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Placing a cam? Slotting a nut? Slinging a tree?
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512OW
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Post by 512OW » Wed Dec 10, 2008 1:54 am

L K Day wrote: Sounds like somebody who's never climbed with Mark Wilford.
True, and maybe thats the reason that most of the people on here know little to nothing about Mark Wilford. In fact, I'd go as far as to say that he's known more for bouldering and alpinism than trad climbing. He's a badass... no doubt... but in terms of trad climbing, he never was a "hero" anywhere near the status of the people I mentioned... or 50 some others.
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512OW
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Post by 512OW » Wed Dec 10, 2008 2:38 am

That may have come out wrong.

To clarify a little... I have the utmost respect for Mark Wilford, and for all the guys who share his ethical standpoint and go for it attitude. I think its a shame that they aren't as recognizable as a Ron Kauk or Jim Bridwell.... but thats life.

The ethical standpoint in question is just outdated, and difficulty would have been MUCH slower to advance if it had remained the stance. For the average person to try and emulate Mark Wilford, and believe that they can climb 12+X, ground up, without knowing the gear, is not just a little... but a lot retarded.

Not to mention, once even Mr. Wilford attempted a climb once, he knew more about it and the gear on his next try. And the next. And the next. Eventually, even his routes were well rehearsed and most likely racked accordingly.
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Post by L K Day » Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:49 am

Racking gear really is pretty simple for Wilford, mostly because he generally carries so little. I think the reasons he may not be as famous as some others is that he's always been happy to live in Fort Collins, away from the major scenes, and that he's not much interested in playing today's number one climbing game. That's because adventure and style still mean something to Mark.

Whether it's been on the boulders of Fort Collins, a horror show 5.11X on the Front Range, the Diamond in winter, the Eiger -solo, or in the Canadian Rockies, or the Karakorum, Mark's heroic efforts are legendary. "Well rehearsed" would describe almost nothing he's done in climbing.

And yes, he's a badass traddie. But that's gotten even less attention than his big mountain exploits.

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Post by Shamis » Wed Dec 10, 2008 8:04 pm

Most of my 'trad hero's' are completely unknown older climbers who will show up at a crag anywhere at the country and get on 11+ trad with no beta and send.

They are stuck in those grades because they don't rehearse routes, and many of them don't even climb more than once a week, but it is still amazing to see their ability to consistently tackle hard trad climbs and send. I think its a good ethic, though obviously not cool anymore.

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Post by 512OW » Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:45 pm

Shamis wrote:Most of my 'trad hero's' are completely unknown older climbers who will show up at a crag anywhere at the country and get on 11+ trad with no beta and send.

They are stuck in those grades because they don't rehearse routes, and many of them don't even climb more than once a week, but it is still amazing to see their ability to consistently tackle hard trad climbs and send. I think its a good ethic, though obviously not cool anymore.

11+ trad does not equal hard. It equals moderate.
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Post by L K Day » Wed Dec 10, 2008 11:18 pm

Maybe so, but there's more than a few 11+ trad routes that would send climbers who say things like that wimpering home to momma.

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Post by 512OW » Wed Dec 10, 2008 11:21 pm

L K Day wrote:Maybe so, but there's more than a few 11+ trad routes that would send climbers who say things like that wimpering home to momma.
Troof.... but that doesn't mean its hard. It just means that said whimperer lacks the requisite skill or desire to obtain said skill.

No matter how you slice it, 11+ is only hard when its Liquid Sky, and even then its size dependant...
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Post by woodchuck008 » Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:23 am

11+ as 'moderate'...geez this just shows the real difference in thought, respect, ethical background, trad vs sport. Am I to believe that the upper grades increase on an exponential degree while the lower end is just a plain linear number? So 5.5 to 5.8 is sooo simple now to some minds that 5.11 'moderate' is the new version of 'moderate' 5.6 to 5.8? I don't think so. To downgrade the efforts of the 5.11 climber to being 'moderate' just because you spend your life on bolted 5.13's is a real slap, a put down to any climber who is NOT as cool, as hardcore as you believe you may be.
5.11 to 5.14 is a number gap comparable to 5.6 to 5.9. Sure it's a different world, a degree that may be unnoticable to many who see the 5.11 as tough as the 5.14 since both are currently out of their grasp.
Any number from the 5.11 range and above was, and is, still quite a bit more difficult than anything to be called a 'moderate'. If you feel that your are so much more superior at your level of climbing than the lowly 5.11 climber, well I feel sorry for your attitude and need for being 'someone' of importance in the climbing ranks. Maybe we really do need to use new names and clear adjectives like the Brits do...'hard, very severe, extremely hard severe', etc. instead of downgrading a known, accepted and understood number to 'moderate'. It's like saying to climbers "you'll never be as good as I am", because you plan on degrading the value of their achievement the closer they get to your little world. Yep, I don't send 5.12s but at least I enjoy every climb I do, no matter what the rating is.

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Post by ahab » Thu Dec 11, 2008 10:52 am

aw shit.
buy the Ticket take the Ride

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Post by GWG » Thu Dec 11, 2008 11:04 am

I've had the pleasure of climbing with some of the "old school" trad climbers who developed areas of the gunks. I really like climbing with them because for them, it's all about the climb and not the grade. Their rating of climbs is focused on the quality of the climb, type of moves, gear placement opportunities, etc and not about the difficulty. They certainly challenge themselves by looking for that new line and working through it, if it's not an enjoyable climb, don't do it again. The only person they are competing with is that voice inside. :twisted:

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Post by 512OW » Thu Dec 11, 2008 11:15 am

woodchuck008 wrote:11+ as 'moderate'...geez this just shows the real difference in thought, respect, ethical background, trad vs sport. Am I to believe that the upper grades increase on an exponential degree while the lower end is just a plain linear number? So 5.5 to 5.8 is sooo simple now to some minds that 5.11 'moderate' is the new version of 'moderate' 5.6 to 5.8? I don't think so. To downgrade the efforts of the 5.11 climber to being 'moderate' just because you spend your life on bolted 5.13's is a real slap, a put down to any climber who is NOT as cool, as hardcore as you believe you may be.
5.11 to 5.14 is a number gap comparable to 5.6 to 5.9. Sure it's a different world, a degree that may be unnoticable to many who see the 5.11 as tough as the 5.14 since both are currently out of their grasp.
Any number from the 5.11 range and above was, and is, still quite a bit more difficult than anything to be called a 'moderate'. If you feel that your are so much more superior at your level of climbing than the lowly 5.11 climber, well I feel sorry for your attitude and need for being 'someone' of importance in the climbing ranks. Maybe we really do need to use new names and clear adjectives like the Brits do...'hard, very severe, extremely hard severe', etc. instead of downgrading a known, accepted and understood number to 'moderate'. It's like saying to climbers "you'll never be as good as I am", because you plan on degrading the value of their achievement the closer they get to your little world. Yep, I don't send 5.12s but at least I enjoy every climb I do, no matter what the rating is.
I'm not talking about me. I'm talking about the whole world. 5.11 is moderate. So is 5.12. Period. Hard climbing doesn't begin until about 13b. 5.11 has been climbed since the 60's for Christs sake. Since the word "hard" is relative, you have to use a generalization when speaking of it. And in terms of the current state of climbing, 5.11 is moderate at best. Shit, my daughter climbed 5.11 within a year of climbing.... at 10 years old.

And no.... 5.11 to 5.14 is nowhere near comparable to 5.6 to 5.9. Not even remotely close. 13d to 14a is probably closer to the leap between 5.6 and 5.9, and even then its impossible to compare.

And just so you're in the know next time you try to preach, I haven't spent my whole life on bolted climbs. In fact, I'd climbed only a handful of bolted routes till last year. I started on trad... and 5.11 was, and still is, easy.
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512OW
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Post by 512OW » Thu Dec 11, 2008 11:26 am

In fact, I'd say that your opposition to using the word "moderate" for 5.11 is far more egotistical than accepting it. I KNOW that I don't climb hard. I never claimed to. I've barely even scratched the surface of hard climbing, and by the time I train hard and long enough to do something really "hard", it won't be hard anymore. I'm ok with that.

Why aren't you ok with only climbing "moderately", when you claim to enjoy it, regardless of the grade? Sounds like a major ego trip to me...

Sorry, but you should catch up to the current state of things. Trad just isn't mysterious anymore. It isn't harder. I didn't wanna accept it either, but its the truth.
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Post by woodchuck008 » Thu Dec 11, 2008 1:31 pm

Oh I see, it's due to the oh so important 'current state of things'. New is always better I'm to belive. I am not intimidated or embarrassed by my level of climging; it's the attitude to downgrade the earlier efforts as 'moderate', with new limits meaning climbers need a higher, better label for themselves and thus choose to call those climbers of less degree, a 'moderate' now. The Brits adjectives might be vague to us, but possibly the world of 12d to 13a to 14d needs some more superlatives to glorify their efforts. Let's try these: stupendous', beyond impressive', or maybe some exponents in a math sort of way will work. Go ahead, use any and all that are needed as the limits soar into the Sharma World of 5.15. It is no fault or defect for someone to enjoy where they are, what they are doing in their enjoyment of the climb. Just don't turn around and re-certify those below you as 'moderates'. By the end of '09, who knows they might be downgraded in your terms to 'novice', or even the dreaded 'gumby' level of 5.9.

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Post by 512OW » Thu Dec 11, 2008 2:07 pm

Yes. When 5.11 was "hard", it was because it was near the upper end of the then current scale, same as 5.14 is now. You're correct, its only a matter of time before 5.13c, or even 14c will be moderate, and 5.11 will be entry level gumby. I mean, once upon a time, 5.9 was the hardest in the world... now even you call it easy or moderate. Thats the nature of things.

Its not about a "better" label. Calling 5.11 moderate, is, in essence, exactly the same as the Brit grading system. I'm all for their system. It seems that you'd have a problem with it if the "label" didn't line up with what YOU thought. I'm not labeling the people who are climbing it.... I'm labeling the climb. I'd be perfectly fine if the climbs I climbed were labeled "novice". It would just make me try harder... not whine that I should carry a more significant label, like you seem to be doing...
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Post by Shamis » Thu Dec 11, 2008 2:17 pm

I'll eat my harness the day 14c becomes 'moderate'.

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