Stories of Bad Belays

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Messages 21 - 40 of total 65 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Off White

climber
Tenino, WA
Feb 13, 2018 - 04:02pm PT
Credit: Off White

This thread needs a picture.
StahlBro

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
Feb 13, 2018 - 04:28pm PT
Me too. A friend of mine almost decked my girlfriend on Orangohang because he was distracted and smoking a fatty.
Alexey

climber
San Jose, CA
Feb 13, 2018 - 07:02pm PT
phylp and rwedgee - I both enjoyed and scared by your stories which both ended "never again!" How you found such morons? Are they posting on ST?
chainsaw

Trad climber
CA
Feb 13, 2018 - 07:52pm PT
Hi Mei, I wasnt there so Im not sure, but it looks like a half hitch (overhand) on a bight. Better than girth hitch because once cinched up, it doesnt loosen like a girth might. And girth hitches put mechanical strain on the webbing in a 2:1 fasion as they bite into themselves when loading. The overhand is almost as strong as a figure eight and can be adjusted to snug fit easily.
RURP_Belay

Big Wall climber
Bitter end of a bad anchor
Feb 13, 2018 - 08:02pm PT
moosedrool

climber
Andrzej Citkowicz far away from Poland
Feb 13, 2018 - 08:24pm PT
I wanted to try a 5.11+ route. Itís too hard for me to on-sight 5.11+, so I was standing at the base for a few minutes trying to figure out the moves. It looked doable to get to the first bolt, so I started going up. I got to the first bolt ~15í up. Then, I hear my belayer asking, donít you want to rope up? No sh!t! I wasnít tight in at all.

We both had our senior moment, I guess. I managed to downclimb. I tied in, climbed a few feet above the first bolt and took a fall. He caught me.

With the same partner. He started leading (a different rout), got to the second bolt, and couldnít get any farther. I lowered him from the second bolt, tied in to his and, and started climbing. I got to the second bolt, and the buddy says, donít you want to take some gear with you? LOL Good I was on a top rope.

Maybe we should just retire from climbing?

Moose
Ferretlegger

Trad climber
san Jose, CA
Feb 14, 2018 - 08:43am PT
Ojai Alex,
I do not remember the name of the climb, but as I recall it had maybe 4 bolts and was a little to the left of the central area that was being climbed in those days. It was put up by the late Rick Moser. There is a faint chance I could identify it if I had a guidebook. It was in the early/mid 1970's.

All the best,
Michael
Mei

Trad climber
mxi2000.net
Feb 14, 2018 - 12:49pm PT
it looks like a half hitch (overhand) on a bight. Better than girth hitch because once cinched up, it doesnt loosen like a girth might. And girth hitches put mechanical strain on the webbing in a 2:1 fasion as they bite into themselves when loading. The overhand is almost as strong as a figure eight and can be adjusted to snug fit easily.
Chainsaw, thanks. I think you are right. Upon close examination, the knot does look like an overhand on a bight. I'm aware that girth tends to loosen when not weighed down, so I like a knot that can cinch down for that use (as shown in the photo). I'm not too concerned about strength as I've yet to hear about such a failure. However, based on my experience, you need to have nimble fingers to tie an overhand knot with a small nylon loop and still be able to cinch it down satisfyingly. Removing the three slings and untying the knots can be difficult too.

I think clove hitch might be the best knot to use come to think of it.
phylp

Trad climber
Upland, CA
Feb 14, 2018 - 04:05pm PT
Oh, God, Alexey, not Supertopo. All my Supertopo friends who have become partners are wonderful. This was someone from rockclimbing.com. Does that even exist anymore?
WBraun

climber
Feb 14, 2018 - 07:54pm PT
I once set up a belay on El Cap with one fixed horizontal pin that was driven straight up under a roof.

I asked partner if he was willing to die on this belay.

He shrugged and clipped in with the haul bag.

We both stared at this one pin anchor we were hanging on.

My partner then proceeded to do a giant pendulum off our one pin behaving badly anchor.

We made it and didn't die ........
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 15, 2018 - 01:20pm PT
Sometimes pins driven straight up can be surprisingly good.

I got caught by a 1/2" angle driven up halfway only. Thirty foot, fall factor 1.5 !!!!
tradmanclimbs

Ice climber
Pomfert VT
Feb 15, 2018 - 04:39pm PT
1986 Zion. No idea what climb but something you could see from the road... P1 was fingers and Hard. Belay was a tat death triangle with both drilled angles completely loose in their holes. We did a 2nd pitch because we wanted a better anchor. Charlie made belay in a wide crack with my#10 hex and a rusty button head with rusty home made hanger... We did not want to rap from the single buttonhead in sandstone so Charlie tried to get us to the top though I have no idea how we would have found t the walk off if we had made it. Naturally it got wide and Carlie walked our single #3.5 Friend up the crack until he got too scared so he sent a loop down for my hex. I sent that up and he kept going back cleaning, running out of gas and eventually aiding on the two pieces. I have my knee jammed in the crack stareing at the single rusty 1/4incher, Charlie is 70 or so feet above me with zero gear in between us thrashing away looking like he is going to Air mail at any second..... Finally the friend and hex max out and start slideing backwards.... Charlie bails on My hex, we then rap from the button head, and the loose drilled angles.....
Mike Honcho

Trad climber
Glenwood Springs, CO
Feb 15, 2018 - 05:52pm PT
uuuhhh, sorry, but dangerous johnny threw me off for a second....

..well put TV, keep this thread rolling folks, chime in with your "bad-belay" stories, I'll share one of mine here soon, gotta run for now..

I thought that was hilarious for someone who only has ONE post ever on Supertopo, then I was like, dude, you came back and call yourself Mike Honcho now dumbass!

OK, so, I was in Eldo in my Sophomore year of High school. I was casually, yet attentively belaying a partner and it occurred to me that the two parties next to me both had a partner named Scott..

In the same 10 seconds, a person named Scott was leading and a person named Scott was belaying and about the same time one yelled "OFF BELAY SCOTT" and the other yelled "BELAY OFF SCOTT" and neither off these two parties were related. So I drolly looked over and was shocked to see a climber from both parties taking the other "OFF BELAY/BELAY OFF"!!!!

Trying to explain and unf*#k these 2 parties and not scare the crap out of them was truly a memorable moment of all time for me. Really 1st rate communication on my part, which is hilarious..
Sierra Ledge Rat

Mountain climber
Old and Broken Down in Appalachia
Feb 15, 2018 - 07:49pm PT
I once set up a belay on El Cap with one fixed horizontal pin that was driven straight up under a roof.
YIKES


Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Feb 15, 2018 - 09:09pm PT
If it was horizontal how was it driven straight up? Is that like new math?
neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
Feb 15, 2018 - 09:23pm PT
hey there say, mike... :O

as to this quote... i ACTUALLY have wondered if stuff like this
has ever happened... :O

your quote:

OK, so, I was in Eldo in my Sophomore year of High school. I was casually, yet attentively belaying a partner and it occurred to me that the two parties next to me both had a partner named Scott..

In the same 10 seconds, a person named Scott was leading and a person named Scott was belaying and about the same time one yelled "OFF BELAY SCOTT" and the other yelled "BELAY OFF SCOTT" and neither off these two parties were related. So I drolly looked over and was shocked to see a climber from both parties taking the other "OFF BELAY/BELAY OFF"!!!!


NOW, i know, :O

whewww... glad it ended well, and most likely they all learned something, :O
Evel

Trad climber
Nedsterdam CO
Feb 15, 2018 - 10:03pm PT
Worst belay I know of is the 6th pitch of "forbidden fruit" in NC. Topo says to "assume a firm stance"
Right on.
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 16, 2018 - 12:03pm PT
tradesman, horror for sure, but who gave the bad belay. (That said I wouldn't mind seeing that photo of Dale and the 5 rurp belay)

Mike Honcho, dangerous Danny is known to me, and has decades of experience, including numerous FAs with big name climbers. He was likely occupied, but doubtless has great stories.
NutAgain!

Trad climber
South Pasadena, CA
Feb 16, 2018 - 01:15pm PT
I seem to recall trying to link pitches at end of Crest Jewel and running out of rope. Instead of a brief bit of simul'ing (which we actually did a lot of on Royal Arches during the approach), I wedged my knee or thigh in a crack and that was my anchor. I like to think slab falls wouldn't generate that much force... sort of like the magical thinking of a mom sticking out her harm to hold back a kid with no seatbelt in a car crash.

Obviously didn't die from that, but screwed up the on-sight of north dome gully. Spent the night back-to-back with teeth chattering somewhere in the manzanita east of the proper descent. In the morning woke up to sound of a jet flyover, but it was actually a big rockfall from high on Half Dome. Filled the valley over to Glacier Apron area with a cloud of dust.


Another time, on an FA near Via Aqua and Aquamist, I reached a mossy wet dark alcove, and couldn't find a single bomber placement. I ended up equalizing a few crappy cams any one of which would pull, but at least half the belay was my chest squeezed in the alcove. When I exhaled, I slid down a little bit. Got pretty slimed on that one.
tradmanclimbs

Ice climber
Pomfert VT
Feb 16, 2018 - 02:17pm PT
Toker. I felt the belay with me jamming my knee in the crack and a single aincent button head was pretty usless considering Charlie had led the entire pitch with just the hex and friend pushing them up with him. when he started aiding about 60ft above me and both pieces were maxing out I had us both written off... that's a bad belay in my book....
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