Thursday, May 28, 2009

denkundstein / Kletterhalle Salzburg Outdoor

denkundstein / Kletterhalle Salzburg Outdoor Kurse, „BaseClimbs“ und Outdoor Personal Training sind kluge Möglichkeiten für begeistert SportkletterInnen das wollen von der Halle in Natur zum klettern.

Das Slideshow ist von verschiedene Outdoor Kurse in Mai. Ich bin mit die TeilnehmerInnen in Rif beim Klertterturm, auf den Gaisberg und in der neue Klettergarten in Mülln gewesen. Klick auf dem Slideshow ins das Fotoalbum zum kommen und Fotos zu downloaden.

Ganz neue bei denkundstein ist unseren Kurse für Mehrseillängen Alpinsport Kletterrouten. Die intensiv Kurse, "MultiPitch" (Juli & Sept.), sind auf der Blaueis Hütte in der Berchtesgadener Alpen.

Meine Outdoorkurse bei denkundstein / Kletterhalle Salzburg:

Outdoor Fortgeschrittene, „BaseClimbs“

Mittwoch, 18:00-20:30, 17. Juni bis 08. Juli 2009

Freitag, 15:00-19:00 und Samstag, 09:00-16:00, 19.-20. Juni 2009

Montag, 18:00-20:30, 06.-27. Juli 2009

Freitag, 15:00-19:00 und Samstag, 09:00-16:00, 03.-04. Juli 2009

Outdoor Fortgeschrittene, „MultiPitch“

Freitag, 15:00-19:00 und Samstag / Sonntag ganztags, 17.-19. Juli 2009

(Ersatztermin bei Schleckt Wetter: 24.-26. Juli 2009)

Freitag, 15:00-19:00 und Samstag / Sonntag ganztags, 18.-20. Sept. 2009

(Ersatztermin bei Schleckt Wetter: 25.-27. Sept. 2009)

Kalymnos: Klettern Einführung und Personal Training (auch Multipitch)

30. Juli bis 25. August 2009

Kontakt und mehr Infos

denkundstein / Kletterhalle Salzburg

Joe Fratianni

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Untersberg East Ridge

Yesterday (08. 05), I was back on the Untersberg east ridge ("Laterndl", III/400m) to train. I did the approach over the "Kienbergsteg" that follows the border between Bavaria and Salzburg. I crossed a couple of snow and debris filled avalanche paths. At about 1200m there are still snow fields to travel over and a small snow coluior before the start of the ridge.

In the route itself, the north-east facing scramble to the start of the climbing is still under a couple meters of snow. After the first initial climbing moves, the short gully leading up to the second belay is also snow filled and running with water at its entrance. The pitch is an interesting bit of mixed climbing. I used my ice axe but the crampons stayed in my pack.

Climbing to the third belay was somewhat nerve racking as just after the winter thaw, everything seemed loser than normal. Overall, the brittle rock sections needed more care due to the fact that the route has not been traveled this early in the year and it is just now thawing out.

An interesting aside: The third belay broke out last fall. The belay anchors on the east ridge are dilled and cemented "U" shaped iron bars. Hence there is only one belay anchor at each station. This is normal on a number of older classic routes in the area. The system is not redundant. A large piece of rock fractured to which the belay anchor was attached. I saw the piece of rock with the intact bolt laying on the ground last fall. I have clipped this anchor numerous times when I've guided the route and even rapped-off from it when I had to bail with a couple of guests.

It really made me think when I saw that the rock broke out with the anchor. I do not trust this type of non-standard belay point any longer. Back up single-point anchors at belay stances.

Monday, May 4, 2009

You Get What You Pay For

This post could also be subtitled, "there's no such thing as a free lunch". I see on almost a daily basis people who think they are getting some sort of deal and saving money by finding a "experienced", or "knowledgeable", friend to teach them how to climb rock or ice, ski, learn about mountain safety, etc.

It does not work: 99.9% of the time, and you get exactly what you pay for. Plus, when you are talking about certain activities such as mountaineering, ski touring, ice climbing, etc., it can be life-threateningly dangerous.

Let's look at the person put in the role of "instructor". In my experience usually this person is someone who has practiced the activity in question for a brief period of time (1 to 3 years) and due to the human dynamic, the "instructor" assumes a role far beyond their experience.

It takes about 10,000 hours of practice to become proficient at complicated activities such as climbing rock or ice. Break that down you come up an average of 1000 hours per year of training time over a ten year period. That's 20 hours per week of doing the activity in question. That 20 hours does not include the time you are using to drink an espresso at the climbing gym bar or sitting in your car on the way to the crag.

There is no substitute for training volume - everyone has to pay their dues. The people who think they are talented, or genetically gifted, or whatever, and delude themselves into thinking that the above does not apply are only fooling themselves. On top of this, someone who is put in the role of transmitting information and guiding the learning process needs a very wide palette of teaching experience similar to, if not more than, the volume needed to acquire the skill itself.

Yeah, it really pisses me off to come along and see someone assume the role of knowledgeable instructor, guide, trainer, climber, alpinist, etc., before they have put in their time. It is simply insulting. I mean when I hear a person talk in a way that implies mastery when they've climbed a few bolted routes, at best can red point one 5b that fits their style in the local climbing gym, have climbed two single pitch WI3's (hanging on every other ice screw), or "done" a classic alpine route with a paid guide, well it makes me want to puke.

If that is the type of person you want to learn from, well that's what you'll get and you'll save some cash. Quality? What quality.

The argument from the "student" is that they are a person looking to save some money and it usually goes along the lines of, "I can't afford it", or "It's too expensive", or "I'm only a beginner, I don't need somebody so good", etc.
This is also a fallacy.

I can see in the first 30 seconds whether or not a so-called beginning climber, skier, mountaineer, etc., has worked with a proper professional or not. The learning curve in the beginning of acquiring a skill is extremely steep. If you chose to screw around and waste this opportunity, you will pay for it over and over again. How? Well you will eventually have to go back and fix every little imperfection, bad habit, sloppy technique, etc., step-by-step. It is much, much harder to override old habits in the nero-muscular system as freshly embed new ones.

In the end, a person may save some cash in the short term but will eventually come to regret not investing in themselves at this very precious time of learning something new.