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TimL

Cascade Route Resoration

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This is a topic that has caught my fancy ever since I watched a buddy pull out a bolt(just using body weight) on the 5th pitch of Town Crier at Index this spring. As I understand, the bolt and remaining bolts on the ladder were replaced by several individuals who we owe thanks. Since then I've been climbing here and there and noticed/appalled by some of the original bolts/fixed pitons that are lurking on many popular routes in the range. I'm sure everyone is aware of "time bombs" in need of replacing. In order to stimulate constructive thought, the following are several questions that come to mind regarding the subject:

- Who bears the responsibility to replace/ clean old fixed gear?

- Should the community form a fund for replacing fixed anchors? Climb On in Squamish has a jar on counter of the store for donations for area fixed anchor restoration.

- Should a "time bomb" list be formed in hopes of specifying restoration efforts?

- In an attempt to minimize rock damage should old pitons be removed and replaced with bolts instead of nailing a new piton every couple of years?

Granted this is a huge topic but many more questions should be asked and answered with the hope of eventually making our mountains and crags a more climber friendly environment.

Shoot Away!

 

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I think this is a good topic and everyone should return some interesting thoughts as well as those pesky "time bombs" smile.gif I'll wait until I have a chance to think more before I respond too quick.

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Wooooah guys, this is a good topic. It is NOT inviting more commentary of whether bolts should be or not to be. It is dealing with reality and the reality is I don't place bolts, but I do clip them. I don't think I'm the only one. Many of these bolts are anchors at belay or rap stations where the rest of the route is clean. If it's a time bomb then I want to know about it....and I support replacing it. Like it or not, the bolt is already there! We're talking about routes in guidebooks that note the mere existance of bolts. Some books even qualify the manky ones. If it needs to be replaced, then I support it and will gladdly contribute.

I cancelled all my climbing rag subcriptions over 10 years ago because of the bolt or not to bolt issue raging so hard. It got boooooooring!! But again, this is reality.....NOT booooooring. Lets here it!!

This is a contructive thread worth keeping the trash talk out of!!!!!! If you must spray, put it on a different thread before we get off on a tangent.

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the point is well taken that this issue is about more than just bolts. old rusty pegs, worn rap-rings and chains, even old slings (we NEVER use the ones we find, do we?) can be false security for the inexperienced/uninformed. the more jaded among us may invoke the principle of natural selection, here, and there may be some validity to that position; but there is something to be said for the argument that if a placement is resident, it ought to be worth something. ultimately, all resident placements become time-bombs. the only place I've ever climbed where anyone acknowledged any responsibility for maintaining resident anchors was at Devils Tower, Wyoming, where the National Park Service installed, and subsequently maintains rappel/belay anchors on the Durrance Route. Everywhere else, the ethic I've seen is that the first ascent party places whatever they feel is appropriate, and subsequent parties mostly repeat the route in the style of the f.a. occasionally, if the f.a. was uncomfortably or dangerously ballsy, a consensus may develop for supporting altering a route. maintenance of existing routes, and replacement of resident anchors has, in most cases, been one of those "hey, if its important to you, then do it" kind of things. my own personal practice has been to remove placements which seemed obviously defective, in the interest of safety. I have on very rare occasions left gear on climbs, but I prefer not to do so. (expensive, and whatever I leave eventually becomes a time-bomb anyway...) ultimately, it comes down to judgment. do I have the background to determine if this resident anchor is adequate for the load I intend it to carry? if I determine that it is not adequate, can I make it so? (reinforce it or back it up) or, am I willing to accept the risk of climbing unprotected? if I can't produce comfortable answers to these questions, then I probably shouldn't be on that climb, and the issue of who's accountable for resident gear is moot.

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Cocaine Connection was bad a few years ago. Dont know now.

Old Grey Mare

Slab climbs on Peshastin's Grand Central Tower

Top anchors on Frenchman's Twin Cracks aka Party in your pants

Fuck I cant think now! Arg

[This message has been edited by Cpt.Caveman (edited 09-18-2001).]

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In response to a point of haireballs, unless crag is on private property and you pay to use it, I don't think anyone is "responsible" for fixed gear. you should understand it can deteriorate and plan your climb accordingly. but then again, I don't understand American liability law. Is Forest service responsible for all bolts on FS land? Is NPS responsible for all bolts in Parks? i don't think so. is bolter responsible for placing bolts correctly? morally, yes. legally, ?? if I climb up what looks to be a sport route, clip a glue in that was improperly placed (glue not mixed right), fall on it and it pulls right out, could I sue guy who bolted it? probably not.

who should replace manky old gear? anyone capable of doing so who wants to perform public service. what gear should be replaced? thats a tough one. a good new bolt for a shitty old bolt is easy to agree with. tricky decision is when removing and replacing old fixed pins. bolts or gear, how much and where?

climb on, MEC have bolt replacement funds. you put money in box along with suggestions. someone with drill comes along, uses money to buy bolts, replaces them. this is usually well done, sometimes a bit controversial.

Neat & cool, squamish Buttress crux have gone from 4 fixed pins to none in last 8 yrs. you can get gear in, so pins not replaced. horrors of ivan went from 4 fixed pins to 2 bolts, still a gear route. fatty bolger had new bolts added next to old - old bolts were in too good to pull, according to sheila sovereign, who did it (she used big crwobar to no avail). she added some new ones where there were not old ones as well! its a bit of a mess now. an example of what to avoid......

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Just a quick point regardiong "legal" responsibility or "liability"

In the states, as well as most anglolegal systems we have a legal doctrine called acceptance of risk. Put simply, you participate in it you accept the risk.

Now with many things the risks are not inherent. However we have a long chaoin of legal history, called precedent that clearly outlines that all things dealing with heights, fire and water are inherently dangerous. Meaning that any compentant person is able to look at it and assess the dangers.

Heights = gravity.

Water = drown.

Fire = burn.

The theory is that anyone from a five year old up is competant to understand the basic dangers involved.

How does this translate to climbing? Well as a general rule anything involving climbing involves "acceptance of risk." Just like swim at your own risk.

Now in recent years there has been a distinction made between waters that are natural and man made. These leads into the attractive nuisance doctrine. ...which means if you create the nuisance and it harms some one you may be liable. This applies to swimming pools and not putting a fence around them.

What does this mean for climbers? Well right now nothing. If you climb and fall whtther it is guided or unguided, sport or trad, crag or alpine, no one is liable.

So the short answer on bolts is: no one is responsible other than yourself....in a legal sense.

I did not feel that the thread asked this question in a legal sense, but since it was brought up by Dru I thought I would put it out there.

It is possible, and one thing I greatly fear about "sport" climbing, that it may cause the creep of the attractive nuisance doctrine into sport climbing. A very clear and cogent argument can be made for liability in a gym setting since it is man made...like the swimming pool.

The question is does bolting a route make it man made?

I do think it is good to have an informal group try to police bolts when possible...but no one other than the user is or should ever be "responsible."

My, and the laws, two cents.

Check that bolt before you clip it.

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Guys I think the point is not who is responsible but that Tim just wants to identify these things and fix them. Not whine or argue or bicker about who should in fact replace them.

[This message has been edited by Cpt.Caveman (edited 09-18-2001).]

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Maybe in addition to replacing old bolts someone should print up a little sign saying "You can thread your rope through these and rappel" and put it on top of Orchard Rock, cause everytime I have been up there, there is webbing tied through the rappel hangers on top!!

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