Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Cochrane Lane Classics Challenge 2013


  • Time begins when you leave the ground in the morning
  • Do as many pitches as possible in 8-hours
  • All routes must be led, and must be classic (at least 1 thumb-up in the guide)
  • No simul-climbing... no soloing
With permission from my terrific wife and son, I gave it a crack on Sunday.

Sonia and I traded leads all day and managed to zip up a lot of quality routes. With all of the options to choose from and with the friendly format, this is a challenge that's approachable for almost any competent team. We set a goal of at least 8-10 pitches... but Sonia did mention a target of 12 before we got underway. 

3.. 2... 1... Go!
We ended up with 14 pitches in 7h 45m

A few tips for other parties who might be considering this as a great way to push their efficiency. 
  • Climbing fast... and especially leading fast, isn't going to get you there. That's 50% at absolute most. 
  • Choose routes you know and/or that you are confident on. 
  • Choose the correct piece for the crack the first time.
  • Don't get your cams stuck, and don't death-set your nut placements. 
  • If you can serve multiple classic lines with the same anchor... do it. 
  • Avoid crowds
  • Manage the rope at all times. Kinks, lost rope-ends, knots - all time killers. 
  • Maximize lower-offs and minimize raps. 
  • Drink water. Eat food. Use anti-inflammatory pills if you're old. 
Don't forget the victory beer.
That was our formula and it got us better results that we expected. We'd have had another pitch or two if we'd eaten food while belaying and if my fitness was a bit better. Thanks for being a stellar partner for this Sonia. This will be something to repeat year-after-year. 

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