can't see into the crack to place your gear, or peeking in throws you off balance.

Maybe the gear does go anywhere, but there's no way you can stop just anywhere.


poorboy


Dec 28, 2002, 1:34 AM
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Arapiles is probably some of hte best TRAD climbing in the world, and it's mostly vertical to overhanging face climbing.


kalcario


Dec 28, 2002, 2:19 AM
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I agree with everything you said, I think for me age is a factor too. It hurts too much anymore to put my hands and feet in cracks, whereas jugs are more body friendly. Also for me sport is actually the scarier of the 2, the only pro you get are the bolts and believe it or not sometimes they are far apart, further than I ever used to run it out on 5.11 cracks anyway...


mesomorf


Dec 28, 2002, 2:36 AM
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Oh, so that's why those cracks hurt more than they used to! I always thought it was the weight I've added...

Seriously, though, my additional weight makes me suck at steep face more than any other style. I never did like having to clip where "they" wanted you to clip, either.

I never adapted to the sport style like some folks my age have. Once a dinosaur, always a dinosaur. Maybe someday I'll be a fit dinosaur though. Maybe not.


skywalker


Dec 31, 2002, 9:37 PM
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I couldn't resist...How fun is it to follow a line predetermined by someone else? I have a trad rack and I can go anyway I choose!


funktimonious


Jan 1, 2003, 2:28 AM
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The line isn't determined, you can climb where ever you want while doing sport. It's just that you have certain "check points" that you can clip into if you want.


beercanclimber


Jan 1, 2003, 3:32 AM
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you are wrong in that the line isn't somewhat predetermined. sure, you can stray a few feet perhaps but then go back to the "check points." but what about the routes that aren't bolted? i think that is the point some people are trying to make, that not only doe it add a whole compenent of placing your own gear, but also climbing routes that haven't been bolted gives an added freedom.

because without bolts us sport climbers are seriously limited.


addiroids


Jan 1, 2003, 3:38 AM
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Well as many of you know, I usually trad climb or aid climb, but I did start out sport climbing. So I am there with my 10 draws in SoCal and looking at the SoCal Sport Climbing book. I look and look, but to my dismay, there is no mention of Joshua Tree. One of the world's best destination spots, and I can't climb there?!?! Right then and there, I sent the book back, called my buddy who I knew that climbed there and had him teach me how to place gear.

As said many times before in this thread, I do not want to be limited by having to climb where there are bolts. And I have never regretted being bogged down with all this gear. Crack climbing is beautiful (I agree that IC is just about the best pics around) and extremely varied.

I think about the only part about trad climbing is that the people who do it have massive balls.



TRADitionally yours,

Cali Dirtbag

[ This Message was edited by: addiroids on 2002-12-31 19:41 ]


tristero


Jan 1, 2003, 4:35 AM
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What drew you to climbing in the first place, you will find plenty of in trad climbing.


kalcario


Jan 1, 2003, 5:21 AM
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*What drew you to climbing in the first place, you will find plenty of in trad climbing.*

The difficulty in trad climbing is contrived. Take your hardest trad lead and top rop it. Wow it's WAY easier now, cuz there's no gear to wiggle in. Now take your hardest sport lead and top rope it. Practically no difference in difficulty.

ps I've done thousands of pitches of trad and sport both


apollodorus


Jan 1, 2003, 5:45 AM
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Many trad climbs are up cracks because that's what the pro goes into. Suction cup pro hasn't been invented (or at least perfected) yet.

Nowadays, a climb with mostly bolts for pro is called a sport climb. So, sport is also one dimensional, in a sense.

And for that matter, most climbs are one dimensional, in the sense that they follow a single line up the rock. You only need one dimension, distance from the base, to fully determine a point on it.

By contrast, snow climbs are 2-dimensional because a snow field has no definite line up; you wander up wherever you want.


easysteve


Jan 6, 2003, 2:08 AM
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Waaa? That's cool, I've climbed one crack, and I never bolted once.


womble


Jan 23, 2003, 6:28 PM
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Is it just me, or does it bug other people when people make asinine, inflammatory posts and then sign off 'Peace'?


dingus


Jan 23, 2003, 6:50 PM
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It's all part of the Great Game.

I want to be a climber. I always wanted to be a climber. Some kids my age dreamed of being cowboys or polar explorers or astronauts or famous baseball players, and well, so did I. But from my earliest memories I wanted to be a climber too.

As a kid, maybe 7 or 8, I used to lie on my side in my parents hallway and pretend to climb the chimney, using doorway moldings as edges. No one showed me the way, it was something internal, some mechanism that drove me to climb. My Pop claims the Dr. dropped me on my head in the delivery room.

I have always aspired to master climbing. I want to taste, touch, feel and experience it all and save big mountain expeditions, I have done just that. I'm an average bloke with modest climbing abilities. But I love it all, crack climbing, bouldering, sport, ice, alpine, peak bagging, I love it all.

I cannot find within me the irony or cynicism to denigrate one form in lieu of another (though individual climbers, that's a different story!).

To the original poster... crack climbing is only one dimensional if you make it that way. The other genres of climbing can be similarly restrictive. What of the people who only climb in gyms? Or do walls? Or only boulder?

To each their own I suppose, all's fair and whatnot. But to me, crack climbing skills are something I cherish. I never seem to tire of repeating my favorites and some of them I've climbed literally more than 50 times.

I encourage folks to open their hearts to all aspects of the sport... or don't. Ultimately one day you will be dead and it won't matter anyway. It's all just a bunch of crap. Or it is the sublime. Or both.

Peter Croft's "A Life in a Day in the Mountains"... moving, flowing over stone. I want to climb like that, climb like water, flow like the air, over every single medium presented to me.

It's what you make of it...

DMT


bandycoot


Jan 23, 2003, 6:50 PM
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traditional climbing is not contrived in difficulty. Try toproping a 1000+ foot rock. Now THAT is contrived difficulty.


dsafanda


Jan 23, 2003, 6:52 PM
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My $.02:

Crack climbing is as multi dimensional and interesting as climbing gets. Take your sport climbing skills to Yosemite and you will find out in a hurry! You will quickly discover that it's not about simply pulling down. The physical movement and technique that is required involves coordinating your entire body in a very complex game of opposing forces and balance.

Ever see photos of Lynn Hill free climbing the "Changing Corners" pitch on the Nose. It's mind boggling climbing! You see it but you still can't comprehend how on earth she does it. It involves moves you will never see in a gym or at a sport crag.

Too each his or her own I guess.


yosemite


Jan 23, 2003, 6:55 PM
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DMT,

Well said.


bakedjake


Jan 29, 2003, 4:44 PM
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Bakedjake is a newbie, bakedjake wants to someday become a trad climber. Why? I am totally psyched by the idea of having to use all your facilites from climbing to pro placement. This thread has given me new incentive.

"Some of the worlds greatest feats were accomplished by people not smart enough to know they were impossible." - Doug Lawson



ricardol


Jan 29, 2003, 5:05 PM
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To me trad is the ultimate freedom to take or not take risks while climbing..

Feeling a bit sketched out??? -- then sew it up .. Feeling bold? -- run it out.

You're not dependent on someone else's vision of the route. and their pro placement.

Even on fully runout sections you can sometimes find some pro.. a tiny finger pocket that will take a pink tricam is my favorite placement to find on a runout face section.

There is a huge mental focus that is required to do it well .. for example, i was doing trad at my limit on sunday, and had to muster enough mental focus to hold a finger lock while my feet were on granite friction on a vertical wall, long enough to decide which nut fit best on the constriction above my hands .. place it, evauluate the placement, decide that it was not the best i could do, try a different placement (turned nut around!) .. set the placement -- then sling it and finally clip it ..

.. this procedure has to be done in a methodical and controlled manner, regardless of how sketched the position it.. in my case, pitching off from that position would have put me a few feet the deck, and loaded my only other piece that i'd set ..

.. that extra dimension gives it a rush that i haven't gotten from sport, or TR ..

-- incidentally i later took 3 falls on that nut placement, which i was glad that i'd take enough time to make sure it was bomber..

-- ricardo


toobigtoclimb


Jan 29, 2003, 5:14 PM
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I just love the rythm of trad. Working with a partner, placing/pulling gear, arriving at the belay, celebrating.

I like sport too, especially for its ease and safety, but nothing beats the feel of a good multi-pitch trad route.

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