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owenel

Good beginner solo climbs?

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I know this is the internet so that automatically means that no one can read intelligently, but I posted what I thought in the first BLEEPING LINE.

 

It says, for those who can't read, which seems to be all three of you yoho's, sorry, maybe just Matt, "up to Class 4".

 

Anyone with an ounce of reading acquity knows this means CLASS 3. Class 3 definition is, you fall you survive, whereas Class 4 is you fall you die. You can have low 5th moves on class 3. Like climbing to the notch on the tooth, not the climb itself.

 

Most newbies think Class 3 is around 5. They also think a 45 degree slope is more like 70 or nearly a cliff. I have run into very few newbies who ever overestimated themselves on any real class 3 terrain. Those who did overestimate themselves it didn't matter what you said, they were going Hell or high water. The OP, here is getting a guide for Sahale... Says where his confidence level is, a bit lower than 'normal.'

 

Sorry, for tone, but common, a little reading comprehension, jimminy crickets guys.

 

PS. Class 3/4 is where most rockfall accidents happen as well. Almost killed my brother going over Himmelhorn-Ottohorn col in class 3 territory. Class 5 rockfall is generally small rocks, that most certainly hurt, but won't kill if you wear a helmet.

 

PPS. Any solo climber who doesn't take emergency rappel chord/rope is brain dead. Like 6mm line. Not ok to climb on, but ok to rappel GENTLY on.

Edited by Wastral

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I'm sorry to have offended you, Wastral. I indicated that already and I tried to suggest both respect and admiration for what I perceived to be your idea that adventure and aspiration are strong points or something like that. But once again I disagree.

 

I could be mistaken but I believe that class 3 is not or has not traditionally been defined to mean "if you fall you survive." I believe it has traditionally been defined to mean that some, but not all climbers, will want to be roped up. There are definitely some class III climbs where a fall could result in death. I don't know, but I think a rather well known and experienced local climber may have been killed on a class 3 climb last year (it could have been class 4).

 

And, I can't believe your argument. "Up to Class 4" means "not class 4 but only class 3 or below" -- and I have a reading comprehension problem? Really?

 

I'm not trying to be an ass here. I simply disagree. And the heart of my point is that I would not rely on a given rating of "class 3" or "class 4" in the Beckey book or some guide to the Coast Range or Rockies and conclude, without further thought about the nature of the route, that it was a good solo climb for beginners or even intermediate climbers.

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It says, for those who can't read, which seems to be all three of you yoho's, sorry, maybe just Matt, "up to Class 4".

 

Anyone with an ounce of reading acquity knows this means CLASS 3.

 

I think that Matt's reading comprehension is far superior to anyone on this site. He is a lawyer after all.

 

Reading comprehension? What does "Sorry, for tone, but common, a little reading comprehension, jimminy crickets guys." mean?

 

Wastral, you really need to take some valium or smoke some pot. Would you really get so excited face to face?

 

"up to and and not including class 4" is what the hot head meant.

Edited by genepires

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"up to BUT not including class 4" is what he apparently meant. In other words, "up to class 3."

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reading comprehension and semantics aside.... "beginner" and "solo" in the same sentance are or should be mutually exclusive. IMO a beginner should not be solo.

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That's a fair suggestion, Bird Dog, and one that would be supported by most "experts."

 

But I'd argue otherwise.

 

There is a lot to be found in climbing solo. And by that I mean not just a scare factor or adrenaline or bragging rights, but a personal experience that can have broader value. A "Solo" climb on a walk up peak in the wilderness, while certainly exposing the climber to danger, is no more unreasonable than a roped and partnered climb on something even moderately technical.

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Not to dog-pile on Wastral here, but I was even more horrified by this statement:

 

Honestly if you manage to get lost in the Cascades with its DEEP OBVIOUS valleys and very precise ridges/mountains, one would have to be truly oblivious to the world from the moment you stepped from the car in order to get lost.

 

Even if this statement excludes fog, snow, sleet, slide alder, denies the existence of cliffs, and ignores the darkness of night I believe it is still an utterly wrong suggestion. Dangerous, even.

 

 

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I "alerted" on that one, too, Fairweather. But I remember having similar thoughts when I moved here from the midwest, where it is far easier to simply get turned around in the woods because there are not big obvious features like mountain ridges and valleys. I said things like that statement that Wastral offered, once upon a time.

 

Yes, plenty of experienced climbers who I think were in fact paying attention to where they were going have managed to get sucked down into the wrong drainage for one reason or another. My guess is that Wastral would acknowledge that this could happen, without the "victim" being "oblivious to the world." And, in the case of some of the volcano's in particular, it would be easy for our lost soul to have little idea of what drainage they ended up in.

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Now this is starting to get funny. If only I could read above a third grade level! I feel I am missing some of the jabs.

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There's no denying that the Waddington Range trip report he posted a couple years back demonstrates an extraordinary level of back country wherewithal. (I don't mean this in a smart-assed way either.) Much like my little brother can't understand why I stop to take a bearing or mark a waypoint--or ask for a rope on 4th/low 5th--I suspect Wastral's competence level leaves him scratching his head when confronted with ordinary skill-sets. No insult intended.

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I think too many experienced climbers make their "hobby" larger than life and "badder" than it really is to "newbies" and folks outside the sport making themselves feel bigger than reality. I have run into this a bit, unfortunately mostly from folks out of the "organized" climbing community like the Mountaineers etc who believe you have to carry your 10 essentials and carry 100 certificates to walk on a trail, let alone Dare to climb a mountain without a trail to the top! AGMA folks I have never had this attitude from I will say.

 

I can't believe I am hearing this from most of the posters here. Is everything in this world dangerous to most of you and therefore should be avoided unless a million safety precautions and warnings are attached? I say, ditch the safety folks in their nanny white padded state prison cells and live.

 

I'll stay with my statement about the near impossible ability to get lost in the N. Cascades. Yes, you can get lost if you never look at a map in unfamiliar territory and never use a compass if you are a complete idiot. AKA they are oblivious. Who wouldn't? That just proves there are idiots in this world.

 

Feeling you have to post warnings to prospective newbies that walking into unfamiliar territory could cause you to get lost is ludicrous. What are they 10 years old and you their nanny? Common sense? I have never been lost even as a 14 year old running in the square miles of woods we used to have here on Grand Ridge without a road when we moved out here many years ago.

 

Hitting cliff bands or slide alder because you took an unoptimum path is not being lost. That is simply learning to read a map. So you will be an extra hour or 2 getting to your destination. Big deal that is part of mountaineering, I do that all the time as I don't carry 7.5min quads. Darkness of night? Fact, you can camp anywhere, it doesn't need to be flat, it also does not mean you are lost, just can't judge time very well. <>

 

A couple times I just start hiking at 9PM because that is when I hit the trailhead and then hike without a flashlight for a few hours and crash in the bushes with a tarp. Never carried a tent till the age of 26, couldn't afford one. PS. Tents REALLY limit ones perspective of where you can "camp". I would recommend to Every newbie to never carry a tent unless you plan to always camp above treeline on snow which happens actually fairly rarely here in Washington. Better yet, bring hiking poles and a tarp and then you can camp without trees/bushes even on snow.

 

Pretty much outside of spots in CA/NV/Idaho/Wyoming and up north, there really is no wilderness where you can get lost to such an extent that you can't find a road or see city lights in which to walk towards in 2-3 days of moderate travel. The cascades? Hardly, surrounded by roads and myriads of trails with a billion signs compared to many other western states. I would think anyone born before 1900 out west would laugh their ass off at our definition of "wilderness" and getting "lost" as posted on this site.

 

Bottom line: Think ahead(bring a tarp, warm clothes) be prudent. Know yourself. Above all, enjoy yourself. If that means 8 Mile days with pancakes/cornbread and coffee every time you wake up while carrying steak and charcoal along with a grill for lunch/dinner with hot cocoa at night fixing jello or pudding for a dessert, be my guest.

 

PS, solo climbers aren't going to be on volcanoes with glaciers in a white out. A very few rare folks do. They also wind up dead in Large numbers as is shown by history.

 

PPS, Instead of enacting a discovery pass, quit mowing the damned grass and I bet they would have tons of cash to keep the parks open. All this stupid pass will do is force the poor away from the parks. When Lake Samammish state park had the $5/day pass less than 50% showed up when the fee was in place. Now, they want $8? or is it $10/day. I bet user percentage state wide will drop well over 50%. Take a quick look at people in the parks and it is generally the poor/lower classes who go to the parks to start with, not those who can afford the money. So, much for "public" parks and Public access freely accessible to all.

 

PPPS. My competence level when wanting a rope is not higher than yours Fairweather, class 4 for sure, class 3 sometimes, though I have gone sans before when its not chossy, though typically we are simulclimbing if on such territory. I would argue in many instances that a rope is actually more dangerous on class 3/4 terrain. Also gives a false sense of security unless used properly and will simply cause 2 people to die instead of one. ESPECIALLY if they are a newbie. I would recommend NO rope except to be used as a repel line. Newbies and ropes should start by pitching it out then learning simul-climbing. If they aren't going to pitch it out, then go sans rope and learn the #1 rule of mountaineering, DO NOT SLIP, move slow.

 

PPPPS. I was paraphrasing the common definition of 3rd 4th class where 3rd is that most folks will want a rope into what it truly means. Obviously, you can die by falling a mere few less than 10 feet and land on your head/neck. Under that definition, class 2 should also be roped travel. Like anything there are wide areas of leeway in the definition. Only thing really clear cut in my mind is 1st class and 4th and above.

Edited by Wastral

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I think too many experienced climbers make their "hobby" larger than life and "badder" than it really is to "newbies" and folks outside the sport making themselves feel bigger than reality.

 

I can't believe I am hearing this from most of the posters here. Is everything in this world dangerous to most of you and therefore should be avoided unless a million safety precautions and warnings are attached? I say, ditch the safety folks in their nanny white padded state prison cells and live.

 

 

People die by this "hobby" every week. Offering warnings about the hazards is nothing more than a public service as we give a crap about fellow climbing citizens. Not for self "beating of the chest". From what I have seen, no one is trying to attach a thousand warnings, but usually highlighting the couple of most likely and unique hazards to a situation that the "newbie" is asking about.

 

If someone was asking you about descending down from baker CD, how could you not mention the fact that there is a moat that eats people on the glissade below camp?

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I think too many experienced climbers make their "hobby" larger than life and "badder" than it really is to "newbies" and folks outside the sport making themselves feel bigger than reality. I have run into this a bit, unfortunately mostly from folks out of the "organized" climbing community like the Mountaineers etc who believe you have to carry your 10 essentials and carry 100 certificates to walk on a trail, let alone Dare to climb a mountain without a trail to the top! AGMA folks I have never had this attitude from I will say.

 

I can't believe I am hearing this from most of the posters here. Is everything in this world dangerous to most of you and therefore should be avoided unless a million safety precautions and warnings are attached? I say, ditch the safety folks in their nanny white padded state prison cells and live.

 

I'll stay with my statement about the near impossible ability to get lost in the N. Cascades. Yes, you can get lost if you never look at a map in unfamiliar territory and never use a compass if you are a complete idiot. AKA they are oblivious. Who wouldn't? That just proves there are idiots in this world.

 

Feeling you have to post warnings to prospective newbies that walking into unfamiliar territory could cause you to get lost is ludicrous. What are they 10 years old and you their nanny? Common sense? I have never been lost even as a 14 year old running in the square miles of woods we used to have here on Grand Ridge without a road when we moved out here many years ago.

 

Hitting cliff bands or slide alder because you took an unoptimum path is not being lost. That is simply learning to read a map. So you will be an extra hour or 2 getting to your destination. Big deal that is part of mountaineering, I do that all the time as I don't carry 7.5min quads. Darkness of night? Fact, you can camp anywhere, it doesn't need to be flat, it also does not mean you are lost, just can't judge time very well. <>

 

A couple times I just start hiking at 9PM because that is when I hit the trailhead and then hike without a flashlight for a few hours and crash in the bushes with a tarp. Never carried a tent till the age of 26, couldn't afford one. PS. Tents REALLY limit ones perspective of where you can "camp". I would recommend to Every newbie to never carry a tent unless you plan to always camp above treeline on snow which happens actually fairly rarely here in Washington. Better yet, bring hiking poles and a tarp and then you can camp without trees/bushes even on snow.

 

Pretty much outside of spots in CA/NV/Idaho/Wyoming and up north, there really is no wilderness where you can get lost to such an extent that you can't find a road or see city lights in which to walk towards in 2-3 days of moderate travel. The cascades? Hardly, surrounded by roads and myriads of trails with a billion signs compared to many other western states. I would think anyone born before 1900 out west would laugh their ass off at our definition of "wilderness" and getting "lost" as posted on this site.

 

Bottom line: Think ahead(bring a tarp, warm clothes) be prudent. Know yourself. Above all, enjoy yourself. If that means 8 Mile days with pancakes/cornbread and coffee every time you wake up while carrying steak and charcoal along with a grill for lunch/dinner with hot cocoa at night fixing jello or pudding for a dessert, be my guest.

 

PS, solo climbers aren't going to be on volcanoes with glaciers in a white out. A very few rare folks do. They also wind up dead in Large numbers as is shown by history.

 

PPS, Instead of enacting a discovery pass, quit mowing the damned grass and I bet they would have tons of cash to keep the parks open. All this stupid pass will do is force the poor away from the parks. When Lake Samammish state park had the $5/day pass less than 50% showed up when the fee was in place. Now, they want $8? or is it $10/day. I bet user percentage state wide will drop well over 50%. Take a quick look at people in the parks and it is generally the poor/lower classes who go to the parks to start with, not those who can afford the money. So, much for "public" parks and Public access freely accessible to all.

 

PPPS. My competence level when wanting a rope is not higher than yours Fairweather, class 4 for sure, class 3 sometimes, though I have gone sans before when its not chossy, though typically we are simulclimbing if on such territory. I would argue in many instances that a rope is actually more dangerous on class 3/4 terrain. Also gives a false sense of security unless used properly and will simply cause 2 people to die instead of one. ESPECIALLY if they are a newbie. I would recommend NO rope except to be used as a repel line. Newbies and ropes should start by pitching it out then learning simul-climbing. If they aren't going to pitch it out, then go sans rope and learn the #1 rule of mountaineering, DO NOT SLIP, move slow.

 

PPPPS. I was paraphrasing the common definition of 3rd 4th class where 3rd is that most folks will want a rope into what it truly means. Obviously, you can die by falling a mere few less than 10 feet and land on your head/neck. Under that definition, class 2 should also be roped travel. Like anything there are wide areas of leeway in the definition. Only thing really clear cut in my mind is 1st class and 4th and above.

I gotta agree with most of this, managing the risks are the responsibility of the one taking them.

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I'm with you there, Drederek, and I'm largely with Wastral, too.

 

I grew up when we walked uphill in the snow to get to climbing areas and climbers and climbers instructional organizations are very risk averse these days. When I see people posting about learning to lead rock pitches by pretending to lead those pitches while climbing on a top rope I just scratch my head. (I realize that many people think this is a good way to teach leading but I think the beginning climber would learn better by following a bunch of climbs and then simply leading. I also understand that there are other approaches toward instruction and I understand why some would think that a rehearsal of placement and clipping is a good idea.)

 

But to suggest that climbs up to class 4 are good for beginners or that solo climbers are not likely to find theirselves on top of a volcano in a white-out is just plain incorrect, in my view.

 

Camping with a tarp instead of tent? Wastral gets my thumbs up. Pushing the limits of what he can expect to climb in a day so he may end up "sleeping" on a mountainside somewhere? Thumbs up again. Deliberately leaving behind the 7.5 minute map that may provide detail that would make his trip easier? Another thumbs up.

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Some of this depends on how you define a "beginner"?

 

Some people have a higher natural ability than others.

 

A person who is a natural in climbing and thin, with woods experience is not a bare bones beginner.

 

That is a totally different than a novice from a city environment.

 

Every hiked with a city girl? They walked on a smooth flat surface all their lives, no experience of being on a uneven surface, much less a rock face. Except for a city park , never been in the woods. Starting out, it can take time for many.

 

Compare that beginner with a person in the woods from a early age and scrambling up and down hills and so on. There is a difference.

 

After a start the beginner will figure out their level.

 

To be cautious on class 3 and 4 is a good idea, the risk is real,

not everyone has a desire to take that risk, it is a personal choice and the rope can make it more dangerous. The summit is optional, going home is not.

 

 

 

Good Day.

 

Dan

 

 

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But to suggest that climbs up to class 4 are good for beginners or that solo climbers are not likely to find theirselves on top of a volcano in a white-out is just plain incorrect, in my view.

 

+1 It's also BS to claim it is impossible to get lost in the cascades. It happens every year, sometimes with very bad consequences. Hikers have gone down the wrong way snowshoeing from Melakwa lake, for heaven's sake. Climbers have gone down the wrong gully on Big 4 and needed to be rescued. A map and compass could help a shitload here. 90+% of the time you never need them or pull them out, but they are nice to confirm you know where the hell you are or are headed.

 

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I will admit that my definition of what a beginner climber is someone who has been backpacking several times before and wants to expand their interests into off trail and mountain climbing. I am not looking at someone who has never even gone camping before. Erm NOT car 'camping'.

 

Yes, I have run into/taken beginners who think a 30 degree slope is death itself without a hand rail, harness, and rope. I handed two guys from the east coast an ice axe, pulled mine out and threw myself down the slope with a pack on on my back head first and then self arrested. I then walked back up, grinned, showed them the easy way to self arrest, let them "fall a couple times", and then "accidently" pushed them over. After much caterwalling, they soon grinned ear to ear realizing that 30 degrees was not death itself, but rather fun and tame. We then proceeded to climb, Buck/Liberty Cap/Maude/7FJ/Carne. Unfortunetly we missed Fortress/Chiwawa because the guys didn't believe me when I told them their packs a) didn't fit him right and b) had to much CRAP in it. After Buck Mtn, we went back to the car and both guys promptly threw a collective 40lbs of crap out of their packs as they finally believed me on what I was telling them all along that NO, they did not need colored pens/pencils/pads of paper/full bottles of Ibuprofen/9 pairs of socks/Super heavy Dry BAGs used in Kayaks/2 5lb bags of Glorp!/Rain Tarps for their tents/3 pairs of Pants & shirts/binoculars/cellphones/3 rolls of athletic tape/hand axe and I forget what other travesties were in their packs, but I am not BS'ing about the crap they took either. I mean colored pens & pencils and a FULL pad of paper that must have weighed 2lbs! No kidding! They both naturally claimed to have been backpacking many times before and in shape to boot.

 

These guys were utter newbies who didn't even know how to hike and they handled class 3 stuff. Were they fast? No. These guys also do not meet my criteria of a beginner mountaineer either as they didn't have a clue about backpacking.

 

My beginner definition is also not stupid enough to not take a map and compass.

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