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Messages - johnmac

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Big Wall Forum / Re: Suggestions on First Solo Wall
« on: November 20, 2009, 08:26:54 am »
Where abouts do you live? Is Zion an option?

Big Wall Forum / Re: new zeland walls
« on: November 19, 2009, 06:31:13 pm »
I lived in Twizel/Mt Cook (up until about 8 years ago and my wife and I moved to Denver.  Twizel is like Canmore to Banff, and Mt  Cook is like Chamonix but without the easy access!

What do you want to know? Lay out some specific questions so that I can give you the information you want?

Also, New zeland is spelt New Zealand.



Big Wall Forum / Re: It doesn't seem real
« on: November 17, 2009, 12:36:05 pm »
Well said.

The other option is to go to Zion! It is very climbable there right now, although later on in the winter the daylight hours are short...

Big Wall Forum / Re: Portaledge bag issues, and modifications
« on: November 16, 2009, 09:47:46 am »
Seems like a good idea.

Russ ( might be williing to make you a new bag for your bag made out of more durable stuff. I'm surprised that metolius doesn't use stronger material as their haul bags are super durable.



Big Wall Forum / Re: Soloing Walls Forum- post here
« on: November 11, 2009, 07:57:06 pm »
Sorry I meant

I'll try to find the link and post it up for you...

Karl Baba is selling one for 170.

Only post a couple days ago so he probably still has it.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Leaning Tower
« on: November 10, 2009, 02:50:59 pm »
On the first day try not to plan too much, just get up there an established on the route. I never like to put myself under much pressure on day one... Pace yourself and then on day 2 you'll do really well...

Big Wall Forum / Re: Soloing Walls Forum- post here
« on: November 10, 2009, 02:48:42 pm »
The overhand backup knots I"m referring too are pre tied on the lead line and as they come towards the sp I untie them.

I don't tie the rope to any intermediate anchor. If the rope starts to get heavy and jam the sp I'll use a long prussik to anchor the lead line to a couple of pieces. That way I won't conpromise the dynamism of the system.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Soloing Walls Forum- post here
« on: November 10, 2009, 08:22:37 am »
Does having the rope in a pack really reduce drag that much?  Do you only use one rope in that case?  Do you have backup knots in the bag?


One lead line in pack. Tow a light 9mm rapp/haul line.

Yes, I tie backup knots and undo them as they come over the shoulder, (you will feel them). Sometimes they happen at a bad spot but its rare that I can't put something in or untie with on hand.

Give it a try, its pretty easy and fun to boot.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Ebay - A5 NF fly for sale
« on: November 09, 2009, 06:24:10 pm »

I have a bibler tent that fits perfectly but I've yet to figure our exactly how to anchor it to the ledge safetly. Its also hard to set up as well....The fin isn't a big deal because I never share my ledge with another person. My main wall climbing parter has a Fish double whammy and we use that if we are just taking one ledge since it has a lot more room than the A5.



Big Wall Forum / Re: Ebay - A5 NF fly for sale
« on: November 09, 2009, 10:44:01 am »
I'm still looking for a fully enclosed fly (expedition) for my A5 double ledge, so if anyone every sees one, please let me know.


Big Wall Forum / Re: Soloing Walls Forum- post here
« on: November 08, 2009, 06:51:54 pm »
I really like the Silent Partner. When aid climbing I use the continuous loop to reduce rope drag and tie back up knots. Having a nice smooth rope no thicker than 10.5mm is the way to go. Once a rope gets beaten up, the system starts to bind. Hence I keep a rope only for the SP.

For other climbing I stick the rope in a light pack and have the rope running over my shoulder down to the SP. It works very well.  I've tried the loop thing as described in the Manual but I don't like all the loops hanging down. I size of the SP seems to be only an issue in the shop, once on a climb I don't even notice it and most of the time I forget about the unit and my backup knot jams reminding me that I'm rope soloing...

I've tried most of the other devices on the market, solo aid, soloist, grigri and even clove hitches, but I keep coming back to the SP.  There is one for sale right now over on somewhere in the three legged ascent of Zodiac thread.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Aliens Web site offline
« on: November 04, 2009, 02:23:50 pm »
I'm hoping that they have just forgotten to pay for the domain name.

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 / Re: Crazy Yates sizes...
« on: November 04, 2009, 12:47:36 pm »
I think Metolius will modify the Leg loops for you to allow quick escapes...

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 / Re: lunar eclipse
« on: October 29, 2009, 12:53:00 pm »
Maybe the two on the outside were the orginal anchors and then one in the middle added a year or two later. Just because of the different heads.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Skid Lids
« on: October 20, 2009, 12:12:08 pm »
5 questions:

1) Do you wear a helmet while climbing, always, sometimes, or never?

Yes, I almost always wear a helmet. Exceptions might be top roping something but that's about it. I'm amazsed people don't wear helmets.

2) If not always, why not?


3) If you use one, what brand/style do you prefer and why?

Petzl Elios (blue)

4) What's your biggest bitch (if any) about currently available helmets ?

Lack of venitaltion. I wear a Skull cap which helps a lot.

5) Has a helmet ever saved you from possible significant injuries? Tell us your story!

Numerous times. I replaced a helmet not too long when I took a bad swinging fall and smashed head first into a diherald. The helmet was totlly destroyed, with a crack down the middle but I was fine. No damage done other than a really sore neck for a few days.

I alpine climbed for twenty years and the helmet saved my noggin many times with falling ice and rock.


I'm surprised these haven't sold yet. With the death of Dave Waggoner over the weekend, who knows if CCH is still in business.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Zion- how long to dry out in winter temps?
« on: October 07, 2009, 12:29:42 pm »
Weather in Jan and Feb can be fine for climbing. Have a Jacket for any time spent in the shade. It can get cold belaying. It's the nights and the frigid water temperatures that I don't like. So try to pick a route you don't have to cross the virgin river. The days are pretty short so things just take longer, however, it can get pretty warm in the direct sun. Take a stove for coffee!
Whatever you pick, make sure you really check the descent route, as it if has snowed you might find that some of the gullies have patches of snow in them which can make getting off nasty.

Something that you might want to look at is the Smooth Ellison aka Crack in the Cosmic Egg on Mt Moroni. 5.8 c2+. Its in the sun, you rapp the route so it's an easy retreat if the weather crapps out.  It's in the new guidebook. Moonlight gets done in the winter too.


Big Wall Trip Reports / Re: Salath
« on: September 29, 2009, 05:04:47 pm »
Wow, what a great looking cam? How much are you going to sell these for?

I also heard that Tom was not making them anymore.

Fantastic TR by the way.

Big Wall Trip Reports / Re: Weeklong alpine shotgun mission goes small wall
« on: September 02, 2009, 11:19:38 am »
I think the love hate thing about soloing walls is pretty normal. I struggle with it at times and I garantee that on every route there is a point in time then I swear that this is my last time... First day is always hard, I've backed off lots of time on the first pitch or two. Just didn't seem right... As the time goes on, I usually get stronger mentally.

The other day I watched vertical frontier and Royal Robbins said something that I think is very true for me, in that you have to climb the route first in your mind before you can climb it physically. I think that's especially true with my solos. Sometimes I need to fail on a route before I'm ready to climb it. Get the rock dust under my fingernails.

Big Wall Trip Reports / Re: Dunn-Westbay V .10 C3
« on: September 01, 2009, 09:24:14 am »
Well done! Excellent TR.

Thanks for sharing...


PS: How about posting a cross link to in the bw forum?

Big Wall Forum / Re: Rope Question
« on: August 27, 2009, 01:32:23 pm »
The Edelweiss has a Sharp 10.5mm bi color availble in 60 and 70m lenghts but not 11mm.

I don't tend to buy 11mm ropes any more but rather 10.5 or so.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Rope Question
« on: August 26, 2009, 11:49:35 am »
Sounds like a perfect candidtate as a haul line to me :-)

Big Wall Forum / Re: Dunn-Westbay Beta
« on: August 24, 2009, 12:22:12 pm »
Thanks for the update ...

The reason was I was asking about Golden is that a couple people at Bentgate were asking me about the route the day before...



Big Wall Forum / Re: WOO HOO -- Double FISH Score!
« on: August 21, 2009, 08:30:33 am »
Congratulations... it's great to see good gear get a second chance at life!

Big Wall Forum / Re: Sportiva Tradmasters as wall shoes
« on: August 13, 2009, 08:43:28 am »
I wonder if he could do the same to five tennies?

Big Wall Forum / Re: Fall Wal plans???
« on: August 13, 2009, 08:42:45 am »
I'm off to Zion for my normal Setember trip in a few weeks. Will be doing a little soloing and a wall with a friend. Not exactly sure what yet.

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