There are times when lowering, rather than rappelling, is a smarter way to get down a route. Learn of some of the scenarios when this might be a smart move, and also how to set it up correctly.
Are you toproping with an ATC Guide style belay device and want to make it autolock if your second falls, similar to a Grigri? Yep, it can do that. Learn how at this Tip.
Belaying directly from the anchor with a plaquette style belay device like an ATC Guide has one significant drawback - it's difficult to lower your second if you need to. But with this Crafty Rope Trick, it's no problemo - all you need is some LSD.
Your ATC Guide or similar plaquette-style belay device is of course great for belay and rappel, but can also be rigged as an ascender. Learn how here.
A Munter hitch belay might seem old school, but it’s free, weightless, and a good skill to have in the toolbox. And for belaying the second, it has a big advantage over new school “plaquette” style belay devices.
It's windy, the pitch is long, and the next anchor is out of sight from your belay. Chances are, the standard belay calls will not be heard. You’d better have a back up plan. Consider this one.
Belaying a second can happen off your harness, or direct off the anchor. Learn the benefits to this modern technique - and one time you probably should not use it.
If you have a Grigri or similar auto locking belay device, you can’t rappel in the normal manner, because only one strand of rope fits in your device. If you need to get down a rope, here are two options.
Placing a prusik hitch above your rappel device might initially seem like a good way to backup your rappel. But, there’s three reasons why this is not the preferred method.
Most climbers don’t give much thought as to which strand of the rope they pull after a rappel. But, the strand you pull can make a difference in avoiding snags. Learn about this and a few other Crafty Rope Tricks (CRT) to make your next rappel have a happy ending.
There are four different things that a leader can do when they reach the top of a pitch. Be sure and agree on which one is going to happen with your partner before you leave the ground, not after.
Extending your rappel device away from your harness has a host of benefits . . . and a few problems. Learn multiple ways to rig it, and the pros and cons of each.
Doing multiple raps on a rope without a middle mark? Take a moment to add a temporary one so you can set up faster and safer rappels.
Simul-rappelling has more than a few downsides, both in terms of speed and safety. If you choose to use it, be aware of the potential problems and be sure to practice in a controlled environment.
Most climbers agree that putting some sort of knot in the end of your rappel rope is good insurance for not zinging off the end of it. But, there are several ways to approach this, with pros and cons to each.
Having a standard system to check your rappelling set up before you head down the rock is a fine idea, especially for beginners. Here's an acronym to check all the relevant components.
There are many scenarios when you might want to add some extra friction onto a rappel. Here's four easy ways.
Use this Crafty Rope Trick (CRT) to move your knot past any crack or crevice near the rap anchor that might snag your knot. But please practice it at home!
Rappelling with a group , especially with newer climbers, can take a L O N G time. Here’s a Crafty Rope Trick (CRT) to cut that time almost in half.
Rappelling on ropes with two different diameters can cause the rope ends to be uneven, which could be a problem if you have a full length rappel. Here’s two ways to fix this.
It's best practice to run your rappel through some sort of metal connection to the anchor. There’s three common options for this; learn the pros and cons of each one.
It might first appear like a bit of rope sorcery - How can you attach a rappel ring to a sewn runner? Each one of them is a closed loop! Read and learn, young Jedi.
Often in alpine climbing, making shorter rappels can minimize the chance of your rope getting hung up. Here's a trick to mitigate that problem even further.
Does your larger climbing team have two rappels ahead to make it to safe ground? Here’s a simple way to speed up the process.
There's two good reasons to mark the middle of your rope. One is hopefully pretty obvious, the other one not so much, but perhaps more important.
It may not be very common, but you might occasionally find yourself having to rappel two full rope lengths on a single strand. Here is a simple, fast and unconventional way to get past the knot.