Stuck up a tree

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19 years 6 months ago - 19 years 6 months ago #124609 by nickfromwi
Stuck up a tree was created by nickfromwi
The model airplane thread got me thinking on another track.

What would you do if you were stuck up a tree?

Here's a scenario that I often fear happening to me. I set the line, footlock up the doubled rope. The end of my line is spliced, and that end is on the ground. I can start pulling that other end so the eye comes up to me. Then clip it to me when it gets to me. At this point, there's a risk. There is (let's say) 60' of rope on one side of the branch, and only about 3' on the other. I am holding that splice for dear-life while I get it clipped to my saddle. There is often some rearranging (pulling the rope around this branch, under this one, over this one) as I try to get the rope set perfectly through the friction saver (if I'm now at the top of the tree). This only takes a few seconds, but if I let go, the rope will fall to the ground.

I've tried tying the friction hitch on the "other" side, so the worse that would happen is the eye would get pulled over the branch, then get caught up in my friction hitch. I don't like that because it is super slow. I have to pull the splice up to me AND tend 120' of slack in the process. It can be quite slow.

Any ideas? What do you guys and gals do?

This did happen to me once when I was getting started. I was lucky because there was another climber about 10' from me, and another person on the ground, so it only took a minute to get back in action. What if I was the only one in the tree? The ground person could toss a throwline up to me, but what if they're having a "bad throwline day?" (much like a bad-hair day!). Or worse yet....what if I was by myself?

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19 years 6 months ago - 19 years 6 months ago #124610 by treeman
Replied by treeman on topic My solutions to a dropped rope.
First, I avoid climbing alone. Second, I sometimes tie a half hitch midline in the rope if I have any doubts I will drop the rope while rerigging and clip it to me with a carabiner. Third, I climb with 100 feet of slickline with throw bag, which can be useful as a drop line. Fourth, I carry a whistle with me to get attention. And lastly, I move much slower with focused attention if I even sense there is risk involved.

I know of one climber who dropped his rope while scaling a 150 foot pine tree. He was with a team of climbers who gave him a stream of jokes and requests before they tied his rope to his drop line.

Waving from a treetop,
Peter Treeman Jenkins

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19 years 6 months ago - 19 years 6 months ago #124612 by Dietley
Replied by Dietley on topic Stuck up a tree
Since I usually climb alone, I am VERY paranoid about dropping my rope while re-rigging. I do like Treeman does, clipping the rope to my saddle any time I untie both ends.

Although I've never dropped my rope, I have managed to drop water bottles, slings, biners, and other less vital pieces of gear. With this stuff, I have had some success in dangling my grapnel down and snagging them. I imagine a rope would be one of the easier things to retrieve this way.

Also, I too carry a whistle. Haven't needed it yet, but it does give some reassurance!

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19 years 6 months ago - 19 years 6 months ago #124613 by nickfromwi
Replied by nickfromwi on topic Stuck up a tree
I've never used my whistle while rec climbing, but I did use it once while Wreck climbing (doing tree work!). It sure beat trying to yell over the sound of a few chainsaws, stumpgrinder, and the chipper!

Just recently has it dawned on me that it might be a good idea to carry a length of throwline with me up in the tree for gear retrieval. I think that'll be a needed thing from now on when climbing alone.

The whole climbing alone thing....let's just say I wish there were more people around here to climb with. I don't climb alone by choice, that's for sure:(

Peter, I most often employ your final technique, moving with care and purpose. I call it moving buddhist. Focusing on each task. So often in a tree I will be doing one thing while looking ahead to the next move or thinking about the next thing that has to be done. (Don't get me wrong, I'm no speed demon!) But every now and then you just have to move buddhist.

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19 years 6 months ago - 19 years 6 months ago #124616 by treeman
Replied by treeman on topic Moving Buddhist
A new term! I will add it to the tree climbing glossary. I think this moving Buddhist thing is what has kept me tree climbing for 27 years. Every move is important. Every move requires thought. Every move is potentially life threatening (if done without backup measures). A climber does develop a certain instinct for the moves. But I have known of quite few professional climbers that turned that instinct to a realized liability.

Waving from a treetop,
Peter Treeman Jenkins

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19 years 6 months ago - 19 years 6 months ago #124617 by icabod
Replied by icabod on topic Droped Line
Nick nobody gave you an answer about how to get down. There is an option. I assume you carry slings like I do: a sling can provide tension against the tree when placed around both feet and wraped around the tree.

I think I've told the story before, but in my younger (and stupider) days, I was sucked into climbing about 40' up a pine tree. (OK those who have read the freeklimbing thread are screaming "HYPOCRIT", but like I said there I have beat the odds, and shouldnt have) My sisters cat had been treed for three days by our dog, and I said in passing "I could get her down..." meaning if I had my ropes. My brother then said the magic words: "You can't get up there..." In my family those are fighting words. Long story short a short lenght of rope with an eye slipped around each foor can act as a lever against the tree. (DONT ANYBODY DO THIS!) Grab high with your hands and kick up with your feet wedging them as far apart from eachother hugging the tree. Trust me it works, I've seen video of Bornean tribesman doing this to fetch honey I think. Well getting down works in reverse but MUCH faster, and it dosen't feel so great either. Long story not short, the cat took a 40' flight (sorry Sammy, he still loves me by the way!), and I came out bleeding under my shirt (I didn't tell anybody either!).
So there you go.

OH! Two new terms Peter:
"Moving Christian"--please "Jesus" don't let me fall
"Brown Stripe"--a descriptive term for both what results in your pants, and the scab on your belly, from using the above described method

Climb Safe!
Icabod

Cam "Icabod" Taylor

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19 years 6 months ago - 19 years 6 months ago #124618 by icabod
Replied by icabod on topic On a serious note
Learn to tie a clove hitch one handed on a quick link attached to your saddle. I use this to back up my switch over on a splittail rig, and when encountering any scenario in which my rope might plunge to the ground...I'll try to find a link.

Cam "Icabod" Taylor

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19 years 6 months ago - 19 years 6 months ago #124619 by Tom Dunlap
Replied by Tom Dunlap on topic Stuck up a tree
Like my namesake and favorite author wrote [to paraphrase]

»I went to the woods because I wished to climb deliberately, to front only the essential facts of climbing, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not climbed. I did not wish to climb what was not life, climbing is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to climb high and suck out all the marrow of life, to climb so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms, and, if it proved to be mean, why then to get the whole and genuine meanness of it, and publish its meanness to the world; or if it were sublime, to know it by experience, and be able to give a true account of it in my next excursion.«

Who am I thinking of? I took liberties with some of the text :D I'm sure that it won't take long for someone to fecognize the source. When it's discovered, I'll name my solo climbing style. Until it's named, I think of climbing "deliberately". This passage plays through my mind whenever I have to do something in the "Red Zone"

Tom

Strong limbs and single ropes!
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19 years 6 months ago - 19 years 6 months ago #124620 by nickfromwi
Replied by nickfromwi on topic Stuck up a tree
Anyone seen Dead Poet Society lately?

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19 years 6 months ago - 19 years 6 months ago #124711 by nickfromwi
Replied by nickfromwi on topic Stuck up a tree
Regarding getting stuck, Sometimes when I'm high enough in a tree and the ropes not rubbing on much, I can footlock up, flipline in, then tie my friction hitch on the proper side of the rope. Now if I'm lucky, I can feed the rope into the TOP of my friction hitch and it will sorta tend itself while I pull the 50 or so feet of rope until my spliced eye gets to me.

This doesn't always work. Sometimes the rope below my friction hitch is not heavy enough to pull the slack through (darned 11mm rope!) or sometimes my friction hitch is just too tight.

But in this scenario, if the rope slips out of my hand, the worse that will happen is it will go up over the branch , then come donw and (hopefully) jam into my friction hitch.

This seems like a win/win situation. Fast, safe. Too bad it doesn't always work!

love
nick

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