Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

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Xharlie
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Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby Xharlie » Tue Sep 21, 2010 4:04 pm

The route called "The Gospel Express" at "The Steeple" in Montagu is listed as a 17 on both this page (http://www.climb.co.za/wiki/index.php/R ... he_Steeple) and here (http://www.climb.co.za/wiki/index.php/M ... sic_Routes) but on De Bos' website, it's listed as a 24.

So... which is it?

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Justin
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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby Justin » Tue Sep 21, 2010 4:07 pm

Gospel Express is grade 17
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toejam
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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby toejam » Tue Sep 21, 2010 4:07 pm

Yip, it's a really easy 24.

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby shorti » Tue Sep 21, 2010 4:23 pm

I once belayed Mokganjetsi in the pouring rain when he was trying to clean draws off the route so we can bugger off and he struggled for grip. I also watched Mariana and Heinrich (on separate occasions, I think) climbing it on trad gear and I think if you combine the two (rain & trad) you might get to 24. But, on a clear day anyone can climb it, it's a really nice route.

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby mokganjetsi » Wed Sep 22, 2010 6:52 pm

a fantastic route..... hard for 17 though... maybe 18? and definitely tradable.

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby jgb » Thu Sep 23, 2010 1:15 pm

A great route, wish it was 24, I thought it was a sustained 17, like almost every move is a 17 move, hense it maybe seems a bit harder?

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby paddy » Mon Sep 27, 2010 12:02 am

It also has badly worn lower offs which need replacing - be careful

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby amm » Mon Sep 27, 2010 8:44 am

Lower off chains are actually half way worn through

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby Andy Davies » Tue Sep 28, 2010 10:05 am

If the chains are half worn through then may I suggest that someone takes the initiative and goes and replaces them? The alternative is we could be attending someones funeral. The fairy godmother aint gonna do it............
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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby mokganjetsi » Tue Sep 28, 2010 10:43 am

if i remember correctly there are fairly lengthy chains on the gospel express - if it's the case someone just need to get up there with a bolt cutter and snip the last chain links; leaving new ones to lower off on.... a compromise solution i guess but it will make good for a few more years.
if the remianing length of chain is too short it could cause sideways pull on the bolts so please consider that.

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby Justin » Tue Sep 28, 2010 10:47 am

I'll go and put something in place before the weekend.
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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby amm » Tue Sep 28, 2010 7:52 pm

I now believe in fairy god mothers/ fathers

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby BrendonSalzer » Wed Sep 29, 2010 9:18 am

Stiff 17 :thumright
Really nice climbing though...
remember the days when sex was safe and climbing was dangerous

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby Ansie » Wed Sep 29, 2010 10:22 am

Maybe it is a 24 if you have one arm and no legs. Or it could be a 24 if you really really want it to be one.

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby Nattrass » Wed Sep 29, 2010 11:00 am

Hey Justin - will be in Montague in December and will bring new anchors - as this is my route. Probably the best route I ever opened....

Roger

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby Justin » Wed Sep 29, 2010 11:07 am

Cool, as mentioned I'll have a look at the chains and sort something out if necessary (I'm thinking mailon's at the moment).

It's probably also the most climbed route you've opened (it even gets trad climbed from time to time 8)
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Justin
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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby Justin » Sat Oct 02, 2010 5:31 pm

Just got back from the Steeple. The chains at the top of Gospel Express are worn, but not that badly - See image below.

Image

In my opinion the chains strength is still good and I put a temporary fix in place. I added one maillon to the left chain, this puts all the weight onto the right bolt, with the second bolt serving as a backup. This will also reduce rope twisting and further wear to the left chain.
The route will receive new anchors in December courtesy of the Roger Nattrass who opened the route.

I did this to the anchors of the neighbouring route (Quassimodo) as well.

Image

A good number of the bolts on this route need to be inspected as well, there are signs of I don't know what! See pic below

Image

:idea: Things I forgot to do:
Flip the chain link to inspect the other side for wear
Face the gate of the maillon outward

Arguments:
That I should have attached the maillon one link up
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mullet
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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby mullet » Sun Oct 03, 2010 7:29 pm

Thanks for the effort Justin! I'm sure it'll hold for some time still. I know everyone will appreciate it.
...Chalk is cheap...

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby Justin » Mon Jan 17, 2011 4:48 pm

Roger Nattrass kindly dropped off a set of new top anchors for Gospel Express over the holidays. They were installed this past weekend. The great thing about this setup is that only the chain link will need to be swapped out one day – (see pic below).

Image

On Cogman’s Buttress… Tony Lourens kindly added a biner to the stances that had only one maillon (see pic here)
Many thanks to Roger and Tony!

In the mean time some person has removed the maillon that I put onto the chains of Quassimodo - Just because something is not bolted/glued down, does not mean you need to take it!
Let it be known... if anyone removes any part of the anchors from Gospel Express I will get a posse together, hunt you down and make you drink 'Montagu water' till you have kidney failure!

FYI: The reason for putting the maillon on Quassimodo was to make it safer for everyone - if you have my maillon please get it back to me, tx.
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Chris F
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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby Chris F » Wed Jan 19, 2011 2:00 pm

There are some dicks out there.

Why do people persist in toproping through lower offs anyway. Ignorance? Laziness or pure NIMBYism?

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby proze » Wed Jan 19, 2011 2:46 pm

Chris F wrote:There are some dicks out there.

Why do people persist in toproping through lower offs anyway. Ignorance? Laziness or pure NIMBYism?

Mostly ignorance, followed by laziness. What's the latter?


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XMod
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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby XMod » Thu Jan 20, 2011 2:44 pm

Hanger looking a bit sad there! It looks like surface rust only. When things start looking that way its best to undo the hanger/nut and have a gd long look at the stud and hole around it, if the stud is rust free and there are no signs of rust emitting from the hole itself its probably ok. Check the nut and hanger for 'pitting' (deep rust) which will produce larger thicker scales of rust rather than just a surface dust. If in doubt replace. The ones in the pic look ok but on such a popular route its probably best to replace them as a matter of course. A lot of attention gets paid to top anchors, yet the quality of running belays (bolts en-route) is equally important as they are shockloaded regularly and there is only one of them.

Which brings us to the question the ARF have been asking for several years, who will replace all of the worn out gear when its needed? A lot of Montagu routes are gonna reach that age soon requiring substantial funding and time to maintain them all. Is there a fund going for this purpose? - If not better start one that ppl can donate to. Does ARF operate in Montagu?

Its noble of Roger to replace the anchors but its also unrealistic to expect the OP to be responsible for every route they have opened. Take care and beware!

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Re: Montagu: "The Gospel Express" at the Steeple

Postby Justin » Wed Jan 18, 2012 3:39 pm

Just to add a conclusion to this thread - Quassimodo and Gospel Express have been rebolted (see the links below for details):

- Bolt Failure at The Steeple
- Quasimodo Bolt Corrosion Investigation
- New Anchors on Gospel Express and Quasimodo

Image
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