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Messages - Paulhauser

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Big Wall Forum / Re: The Valley in April
« on: January 16, 2010, 11:01:51 pm »
Thanks for all the info. Let's see how this trip will turn out....

Big Wall Forum / Re: The Valley in April
« on: January 15, 2010, 12:21:53 pm »
The biz meeting is a 4 day session, from the 17th to the 20th. I can make about one week plus on either end, before or after. So my total stay would be close to two weeks. Roughly one week for climbing, the other is to do the work + fly in and out.

My free skills are somewhat non-existent :-) I started to climb in '98, did a lot of long trand routes in the 5.10 level, then my interest switched to bigwalls. After partner and me got turned back twice from our first big wall in Norway in 2000, I finished university, started to work and did not climb till last year. The I started again, aiding a lot of small 1 pitch routes here, mostly by roped solo. I was working on hauling systems, tricks, etc, did a lot of big-wall exercises on these small cliffs as a preparation for something big, but could not find a partner last year to do something in Europe. Soloing my first bigwall is somewhat daunting, even if I have a lot of knowledge (or I want to believe) of the placements and the whole system, so in absence of a partner last year I finally did nothing big.

As this opportunity is coming to be able to visit the valley, it is hard to resist even if there are a lot of details to work out. Climbing bigwalls is really an ambition that stayed with me during all my non-climbing years, and I feel that if there is something in life that during all the life's changes stays with me, that dream I must fulfill. I was planning to go to Norway this summer when I feel ready, but this new opportunity is more tempting .-)

Big Wall Forum / The Valley in April
« on: January 15, 2010, 11:41:53 am »
Dear All,

I got the news today that I probably will be visiting the SF area for a business meeting from 17-20 of April. This will also be my first visit to the US, by the way. The opportunity is tantalizing: to get a few extra days and do a wall in the valley.

Before I really start planning , please let me know what to expect regarding  weather and climbing conditions in Yosemite (El Cap ) by that time of the year.  I can either come a week earlier to the meeting or leave a week after that. I pretty much have about a week, 8 days max either way.  Once I made my flight booking I can not change it, so what do you think? Should I forget it and use the time to do some sightseeing? (not bad idea either as I have never been in the US before)
What chances do I have for some nice weather?

I don yet have a partner (but have someone in mind) and I really do not want to begin daydreaming about this until I got the confirmation about the trip and also will be asssured that by that time of the year I can get a fair chance to have decent weather.



Big Wall Forum / Re: Soloing Belay Device Question
« on: April 15, 2009, 02:00:39 pm »
I'm using the same system, but even if I clip the top biner directly to the Yates' strap, sans ring, the grigri is still flipping around, making crossloading the low biner possible. So now I put the cord on the top of the grigri directly to the cross strap of the Yates chest harness. It takes more time to remove, but for me it is ok.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Where is the very best rock for Big Walls?
« on: April 03, 2009, 07:29:11 am »
On my way to Milford sound I remember seeing huge walls on both side of the road. This was some kilometers before the Homer tunnel, coming from Te-Anau. I don't remember exactly but it seemed like granite or gneiss. Anyone?
I was cycling around NZ some years back. Did nothing climbing, only some mountaineering but this was the trip of a lifetime really. Did more than 3000 km of pedalling around the 2 islands in 2 months, did sea kayak trip, hiking  and an all time goofing around with my brother.  Brings back some fond memories. I'll never be 24 again :-D

Big Wall Forum / Re: Soloing Belay Device Question
« on: March 24, 2009, 12:06:36 pm »
I drilled by the pic in Ogden's book. Maybe a bit too close, but too late, as you said. I will not use this grigri for anything else than soloing, that was decided before I modded it. Anyway, thanks for the heads up.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Soloing Belay Device Question
« on: March 23, 2009, 12:48:26 pm »
Ditch the pear shape biner and replace with either a steel biner or a Maillon Rapide D.

If you are going to use a gigri you might as well make it as safe as possible. There is one case of a Brit using a DMM Belay Master biner falling on Eagles Way and the biner breaking...

Hope he survived (backup knot?)

Yes, I will buy a Maillon for sure.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Soloing Belay Device Question
« on: March 22, 2009, 01:23:23 pm »
This is how I have done the mod:

And this is how today's setup was.

The locking biner on the right goes to the belay loop, the non locking biner on the left clips to the chest harness. (It is a Yates double gear sling, I clip this biner directly to the cross strap on the chest, not into the ring on it)

I will make a couple of adjustments based on today's experience:

- get the cordlette loop on the grigri much sorter
- and tie it directly into the chest harness, without the non-locking biner
- I will get a bely master for the pear biner, to keep it more in its place
- and will try to use one of these small rubber bands on the grigri and the pear biner to keep the thing on its place:

Big Wall Forum / Re: Soloing Belay Device Question
« on: March 22, 2009, 08:48:02 am »
I did a aid route solo in a local crag today, using a modified Grigri. My worries (that I posted a few posts above) were justified, the grigri flopped around a lot even though it is modified and connected to the chest harness. I was worried that it will cross load the biner, and whether it will be in a right position to catch if I fall.

So grigiri soloist out there what am I doing wrong? Is it the usual clusterf..k or there are ways to improve this?
I bought the grigri to have less hassle with backup knots and clove hitches, but so far I'm not convinced? If one keeps worrying about your equipment on the third sketchy hook move in a row like I did today, it will push up the fear factor quite a bit.

Paul, what kind of nylon pants are you talking about?

Like these.  I have a pair similar to this and in the inside the label says 100% nylon. So it is not cotton/synthetic mix, but pure syntethic material.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Soloing Belay Device Question
« on: March 21, 2009, 11:42:35 pm »
Rags, please not that the OP and much of this thread is more than 2 years old. I just resurrected it instead of creating a new one as I have a question related to this.

Hoi, thanks for the info, I might as well need them later today .-)

What was working me is to use a normal nylon pair of pants. No cotton here. Those 'hiking' style, lightwight ones. The reason being first of all that once it got wet, will dry quickly, even from body heat. Second, it is durable and also have some stretch in it, so I found them more comfortable for outdoor activities that cotton pants.
Also for this winter I used a bikers pair of thermal underwear under it.
They are the perfect combo for snowy, rainy, wind conditions, as the inner layer keeps you warm, and they both dry quickly and wick moisture out very quickly. I did some climbing with a gore-tex outer shell pants, which has its place for long, multiday routes for extreme conditions, but as long as i was moving, the thermal underwear/nylon outer was much more convenient and better for me (I was soloing so it really did not allow any rest time to get cold :-)

Big Wall Forum / Re: Soloing Belay Device Question
« on: March 21, 2009, 03:30:50 pm »
Sorry for bringing back an old topic, but I did not want to start a new one (and it shows I did some searching :-) )

I'm doing a lot of soloing these times and just got a Grigri for this purpose. So far I have used the clove hitch method.
I have already made the mod on the Grigri (a small hole on the top for keeping upwards), I have a chest harness to attach it for the right position, so in principle everything is set.
The thing which is puzzling me a bit is the way to attach the G to my (sit) harness. If I attach it to the belay loop with a pear locking biner, it is in the right position, no torque. But when I did a test fall at home I have noticed that after the grigri engaged, it nearly knock out of my teeth, because it got quite "high" and also put a lot of stress on the top small loop that connects it to the chest harness to keep it upright. I'm not sure I can explain it 100% as english is not my mother language. 

Now if I connect the biner directly through the leg/belt loop, it keeps the grigri lower, but it will be 90 degrees turned, so it will be parallel with my body. And I'm worry about the torque in an event of a fall.

Anyone experienced such phenomena? Any help?

(maybe I have to keep my harness a bit tighter and to keep it more low, but I dont think it is a solution)

Tomorrow morning I'm off to a local crag to try this all "live". I'm not worried the grigri not catching because it will (or my backup know at least). But I'm worried about it impaling my head from under :-)

Big Wall Forum / Re: Lead Rope Suggestions?
« on: March 21, 2009, 01:52:02 am »

I've been checking out this Beal Edlinger 10.2mm x 70M.

I have this rope, this is Beal's most inexpensive rope over here. It is a basic one, not much extra, no dry core or whatever it is called. I haven't used for big walls yet. It does have a tendency to absorb more water that I thought it would when I was cragging this winter in snow/sleet. Handling is fine, wear is ok so far.
But next time I'd buy something a little beefier and with more "extra". Probably Beal Apollo II which is marketed as a rope for big walls.

My 0.2 cents...

Big Wall Forum / Re: Pro Traxion things to remember
« on: March 19, 2009, 12:12:13 am »
I'd be curious about the ascenders, too. Though I think that falling 15' onto any ascender is a hell of a risk, as they were definitely not designed to hold more than body weight. I think even the non-teeth ones like the Shunt of Petzl would damage the rope because of the violent forces.

Ascenders can be scary enough, a lot of things can go wrong and since it was mentioned here that some uses grigri as a backup, I integrated this in my system as well. But of course no backup knot or grigri saves my ass if one of the ascenders above sever the rope during such a fall....

Big Wall Forum / Re: Double gear slings
« on: March 18, 2009, 11:22:02 am »
@xtrmecat: I have yet to find a place for the hooks where they don't catch up on everything. I've already considered putting them away in a small pack, hanging on the back of the gear loops.

@munge: sound like a good idea. Guess it will evolve for me what I use this loops for. Thought of putting the daisy/aider combo hanging from it while switching the from lower to the highest. Or in some ways hanging my bottle of red wine off of them. Maybe too risky, they'd break in a fall... Anyway, I'm off to the crags this weekend and will see how it develops.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Pro Traxion things to remember
« on: March 18, 2009, 11:16:15 am »
I'm using a mini traxion. It does not have a lower "hole" for biners to clip in and I' understand correctly it can happen with this as well that the plates are not aligned properly, as the moving one can be off its place. Though I believe if it is loaded and weighted the biner in its central (and only) hole keeps the plates in place.

This story is frightening, to say the least, in more than one aspect. Gets back my attention on all the small details....

I'm using a static line for hauling but would never jug it if it is hanging only by the mercy of a cam of a device.


Big Wall Forum / Re: Double gear slings
« on: March 17, 2009, 10:56:40 am »
Today I have received my pack from the States, containing among others a Yates DGS.
I have to say I'm impressed of what I've seen for the first check. I have not yet used 'on stage' but tried up, adjusted and seems to fit really well and has a thoughtful arrangement of loops.

Those who have one, what do you use the two small loops that are on both of the front side of the shoulder pads, just over the buckles?
(I'm not talking about the clip-in loops on the top of the shoulder straps)

Big Wall Forum / Re: Where to buy gear?
« on: February 23, 2009, 03:00:21 pm »
Mr., I really have not other chance to get specialized aid gear here in Hungary, like dg slings or adjustable daisies. The less than dozen climbing/outdoor shops here carry only regular sport and trad climbing gear. Special stuff ends with some "mainstream" BD products, like overpriced rurps and cliffhangers and some Petzl hooks, that will hang unsold in the store for years.

When I first started climbing in '98 I hung out a lot in the local (since defunct) climbing/outdoors shop in my university town. I bougth a lot of my gear there, the vibe was great, so I know very well what you are talking about. Some of our climbing trips left from the shop.
Now I have kids, family and whatnot and I'd rather spend the time with my kids teaching them the ropes than to travel to the nearest outdoor shop, hang out with the folks there and talk about a sit-up start of some obscure 3 m high boulder. I miss the company though, but just restarted, so there might be some partners joining me on my way to the high stones, but I really have some doubts, as very few people here are seriously into bigwall climbing. I sometimes doubt if I am... :-)

Big Wall Forum / Re: Where to buy gear?
« on: February 19, 2009, 01:26:17 pm »
I'm checking the 'bay for some stuff, but the exchange rate is gone so bad for our currency lately that I pay 50% more for 1 USD than in last June. It is crazy, I know. Should have been buying all the stuff back then, only if I knew. Well, if I knew I'd be filthy rich by now due to the stock exchange earns I'd have done with my knowledge, but alas, no. :-)

Seems like for this very reasony I will have my ledge made locally, instead of buying one from well known makers. I am lucky, I got Cordura 1400 and Goretex for free so in the end this ledge will not only be less expensive than a factory one, but will use the best materials....

Big Wall Forum / Re: Where to buy gear?
« on: February 14, 2009, 02:45:22 pm »
Munge, thanks!

Lunchbox, thanks as well. I have been buying stuff from overseas, and yes, I have to pay an additional duty and VAT upon receiving the goods. I always calculate this into the purchase, and eventhough it does make prices higher, it is still better than not having the gear I need. Some of it I could buy in Europe, hardware mostly, but the prices are the same as I could get for overseas including the additional charges. 

Big Wall Forum / Where to buy gear?
« on: February 13, 2009, 11:17:16 pm »
Can you recommend good online shops for me where I can buy bigwall specific gear? I live in Hungary, Europe, where specialized climbing gear is rare. Very few people do this kind of climbing so the shops don't have much. I can buy some BD products like hooks and peckers, but thats all (and I already have them)
I'd plan to buy some Yates stuff, some camhooks, BD cams, other microcams, micronuts, beaks, rurps, heads, etc.
Ideally I'd be able to buy all that in one, for this would reduce shipping and other costs as opposed to get different stuff from different places (like Yates from Yates, some stuff from Ebay so on)

Also any sites with used gear apart from Ebay and the classifieds here and RC?



Big Wall Forum / Re: Lower Out Vid instructional - Erik's vid
« on: February 06, 2009, 09:25:40 am »
Never used Grigri before, but now I have bought one for soloing, so using it as a backup.
I've just started climbing again after a 8 year pause. In the last couple of months I was gathering info, remembered techniques I used, dusted my gear, bought some new toys, and already did some solo aiding on local crags, but no multi pitch route so far since restarting. It's winter here, one of my latest session was in -10 Celsius, pretty alpine :-) Here we have only 30-40m crags, to do anything longer I need to travel to the Alps or the Carpathias, which is not an option for me this winter.
It is good to see the different systems and solutions people use, there is a lot to learn for me from anyone.
Also it is much fun to relearn my old things and getting better every time I'm out at the crag.

Big Wall Forum / Re: Double gear slings
« on: February 06, 2009, 09:15:57 am »
Thanks. I guess I just wait some weeks to see my currency go up a bit against USD, so again it will be reasonable to buy and ship from the States. I'll probably end up with the Yates one, as I plan to get some more Yates stuff, adj.daisies, Screamers, so i can have the whole bunch directly from them. 

Big Wall Forum / Re: Double gear slings
« on: February 04, 2009, 04:58:57 am »

Anyone have first hand experience with the Yates double gear slings?

Big Wall Forum / Re: Double gear slings
« on: February 01, 2009, 09:54:35 am »

The key point for me is to have both worlds integrated,that is, safety and the advantages of the dgs.
I'n not 'over secure' about these things and a lot of normal procedures can be done to have a more secure feel. (like I girth hitch the daisies through the same way as the main tie-in loop goes - sorry, my limited english is not enough to describe, but it connects together the legloop power point and the waist main point)

Big Wall Forum / Re: Help the mentorless
« on: February 01, 2009, 07:53:34 am »
I have been using the 2x2 aider method, for the lack of a better term.
I have 2 ladders on each carabiner, connected by daisies. in the past I used normal daisies, not I'm experimenting a Peztl adjustable sling on one pair. I guess it is what others call 4 aider method.
I have ladders similar to what Yates and others introduced some years ago. It is strange, I made myself these in '99 and come up the design myself. I my country everybody uses ladder with wood or alloy steps. One ladder per biner /fiif i was thinking these were cumbersome, so I sewn a ladder with a spreader bar. I came to realize later that others had the same idea. I by no means claim any 'breakthrough', I think it is only common sense. 

Other thing is that I use my fiifi on a short loop of tube webbing around the legloops of my harness.
When I place and move onto a placement my goal is to get as high as to be able to directly place the fiffi to the placement. this way the placement is in the level of my 'you know what' or a bit higher. This makes my position quite good for reaching as high as possible for the next one. I don't know if it is common or not. I'm sure I read it somewhere back then or somebody told me, but it is working. Before that i had my fiifi put on my tie-in loop, but this way i think we can loose 10-15 cm hight. This counts as meters in a pitch.

Big Wall Forum / Double gear slings
« on: February 01, 2009, 07:37:39 am »
This is a newbie question, sorry about that.

I have never used any double gear slings apart from the one I made myself about 9 years ago.

I just started to climb again with all of the usual "fears" of this. Fear of fall, fear of gear failing, you know it (or not :-) )
Ever since I got to know Todd Skinners' death by a failing harness tie-in loop (later determined to be well beyond the state of 'have to replace the harness' I am thinking about using chest harness as a back-up.
I know, I know. My past harnesses never failed me, thats obvious since I'm sitting here and typing this. But then... ( I have to play safe, I have kids... can not act like a maniac anymore :-) )

And also never used chest harness before.

So I'm thinking about getting a double gear sling which is rated as a full strength chest harness. So far I only found Yates's model that would do.

My question is that any other maker does any product that is a d.g.s and a full strength chest harness?
Any links, reviews, thoughts welcome.

I'm ok with buying from US.

(it is a pity that our local currency is in such a bad shape now, buying anything from the States is about 35% more expensive than it was 6 months ago)

Big Wall Forum / Re: Lower Out Vid instructional - Erik's vid
« on: January 18, 2009, 11:53:26 am »
My question is perfectly answered, thanks a lot. This is pretty much what I thought, but never used so far. I am well aware of the phenomena of ascenders coming off the rope while traversing or following on roofs. So far I have never had such a problem.
I always tie into the rope nevertheless. But I will consider this method of using a grigri as a backup next time.

Thanks and if you happen to have more videos available, let us know.


Big Wall Forum / Re: Lower Out Vid instructional - Erik's vid
« on: January 18, 2009, 04:39:20 am »
Help me out with this please. I don't fully get the role of the Grigri in this video.
To be more precise: is the Grigri used for the jugging as whole (being a backup for the 2 ascenders) or only for making the  lowering out easier?
(I never used a backup for the 2 ascenders 'system' )
@nanook : I'd love to see more of such videos

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