41 thoughts on “UPDATE SERIES #1 – Rope Solo Lead Climbing – Rope Systems and Anchoring

  1. I think there is no need (in both scenarios) to do the butterfly first. You do the eight first, clip it and then you do a butterfly, clip it, and if you are not tensioned enough, you can simply slide the butterfly on the rope and bring it where you need it. I mean I've just learned how to do the knot through a video and I already find it ridiculously easy to move the butterfly left or right on the rope.
    Anyway, thank you very much for the video, it's very informative. I was looking for a video like this, cause I'm planning to start rope soloing sooner or later. Would you approve a reverso as a fall arrester?

  2. Would not want to sport climb at a location where someone is using the bottom bolt of all three routes to climb just one.

  3. when setting up an anchor off of cams, nuts, etc to rope solo off of, why wouldn't you equalize each piece with a cordalette, then knot and biner your rope into the master point? … as opposed to putting each piece directly into the rope.

  4. My only input on this is i spent half the video thinking you had the bolts on your wall lol then seen your foot. hhahahah

  5. pfffftttt…. NO… Why not build a tree-tailed-figure-eight this will split the impact force to all three ground ancors! AND You blocking Tree Routs… isn´t it a bit disrespectfull… all in the NAME OF SAVETY.. no it also works save and not so recless ! ! ! !
    Where have you learnt this ?

    First: Its good that you think about the added impact force at the slack rope, but you wont have this much of a impact force cause you useing a dynamic climbing rope.
    So normaly if you use a chain system as yours, you should look for the impact force to get at (in your case) the first ancor, (were your butterfly is) and have your second ancor for redundance. Otherwise you wear out the first ancor, and the climber which comes after your will have a worn out ancor, which he didn´t know.

    Second: I think its thing of respect for your next climber to create a system which is save AND let the bolts in good condition, …and in my opinion this only goes by splitting up the force on all tree ancors, by building a force-triangle using (for example) a tree-tailed-figure-eight.

    Watch more ancore creating videos, there are much from the german DAV !
    OK, they are in german, but you see very good what they doin 😉

  6. geesh.. dude.. get a drill and put in a bolt yourself.  save you time and you would look a  lot cooler 🙂

  7. Your vids have inspired me.  That said, bolt 2 carabiner should form a v with the focus point a foot or two to the right of bolt 2 in line with the left to right direction of pull force.  Also, instead of a butterfly, tie a figure 8 on a bight with the figure eight being the focus point of the Y configuration and the bight being long enough to create v such that the first and second bolts will have equal tension.  In your setup, your v faces downward with the butterfly knot being the focus point of the v and the focus point not facing toward the direction of pull which is left to right but rather your focus point is setup to handle a downward direction of pull which is completely wrong.  If bolt 1 snapped, bolt 2 would get shock loaded because you aren't giving bolt 2 ANY tension in your sample.  Bolt 1 in your sample gets 100% of the load in a fall.

  8. This is a good idea that other people have suggested- using screamers on the anchor. Your suggestion of the friction plate is essentially the same. This is a good idea, especially if you think you might fall in the first few bolts. Good suggestion!

  9. one more suggestion, use the friction plate on bolt 1, it will work like dynamic belaying, securing the bolt and the climber. If the fall on bolt 1 is hard one and the ground impact is inevitable, the absorbed energy will help to reduce the impact force. You can setup the max load applied on anchor, and with the a few meters of free rope, you can afford a few falls, just do not forget the knot at the end of rope 🙂 google Dissipator KISA for details

  10. If the world is perfect or not, the bolt 1 need to sustain fall factor 2 to be safe! In your configuration the first bolt is working like a pulley, so is no force reduction for bolt 1 there, only for climber. You need to double the bolt 1 and equalize the load. The best solution for solo climbing would be equalized anchor point on the ground level, vertically below the bolt 1, all the rest is in category "the world is not perfect". Good luck!

  11. @timo – Great points! 33samogo is correct in a perfect world, but in the real world we cant rely on ideal situations. We have to plan for the worst, and that's why redundancy in some form or another is a must!

  12. @ 33samogo – You are correct again. Falling in the first few bolts is not a good idea!!! That's why I find it acceptable to preclip a few bolts when rope soloing on sport climbs. Its just much safer for exactly the reasons you mentioned. Good point.

  13. You are correct and I agree. In a perfect world, with perfect rock and bolts, you are absolutely right and a one bolt anchor would be OK. However, not every bolt is perfect. Not all routes are in a straight line. Not all rock is solid. Things go wrong usually where you least expect it (that's been my experience). In a theoretical world I agree with you, but in the real world, I don't agree. But again, I thank you for challenging me and adding thoughtful comments to this discussion. Thanks!

  14. @Aron, I'm not trying to pick on you or on your research, I am using my logic and some physic knowledge to point out where to pay attention. It is a challenge to explain so complex area with writing on the youtube. Climbing is physics at first, some basics here, google FORCES INVOLVED IN LEADER FALLS. Keep it up!

  15. @Timo, if the first bolt do not sustain the factor 2 fall, you will lend on the ground if you fall before securing on the second bolt! In the Arons anchor installation, the first bolt need to sustain factor1 less or more, but the force on bolt1 is almost the same like in factor 2 case. So, the first bolt is the most critical to pay attention and will be the last one to be pulled out 😉

  16. @33samogo

    I feel you ever assume that all bolts in Arons scenario are about to fail by the same force ("… the last one to pull out.") and under same conditions. I wouldn't assume this way. Every part of the whole system should be overlooked and seen by means of redundance (if ever possible). So this is valid for all bolts in the chain… naturally… 🙂

  17. I just want to say again that not everyone will agree with me, and that is fine! I just hope you learn something and expand your knowledge. Maybe some trick I do here can be used in another application. Its good to learn as much as you can, even if you don't use it. You never know when something might come in handy. I try to learn as much as I can, and that allows me to think outside the box, and I am often able to innovate when my friends cant think of anything. Knowledge is power!!!

  18. First I want to say that everyone should climb the way they feel comfortable. I respect you and your choices. However, I do not like 1-bolt anchors. I have seen bolts fail. pull out of the rock, hangers bend, and I even pulled a bolt out of the wall with my bare hand! You never know if a bolt is placed correctly. For me, 1 bolt needs to be backed up in some way or another. I have learned that things go wrong in the way you least expect. Highline rigging taught me this and a lot more!

  19. In your configuration, if you fall on first bolt clamping, the force on the bolt will be double the force on climber harness, so it will be pulled out like any other bolt anchor rope runs through. So nonsense for me, sorry.

  20. Aron, you will pull out all bolts before first one or lend before double-loaded the first bolt anchor! It will be always more stress on the bolt before the first one, the first bolt is actually the last one to pull out. The bolt anchor hold a lot of force if installed correctly, the old rope will brake before bolt anchor. The critical is always the first clamping, low rope elongation-higher forces on anchor.

  21. @33samogo If you feel safe on a 1-bolt anchor, by all means go for it. I don't feel safe with a 1-bolt anchor, nor would I want to teach other people to do that either. The method in this video takes me bout 2 minutes to set up in real life. Its pretty quick to get backed up, so I see no reason to forego the second bolt.

  22. of course, the pragmatist in me just tells people to trust a single bolt … or carry around a 10m 25mm tube tape – weighs next to nothing

  23. you're bang on correct, & the force dissipated by breaking bolt 1 will leave bugger all transferred to bolt 2, but as it's redundant rather than equalising mightn't be strong enough for all – think I've a way to do this sacrificing a few metres of rope end, will have a play over next 24hrs & see if i succeed

  24. OK, I follow you now. That's quite interesting. Like you said, you are limited to the strength of the prussic cord. Thanks for your comments, and I will have to think about this idea. Perhaps I can figure out a way to use your idea. I really appreciate your comments!

  25. Thanks for watching the videos and thanks for the comments and thoughts. I hope you enjoy rope soloing with your SP!

  26. You method would work if you have a sling long enough to span between the 2 bolts, but most bolts are too far apart to do that- thus the setup I created. You are right, the butterfly will take the majority of the load, but a little bit will transfer to the 8. Also, if the butterfly bolt fails, there will be no shockloading since the backup bolt is already tensioned. Its not textbook, but with a very minimal rack when you are traveling, its a way to get things done. Thanks for the comment!

  27. Setting up a static equalisation with this rigging is impossible – Just because the butterfly-8 leg is under tension doesn't mean it will be sharing any fall force (it won't). You'll be falling on the butterfly with the 8 as a backup. Which is fine if you trust the (single) bolt to take a whipper, but not if you don't.
    Best and simplest way to equalise anchors is a simple sling with one twist.

    Excellent series of videos though – I've just picked up a silent partner & slowly figuring it out

  28. make a prussic loop with a double fisherman's small diameter rope than what you're climbing on. tie your double 8 like you did in your video. Tie prussic knot onto your rope. connect your prussic loop to the second anchor and slide toward the first anchor to place tension. I've done anchors like this in the technical rescue world and it works, but you're strength is reduced to the breaking point of the smaller diameter. I can make a video if you would like to demonstrate. climb on.

  29. I'm sorry but no.
    The tension does not create equalisation.
    You seem to have a misconception of what equalisation means and are now broadcasting that misconception over the internet to others which is potentially dangerous. Don't get me wrong, I like your vids on the whole and find your ideas interesting and usefull, including this one.
    But misinformation is dangerous for you and others who may regard you as an authority.
    Please don't let your ego get in the way of safety on this.

  30. I think you got the general gist. Its not a proper equalization. Both bolts get loaded, but more like 75%-25% instead of equal. And yes, to have it work at all, you would need to follow the video description carefully to ensure tension between the 2 bolts. That tension is what creates the equalization.

  31. When you first set up your anchor the bolts ARE NOT EQUALISED. If you tighten + tension everything and have a fair loop on the butterfly any fall would be taken by the left bolt ONLY (not equalised). In practice with a small loop on a loosely tied butterfly and with a serendipitous amount of rope stretch – a fall could load both bolts (equalised). It seems a good idea but If your system is not EXACTLY as illustrated here it may not work.
    If you post instructional videos be CERTAIN of your facts

  32. thanks for your thoughts. Im curious how you envision using a prussic, because I cant see any application here. Could you give me some details about that?

  33. Actually, the 2 anchor bolts are equalized. Just in a very unconventional (and non-optimal) way. The option you mentioned can be used if you have a bolt nearby, but if 2 bolts are nearby, I think my setup is better because you avoid said factor-2 fall. Factor-2 falls are not pretty, even at short distances.

  34. Just to clarify. The 2 anchor bolts are not equalised. The 2nd one is a backup only. Therefore the angle is not a problem. A simpler option where the bolts aren't falling apart is to just clip a side bolt and then a butterfly on the actual climb. Sure it means a factor 2 before the 2nd bolt but it depends on the difficulty.

  35. You could tension the anchor by adjusting the butterfly instead of your method…and who keeps telling everyone the double loop figure eight is the strongest? Its an multi point anchor knot…carabiners are designed to be strongest at the spine and that knot puts unnecessary force on the gate side….

  36. I dont follow your exact question, sorry. But you are right, there is a large bend in the rope which isn't ideal. However, I still think that in the right situation this setup is good. As for the bend angle, 180degrees is no bend- a straight line. So therefore we want angles approaching 180. So having a bend of more than 90 is good. Less than 90 would be terrible, like Z clipping or something.

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