Bolt placement discussion

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Bolt placement discussion

Post by NatureBoi »

I overheard a discussion recently where a tall climber bolted a route in the hard range. He had consulted other climbers to check his placements. I also know this bolter does make allowances for different physiology's.
The route had seen a 2nd ascent shortly after.
Another shorter climber of exceptional experience tried the route but complained about the bolting.
Their view was that the bolt was placed in such a way that they had to do the hard move and beyond and then clip. They were wanting the route bolted in such a way that the bolt placement would enable them to pull/ aid that section.
They felt that they physically could not climb the route ground up and used a cheat stick in places to get to the top of the route.

I have heard of this style of bolting before and am interested in what people have to say about it.
Does it only apply to hard routes?


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Re: Bolt placement discussion

Post by justin »

NatureBoi wrote: Thu Apr 25, 2019 11:38 am I have heard of this style of bolting before....

Bad bolting style perhaps!?

The usual reason for having bolts in place is to keep the climber(s) safe. There are some routes where bolts are placed badly and the route gets a reputation and/or the bolt is moved/a bolt is added.

Often on harder routes, bolts are closer together so that the first ascensioninst and others trying the route can work it easier.
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Re: Bolt placement discussion

Post by vinceB »

I must say I don't see the problem there. First, it's not a big issue whether it's a hard or an easy route. The only issue that matters is the potential for a ground fall.
Is there a potential grounder if you have to do the crux and then clip ? If yes it's bad bolting.
Is it high up ? Then the only risk is to bruise your ego... You can't do the crux, then aid climb using draws to do a ladder or improvise with an escape biner.

Lots of famous crags are bolted like this : Céüse, Tarn, RRG, Chulilla, Siurana etc. Some routes have a special feeling to it and, as long as they are safe, things are fine.
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Re: Bolt placement discussion

Post by micky »

agreed, it's badly bolted if it's unsafe firstly and then if you have to clip mid crux or deviate off the natural line to clip. Otherwise, if it's run out, you cant clip after the crux etc, that's just the way it is, climb harder. I prefer the style like in France where the run outs get longer the higher and safer you get, it's very rare to be able to pull from one bolt to the next to work routes there, you have to climb it.
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Re: Bolt placement discussion

Post by tygereye »

If the potential fall is safe, there's no issue.
Like VinceB said, it's only your ego that gets injured.
(and that's not always a bad thing - it can actually be character building)
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Re: Bolt placement discussion

Post by Gustav »

If you’re lacking in altitude and struggling to clip bolts, invest in one of these next time you go to Europe - ... p420-panic

Normally found on the bottom shelves...
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Re: Bolt placement discussion

Post by XMod »

This is actually a good point. People seem to think the only consideration is safety but if this were the case, then placing the bolts practically anywhere will keep you on the mountain and away from the ground. This approach however will NOT make the route nice to climb. You want to protect the hard moves first and foremost (you will hardly ever fall at a rest) and it makes the route a whole lot more pleasant to climb if it is easy to work on the moves properly - something simply putting a clip at each rest will NEVER achieve. Please see my topic "Bolting Considerations" in this forum for more thoughts on this - it is something that most bolters need to wake up to.
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