The Columbus weekend is upon us and lets just say the climbing atrocities were stacking up today pretty quick. Within five minutes of showing up at a popular cliff I witnessed one gentleman almost deck because he un-clipped from his tram, a belayer and his climber go swinging out into space because the climber while trammed into the belayer cleaned the last draw, and a woman top-roping a climb with enough cordlettes, 4′ slings, and “shit” to set anchors on 4 routes. As we moved on to the next cliff line the of “shit” shenanigans continued. People were climbing routes with so much “shit” on their harnesses it was a wonder how they made it to the anchors, then when they got to the anchors they made a “shit” tangled mess. There was so much “shit” wrapped around two bolts you couldn’t tell who was tied to what. People were doing all sorts of stupid “shit” while on the walls, clipping into adjacent routes to lower off, back cleaning in ground fall potential zones while top roping on one back clipped draw (ya you had to see it, took me a second to realize what was going on). The most obnoxious one I saw repeatedly was people cleaning overhung routes on rappel!
One of my biggest pet-peeves is seeing climbers rapping off a over-hung climb to clean the gear. Not only is this incredibly time-consuming but it straight up dangerous!!!! Just how the hell do you think you are going to swing in 5 ft to the piece of gear in the rock, grab the gear , and still hold the rope? All the while trying not look or act like a sketch ball…HA! right!!! The worst is when people do this without a fire mans belay. I see this a lot and continually try to tell people (as politely as possible) how much of a fucking idiot there being!! No really, I try really hard to let people know in a polite way how unsafe this is. There are a bunch of reasons this is bad, some I’ve just stated, but I think the worst one is the fact your making a really simple task complicated. Haven’t you ever heard of “Keep it simple stupid!” The more steps you add to a system the more likely to end up “Shits” creek.
Out side of the shenanigans, the crag was straight up bat “shit” crazy!!!! For the most part people were civil and every-one seemed to be enjoying their day. There were a lot of casual weekend climbers out and more than once I found myself getting edgy waiting on people goooiing sooooo slllooowwwwwww. It was hard but I bit my tongue, we all started somewhere and every one is out to get some good climbing in.
I gotta work tomorrow but for those of you climbing tomorrow “keep it simple stupid”