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What will I Learn?
The list below explains the main learning objectives for this Improvised Rescue course.
Abseiling is the act of descending a rope, usually to get back down a cliff, or to get to the bottom of a sea cliff in order to start a climb. A friction device, commonly a belay device, is used to control the descent speed. On this course you will learn how to abseil safely, taking into consideration what happens in the event of an emergency such as the rope getting jammed in the belay device or a rock falling on you mid abseil.[ Hide ]
Abseiling as a pair
Sometimes it is necessary for two people to abseil together. Perhaps because a climber has injured themselves, or a parent abseiling with their child, or a more experienced climber abseiling with a novice. On this course you will learn the techniques used when abseiling as pair and how to deal with any problems that might arise.[ Hide ]
Ascending a rope
Being able to ascend a rope is an important skill to learn when retreat down a cliff is not an option. This skill is often used at sea cliffs to quickly escape an incoming tide, or, in the event of a fall, usually at an overhanging cliff, where a climber is left dangling in space on the end of the rope.[ Hide ]
Belaying is the act of holding a rope for a climbing partner. So that a climber doesn't hit the ground when they fall, they attach themselves to a rope. When they fall, they fall onto the rope and the rope takes their weight. Climbing is done in pairs as there needs to be somebody at the opposite end of the rope to keep hold of it. The person holding the rope is known as the belayer.
Rather than holding the rope directly, the belayer uses a belay device attached to their climbing harness to add friction and make it easier to hold the rope. A belay device makes it possible to hold the weight of a falling climber.
There are many types of belay devices available. Some are specific to different types of climbing, some accommodate one rope, some are intended for use with two ropes, and there are many specialist devices available. Knowing which one to use, and how to use it correctly, in any given situation is fundamental to climbing safely.[ Hide ]
At Climb Wales we take conservation seriously and this is embedded in all of the climbing and mountaineering courses that we offer. One of the many great things about climbing is interaction with nature. During the course we will look at how to minimise impact and ensure that future generations will be able to enjoy the same luxuries as we do.[ Hide ]
During the course you will learn to use a variety of climbing equipment. There are some aspects of equipment which are universal to all disciplines of climbing, such as climbing shoes, harness, helmet, ropes, belay devices and carabiners. Some items are specific to a particular discipline though and won't be the focus of other climbing courses, for example, during our multipitch climbing courses we will look at twin and half ropes but it's unlikely that these will be the focus of any of our other courses. On the sea cliff climbing course you will learn to use jumars and prusiks. And on the single pitch trad climbing course you will learn to place nuts, cams and hexes.[ Hide ]
Escaping the system
What do you do if you're belaying from above and you accidentally dislodge a rock which knocks your climbing partner unconscious? Lower them down? What if the rope isn't long enough for your partner to reach safe ground or you're on a sea cliff? Sometimes, it is important to be able to escape the system, usually involving climbing out of your harness with your belay device still attached, so that you can aid your partner or call for help. On this course you will learn how to escape the system safely without putting your partner in further peril.[ Hide ]
"I've got no friends and my nuts are too small" is a phrase that many climbers have found themselves shouting down to their climbing partners. Snatch the Gaston, Undercling the flatty, Flag into an Egyptian, Dyno to the Crimper, Mantle on the Sloper and get ready to Dog the Flash... By the end of this course you will speak climbing lingo with the best of them.[ Hide ]
Knots are an integral part of climbing and an extremely important link in a chain intended to keep us alive. For sport climbing the most important knot is the figure-eight, for multipitch and trad we extend the use of knots further with clove and Italian hitches, prusiks, bowlines and more. As part of this climbing course you will learn to tie and inspect knots appropriate to the discipline of climbing and how to ensure their safety.[ Hide ]
To prevent a falling climber from hitting the floor, climbers periodically place climbing equipment into natural rock features as they climb. In the event of a fall, the equipment catches the rope and minimise the distance of a fall. On this course you will learn about how to place a variety or protection in different scenarios, the types of placements to avoid, and how to get creative when it seems like there is no way of protecting the next part of the climb.[ Hide ]
Protecting a second
When leading a climb it is easy to focus too much on protecting yourself and not enough on making the climb safe for your partner who will climb behind you. On this climbing course you will learn about the situations where problems arise and how to avoid them.[ Hide ]
Prusiks are an important part of the equipment arsenal and as they weigh so little so be present on almost any rack. On this course you will learn about the different types of prusiks and how to protect an abseil, to ascend a rope, to assist a belay and a host of other uses for prusiks.[ Hide ]
Retrieving a rope
After abseiling on your rope it is necessary (unless on a sea cliff) to retrieve your rope so that it can be used again. On this course we learn how to rig belays so that the rope moves freely and how to avoid getting the rope caught.[ Hide ]
There are many types of ropes used in climbing; dynamic ropes, static ropes, single ropes, twin ropes, half ropes, hybrids, and many different weights and thicknesses from a number of manufacturers. During this climbing course you will learn to decide which rope to use for ta particular type of climbing.[ Hide ]
Throwing the rope
When rigging an abseil from the top of the cliff it's important to make sure the rope reaches the ground. As part of this course you will learn a number of techniques to ensure this happens and how to recognise potential problems.[ Hide ]
Traversing is the name given to climbing sideways. Often in climbing you will find that the way above is bared, perhaps by a large overhanging obstacle, and the climber will therefore having to climb sideways to avoid the obstacle. Doing so can create a number of problems if it isn't managed correctly both for the lead climber and their climbing partner. On this climbing course you will learn how to traverse safely and avoid the problems which can arise.[ Hide ]