What is the essence of sport climbing? :)

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Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Topic Author's Original Post - Sep 5, 2013 - 11:21am PT
This is not intended to be a troll per se (even though every post is a troll). I'm hoping for a dialogue and perhaps some photos and vids to entertain, as well? No need for a slag fest about bolts or trad vs sport or any of that shyte, imo. Let's focus on the positive? Please???

I decided to ask as I watched the video below, yet again. I am taken by the climb and the climber, the position and as HFCS put it (thanks again for porting it HFCS), the textures and colors of the Verdon, a climb in such a wild position with such a variety of moves, a climber going all-out to her limit and then perhaps some... and succeeding.

I love it.

For me sport climbing, at least at present, is not about going all out. And yet I do think that doing so IS part of the gig and the essence of sport climbing.



Thoughts?

DMT
locker

Social climber
Some Rehab in Bolivia
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:24am PT

Climbing...






EDITED:



RyanD

climber
Squamish
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:26am PT
the essence of sport climbing is giving people something to argue about on the internet.


edit- argue/complain about
GhoulweJ

Trad climber
El Dorado Hills, CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:28am PT
Gym climbing but you can get a tan.
TwistedCrank

climber
Bungwater Hollow, Ida-ho
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:29am PT
There's sport climbing?
Randisi

Social climber
Dalian, Liaoning
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:30am PT
Its essence?

Eau de tube sock.
locker

Social climber
Some Rehab in Bolivia
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:31am PT


"Trad" climbing is "Gym climbing" with gear...

Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:33am PT
What is the essence of sport climbing?

Looking at sports bras.
survival

Big Wall climber
Terrapin Station
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:33am PT
Sport climbing allowed the physical gymnastic standards to explode by removing the "rules" about fair play.

Some folks are more into pure athletics.

Some folks are more into the "spirit" of the thing.

A double edged sword for sure.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:35am PT
Sport Climbing- Alpinism's Answer to Menopause...

The bumper sticker that I haven't quite got around to printing up yet. LOL
kennyt

climber
Woodfords,California
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:35am PT
It smells pretty good depending on where your climbing
kaholatingtong

Trad climber
Nevada City
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:36am PT
i would have to agree. its about the ability to focus on just the difficulty of the moves, and thus, to push said difficulty a lot further. very similar to bouldering for me, just longer, with a rope, and with a power-endurance aspect i suppose.
Gary

Social climber
Desolation Basin, Calif.
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:37am PT
Yer NOT.....










































gunna die!
FörtMental

Social climber
Albuquerque
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:40am PT
Thoughts?


Here are hers:

Q: So you're mainly into sport climbing, or trad climbing?

Definitely sport. I guess the reason I like sport climbing is that it allows me to really push myself physically. Just the movement involved. I love some of the crazy positions you can get yourself into. For me clipping bolts I feel at ease, but when I'm placing gear I'm just a nervous wreck. At that level anyway. If I had to place gear on 29 I'd just be outa there.

Simon: It's not that you're not interested in trad though?

No, it's not that I'm not interested, but what I find appealing about sport climbing over trad climbing would be that. But yeah on the other hand I recognise that trad climbing is a weakness of mine which I want to develop, but not at that level.
survival

Big Wall climber
Terrapin Station
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:43am PT
Burch3y adds nothing but a smart mouth/keyboard, once again.

Dude, add something to the conversation or get the f*#k out.
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:45am PT
Sport climbing allowed the physical gymnastic standards to explode by removing the "rules" about fair play.

Some folks are more into pure athletics."

What are you talking about? Rules? We are talking about freaking CLIMBING! All forms of it are supposed to be fun, and than it only matters how serious you take it and how obsessive you are about improving. I don’t think the rules apply to climbing. Every single participant makes up his own rules. And if a bunch of people in one area agree to one set of rules due to peer pressure etc it doesn’t mean the whole world must play, or respect those rules.
I do not sport climb often, but when I do I have a good time. In Peru for example it gave me time to rest mentally and get excited about climbing the high mountains again. It is good training. I still am afraid to fall even though I know there is a bolt below me.
God, if I cared about every single rule other people have...
squishy

Mountain climber
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:51am PT
That was one of the coolest places I have ever climbed...the little towns and wine, the entire atmosphere was unbelievable...My favorite part was driving fast down the roads in the canyon, so much fun..

locker

Social climber
Some Rehab in Bolivia
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:54am PT


+1 to Vitaliy's post above...


all in jim

climber
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:57am PT
"Sport" climbing in the Verdon is WAY harder and scarier than "trad" climbing in Yosemite.

The bolts in the Verdon can be super far apart and quite old, and the climbing is hard and super technical and feels way more exposed.

In Yosemite if you get scared or sketched you just plug another cam.
GDavis

Social climber
SOL CAL
Sep 5, 2013 - 12:01pm PT
When I picture myself about to go sport climbing, or a trip has been planned that I'm psyched for.... I think about uninterrupted movement. As close to performance art as possible. Move, move, execute... when you take the mental game out it can be fun, too.

Of course nothing gets me up early like traditional climbing, going from stance to stance and conserving gear while punching through cruxes... ahh.

It's ALLLL good! So good...

mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Sep 5, 2013 - 12:02pm PT
a troll per se per day keeps the sports climbers at bay

Per say hey there, DMT.
Per say hey there, DMT.
Credit: mouse from merced
Or so they say in San Jose.
Chim-Chim

climber
Sep 5, 2013 - 12:23pm PT
Pocket pool?
survival

Big Wall climber
Terrapin Station
Sep 5, 2013 - 12:25pm PT
What are you talking about? Rules? We are talking about freaking CLIMBING!

V, everyone from the previous "era" knew there were rules. It put some limitations on development for sure, but it wasn't ALL bad either.

I guess a free for all of do exactly whatever the hell you want, no holds barred suits some people.
Branscomb

Trad climber
Lander, WY
Sep 5, 2013 - 12:25pm PT
My attitude toward sport climbing goes back and forth, I think depending on how successful I am at it. I'm certainly one of the usual suspects around Lander for putting up a lot of sport climbs in the Sinks (around 80 or so)but having a long trad background, I sometimes start looking down my nose at it as a practice for a bunch of punks that are too chicken to get more than 4' out from a bolt that would hold a medium sized SUV.

I still subscribe to the idea that getting out there and committed on the lead or failing ugly is when you really learn to climb: the whole package of mental and emotional control as well as good technique and talent all come to a point and I still think that is the all time experience I look for in climbing, though, getting on in my 60s, I'm not as bold and crazy as I think I used to be.

The advantage of sport climbing, for me, is that I can work on technique at the limit of my ability and not worry much about smacking the ground because the pieces pull. I think it has helped improve my technical ability on trad. So it's been valuable and fun, but I feel it's sort of like eating M&Ms, you never seem to get enough of something that makes it feel complete. So I get out and trad climb, alpine climb, water ice in the winter, and get that completion.

It seems to work fine as the main pursuit for a lot of people and I say, great. You're all concentrated at Wild Iris and the Sinks and Rifle and not in the mountains, so us strange gear placers and runners users can have that to ourselves.
SteveW

Trad climber
The state of confusion
Sep 5, 2013 - 12:37pm PT

'sport climbing' is neither. . .
Elcapinyoazz

Social climber
Joshua Tree
Sep 5, 2013 - 12:47pm PT
More climbing, less fiddling with toys.
NutAgain!

Trad climber
South Pasadena, CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 12:52pm PT
For me, the essence of sport climbing is you can try your hardest, and you're not at all worried you're going to die.
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 5, 2013 - 01:06pm PT
Fitness, endurance, climbing movement, puzzle-solving, exposure, self-testing, fun, companionship, new-routing... i.e. climbing.

For me the essence of sport climbing has a large % in common with the other climbing styles I still pursue.

DMT

Dave Kos

Social climber
Temecula
Sep 5, 2013 - 01:22pm PT
Backpack is not as heavy.
Brandon-

climber
The Granite State.
Sep 5, 2013 - 01:26pm PT
Movement.

I grew up climbing at Rumney, it's pretty compact schist that doesn't lend itself to climbing on gear for the most part.

Were it not for bolts, the climbing there would be very limited.

Sport clipping is fun, you can safely climb very steep things.
Dave Kos

Social climber
Temecula
Sep 5, 2013 - 01:28pm PT
In Yosemite if you get scared or sketched you just plug another cam.

That's why I only climb on the apron.
selfish man

Gym climber
Austin, TX
Sep 5, 2013 - 01:46pm PT
read the most recent ANAM. Sport climbing accidents on every page. Most common causes are the same: falling while clipping overhead, too much slack in the belay etc. That sport climbing (in its most commonly practiced form also known as sport clipping) is safe is a myth. Top roping, on the other hand, is pretty safe and really is all about ultimate movement
RyanD

climber
Squamish
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:00pm PT
Try toproping a 25m, 40 degree overhanging route at your limit. Gud luck!
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:04pm PT
The question is one of "essence" aka "essential" aspect which has a singular connotation, not plural.

So answers that provide multiple aspects are not following the call of the question.

But also the call of the question is flawed in asking for a singular aspect.

To try and narrow it down to a bit, sport to me, means that a climb requires well protected climbing. (avoiding the debate over tactics and strategy of establishing for the moment)

In most climbing circles, that also usually means bolt protected. (avoiding the idea that bolts can horrible at times and thus really dangerous)

When a climb is well protected (&bolt protected) I can push to my hardest difficulty without fear of hurting myself too much. There is always risk.

I can also do that on toprope, to an infinite length with proper cord and traxion, so what is the difference between those?

The difference is the lead. So some fear of flight and falling is inherent in a sport lead, otherwise we could just TR.


So in essence, sport climbing is regulated fear and regulated danger.


Which is a hell of a lot of fun.



kaholatingtong

Trad climber
Nevada City
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:12pm PT
^^ good points. i like the way gary put it up thread. your NOT gonna die. ( but you could get hurt? )
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:23pm PT
V, everyone from the previous "era" knew there were rules. It put some limitations on development for sure, but it wasn't ALL bad either.

I didn’t mean to say some rules are not necessary. But it is silly to impose strict rules on an activity that is described by some as anarchy. I like that old quote; “climbing is anarchy.” It suits what I like to do. Some days I feel like ice climbing, some days I top rope in the gym, climb trad, sport, boulder, lay in the meadow looking up at a cliff. It could all be fun. People usually agree on no retro bolting, and no rap bolting in areas where established climbs were done ground up. However, I do not see a problem with someone rap bolting a 5.12-13 climb in a GU area (unless it is a squeeze job) if they cleaned the line, TRd it and picked the right amount of bolts. Reason why I have no problem with it is because there are other people who put up aid routes GU which is a total cluster of bolts, rivets, enhanced edges for hook moves and so on. If that sh#t is acceptable than I do not see any point in any rules at all. Maybe I do not understand something but if you guys take it so seriously you should chop all the bolt ladders through blank rock – many of them in Yosemite!
Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:29pm PT
"Some mountaineers are proud of having done all their climbs without bivouac. How much they have missed ! And the same applies to those who enjoy only rock climbing, or only the ice climbs, only the ridges or faces. We should refuse none of the thousands and one joys that the mountains offer us at every turn. We should brush nothing aside, set no restrictions. We should experience hunger and thirst, be able to go fast, but also to go slowly and to contemplate."

Gaston Rebuffat


"I consider mountain climbing an absolutely egocentric activity; I could therefore never understand why one would want to set up rules for it. "In the mountains, freedom rules" is an old poacher's saying. Whether and how I use artificial means is my business. To climb in the cleanest and smoothest way possible - that was my desire. How others climb is their business, and nobody else has the right to interfere. Most people abide by rules because they want to be accepted. I was only truly content when I succeeded in completing a climb the way I had envisioned it. Naturally, there is satisfaction when a climb is acclaimed by the experts, but basically, this was not as important to me as the recognition by my friends."

Anderl Heckmair
guyman

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:46pm PT
Kaholatingtong and Vitality.... well said.

I do go back to when it was just CLIMBING.

No need to devide into segments intill Ice Climbing showed up...

But to me Sport Climbing is FUN climbing, to go all out and see how hard I can climb is what climbing has become, for me.

For you guys who wish to remain "pure" please do so and don't come out and embarrass yourself.

Good topic Dingus

drljefe

climber
El Presidio San Augustin del Tucson
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:47pm PT
http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=AU0NLheu8mU
Bob D'A

Trad climber
Taos, NM
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:49pm PT
So funny to hear some remarks from the old trad climbers who are stuck in some weird ass time warp.


A few shots from yesterday sport climbing outing in Upper Dream Canyon. Mark Hudon and Lynn Hill enjoy clipping bolts, maybe the neanderthals should just shut up or move on.

Credit: Bob D'A

Credit: Bob D'A
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:52pm PT
I wonder why we don't really hear women climbers arguing/moaning/bickering about bolting/methods of climbing/etc?

They have own forums where they mainly post shirtless Burchy photos. No time for arguments. ;)
G_Gnome

Trad climber
who gave up and just goes sailing now!
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:04pm PT
A bunch of us old tradsters love to sport climb. That is not to say that I don't still enjoy getting all scared on Tuolumne runout slab but it is damn fun to go do clip-ups too and it what I do most of the time anymore as do most of my friends who are also just either side of 60 year old.
jgill

Boulder climber
Colorado
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:13pm PT
To the general public, sport climbing = rock climbing. A glimpse into the future.
survival

Big Wall climber
Terrapin Station
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:14pm PT
So funny to hear some remarks from the old trad climbers who are stuck in some weird ass time warp.

Let's go, just bolt up the whole thing, 6 inches apart, clips everywhere.

There are no limits, max it out.
RyanD

climber
Squamish
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:18pm PT
If Bosch bulldogs were around in 1963 sportclimbing would be happily embracing its 50th anniversary & 5.13 would be the new 5.7. Ondra would be onsighting 18d & red pointing 19b.
Bob D'A

Trad climber
Taos, NM
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:27pm PT
"Let's go, just bolt up the whole thing, 6 inches apart, clips everywhere.

There are no limits, max it out."


Another fear monger...What are you talking about and please show examples?


Mungeclimber

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:27pm PT
back to the original question?

anyone

anyone

anyone
Mike Friedrichs

Sport climber
City of Salt
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:35pm PT
I'll bite. Sport climbing is about "learning it down." Learning when to move fast, and more importantly when to rest. Learning how to learn. Then executing it perfectly. It takes concentration and a different kind of commitment. I find it to be interesting, fun and way rewarding.

And to the old tradsters (I'm one BTW) who think the bolts are "6 inches apart," I take bigger and more numerous falls consistently sport climbing than any other type of climbing. Maybe you ought to try it sometime and see how brave it makes you.

Also, what ElCap said about more time climbing and less time fiddling with toys.
10b4me

Ice climber
Soon 2B in Arizona
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:37pm PT
not getting as injured
patrick compton

Trad climber
van
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:51pm PT
People that think sport climbing is 'fun' haven't projected a route and pushed their physical limits.

They are climbing within their comfort level physically and mentally.

Not to say that projecting isn't fun in it's own way.... in that winning and succeeding are satisfying.

Trying to complete a route over a month of constant training and work is a mental exercise, just not the same mental exercise as trad.
Bruce Kay

Gym climber
BC
Sep 5, 2013 - 04:04pm PT
This is worth repeating:

Sport Climbing- Alpinism's Answer to Menopause...

The bumper sticker that I haven't quite got around to printing up yet. LOL


At least in the hope that he will eventually produce such a bumper sticker.



But then..... isn't Alpinism nothing more than the search for sport climbing in all the wrong places?
steve shea

climber
Sep 5, 2013 - 04:23pm PT
What's up with a grunt a move? Sounds like a tennis match. Is that part of the shtick now? Spent some time in the Verdon in the mid 70's. The coolest thing is rapping off your bumper and climbing back up to the car. High standards too as in difficult. Pretty well suited to bolt laps. Pretty fun. The first sport climbing I ever did was in the Verdon, pretty cool place. But I do not think the Froggies called it sport climbing then. Oh, and the essence? Way less serious endeavor than climbing. That's why it is fun but not as rewarding for me. Guess I'm missing something. Thank's for putting up all those sport routes though. I'd never do it. One problem here is that most of the sport crags are limestone, have seen 15/20 yrs of traffic and now polished to a glassy veneer. Not much fun any more.
Bad Climber

climber
Sep 5, 2013 - 04:30pm PT
Great vid! T'was a lot of grunting, I'll grant you that. I always thought Sharma's screaming was way over the top--as in we're all damn lucky everyone doesn't do that. Can you imagine the chaos at the crags? No thanks.

Sport/trad debate = WAY tedious.

BUt! Not every crag should be grid bolted either, so as others have said, we need some "rules," yes?

Thanks, DM, for the post.

BAd
Elcapinyoazz

Social climber
Joshua Tree
Sep 5, 2013 - 04:35pm PT
I take bigger and more numerous falls consistently sport climbing than any other type of climbing.

Yep. Which, in turn, makes me a much better trad climber. Every trad climber I know who climbs above about 5.11+ also sport climbs and boulders.

BITD, the sport climbing was toproping...a way to try hard stuff where you WILL fall, without putting yourself in a dangerous situation half the time. But there are many reasons why sport climbing is a better alternative to TR...aside from logistics where you can't easily access the top of many cliffs, the falling is integral. It will make you a better climber.
The Chief

climber
From the Land of the Mongols
Sep 5, 2013 - 04:50pm PT
I personally enjoy Sport Climbing cus it allows me to take more and longer "dumps" any where along the route.

Makes my Wife happy as well cus I come home with a bigass smile.

The "Sport Dump!"


Pinching one off on the PSOM Wall.







BURCHEY: I get it now. I really really do. Old dogs CAN learn new tricks.
Michelle

Social climber
1187 Hunterwasser
Sep 5, 2013 - 05:00pm PT
they have own forums where they mainly post shirtless Burchy photos. No time for arguments.

BWAAHAHAAA. No.


At this point, I'd be happy climbing anything.
Mark Hudon

Trad climber
Hood River, OR
Sep 5, 2013 - 05:23pm PT
Pure movement on rock. Sport climbing gets me closer to pure movement on rock.

Great shot, Bob, thanks for going out with me.
patrick compton

Trad climber
van
Sep 5, 2013 - 06:27pm PT
Steve,
The grunt sound is the sound of trying.

Thanks for your contribution Chief. Was pushing out that duece harder than the route you did?
Bob D'A

Trad climber
Taos, NM
Sep 5, 2013 - 06:34pm PT
Mark...it was great fun...maybe get out later next week if you are around, I get back from Yellowstone Tuesday night.
Mark Hudon

Trad climber
Hood River, OR
Sep 5, 2013 - 06:35pm PT
I'll be here till the 20th (exploring all sorts of movement on rock regardless of what people call it).
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Sep 5, 2013 - 06:44pm PT
"What's up with a grunt a move? Sounds like a tennis match....Not much fun any more."--Steve Shea

See last page--Perhaps one of SS's greatest posts ever! "The Essence of SS?"
patrick compton

Trad climber
van
Sep 5, 2013 - 07:15pm PT
Good to see this is yet Another cranky never was thread of 5.9 chuffers casting aspersions on a different style that doesn't favor mediocrity.
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 5, 2013 - 07:20pm PT
Hey!

DMT
The Larry

climber
Moab, UT
Sep 5, 2013 - 07:28pm PT
I realized sport climbing was cool when I saw Ron Kauk hiking into smith rocks with a cheater stick.
JLP

Social climber
The internet
Sep 5, 2013 - 07:28pm PT
Hey wankers - that's a chick - on a 5.14.

Five - fuking - four - fuking - teen.

I JUST LOVE these comparisons to all the 5.fuking easy routes you all plug your little metal doo-hickies and widgets into. Do you take your roller skates off first?

Please tell us all about some TRAD 5.14 ROUTES!! Like where, and how do they get climbed?
DanaB

climber
CT
Sep 5, 2013 - 07:28pm PT
**Burch3y adds nothing but a smart mouth/keyboard, once again.

Dude, add something to the conversation or get the f*#k out.**

He did, something fairly pertinent. You just didn't like it.
Dave Kos

Social climber
Temecula
Sep 5, 2013 - 07:30pm PT
Good to see this is yet Another cranky never was thread of 5.9 chuffers casting aspersions on a different style that doesn't favor mediocrity.

That's why I'm here.

Please tell us all about some TRAD 5.14 ROUTES!! Like where, and how do they get climbed?

Please tell me why I should give a f*#k about what the number is after the decimal point.
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 5, 2013 - 07:59pm PT
I didn't know the grade translation when I watched the vid and made the OP.

I was moved by the grace and power of a top tier climber going all out. Those stems were amazing. The features on the wall are priceless. The position is other worldly. Her back is a sight to behold. She's an inspiration to me and hopefully to my partners as well.

The question was answered right away munge, the essence of sport climbing is climbing.

Only have to watch the vid to see that.

I'm happy clipping 5 dot easy sport routes too and the whole Dirty Hippy Never Clip a Bolt thing? I couldn't care less. I go tradding when I want.

DMT

guyman

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
Sep 5, 2013 - 08:03pm PT
People that think sport climbing is 'fun' haven't projected a route and pushed their physical limits.

Patric... that is just plain wrong.

It's the working, learning and remembering the sequences that make "IT" fun.... and when and if you get the red point... well thats the golden ring.


And to Chief... YOU go to ORG, CC and other spots, so how come the hate on SC????
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 5, 2013 - 08:05pm PT
Guyman it doesn't have to be fun to be fun. Hmmm, now who said that? ;-)

Something interesting from the About section of Monique's web page:

G’day! My name is Monique Forestier, I am a climbing fanatic and I live in the Blue Mountains (near Sydney) with my hubby Simon Carter and daughter Coco.

I have been climbing now for 15 years. Climbing has given me, not only the perfect physical and mental outlet; it has been a constant in my life and a direction on which to set the compass to travel the world. I am truly lucky to have visited many wonderful places and to have met beautiful people whilst living my life of adventure. Now with Coco on board it’s certainly more challenging in fact travelling with Coco has opened many doors and she adds yet another element to enrich our travel experiences.

Some of my notable achievements are becoming the first Australian women to climb routes graded 31 and 32. But to worry too much about grades seriously misses the point about what climbing has to offer. For me climbing allows me to push my limits, physical and mental. Focussing on my own dreams and setting my own personal challenges has given me the freedom and direction for which to pursue my climbing.
Monique Forestier

DMT
eKat

Trad climber
Less than a second shy of 49 minutes
Sep 5, 2013 - 08:09pm PT
What's the essence of sport climbing?

As with any pursuit, in the name of recreation, hands down, it's got to be FUN!
Cosmiccragsman

Trad climber
AKA Dwain, from Apple Valley, Ca. and Vegas!
Sep 5, 2013 - 08:10pm PT
I'll climb ANYTHING and love every minute of it,
But I still prefer to climb cracks or any features
where I can place my own gear.
guyman

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
Sep 5, 2013 - 08:17pm PT
DMT... +1

I recall it goes something like this.... "most folks would not consider this fun"

And you are correct... the essence is the climbing


EDIT: Bob D'A ..... NEXT time please get a better pic of Lynn, OK.
The Chief

climber
From the Land of the Mongols
Sep 5, 2013 - 08:20pm PT
And to Chief... YOU go to ORG, CC and other spots, so how come the hate on SC????

GUY:


Deep breath.... sarcasm.

Remember, if I did not feel any kin to SC, I surely would not have assisted in rebolting over 426 routes and replacing the anchors on over 375 (cus of all them Sporties Yo Yoing off of em instead of setting up a temp anchor to TR off), throughout the west over the past 20 or so years. I totally lost count of how many replaced bolts that all entailed.

Just a little sarcasm Guy.


Everybody's waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay to serious around here.


BOBDA:

Nice shot of Mark and Lynn. Got one question. Appears that Lynn is taller than Mark.... wtf is up with that?






Sarcasm.
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
Sep 5, 2013 - 08:57pm PT
DMT,

But it's not, unless we disregard fully the adjective attached to the phrase "Sport Climbing"

What is essential to climbing is climbing. That's tautologically true.

What is essential to sport climbing is sport climbing.

But to make sense of that is to define it's core characteristics.


Usually this is where I go into a rant about the history of a thing, rather than it's essence, since really essences are metaphysical objects. I.e. they are part of the world of ideas. But I'm ready to head out the door and go boulder. HAH!

:)

Cosmiccragsman

Trad climber
AKA Dwain, from Apple Valley, Ca. and Vegas!
Sep 5, 2013 - 09:00pm PT
Isn't, ALL, Climbing, a Sport?
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 5, 2013 - 09:00pm PT
Yes let's disregard all the adjectives and stick to the important part - climbing.

Like on those boulders.

I'm about to head to Pho Dynasty for some Vietnamese noodles and pork, mmmmm. Meeting a friend whom I've known, oh sh#t, 27 years. Hopefully hit up the boulder at the park after I've stuffed myself :D

DMT
Dave Kos

Social climber
Temecula
Sep 5, 2013 - 09:07pm PT
I find it interesting that even top climbers can't help but grab the rope when they fall.
Mark Hudon

Trad climber
Hood River, OR
Sep 5, 2013 - 09:13pm PT
Nice shot of Mark and Lynn. Got one question. Appears that Lynn is taller than Mark.... wtf is up with that?

That's funny, we were actually comparing heights. She said she is 5' 1 3/4", and that its important for us short people to work the quarter inches. I told her that I'm 5' 1 7/8" and that the eighths are even more important!
patrick compton

Trad climber
van
Sep 5, 2013 - 09:34pm PT
I ride a beater cruiser to work, but it is a single speed without a helmet so that makes me cool.

.and furthermore, I have an opinion on how others should ride their bikes.

Gears, helmets, spin classes to train, intervals, heart rate monitors: all that is for pussies.

I ride my beater cruiser in a finer style than any road rider.
mucci

Trad climber
The pitch of Bagalaar above you
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:10pm PT
At the heart of it:

Ball cupping.
JLP

Social climber
The internet
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:17pm PT
If the .xx after the 5 didn't matter to you, you'd be over on Summitpost.com beating off about the trail up the back side. That .xx is everything - and a whole lot of what many of you don't appear to have sh#t of.

The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:45pm PT
The essence of sport climbing is climbing.

Climbing the rock with the minimal amount of gear, and leaving the sheltered corners and crack systems behind. Straight over roofs, and linking up features on the steep open face. Dangling around and making creative use of your feet as you go, not limited to hand and foot jams in a crack, and not worried about ripping dicey gear out and busting yourself up. Cams and nuts are kind of a PITA to drag up steep cliffs, and fiddling around trying to place them on the lead is too.

Then you gotta add runners to the pieces on long pitches to make the rope run free. A well bolted sport pitch has next to no rope drag, and rope drag is, well, a drag.

In a lot of ways, sport climbing is the purest form of climbing. Depending on what your definition of climbing is, right? (ya grumpy old curmudgeons) Bouldering is purer in a way, but you can't boulder the big stuff, or most of us can't, and the big stuff forms the roots of climbing.

Definitely doesn't earn the buzz of a life and limb risking all out trad horror show, but sport climbing is a great way for old guys, and even young folks, to climb steep rock in the great outdoors.
alina

Trad climber
CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:48pm PT
I'm speaking up because
a) from previous posts, it seems you guys were just begging for a women's opinion
and b) I have a strong issue with the "sport climbing = pure athletic movement" statement, which leaves trad as... ???

I disagree because, for me, the essence of athleticism and the perfection of movement comes from the mental state. Fear, consequences, and the focus required to deal with those factors contribute a psychological aspect to climbing. With focus, we have pure athletic movement. Without, we have a lurching about.
So, for me, a free solo comes closer to what was mentioned as the "essence of sport climbing" than batting around on top rope. And pushing myself mentally and physically on a trad route is definitely pure athletic movement.
Leggs

Sport climber
Tucson, AZ
Sep 5, 2013 - 11:59pm PT
What are you talking about? Rules? We are talking about freaking CLIMBING! All forms of it are supposed to be fun, and than it only matters how serious you take it and how obsessive you are about improving. I don’t think the rules apply to climbing. Every single participant makes up his own rules. And if a bunch of people in one area agree to one set of rules due to peer pressure etc it doesn’t mean the whole world must play, or respect those rules.
I do not sport climb often, but when I do I have a good time. In Peru for example it gave me time to rest mentally and get excited about climbing the high mountains again. It is good training. I still am afraid to fall even though I know there is a bolt below me.
God, if I cared about every single rule other people have...
Vitaliy makes some excellent points in his statement.



As does kaholatingtong with his contribution:
its about the ability to focus on just the difficulty of the moves, and thus, to push said difficulty a lot further. very similar to bouldering for me, just longer, with a rope, and with a power-endurance aspect i suppose.



Dingus, thank you for sharing Monique's clip... damn awesome! SHE is an inspiration!


And the Zoolander clip... I nearly peed my pants.


Mungeclimber

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
Sep 6, 2013 - 03:13pm PT
Oh Mucci.





locker

Social climber
Some Rehab in Bolivia
Sep 6, 2013 - 03:17pm PT


"The essence of sport climbing is climbing.

Climbing the rock with the minimal amount of gear, and leaving the sheltered corners and crack systems behind. Straight over roofs, and linking up features on the steep open face. Dangling around and making creative use of your feet as you go, not limited to hand and foot jams in a crack."
...


+1

patrick compton

Trad climber
van
Sep 6, 2013 - 03:38pm PT
Sport climbing is both.
Oplopanax

Mountain climber
The Deep Woods
Sep 6, 2013 - 03:38pm PT
The essence of sport climbing is to crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their wimmin...

Or to be the climber having the most fun.

How do they shoot the bolts up there anyhow?
Elcapinyoazz

Social climber
Joshua Tree
Sep 6, 2013 - 03:43pm PT
Eigths, quarters,...you guys sellin' weed, or comparing heights Mark? ;^)

on a trad route is definitely pure athletic movement.

So when you're standing there fiddling with trinkets, not moving anywhere for minutes at a time in some cases...that is "pure athletic movement"? O.K. Not in my book, and I spent at least twice as much time climbing gear routes as I do sport routes.

I do enjoy intricate and scary gear routes on occasion, but have no illusions that it has more appeal from an athleticism or movement perspective. I personally prefer crack climbing to anything else, but that's also why I like soloing...cracks without the stopping and futzing with gear. Sport climbing gives me the "no futzing" part, with challenging terrain that I can, and will, fall on.
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 6, 2013 - 03:53pm PT
Dingus, thank you for sharing Monique's clip... damn awesome! SHE is an inspiration!


I find it quite a moving video :-)

My daughters loved it :-D

The reaches Monique makes are so freakin cool. One full extension after another, full effort. And that stem near the top... un... believable.

DMT
Elcapinyoazz

Social climber
Joshua Tree
Sep 6, 2013 - 03:56pm PT
I think ol Caughtinside has spent some time climbing with Monique and Simon (Carter, the stellar aussie climbing photog)
The Larry

climber
Moab, UT
Sep 6, 2013 - 04:08pm PT
I wish my sport climbing area wasn't scary but the majority of the climbs were bolted ground up by bold climbers. I have to head point my projects because I'm not so bold.

Awesome vid of Monique.
mucci

Trad climber
The pitch of Bagalaar above you
Sep 6, 2013 - 04:13pm PT
Roll em around a bit for the SEND!
The Larry

climber
Moab, UT
Sep 6, 2013 - 04:14pm PT
Wax and roll.
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Sep 6, 2013 - 04:31pm PT
I went to The Verdon once, years ago, and had the good fortune to be shown around by JB Tribout. Nearly my first question when we walked up to the railing along the top of that stupendous climbing area was about the colonets and the giant shaded wall across the gorge which the woman in Dingus' video is climbing. At the time he told me there were no major routes on that side of the Verdon Gorge because it was too hard to get to.

Looks like it was worth the trouble.

Anyway, if you're still cynical about sport climbing after watching that video, a trip to the Verdon, or Ceuse, or Buoux would probably change your mind.

Unless you're just into wide cracks or aid climbing...
Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
Sep 6, 2013 - 04:45pm PT

A bit of Ceüse, Chris Sharma and Daila Ojeda

The Larry

climber
Moab, UT
Sep 6, 2013 - 05:07pm PT
Awesome video. Sharma = Greatness.
JLP

Social climber
The internet
Sep 6, 2013 - 05:11pm PT
Oh yeah - starting at 3:00 - exactly how the Bachar-Yerian went in - except different because Sharma goes back and frees the thing w/o hanging from the hooks before calling it an FA. Suck it up wankers.

The Larry

climber
Moab, UT
Sep 6, 2013 - 05:14pm PT
Sharma didn't call it anything. He just went climbing.
tradmanclimbs

Ice climber
Pomfert VT
Sep 6, 2013 - 06:06pm PT
Sport climbing has opened up a lot of climbs that simply would not exist otherwise. I have been developing a cliff that is 15 min from Dartmouth College, 180ft tall and a half mile or so long that had 4 or 5 never repeted, obscure scarefests mostly on the less appealing features. It now has 16 new climbs many of them 5 stars. A few are mixed climbs. A few are ground up but most are sport climbs as that is what the rock offers.
Chim-Chim

climber
Sep 6, 2013 - 06:10pm PT
Dancing in lycra while, listening to The Village People?
RP3

Big Wall climber
Sonora
Sep 6, 2013 - 07:47pm PT
Essence of sport climbing = FUN. Pure, unbridled fun!
eKat

Trad climber
Less than a second shy of 49 minutes
Sep 6, 2013 - 07:51pm PT
^ ^ ^ ^ I agree. . . if it ain't fun. . . and it's recreation, WHY DO IT?

?
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Sep 6, 2013 - 07:59pm PT
fun
allows athletic ability to be unrestricted
opened up a lot of previously unclimable rock
Revolutionized climbing standards
great training venue
popularized climbing (maybe not a positive)
took pressure off of traditional areas
extended climbing careers
brought more women into climbing

but its essence
or
without which it would lose its identity
most of its attributes, of which there are many, seem accidental
the opposite
of essence
BASE104

Social climber
An Oil Field
Sep 6, 2013 - 11:01pm PT
It probably increased the amount of climbable rock by a factor of ten, once people got over the whole ground up thing.

I remember driving through Rifle before there were more than a handful of routes there, and it all looked either impossible to protect or impossible to climb. Both most of the time.

It has been good. There are so many climbers now. I was a stick in the mud myself around 1985, though. It took a little while to see the light. Now it is just climbing. I have friends who climb their freaking butts off.

It does bother me that a lot of sport climbers are intimidated by placing gear. They miss out on a lot of beautiful routes because of that. It is just a matter of practice. The ability is a zillion miles high now.
Klimmer

Mountain climber
Sep 6, 2013 - 11:18pm PT
Mental chess. Choreographed Ballet. Muscle gymnastics. Perfect movement over stone. Pushing yourself to your personal limits or beyond. All possible with the least amount of risk and maximized fun.

It's just another game that we climbers play.

It will make you a better trad climber if you were one to begin with. Think about it. Sport climbing will help your trad climbing, but trad climbing really won't help your sport climbing much.
tioga

Mountain climber
pac northwest
Sep 7, 2013 - 12:18am PT
It makes the climb look like there're simultaneously a pile of cash waiting at the top and a hungry grizzly bear waiting at the bottom.
Decko

Trad climber
Colorado
Sep 7, 2013 - 12:44am PT
Clipping bolts on a beach with beautiful topless women around (Thailand) is soo against what climbing is but it was super fun for two and a half months.......




Not to mention how strong I got and came home to send multiple hard trad classics in Eldo and RMNP...
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Sep 7, 2013 - 10:21am PT
We have two genres of climbing, each of them with enormously appealing attributes, and a lot of mostly inane arguments about the validity, whatever that might possibly mean, of each pursuit.

The pursuit of difficulty has been an intrinsic aspect of climbing from its inception. Sport climbing has swept away all the other aspects and made difficulty the centerpiece of the endeavor. At the same time, trad climbing seems to me to be running into dead ends; increasing the level of trad difficulty seems to require either prearranging relatively good protection and so making the climb a sport climb in all senses except for what is holding up the draws, or else venturing forth on rock with little or no opportunity for decent trad protection and practicing the moves on a top rope before eventually committing to a dangerous lead in which even the minutest aspects of the climb are known and practiced before the route is "led." Both of these developments involve extensive rehearsals and so have increasingly tenuous connections to the core of trad climbing, at least as I understand it.

Here are two examples of these approaches: http://vimeo.com/73599174 and http://www.ukclimbing.com/news/item.php?id=68330.

When it comes to advances in difficulty, all the action is in the sport arena. The incredible strength, endurance, and technique displayed by top-level sport climbers has reached a point that is probably beyond the comprehension of most of the rest of the world's climbers. I doubt that most of those here casting aspersions on sport climbing have any genuine understanding of what it is about. Well, maybe I should make that no more than a personal observation. I've watched the videos of Sharma and Ondra and I'm pretty confident that after 56 years of trad climbing, I don't have the remotest inkling of what they are up against and how they are resolving it. The closest I can come is that they are stringing together scores of moves, each single one of which might well have been beyond my abilities at my very best. I think it best not to heap either scorn or criticism on an endeavor that is basically beyond my understanding.

This is not to say that sport climbing has not had many unfortunate consequences for trad climbing, and I've certainly had plenty to say about that over the years. But these problems have nothing to do with sport climbing per se, rather they involve an unfortunate transport of sport climbing norms over to the trad climbing genre, where those norms threaten to eviscerate the core of the trad experience. Making trad climbing more and more like sport climbing is, in my opinion, a very bad thing. There is room for two genres, and we ought to strive to keep two genres, vibrant but distinct, with respect on both sides for the astonishing achievements that continually advance what we imagine to be humanly possible.
patrick compton

Trad climber
van
Sep 7, 2013 - 10:36am PT
Well said rGold. You have eloquently spelled out the core of the discussion.

However, you say trad is inevitably using more sport tactics to achieve a basic level of safety while working very hard 'trad' lines. An example being the siege tactics used on the Dawn Wall?

Yet you also say:

Making trad climbing more and more like sport climbing is, in my opinion, a very bad thing.

I don't understand why. I am basically a sport/boulderer who does a bit of easy trad on the side to get into the mountains. But, as a consumer of climbing media, missions like the Dawn Wall are exciting for me to follow.

I am over 40 and could really care less about how hard teenage girls are climbing these days. The feats of the newest generation are impressive certainly, but the write-ups are repetitive, the videos boring.

I'd rather watch crazy brits take grounders off the gritstone any day.



rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Sep 7, 2013 - 11:17am PT
Well Patrick, first of all, I have no business suggesting what anyone, trad or sport climber, should or should not do, and it wasn't my intention to do so. It seems, though, that the top end of trad climbing is destined to be either a version of sport climbing with pre-placed gear instead of bolts, or else incredibly dicey and dangerous leading, practiced over and over, on negligibly protected rock, neither of which seems much like what I'm now obliged to call "traditional trad." This is not to say that these pursuits are not of great value and import to the practicioners and to those who follow their exploits.

If we pull back from the frontiers of difficulty on one hand and risk on the other, then there are a vast range of climbs that still fit into the trad genre, which is to say that they can be done by good climbers from the ground up without extensive rehearsal, placing the gear on the way, with perhaps a few falls but without a lot of hangdogging. These climbs have a mixture of difficulty and risk that together make up what I think people mean by "adventure." When sport climbing norms are transported to this realm, we get bolted belays in places where gear would work perfectly well, the elimination of run-outs with via bolted pro, and a proliferation of convenience rap stations that remove the commitment factor intrinsic to the climb in its natural state. Those are the features of trad climbing that I think need to be protected from the influence of the sport genre, even if it is already late in the day for some places.
Randisi

Social climber
Dalian, Liaoning
Sep 7, 2013 - 11:21am PT
All this crap is one reason I have always preferred bouldering, and long before it became popular.
steve shea

climber
Sep 7, 2013 - 11:23am PT
I agree rgold. The placement of unecessary bolts in the trad genre negates the classic 'tradness'. It is late in the day for some areas. I'm recently off the couch after a long hiatus and getting educated as to what has transpired in rockclimbing since I stopped. At some crags I have been looked upon as an antique rustic as I clang my way up with a rack of pro. But in these unecessary bolted areas we have discovered a new aspect of the sport. Eliminating, not chopping, placed bolts with perfectly good trad placements. Really fun. I do like sport climbing though as well, just different. The issue for this old alpinist is I like to go into the mountains where pro is kind of needed so its good to stay honed.
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Sep 7, 2013 - 11:40am PT
I don't get it, what's the big deal?


I used to be a staunch "ground-up only" type of guy, and also argued that you couldn't red-point with pre-hung draws. Geesh, was that really me?

While I still have a staunch ground-up only view, I also see that many routes couldn't be protected by going ground up. I'd love to see the upper half of Growing Up to see what caused DR to go on a down-first escapade. I know Doug, and I know that the choice he made wasn't an impulse buy.

The thread title, What is the essence of sport climbing?, could just as easily be "What is the essence of climbing?" Because really, the goal for 99% of the folks who rock climb is the exact same.

Movement.
steve shea

climber
Sep 7, 2013 - 11:46am PT
I think the big deal, if there is one, is about personal values. When one is dissed over one's values things can get contentious. People get testy. So go try another way, get exposed and see what all the hype is about. The naysayers might like it. I think the goal is to get to the top, get some satisfaction and go home in one piece.
patrick compton

Trad climber
van
Sep 7, 2013 - 12:20pm PT
When sport climbing norms are transported to this realm, we get bolted belays in places where gear would work perfectly well

Although this sometimes the case, often the pro is so thin on these nu-trad pieces that the belay pro is no better than the thin, run out pro on the route. I am not surprised that a minimum level of protection is allowed to prevent the ground fall deaths of both climber and belayer in the event of a fall that pull all the pieces.

In any case, the 'leader must not fall' paradigm has been deemed impractical to those pushing the limits of low-probability moves on marginal pro. Falling and working moves is inevitable at this level.

So, I would argue that if hard trad isn't worked with these tactics, then it wouldn't exist.
Chim-Chim

climber
Sep 7, 2013 - 06:06pm PT
Apples and oranges, I've seen 5.12+ sport climbers destroyed on Reeds Direct. so, some crack climbing could benefit a badass sport climber.
RP3

Big Wall climber
Sonora
Sep 7, 2013 - 10:44pm PT
^^Agreed...although some sport climbing could also benefit many trad climbers!!!
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