How to multipitch

If you are a beginner climber and want to ask other climbers any questions - then this is the place to ask.
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How to multipitch

Post by Mark » Wed Feb 15, 2006 8:50 am

I havent climbed multipitch before and at the moment I have a single pitch setup, ropes, quickdraws, reverso, screwgate (1) and a couple of straps (2 long 2 short).

What is the procedure when I reach the next belay station? Are there two bolts at the station? Do I use 2 straps (one through each bolt back to the screwgate), Do I use one strap (through both bolts and back to the screwgate) I'm guessing I'm going to need an extra screwgate (one to hang on, the other to belay the second?) Do I belay directly off my harness or should I do it thorugh a quickdraw off one of the bolts of the station (to prevent a fall from pulling me down)

What is the normal and safe procedure? Thanks

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Post by Grigri » Wed Feb 15, 2006 9:11 am

Youve got the basic idea Mark although I suggest you look this up in a book at least, and preferably get an experienced person to run through it with you too, before you head for the heights. You dont want to be figuring this out 100m off the deck! Its too much to describe here, and besides this is not the way to learn properly. You will need six screwgates at least (for the next belay as well) and four 60cm slings (straps) or two 120cm slings. If you opt for the sliding self equalising set up possible with the 120cm slings get some one to teach it to you well.

Make sure you know your stuff before heading out dude, there have been too many accidents lately! I strongly suggest attending a rock leader course with a properly qualified instructor. Good luck! May you find some cool (but safe) adventures!
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Post by Rastaman » Wed Feb 15, 2006 9:23 am

Agreed, its all too easy to have an accident.
Whats also important is to be able to ascend the rope. Your ropes can get stuck and then so are you if you can't ascend and free them. (I learnt this the hard way!). Basically learn to prussik.
Wear helmets, you and your belayer.
Definately worth it though, lots of fun and \"big mountain feel\".

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Post by Rookie » Wed Feb 15, 2006 11:07 am

Do you guys have any suggestions on books and training courses/venues to get this type of training?

Thanks for the info
Don't wish upon a star, reach out and grab it !

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Post by Tian » Wed Feb 15, 2006 12:28 pm

Yes bye a book but, get one of the thick ones with lots of info and pictures. The best way however is to learn form more experienced climbers. Hook up with someone and head of for a day of training or do a climbing course. It's also very important to know how to get back to the ground. Get your descending/abseiling skills spot on. This is where people die very easily. Check the links on Climbza to find training courses and other usefull info. Have fun!

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Post by timmy » Wed Feb 15, 2006 1:27 pm

Good advice guys!

Hey Mark, books and learning from the experienced are excellent ways to learn(thats the way I did), though I have been taught some tough lessons on the rock. Fortunately none were serious. I am going to be doing a few courses through MDT(just for my own personal gain in knowledge)

Take a look at what they offer ond consider it, it is pricey and time consuming so it may not be for you.

Hope to see you up on a stance one day. Enjoy and be safe.
\"If you don't break your ropes while you're alive do you think ghosts will do it after?\" -

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Re: How to multipitch

Post by Gadget » Wed Feb 15, 2006 1:29 pm

About books: the book \"Mountaineering freedom of the hills\" (now in 7th edition) has a reputation in the USA of being the \"mountaineering bible\". It has been a best selling mountaineering book for yonks is thick, comprehensive and fairly detailed and I found it to be a very useful reference to go back to time and again. But: it is pricy and I have not seen it in SA book shops (maybe

The list of climbing books (most in the \"How To Climb\" series) by John Long is very good, recommended by many and more readily available in SA. I only own and have read the \"Climbing Anchors\" book, and can recommend it (talks mainly about trad anchors and stances, but the principles applies to sport to some extent and it has a sport anchor chapter). Other titles in the series focus on sport climbing issues. Drifters in Sandton City has a few of his books.

Be careful to make sure you get a book that discuss the actual ins, outs and technical details of climbing and not just a lot of nice pics with a long list of topics which they only glance over.

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Post by scottnoy » Wed Feb 15, 2006 1:49 pm

A good climb to learn the ropes is Belly Button on Paarl Rocks. It's only two pinches (or three if you use the ab chains) but allows you to figure things out without it becoming a mission.
If you do it, 1. take the walk down, don't abseil it easier on your ropes and way quicker and 2. take a long sling so you can stand at the stance

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Post by Grigri » Wed Feb 15, 2006 6:45 pm

If you live near Cape Town one instructor who really knows his stuff is Ross Suter from High Adventure phone:021 6891234 or cell 0834375145. For literary reference the Petzl catalogues have loads of useful and interesting tips at the back of the catalogue, just dont mistake it for a training manual or handbook! :)

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Post by JonoJ » Thu Feb 16, 2006 8:04 am

Just go out and do what makes common sense........... natural selection will take care of the rest!

Oops, did I just say that? :shock:

No! Don't take me seriously on that.

Best bet - aside from (and above) reading up as much as you can - is to hook up with a climber who's got good multi-pitch experience ..... watch and learn, ask and learn more, do and learn most!


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Post by guest » Thu Feb 16, 2006 8:11 am

Everyone has the right to opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.
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Post by Mark » Thu Feb 16, 2006 8:33 am

Great! thanks - No fear I am still going to hook up with a buddy etc, but at least my head can work in a direction in the mean time and generate all the what ifs.

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