White pine summer climbing

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10 years 10 months ago - 10 years 10 months ago #135562 by moss
White pine summer climbing was created by moss
This is a recent white pine climb in what passes for hot humid weather in New England.

Having a smartphone was key for this climb, we were able to track a very strong thunderstorm with doppler radar and determine when it was safe to climb.

Three climbers made their first SRT climbs, they were all on a Yo-Yo or RADS system. I ground anchored my access line then climbed up and cinched a line for each climber.

Climber using alt lanyard technique to reach the top:


All photos below by David St. Germain

Checking out the TIP on my ground anchor access line, I'm bouncing while Adam looks with binoculars to see how the limb is responding:


First SRT climb, working hard, 90+ ft. ascent through a maze of limbs


Great thing about a Yo-Yo system is it works well barefoot


Adam going up into the top, his first SRT and highest climb to-date


-AJ
Last edit: 10 years 10 months ago by moss.

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10 years 6 months ago #135653 by Treezybreez
Replied by Treezybreez on topic Re:White pine summer climbing
Looks like you all had a great time. How many climbers were with you? I just have to wonder about that chicken man. :woohoo:

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10 years 6 months ago #135654 by moss
Replied by moss on topic Re:White pine summer climbing
Treezybreez wrote:

Looks like you all had a great time. How many climbers were with you? I just have to wonder about that chicken man. :woohoo:


4 climbers total. One is an experienced climber, the young woman made her first climb and my friend Adam (enthusiastic climber at the top) is a beginner has climbed with me several times, been up high in big hardwoods, this was his first high climb in a conifer. I was closely guiding him through every move.
-AJ

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10 years 6 months ago #135655 by Treezybreez
Replied by Treezybreez on topic Re:White pine summer climbing
Well, it was fun to see an enthusiastic climber.

Are there any little tricks that you use to help people overcome their fear of heights?

Today I will be showing the ropes to a Man and his son. Hopefully they will learn and enjoy.

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10 years 6 months ago #135656 by moss
Replied by moss on topic Re:White pine summer climbing
Treezybreez wrote:

Are there any little tricks that you use to help people overcome their fear of heights?

Today I will be showing the ropes to a Man and his son. Hopefully they will learn and enjoy.


First off give them a climb route with their feet on the tree, an all air route is not so good for first-time or nervous climbers.

Next tell them how you did an assessment of the tree, how strong the limb is their rope is hanging on and how strong their rope, carabiner and harness is.

Before they get on rope I explain the concept of the internal "height ceiling". Just about everyone has one, you can't tell what it is until you reach it. For some people it is 15 feet off the ground, for others it's 90', most first time climber's hit it in the 25-40' range. Either way there's no shame in reaching your ceiling at any time, happens to everyone.

I tell them to let me know if they start to feel strong anxiety as they're climbing up. If that happens I instruct them to stop ascending and sit for a few minutes. If they continue to feel anxious I have them descend 6 ft. or so (with my hand on their down rope). It's amazing what a difference that will make in how they feel. Most climbers will then climb back up to where they felt very nervous and wonder what the problem was. Using this technique over several climbs even very height challenged climbers will move their ceiling up. I certainly did, when I first started climbing 25' was my ceiling.

Good luck with the climb!
-AJ

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10 years 6 months ago #135657 by moss
Replied by moss on topic Re:White pine summer climbing
Also... conifers like white pine take away a lot of height fear. As you climb the boughs below form a visual floor which creates an instinctive feeling of security. In that situation you want to pay close attention to the new climber, they may forget about how high they are and get a little overconfident :-)
-AJ

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10 years 5 months ago #135668 by Treezybreez
Replied by Treezybreez on topic Re:White pine summer climbing
Thank you for that advice Moss, I am sure others on the forum will benefit from the advice as well. Now that you put words to it I know exactly what you are talking about when you say "internal height ceiling". As much as I have worked at heights I can still feel my stomach tie knots from time to time. :S

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10 years 5 months ago - 10 years 5 months ago #135669 by moss
Replied by moss on topic Re:White pine summer climbing
Treezybreez wrote:

Thank you for that advice Moss, I am sure others on the forum will benefit from the advice as well. Now that you put words to it I know exactly what you are talking about when you say "internal height ceiling". As much as I have worked at heights I can still feel my stomach tie knots from time to time. :S


Some of these lessons were learned climbing with Treeman and other experienced climbers when I was a beginner, others discovered on my own, happy to pass them along.

Many of us have discovered that on some days in a tree there's very little fear, other days more fear than you think you should be experiencing. So many factors, whether or not you had enough sleep the night before, things going in the background in your life, or more directly an old injury acting up or the configuration of a particular tree that can put you on edge. A very experienced production climber I talked to about this said that on some days, if he's not feeling right he just won't climb, it bugs his crew but he has to make that call, if he can't feel safe in the tree nobody around him can feel safe either.
-AJ
Last edit: 10 years 5 months ago by moss.

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