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Topics - johnmac

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Big Wall Forum / Andy Kirkpatrick's Zodiac climb
« on: July 06, 2010, 10:53:54 am »
Andy posted this earlier this morning ... a nice piece of writing about his speed solo ascent of Zodiac...

Cross post from

New ledges for sale.

450 is the asking price but it has been up for a couple of days so you might be able to talk them down.

Asking 400, same as above been on the site a couple days...

Big Wall Forum / Metolius Gizmo Belay Ledge
« on: April 07, 2010, 01:54:19 pm »
In the latest MGear catalog, the Metoluis Gizmo Belay Ledge

Basically a 20.5 x 39.5 portaledge... 5lbs 7oz for 390 dollars... recommended for Big Wall pushes!

Anyone seen one... Seems really expensive to me.

Big Wall Forum / A5 Flys for sale over on Ebay
« on: March 14, 2010, 07:52:33 pm »
There are several A5 rainflys for sale over on Ebay right now.

Some wall gear over on for sale...

Biners, rurps, belay seat, rivet hangers, pings, wires, tricams, etc

Big Wall Forum / Aliens Web site offline
« on: November 04, 2009, 12:54:10 pm »
I had heard that it was produciton as usual but now I'm wondering ....

The links shows that the domain is available.

Big Wall Forum / NForce Ascenders
« on: November 04, 2009, 12:46:19 pm »
They have been out for a while now but I've yet to meet anyone that uses them. My old petzl's are getting pretty bashed up and I was wondering if anyone has switched to the BD's.

The new Petzel feel pretty nice in the shop but that's not always a sure thing either so if anyone has any expereince with them would be appreciated. I figure I can probably sell my on Ebay for a good price and not have muck to pay for the upgrade. Gotta love Ebay.



Big Wall Forum / Psychovertical by Andy Kirkpatrick
« on: November 03, 2009, 12:36:24 pm »

Big Wall Forum / Sportiva Tradmasters as wall shoes
« on: August 10, 2009, 08:34:31 pm »
Well, my test of using LaSportiva Tradmasters as a wall shoe failed.

The shoe has enough support lengthwise and wearing them a size larger than my normal shoes made them very comfortable, but the arch is where the issue was. The shoe is cut away under to the arch and even standing in yates ladders my arches were starting to get sore in a 10 minutes. A hour later I was tearing them off... I hate to think what they would feel like if I was using my light aider set up.

Putting inserts in the shoes didn't help either as they took up too much volume and started to cause problems for my toes...

I'm back to using my five tennies with inserts and carrying a pair of slippers for when I need to do free climbing that is above my comfort level in my sloppy shoes. I would really like to find something that I could do both in and avoid carrying an extra pair of shoes... Luckily I was able to recoop my costs.

So the quest continues for the perfect wall boot!

Big Wall Forum / Metolius Quarterdome Haul Bag - Anyone got one
« on: August 10, 2009, 08:18:34 pm »
I've got a opportunity to buy one for a very good price (about half retail) and wondered what everyone's thoughts on it where.

Is it big enough for say a grade 5 route? Is it a useful size?

I'm not worried about quality, etc, since I've already got a sentinel, an Half dome and an El cap!



Big Wall Forum / Standard to Adjustables and now back to standard dasies
« on: August 10, 2009, 12:25:59 pm »
Has anyone else done this...

Gone from standard daisies to adjustables and then back to standard daises after a few years...

I've pretty much come full circle and have gone back to using standard daisers for everything, including jugging, anchoring, aiders, etc.

I like the adjustables, but ...

When I switched back to using standard daises I really noticed the differience in weight. Sure, it might be only a few ounces but I tend to really notice it when jugging...

Fraying webbing
The Yates buckle/webbing combination wears out really fast and you end up having to replace the webbing after a wall or two. Not a big deal, but it frays before your eyes....

As a docking system for haul bags
I've gone back to using a piece of 8mm for this... just so much lighter and has more options

Likewise with aiding. I don't use daisies on aiders until about c3 and when I do using the old system is just so much cleaner and lighter...

A couple of times my buckle has slipped and given me a hell of a fright!

So, I've gone full circle back to my old systems. Its cheaper, lighter and with a bit of practice just as easy to use. Weight all that stuff up and it starts to add up. I've also gone from 4 aiders to 2 ladders, big weight difference there too!

Anyone else done this or am I the only screwball here?

Big Wall Forum / Zion Climbing Free and Clean book review
« on: August 03, 2009, 06:48:17 am »

Big Wall Forum / Supertopo Zion Guide Available
« on: July 24, 2009, 10:00:24 am »
I just finished printing all 232 pages of the new zion guide.

It looks pretty amazing, but quite different from the usual sp guide book. There route information is more than adequate but not pitch by pitch like we are used too with sp guides. The quality of the pictures, route drawings, layout and presentation is stellar. Really nice to see plenty of space devoted to history. Some nice pieces written by JM and Mike Anderson.

You can get a copy over on supertopo

Zion Climbing Free and Clean is the most comprehensive climber?s guide to Zion National Park, arguably one of the most beautiful national parks in the United States. Inside you will find up-to-date information on more than 250 free climbs and 25 of Zion?s best clean aid climbs, plus pictures and directions to the park?s most popular bouldering areas. Detailed coverage ranges from 10-foot boulder problems to 2000-foot epic free climbs, making this compilation of stories, maps, and history the best guide available to Zion.

Special Offer - get a FREE print book and Save 25% - expires after August 9

Order a Zion Climbing eBook and receive a free Zion Climbing print book (ships August 7). Not only do you get a free print book, but you get free shipping and no sales tax (a 25% savings). Offer expires after August 9. This is an especially great deal if you live outside the United States because with free shipping you save almost $13.00.

Big Wall Forum / WTB - A few angles and KBs
« on: June 26, 2009, 10:27:05 am »
I'm wanting to purchase a few BD pins:

2 x 3/4 inch angels

2 x 1 inch angles

2 or 3 knife blades

Sawned offs are fine since that will save me the effort of hacksawing them!

So if you have any extra iron lying around and don't need it anymore please shoot me an email.



Big Wall Forum / G-Money Zion
« on: June 16, 2009, 05:47:14 pm »
Anyone got an updated topo for G-Money in Zion. I

I believe it goes at c3 and it looks like a nice route but i haven't been able to track down a topo for it yet. (Park Hq didn't have any.)



On a recent trip back home I found a spare copy of Yosemite climbs by George Meyers. Its the yellow, 1st edition.  Its never been read, so its in mint condition. Asking 40.00 obo.

I also have a copy of Climb, by Bob Godfery, 1977. (1st Ed.) The jacket is ripped but the book is in very good condition. 100 obo.

I'm trying to get some money together to buy some offsets!



PS: If anyone is interested I can post up pics.

Big Wall Forum / Grey Aliens
« on: May 18, 2009, 10:22:00 am »
Does anyone buy the Grey Aliens...

They are supposed to fill a gap between the Yellow and Red sizes but I haven't found that to be an issue...

Also likewise with the grey/red and yellow/grey hybrids...

If I go buy what's available in the shops these sizes are probably the easiest ones to buy.



Big Wall Forum / Two Aider Experience
« on: May 03, 2009, 10:26:40 am »
Last weekend on a wall I committed to the route without my usual aider setup and found it pretty enlightening so I thought I should share. Usually I take the following:

* 2 pr of Aiders (4 in total)
* Set of speed slings for cleaning
* Yes an old heavy system, but very comfortable.

The aiders are free floating. I don't connect them with daisy's until I start hooking etc.

On this wall I only took 2 Yates wall ladders and after the first couple of pitches I was really wondering why I had changed my tried and true methods but my the top of the route I knew I wasn't going to go back to the old system. I had used ladders in the past but hadn't liked them so I knew what I was getting into.

To make the transition easier try this:

1. Wear sticky shoes, such as five tennies. You want to be able to smear and be able to create a stable platform for your other foot. Try placing the heel of your free foot against the heel of the foot in the aider. It works surprisingly well. I wear stiff ski boot inserts in my wall shoes for extra support.

2. Teeing off helps a lot in keeping your body in position. If you don't know what I'm talking about buy Jeff Lowes, clean walls DVD. Toes got a little tender but not too bad.

3. The edges on the Yates aiders are sharp (new) and this caused my shins to get cut up and tender. Usually I wear knee pads but in this case having them slip down and cover my shins worked pretty well. Hopefully with use this issue will go away.

4. Jugging with the ladders were fine and as long as I keep my toes pointed slightly down my feet didn't come out. No need to carry my jugging system anymore.

5. A third ladder would be helpful in some situations such as going through roofs, etc.  I'm going to buy a Yates speed ladder for this.

6. Top stepping is pretty easy in ladders since the distance between steps is less than some of my aiders. Just have a fifi set up with the right length prior to stepping up. In my garage on my climbing wall I have a series of anchors set up as a bolt ladder and over the years have practiced top stepping. With some practice you will be amazed at how big a step you can take.

For example, Prodigal Sun is a very popular route in zion and the first pitch is often a horror show for people due the distance between bolts. The first time I climbed that pitch I was cursing the person who put it up the entire way and I had to make a stick clip to reach the fixed pro.  It took like 3 hours to climb the first 2 pitches.

The next time I climbed it I was able to top step easily and kept waiting for the long reaches that never came. I can't over emphasize how important this is.... It saves time  (1 hour lead compared to 3 hrs) and allows you to make better placements.

7. The aiders show more wear and tear than I thought they would after one wall. I'm going to have to apply some edge protector to the edges of the aiders and all the joins. Note: The wear and tear is cosmetic only.

8. Less clutter to worry about. 2 aiders is less work than 4.

There is probably other things I can add but can't remember right now and the sun is coming out so its time to head outside...

For hard aid I'm going to stick with my 2 pr for aiders but for routes up to C2 + I'm going to be using my new system from now on.

Big Wall Forum / Fish hooks (orginal unused - large photo warning)
« on: February 10, 2009, 11:03:47 am »
I've just scored a couple of Fish hooks that have never been used before .... been looking for them for years...

I paid 19 each, which was the orginal price. Sweet deal...

Anyone used these before, are they as good as people say?

Big Wall Forum / FS: TNF/A% single ledge fly brand new
« on: July 14, 2008, 10:47:43 am »
Cross post over from ...

Standard A5/north face single portaledge fly. Brand new still with tags in the bag. If you have an A5 single ledge this is your chance to get an extra fly for the long run. I can also include an extra bed for your ledge.

asking $150 OBO for the fly.
will bargain with bedding included

Big Wall Forum / Aliens for sale over at
« on: April 09, 2008, 10:29:34 pm »
Set of 7 aliens for sale, or 40 each. They all been tested. Not mine, just cross posting the info.

By the way I picked up a couple hybrid aliens at WindyX yesterday. They have more in stock if anyone is looking...

Big Wall Forum / BD Big Gun Harness
« on: April 08, 2008, 10:56:27 am »
Anyone tried this out yet? Thanks. John

Big Wall Forum / Metolius Master Cam reveiw (cross post)
« on: April 07, 2008, 07:49:36 am »

Big Wall Forum / Iron for sale
« on: March 24, 2008, 09:45:40 am »
For sale over on

It's not mine, I'm just one of the admins on the site...

Big aid climbing rack. These are mostly Chouinard hardware that have been used-- they are not cracked and do not have broken eyes. This is over 100 pitons = $4.50 @ plus extra aid gear!

Prefer to sell as a lot - make an offer!

4 baby angles (1/2")
5 baby angles (5/8")
2 angles (3/4")
4 angles (1")
8 angles (1.5")
1 angles (2")
1 angle(2.5")

12 assorted Lost Arrows
18 assorted Knifeblades
25 Leeper Z-tons
7 sawed-off angles (assorted)
3 Bong-Bongs

plus, 15 chouinard biners, many small wires (#1 stoppers -for rivets), few assorted copperheads, Big wall hammer + holster

Big Wall Forum / Silent Parner and A5 DB ledge for sale
« on: March 20, 2008, 08:54:52 am »
Just in case anyone is looking for one, there is a A5 Double Ledge and fly as well as a Silent Partner over at for sale.

These are not mine. I wouldn't sell my A5 ledge and SP.

Big Wall Forum / Resetting drilled angles in sandstone for upward pull
« on: March 08, 2008, 09:01:46 pm »
I'm curious to know what people think regarding resetting anchors on sandstone routes such as in zion for an upward pull.

For example, the first real pitch on spaceshot, you have two drilled angles. What I've done here is to set the rope for an upward pull using a screamer and then tied the rope also off to the first couple of bolts as well, since the start is a bolt ladder. I know that many people believe that drilled angles, if placed correctly, are stronger than bolts in sandstone.

If I have a heavy bag I could incorporate it into the anchor but on routes like that I find it better to go lighter.

Anyhow, I'd appreciate to find out what others do in similar situations or am I just being paranoid!

Here's a pic as an example:

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