Not a rock!

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Not a rock!

Postby avit » Mon Aug 22, 2011 8:51 pm

From another post here, this reminded me:

NateDoggOG wrote:I took it upon myself to yell KARABINER, and by the time it disappeared, it was ricocheting off probably about 15 feet or so.

On that note, if you drop something, or kick something loose, probably a good idea to warn the people below.
Instead of staring at it.


A few weeks ago I came within inches of catching a Reverso to the face from the top of Rock On. (No, I wasn't wearing a helmet. Whip me later.) I can't blame anyone for sh*t happens, but I'm sure glad they yelled "ROCK" loud and clear so I could duck that missile after it bounced 50m above me.

Please don't get creative with your signals, I don't want to second guess what you mean when you call down "WATER BOTTLE!", "CARABINER!", "NUMBER TWO!" or "GIRLFRIEND!"

Please, yell "ROCK!" loud and clear so you're understood, and repeat 3 times to be sure.

Thank you. Violators will be cursed loudly.
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Re: Not a rock!

Postby psi4ce » Tue Aug 23, 2011 7:44 am

The correct thing to do is yell "ROCK".

Even if you think there are no people below, you still need to do it, because you never know for sure who or what is down there.

Even if what's coming down isn't a rock, you still yell "ROCK" because that's the universal signal. Yelling anything else will confuse people for the split second they need to react.

And you need to yell it LOUD and CLEAR. You need to repeat it at least three times, but as long as necessary. Your partner needs to join in too. Make a big deal out of it.

Objects falling from above is one of the biggest hazards in climbing.

That's why helmets are designed the way they are. That's why a bike helmet won't work for climbing.

I've been buzzed on several occasions by rocks, Reversos, and various other debris falling from above.

The #1 rule? Wear a helmet.

The #2 rule? Don't fumble around with stuff, and do everything you possibly can to avoid dislodging anything. It's your responsibility, not the climbers below you.
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Re: Not a rock!

Postby J Mace » Tue Aug 23, 2011 8:19 am

Actually the number one rule is to not climb below other climbers, there is a greater risk of having stuff dropped on you.
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Re: Not a rock!

Postby bearbreeder » Tue Aug 23, 2011 12:01 pm

It is the reponsibility of those below to know an accept the risk of climbing below other climbers

While the climbers above should take all reasonable precautions not to drop anything, shiet happens

I was on haling'a ne face a few weeks ago and there was a party following closely ... As anyone who has climbed it knows the rock is loosey goosey there

Despite my best efforts, i sent 2 rocks down ... On was dislodged by the rope, the other when my foothold broke ... Forunately it didnt hit anyone

If you are following a party closely it the risk you take

Oh and i would yell FREE BOOTY if i dropped a cam ;)
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Re: Not a rock!

Postby Sunday » Tue Aug 23, 2011 6:02 pm

This post is hitting home for me

avit - It was my buddy who dropped that reverso within a foot of your head - sh*t stings sorry, I saw the whole thing and it was mega close

psi4ce - It was probably you who taught me to just yell "ROCK" when anythings flying

J Mace- just before the reverso went i thought what idiots (not meant to be personal) to be climbing right below us, don't they know your not supposed to climb below another party... then I remembered I'm on Rock On

Also after we realized no one died I yelled up to my buddy "that was your belay device wasn't it"
"yeah"
"So ahhh, how are you with the Munter hitch ? "
"Munter what?"
"OK give me a minute to figure this out"

Luckily there was three of us and buddy didn't clip the second rope into any pieces I couldn't reach lead climbing with the tail of the rope - problem solved - he pulled up a reverso with the free rope.

The point of this little rant is to say - learn your freakin knots already - especially the basics
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Re: Not a rock!

Postby NateDoggOG » Tue Aug 23, 2011 6:23 pm

I think that while on a climb, if someone yells something with a touch of urgency, people are going to notice, no matter what is yelled.
If someone above me yelled SH*T or any other word of the four letter variety, I'd sure as hell be ducking. Hopefully it isn't actually sh*t......
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Re: Not a rock!

Postby avit » Tue Aug 23, 2011 7:18 pm

NateDoggOG wrote:I think that while on a climb, if someone yells something with a touch of urgency, people are going to notice, no matter what is yelled.
If someone above me yelled SH*T or any other word of the four letter variety, I'd sure as hell be ducking. Hopefully it isn't actually sh*t......


You know, my post wasn't meant to call you out NateDogg... it's good that you yelled something. The point is, everyone needs to have "ROCK" on automatic speed dial.

It seems a lot of us forget what to do in the moment we realize we've dropped something, especially when it's important like "oh sh*t my belay device" and all sorts of junk is going through one's head. I know. I've dropped a few shinies myself and momentarily watched them plummet, longing for them to come back to me ("nooo my preciousss!") before snapping out of it.

Those (hopefully rare) events are never expected so it's important to react immediately and be understood quickly.

The point is, don't think. Just yell ROCK and figure out what was dropped later. On the receiving end, the automatic reaction to glance-and-duck is also very different than craning your neck out to see what all the yelling is about...
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Re: Not a rock!

Postby jefffski » Wed Aug 24, 2011 1:28 am

It may be wise to show your friend how to take the rope out of a device without losing the device. I've watched many people end up with the belay device in one hand and the belay biner in the other, then drop or fumble the device before they get it clipped back into the biner. I have found many belay devices--never with a biner attached--and that's very relevant.

As I much prefer that you drop gear my way that I can catch and keep or find on the ground and keep (I need more pro, not more belay devices), this is a way to prevent dropping the latter. But, by all means, keep dropping the pro :).

Here's how to keep your belay device:

1. Unclip the belay biner from the belay point on your harness or from the anchor. At this point, the rope is still running through the device.

2. Remove the belay biner from the rope AND from the belay device keeper (the plastic or metal loop). One hand will be holding the biner, the other the device. The rope should still be running through the device.

3. Clip the belay device back into the belay biner by the keeper. The rope is still running through the belay device, but not through the biner.

4. Hold the belay carabiner with the attached belay device in one hand.

5. Now, pull the rope out of the belay device with the other hand. One hand is now holding the biner with the device already looped on it.

6. Clip the biner to your harness with the device attached.

Follow this method, and you will never ever drop a belay device again, unless you are so damn clumsy that you drop the biner with it--and that, I have not seen.

Have fun y'all
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Re: Not a rock!

Postby Lurch » Fri Aug 26, 2011 5:05 pm

Nice advice Jeff

Even easier.

1. Feed six inches of slack into the belay device
2. Unlock biner
3. Open gate and remove rope from biner
4. Close gate
5. Pull rope from device
6. Unclip biner with device and clip to gear loop

This way you never remove it from your harness until your storing it.
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