Aid climbing progression
In aid climbing, the climber places anchors which allow him to progress along the pitch. We review here the key steps for progression when aid climbing through a roof.
- Read the technical notice before viewing the following techniques.
- It is important to fully understand the information provided in the technical notice before using this complementary information
- Mastering these techniques requires training.
- Consult a professional before attempting to perform these techniques on your own.
1. Anchor placement
First find a placement for the anchor in the rock and choose the type of equipment best suited to the placement (cam, piton, hook, bolt...) Remember that some anchors are for progression only (will not hold a fall) and others are also protection anchors (can hold a potential fall).
Concerning piton placement, see our Piton guide.
2. Anchor testing
Once the anchor B is placed, clip the anchor, with a quickdraw for example, to which you have connected the free end of your lanyard. So if anchor B fails, it will be retained by the lanyard. Instead of a quickdraw, you can also hitch a cord or thin sling to the anchor, with a non-locking carabiner attached.
Clip your etrier to the anchor (do not clip to the lanyard carabiner to avoid interfering with the lanyard adjuster).
Test the strength of the anchor, looking away from it while testing.
3. Load transfer
Pull the slack end of the lanyard connected to anchor B.
Slacken the lanyard arm connected to point A. To slacken the lanyard arm, unweight it using the etrier.
4. Climbing on the anchor
Unclip the lanyard arm from point A, and continue to shorten the arm connected to point B by climbing the etrier.
Clip your rope into point B.
Clipping the anchor should not be done too early, in order to limit the fall distance should the anchor fail.
You are ready to place the next anchor and repeat all of these steps.