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Climb Safe: Retiring Old Ropes
To help make more climbers safer climbers, Rock and Ice has teamed up with Black Diamond Equipment to present the Climb Safe series. These articles aim to answer some of climbing's most common gear-related questions. Here, Kolin Powick, Black Diamond’s Director of Quality, and the crew look at retiring ropes.
John Long: The Royal Scam
Coming clean on the mysterious first ascent of a Yosemite classic.
Pure Magic: Spellbound By the Boulders of Switzerland
The mossy green forest of Magic Woods radiates upward out of the steep valley until it meets the sharp, snow-capped peaks of the Swiss Alps. The contrast is sublime.
KEEPING THE FAITH
NICK DUTTLE SHOES UP, TIES IN and snaps on his chalk bag like any other rock climber. Then, before touching rock, he pulls out his spray bottle, soaks his chest, head, hands and sweat shorts with water, and maybe, if his eyes are dry, blasts himself in the face.
A tricky crux, a surprise pop, a very fast 15-foot descent. I was delighted to find myself dangling from my beloved little blue Metolius. But when doing a quick body inventory, I noted that my left foot was attempting an inward 180. Suddenly, explosively, it hurt like hell. My partner Peter quickly lowered me, winced, and suggested we call an ambulance.
Mammut Liquid Chalk
I liken Mammut’s new Liquid Chalk to the introduction of sticky rubber shoes—it works so well you think you can’t climb without it.
Knee: Synovial Cartilage Damage
A year and a half ago I fell mountaineering, banged my right kneecap and couldn’t walk for two weeks. I saw a doctor, who said that I had lost cartilage. For the past year my knee has constantly throbbed.
Witness the Mental Fitness: Set Thought Aside to Improve Performance
Your mind will do anything it can to keep from being fully present for the stress that is inherent in a climbing challenge. You can’t “fix” the mind from the perspective of the mind. Mental fitness training has to be done from a perspective that is removed from the mind itself. You need a different access point.