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Topic Date User
The Irish Solution to The Ben Lomond Problem 27-Sep-2017 At 7:23:59 AM Wendy
On 24-Sep-2017 Tastrad wrote: stuff
Great, we are now acknowledging that the argument has all to do with abstract ideals and all the other arguments are tangents. No worries. Argue for your ideal all you want.

>The issue has nothing to do with safety. Climbers since 1970 safely negotiated
>the access and descent from crags on Ben Lomond without bolted rap stations.
>Bob took a screamer or two, but no-one came to grief accessing or descending
>the cliffs..and there was no tat on the Flutes either. We climbed to the
>top and walked down.
>The rap stations went in for convenience..not safety..and also to protect
>the descent gully. But this is a nonsense reason, as the descent gully
>is primarily on scree slope. People also seem to forget about the access
>gully which was doubly trashed when the bolts were in place..accessing
>and descending from the crag via the same gully.

There was tat on the flutes on my first trip there in 2001. I do actually think there is a safety and erosion argument to be made. Sure, people survived doing dodgy stuff. Individuals will always survive doing the odd dodgy thing. But there is a lot more pressure of numbers now, and that increases the likelihood of an accident plus the erosion.
>As for Wendy's contribution. Seriously, are you on the same drugs as the
>yes campaign for same-sex marriage? Just because alot of people agree with
>it, doesn't mean that it's right. I chuckle when I hear people say that
>the majority want bolted rap stations on Ben Lomond. Their majority is
>the peer group they talk to at the pub or around campfires. But what about
>the majority I talk to; the dozens of people who pioneered the new routes
>on the mountain over the last 47 years, who hate the idea of any bolts
>on the mountain whatsoever, including rap stations. Their opinion has the
>most value and weight because of the time, effort and emotional investment
>in the mountain over many years.

I'm hardly the person to argue that the majority view is right just because it's the majority view. You might have noticed a tendency towards non-conventional ideas. I'm arguing the slippery slope argument is wrong.
>Tat only appeared since the bolts were removed in 2008, and now a well
>meaning person has installed a chain to replace it. The tat is the convenience
>mentality again, littering the cliff, too lazy to walk down, bringing a
>sport climbing attitude to a big alpine cliff and not willing to embrace
>the whole trad ethic. The weetbix is not an issue on the established classics.
>I've done Defender, Rigaudon, Ramadan, Barbe di Vendetta, Rajah, many times
>and never broken a hold on the upper pitches. If you don't top out, you
>haven't done the climb.
There so is weetbix at the top of those routes! I think you have just become acclimatised to it.

> I used the abseil bolts on Ben Lomond
>for the 8 years or so they were in place. But when a couple of people were
>seriously considering bolting climbs, I argued that the mountain should
>be bolt free. But the would be bolter came back with the argument that
>it wasn't bolt free, because of the abseil bolts; that a precedent, grey
>area was established. To have a bolt free mountain, there had to be no
>ambiguity and the rap bolts had to go.

There's no ambiguity in stating rap anchor only, no bolted routes either. If you want to see ambiguity, you can see it anywhere - including in fixed rap ropes, tat and chain.
> Sooner or later, rap stations would
>appear on every buttress on the mountain, because there is no logical reason
>to restrict it just to the Flutes, and then how about that lovely arete?

here we are, back at slippery slopes ...
>And unless they learn self reliance in the mountains, they will always
>be bolt dependent. But then how can we climb safely on Ben Lomond?..learn
>the traditional skills.

Um, if you can't actually do some solid trad climbing, you can't even get to where the rap anchors would be? You don't "learn" traditional skills on a cliff like Ben Lomond. It's already a bit beyond that.
>Which reminds me Wendy, the guidebook does describe the top down access
>via the plateau. So for your summer holiday in Tassie, check out the guide
>at , get your static rope and come on down.

Ok, so later guides might be a bit more forthcoming on the topic. In an amusing aside, I just checked Douglas's copy from 2005 and it says you could walk to the top and find the rap anchors. It is written as a secondary option though. But because I am quite keen on convenience climbing, I probably will go the rap in from the top option. I won't be deluding my self that I am going for any sort of traditional experience in the process though.

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