### How does one climb a route a 'negative number of times'?

Posted:

**Thu Nov 03, 2005 3:16 pm**I was trying to determine a good strategy for the upcoming rock rally competition this Saturday to earn as many points as possible and then I encountered a possible loophole in the scoring system.

For those not familiar with the basic scoring system, here is a brief description: your handicap grade is your ((highest redpoint the past year)+(highest flash the past year)/2) which equals 25 in my case. Then you earn 70 points for doing a route at this grade but 10 points per grade less for doing a route easier than your handicap grade (and 10 points more per grade for a route harder than this grade).

See the figure below to determine the number of routes to climb of a certain grade to earn the same number of points as if you climbed 1 route at your handicap grade. The graph shows that Sam has to climb 1 18 to earn the same number of points as I would climbing 7 19s or about 2 21s (or 1 25). The graph also shows that if I downclimbed an 11 I would also earn 70 points (if this means I climbed the route -1 number of times).

total number points= sum_i [(number routes at grade_i)*(70+10*(grade_i-hadicapgrade))]

So the question is how can we do a route a negative number of times? is it safe to assume by climbing it from the top downwards you have done it -1 times or do you need to be upside down as well, or is it not possible?

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For those not familiar with the basic scoring system, here is a brief description: your handicap grade is your ((highest redpoint the past year)+(highest flash the past year)/2) which equals 25 in my case. Then you earn 70 points for doing a route at this grade but 10 points per grade less for doing a route easier than your handicap grade (and 10 points more per grade for a route harder than this grade).

See the figure below to determine the number of routes to climb of a certain grade to earn the same number of points as if you climbed 1 route at your handicap grade. The graph shows that Sam has to climb 1 18 to earn the same number of points as I would climbing 7 19s or about 2 21s (or 1 25). The graph also shows that if I downclimbed an 11 I would also earn 70 points (if this means I climbed the route -1 number of times).

total number points= sum_i [(number routes at grade_i)*(70+10*(grade_i-hadicapgrade))]

So the question is how can we do a route a negative number of times? is it safe to assume by climbing it from the top downwards you have done it -1 times or do you need to be upside down as well, or is it not possible?

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