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30 meter rope on Rainier?


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Most individuals, save the incredible hulk, would find it impossible to pull a dangling, injured climber out with a standard z pulley single handed. You could both bring a double z pulley setup, but you'll need to make sure you've got enough pulleys; the friction of using just biners rolls back a lot of that mechanical advantage.


2 people on a 30 meter rope, for most folks, means the person is the crevasse is going to get their own ass out or the party's going to wait for assistance. It also means the rope's not going to melt/freeze into the crevasse lip - and thus require an extra length of rescue rope.


Revolvers (a biner with a built in pulley) offer a more versatile and lighter substitute for pulleys. Expensive, but I've got a pair and use them all the time for all kinds of things.


A pair of Tibloc's (which climb 8mm + size ropes) negate all the fuss of matching prusik line to rope size and enable faster self rescue.


If all else fails, climb down further into the crevasse to look for a way out. Just ask Joe Simpson.

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FWIW - 5mm cord is rated to 1169lbs, or 5.2 kn. Which is more than enough (in my opinion) for the static loads it will be tasked with when used as part of an anchor or as a friction hitch in a rescue.


Also, I usually use kleimheist and autoblock friction hitches with dyneema slings.


Regarding the stopper knots - DPS and I can attest that they work, when I fell into a crevasse on the Ruth Glacier the knot actually stopped my fall before the rope even became tight on DPS. Made me a convert.


For crevasse rescue, I use (and teach) a drop C to the victim, then I build a 6:1. If the rope isn't long enough, I'll try to extend the locking carabiner to the victim with my cordellette. If that's not long enough, I'll resort to clipping into whatever stopper knot that can be reached - although that's never happened to me in practice or actual application.

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FWIW - 5mm cord is rated to 1169lbs, or 5.2 kn. Which is more than enough (in my opinion) for the static loads it will be tasked with when used as part of an anchor or as a friction hitch in a rescue.


I agree that 5mm is probably plenty strong but I think that in many rescue/hauling systems the force on the various parts of the system is not as static as you might think because of the mehanical advantage of the system, right? This is where this shit always got complicated in class. In a 5:1 system, how much does force multiplication of the system change the dynamic loading on the anchor and friction knots? I dunno, i think that's how it works, right? Food for thought, anyway.

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I personally think 5mm is just fine for prussik cords. Really? You bought a 30m 8mm rope and are taking it back because you can't make a few prussik loops, a few cordellettes and a set of foot loops? 5mm isn't that expensive and it never hurts to have them around for lighter adventures.


After coming off the DC a few weeks ago, I'd guess that the 30m + 5mm prussiks would have been just fine. The crevasse danger then wasn't too bad - although I'm sure we've had some melt out. Our riskiest crevasse crossing was because some dumbass on the first team of the night took the wrong trail when there was a split at the flats - and our dumbass team followed the line. By the time we came back down, the bad trail with the 4-5 ft crevasse jump was already blocked off and we descended the trail we SHOULD have ascended. Without that added bonus, I think we jumped ONE other crevasse and all the snowbridges were pretty awesome.


I think you'd do great there. FYI, the route up the DC itself is MOSTLY rock scrambling from the nose to the rest at the top of the cleaver. I'd say 85% rock and about 15% snow and ice (and probably even MORE rock now that two weeks has passed).


ADDITIONAL NOTE: 30m not that bad of an idea right now. Your biggest risk is NOT crevasse falls, but more likely full on rock fall. That means if you can swing a short rope interval, less weight and go a faster speed, I would. The blog is warning about rockfall and I can tell you we had more than a few close calls on our climb - and we had 11 people in our group. One suitcase sized rock went between rope team members at one point. If lighter means faster for you, I'd stick with your 30m rope and move faster to get out of rockfall zones. With how direct the route is right now, you'll spend more time in these zones then out in the standard glacier travel anyways.

Edited by CaleHoopes
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