solo aid : LUSENET : Mountaineering : One Thread

I am just starting in aid and have been up some (3) big walls. I have been on self belay but I would like to know how other people solo aid belay?

-- Rodger Goltz (, June 26, 2001


Solo aid, always back yourself up, tie in short, and don't mess up while switching lead to rap to jugs. There is alot of info on this page about beley toys. I use and now swear by the Wren Silent Partner. Three times the work ,and twice as scary, yet incredibly satisfying to top out solo. oh, yea humpping loads solo is a bitch.

-- David Brendgard (, June 26, 2001.

I've soloed El Cap three times, the first time using a Solo Aid, the next two times using a Gri-gri. I definitely prefer the Gri-gri. I haven't tried the Silent Partner, but people I've talked to seem to like it. It's big and klunky, and kinda expensive though. One thing to watch when soloing with a Gri-gri is that as you get higher up the pitch, the weight of the rope below you will cause the rope to slide thru the thing, thus adding unexpected and unwelcome(!) slack between you and your lower belay station anchor. Yikes! You can prevent this from happening by clove hitching gear every so often, but I prefer carrying half a dozen LONG prusik loops to attach to good pieces every so often. Not only does this prevent the rope from sliding through, but on the way back up when you're cleaning, the rope is rebelayed a half dozen times up the pitch, therefore almost COMPLETELY eliminating any rope wear (you're not weighting the rope as it rubs across edges a hundred feet above you - your weight is held by the prusik knot on the good piece of gear twenty feet above you). End result - your lead rope is almost as pristine as when you started, very much unlike climbing a wall with a partner who trashes your rope as he jugs it and rubs it across edges all the way up the pitch. Just make sure you put the prusiks on good A1 pieces - your weight will be held by it as you clean. Also, no extra slack in the rope when you fix it to your upper station! What?! ME hump loads?! Like, take OFF, eh?!

-- "Pass the Pitons" Pete Zabrok (, June 28, 2001.

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