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Little Bear fixed ropes

Colorado 14er peak questions and conditions should be posted here. 14er Trip Reports
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Little Bear fixed ropes

Postby bike4mee » Fri Aug 10, 2012 2:25 pm

Thanks to whom ever replaced the fixed ropes in Little Bear recently. These two don't look very old. The webbing looks new also. One line is made of 2 ropes tied together going all the way down the hourglass. On the eve of August 6th it hailed 2" on the upper areas of Little Bear. The next days climb the hail had filled the ledges but the faces were dry. The climbing was interesting w/ the hail and the melt water cascading down the hourglass. Up was no problem but the down climb was much safer with the fixed ropes
The road hasn't gotten any easier. I don't recommend anybody beating up their 4x4 on the lower slopes much less have a machine you could get past the jaws sections. I did see an ATV at the lake who said they had no problems. Fantastic peak

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Re: Little Bear fixed ropes

Postby tmathews » Fri Aug 10, 2012 2:29 pm

Image

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Re: Little Bear fixed ropes

Postby I Man » Fri Aug 10, 2012 2:30 pm

(borrowed this from another user because it's just that good)
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Re: Little Bear fixed ropes

Postby bob863 » Sat Aug 11, 2012 11:52 pm

why, oh, why....would anyone trust ropes that you have not personally put there??? I'm just saying....

Re: Little Bear fixed ropes

Postby forbins_mtn » Sun Aug 12, 2012 6:40 am

bob863 wrote:why, oh, why....would anyone trust ropes that you have not personally put there??? I'm just saying....


what scares me is this seems like a hiking community, not a technical climbing community. some people just don't know about the standard rules. it seems obvious, but someone might just look at that rope and start putting their body weight on it

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Re: Little Bear fixed ropes

Postby CAF » Sun Aug 12, 2012 6:57 am

bob863 wrote:why, oh, why....would anyone trust ropes that you have not personally put there??? I'm just saying....
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Re: Little Bear fixed ropes

Postby SurfNTurf » Sun Aug 12, 2012 9:47 am

Yes, but CAF, those ropes are placed and inspected daily by professional guides. The lines in the Hourglass are fixed by "Anonymous."

As usual with these threads, my main concern is the average 14er hiker with no Class 5 or rope experience. They can get up to the Hourglass and say, "Oh nifty, a rope," then haul themselves up hand-over-hand without inspecting it. If you climbed the Hourglass unaided, carefully inspected the rope and anchors, and felt comfortable using the line to assist your downclimb, more power to you. That's an informed decision. The scary part is only a small percentage of Little Bear climbers have the knowledge and experience to even begin that thought process. Just because a rope "looks new" doesn't mean it's not damaged, especially after a hail storm.

Bottom line, if you really want to use a rope in the Hourglass, haul one up yourself.
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"There have been joys too great to describe in words, and there have been griefs upon which I cannot dare to dwell; and with those in mind I say, 'Climb if you will, but remember that courage and strength are nought without prudence, and that a momentary negligence may destroy the happiness of a lifetime. Do nothing in haste, look well to each step, and from the beginning think what may be the end.'" - Edward Whymper

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Re: Little Bear fixed ropes

Postby d_baker » Sun Aug 12, 2012 9:55 am

Just because a rope "looks new" doesn't mean it's not damaged, especially after a hail storm.

I don't think a hail storm is going to damage a rope.

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Re: Little Bear fixed ropes

Postby SurfNTurf » Sun Aug 12, 2012 9:58 am

Fair enough. How about, then, "especially one that's constantly exposed to the elements and has been in place for an indefinite amount of time without regular inspection." Satisfied now, Mr. Baker?
Many Miles to Go (Blog)

“There are two kinds of climbers: those who climb because their heart sings when they’re in the mountains, and all the rest.” - Alex Lowe

"There have been joys too great to describe in words, and there have been griefs upon which I cannot dare to dwell; and with those in mind I say, 'Climb if you will, but remember that courage and strength are nought without prudence, and that a momentary negligence may destroy the happiness of a lifetime. Do nothing in haste, look well to each step, and from the beginning think what may be the end.'" - Edward Whymper

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Re: Little Bear fixed ropes

Postby d_baker » Sun Aug 12, 2012 9:59 am

SurfNTurf wrote:Fair enough. How about, then, "especially one that's constantly exposed to the elements and has been in place for an indefinite amount of time without regular inspection." Satisfied now, Mr. Baker?

Yes.

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Re: Little Bear fixed ropes

Postby screeman57 » Sun Aug 12, 2012 10:00 am

Just curious: have any of the serious injuries or deaths in the hourglass resulted from a fixed-rope failing? Not the point, I know, but I am curious if there's a cautionary tale out there...
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Re: Little Bear fixed ropes

Postby d_baker » Sun Aug 12, 2012 10:07 am

screeman57 wrote:Just curious: have any of the serious injuries or deaths in the hourglass resulted from a fixed-rope failing? Not the point, I know, but I am curious if there's a cautionary tale out there...

No, I don't think so. I think all fatalities on LB I've read about were falls without a rope.

Ropes don't break article.

I'm not advocating using previously placed ropes in LB, but if you do know what you're looking at, along with the anchor, putting a static load on the hanging ropes might not be that dangerous. If I were the op, and there was that much hail in the hourglass, I might have used them myself.
If the anchor looks "ok" with redundancy and the ropes (2 twisted/tied together?) looked ok on my ascent, then I might feel ok with using it as a hand line.
Hauling up your own rope would be the better practice though.

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