Scrambling...

3:19 a.m. on August 2, 2011 (EDT)
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What is it? I saw a few mentions of it on REI. I tried looking it up on Wikipedia, but to no avail. Can anyone clear this up for me? 

8:58 a.m. on August 2, 2011 (EDT)
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Imagine you are working your way up trough a steep canyon or gorge that presents a lot of tumbled rock and tricky sidewalls. It requires some climbing and problem solving, but without any serious exposure. It's basically literally describing the action, scrambling, used to traverse mixed technical routes from difficult Class 3 to difficult Class 4 but with no serious exposure that would require the use of rope or pro.

That is scrambling :)

Wiki has this to say about it:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scrambling

1:55 p.m. on August 2, 2011 (EDT)
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So...it is like climbing up seep hills and bouldery cliffs on all 4s? Sounds awesome. 

2:15 p.m. on August 2, 2011 (EDT)
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Latitude918 said:

So...it is like climbing up seep hills and bouldery cliffs on all 4s? Sounds awesome. 

 Bingo!

It is :)

6:45 p.m. on August 2, 2011 (EDT)
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Gonzan is correct, sounds like he has done this some:). Scrambling is basically using your hands and feet as required, to climb, traverse, or descend rough terrain that does not require the use of technical equipment.

At least that's the southeastern definition as I understand it.

7:27 p.m. on August 2, 2011 (EDT)
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Unless you mean eggs...

Scrambling how I started climbing.  Its also how I introduce my kids to climbing. YDS class 3 and 4 are considered scrambling.

Class 3 YDS rating means that there is a risk of falling but if you do you will probably not die.  In class 4 scrambling a fall could be fatal but a careful climber is not at a great risk of actually falling here, though I might rope up anyway. 

I like scrambling routes because I don't have the trad/multipitch training, experience or gear. 

9:40 p.m. on August 2, 2011 (EDT)
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Scrambling sounds like A LOT of fun.

What type of gear is usually required for scrambling?

9:44 p.m. on August 2, 2011 (EDT)
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Soooo ... THAT'S what they call what I've been doing for eons.

Didn't Fran Tarkenton invent it?

                                               ~r2~

9:45 a.m. on August 3, 2011 (EDT)
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On harder scrambles I make my kids wear helmets and sometimes I wear one too.  If its really dicey I might belay them through sketchy spots which requires rope, harnesses, a locking carabiner and a belay device.  Sometimes its easier to rappel off a scramble so I might also have a nylon sling and two oval carabiners that I rig as a retrievable rappel.  Most of the time though I just go gearless and retreat if it gets too vertical.

1:18 p.m. on August 3, 2011 (EDT)
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Smart !

                                                     ~r2~

5:52 p.m. on August 3, 2011 (EDT)
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Scrambling sounds like a blast, but definitely something I should try after taking a climbing 101 class, or having some climbing experience ;) I look forward to sampling it at my local rock gym, in a controlled environment :)

12:21 a.m. on August 4, 2011 (EDT)
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Latitude918 said:

Scrambling sounds like a blast, but definitely something I should try after taking a climbing 101 class, or having some climbing experience ;) I look forward to sampling it at my local rock gym, in a controlled environment :)

Rock gyms typically don't have a section set up to practice scrambling, nor is any class needed to do most scrambling.  Chances are if you are executing difficult “technical” moves you are bouldering or climbing, not scrambling.

It seems you are still a little unsure what is scrambling.  Rock climbers usually start their climb scrambling up the scree and talus piles at the base of the cliffs they climb.  Scrambling is technique for traveling over rough terrain; it doesn’t even have be inclined, one scrambles along the top ridge of a harbor jetty built from large boulders.  Scrambling should not be confused with bouldering, however, the later being a climbing skills building exercise in which a route at some level of difficulty up a large boulder is declared, where upon the active climber ascends, repeatedly, typically belayed from above by rope to protect from incidental falls.  Think of bouldering as a mini climb, and scrambling as walking on all fours.  Of course as terrain steepens or requires greater technical skill, scrambling gives way to climbing.  For example climbers in the image below scrambled up the talus slopes to gain access to the rock faces.


rock-slope.jpg

Ed

9:30 a.m. on August 4, 2011 (EDT)
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Yes, Ed is right, scrambling is not rock climbing, usually. 

Crazy statement ahead:

I taught myself to climb and I think a lot of other people do the same.  There are too many climbers out there and too few insrtuctors to have all taken some kind of formal classes to learn climbing.  My first ever sport climb was leading a 5.7.  My 12 year old belayed me.  We had practiced a lot in the tree at home mind you, but no classes. 

I know everyone will disagree with me but I don't even think that a Rock 101-type class is necessary to learn sport climbing.  With all the info, books and video at the library and online you can easily learn sport climbing on your own.  I wouldn't waste the $$. Just do the research, ask questions and watch people. 

I think I just dissuaded any potential future climbing partners.

Jeff 

12:56 p.m. on August 4, 2011 (EDT)
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FromSagetoSnow said:

..Crazy statement ahead:

I taught myself to climb... 

..I don't even think that a Rock 101-type class is necessary to learn sport climbing.  With all the info, books and video at the library and online you can easily learn sport climbing on your own.  I wouldn't waste the $$. Just do the research, ask questions and watch people. 

I think I just dissuaded any potential future climbing partners.

Jeff 

 

Yep, crazy. 

Lots of people do hang from ropes with no formal training; I knew one whose hubris and ignorance eventually killed him (came unclipped from rope). 

There is lots of published info regarding learning how to fly, and for that matter, practice medicine.  I doubt you want to be a passenger or patient of someone whose education in these endeavors was limited to some texts, internet, and perhaps asking some questions.  But that is what you subject your son to, on your belay.  Just a thought. 

There are so many basic things circumstantial to roped climbing that a book or video can’t cover effectively, for example what type of rock and formations can be relied upon, or not, and what are appropriate anchoring devices and placements for each rock type/situation.  There is much to be said for hands on experience in this regard.  There is also the notion of how to safely rescue yourself or a partner, should an accident happen on the steeps.  High aspect rescue alone is the basis of at least three course levels of instruction from a certain So Cal instruction program.  Alas even those who do take course instruction often don't enrole in the rescue seminars. 

Research has indicated many people have difficulty with proper protection placement, not to mention devising safe belay stations.  Many also don’t know how to position themselves as belayer.  Many people are surprised at how massive a boulder must be to be considered a candidate for a bollard, thus they probably have relied on unsafe bollards in the past.  I am by no means a rock jock, but have practical technical skills to facilitate my mountaineering misadventures.  I have been doing this since the 1970s, occasionally take a refresher course, and still manage to learn enough each time to say it was worth the money.  And so are you and your son.

Ed

1:03 p.m. on August 4, 2011 (EDT)
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Ed,

If you'll be my belaying partner, I promise I won't take your appendix out, nor remove your wisdom teeth, with my multi-tool, as I have learned on the 'net.

                                                      ~r2~

4:11 p.m. on August 4, 2011 (EDT)
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I specifically mentioned SPORT climbing.  Not alpine/trad/ice.

4:12 p.m. on August 4, 2011 (EDT)
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Was there sport climbing in the 70s?

12:09 p.m. on August 5, 2011 (EDT)
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FromSagetoSnow said:

Was there sport climbing in the 70s?

 Probably.

But the practitioners did not survive to tell about it.

                                                     ~r2~

8:21 a.m. on August 6, 2011 (EDT)
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FromSagetoSnow said:

I specifically mentioned SPORT climbing.  Not alpine/trad/ice.

Please define what you call sport climbing, and why you think it doesn’t warrant seeking instruction?  Plenty of what passes as sports climbing achieves enough exposure that I would not want to bounce, due to improperly placed protection or a rope handling error.

Ed

9:30 a.m. on August 8, 2011 (EDT)
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Bolted routes. No pro placed.  Like gym climbing but on rocks.

3:41 p.m. on August 8, 2011 (EDT)
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FromSagetoSnow said:

Bolted routes. No pro placed.  Like gym climbing but on rocks.

I guess as long as you know how to discriminate between legitimate climbing bolts versus bolts from hardware stores, know how to test fixed anchors before use, know how to rig equalized belays, and judge what would be the best belay position at a given stance, then you may get by with casual knowledge.  But I would still be inclined to get some courses.  People still get hurt in the conditions you describe, and they will want a safe rescue off any kind of exposure ASAP.  In any case instruction may preclude some events that will stress or degrade your rope and force its early retirement, thus you recover your seminar costs in that regard.

Ed

4:02 p.m. on August 8, 2011 (EDT)
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FromSagetoSnow said:

Was there sport climbing in the 70s?

Yes.  Folks started sinking lags into all manner of vertical faces, both short and long routes.  This lead to an uproar among the LNT and passive aid climbers; the practice was implicitly non-gratis for most situations, explicitly prohibited on others, and a wave of bolt extraction activity ensued over the next 15 years.  Since then some concessions were acknowledged, that highly traveled routes may be less impacted in the long run with judicious use of bolts.  The practice still has its detractors, both because of esthetics, and out of respect for the rock.  For example several sport routes in So Cal have multiple bolt placements right next to each other.  Some are intended to replace their aging neighbor, but others have questionable justification, for example a top rope route capped with seven viable bolts.  The current school of thought is don't add bolts to a route already climbed; don't consider bolting first ascents unless you happen to be the cream of the crop (AND know how to set anchors AND come equipped with the proper tools and hardware) - and even then seriously consider the legacy of your action.

Ed 

2:24 a.m. on August 9, 2011 (EDT)
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Best way to learn scrambling...

        Go to Zion National Park... Go to hidden canyon... and just keep going back for miles. it gets tricky when it gets to the 100 ft down repel, but it's doable, just highly not recommended. If you go mid spring, there will be artificial glaciers to add even more obstacles. Funnest trail of my life!!

8:50 a.m. on August 9, 2011 (EDT)
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kenrick said:

Best way to learn scrambling...

        Go to Zion National Park... Go to hidden canyon... and just keep going back for miles. it gets tricky when it gets to the 100 ft down repel, but it's doable, just highly not recommended. If you go mid spring, there will be artificial glaciers to add even more obstacles. Funnest trail of my life!!

 I'm truly curious-  If you are prepared and capable, is there any reason the 100ft abseil would be inadvisable? Running canyons with one or more good raps are my favorite, personally.

9:39 a.m. on August 9, 2011 (EDT)
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We have a few around here who hate bolts too. I think that trash is a far bigger blight but the bolting debate us a huge deal. 

 

Gonz:

Learning to rappel took me a lot of reading, practice in the backyard tree and watching people and asking them questions.  It is deffinately one of the higher risk things a climber does. 

Still, its do-able and can be done safely and, in your situation, might be the best way to get down.  Rope is expensive though.  Like Ed said, learning about equalizing anchors (just takes more reading) is important.  Mostly in popular areas there is a poor old tree with a thick covering of nylon slings which is the unofficial rapp anchor. 

 

10:30 a.m. on August 9, 2011 (EDT)
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Yeah, I guess I should have clarified a little better and given more qualifiers :)

  By " prepared and capable" I was meaning someone who has the experience, knowledge, and equipment required for vertical ropework- including proper anchor placement, rap technique, mid-line self rescue, and conscientious resource practices.

For someone who meets that baseline, I don't think it would be something to avoid.  Now, if a person doesn't have the ability to do it safely and responsibly, then they should definitely forget it. So, in the context of Latitude just getting into this type of activity, it would be best not to go for the 30 meter dulfersitz ;)

2:55 p.m. on August 9, 2011 (EDT)
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geseundheit!

3:07 p.m. on August 9, 2011 (EDT)
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Haha!

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