UKH

axe lanyard tie-in

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 wee jamie 01 May 2021

Hello, what do people attach their axe lanyards to when soloing?  I've always worn a harness for harder routes but am thinking I should probably make up a simple webbing waist belt with a loop at the front to simplify things.  Ideally it should be strong and load-bearing just in case.  Anyone else made something like this or adapted a sling/daisychain?

In reply to wee jamie:

I either take my ultra light alpine harness (especially if I expect to abseil) or, on steep neve or easy mixed stuff, I am happy to go without leashes, since I figure that if I drop a tool I can probably get down with only one. The only times I've ever dropped a tool so far have been a couple of times when trying to fiddle gear in, which is not an issue when soloing.

I'm interested to hear other people's responses though.

 lithos 01 May 2021
In reply to wee jamie:

get a really light alpine harness, some around 150g!

 Rick Graham 01 May 2021
In reply to wee jamie:

Pre stretchy lanyards , I always attached my lanyards to rucksack shoulder straps or a sling worn as a bandolier.

 Rick Graham 01 May 2021
In reply to Rick Graham:

Forgot to add .

Mick Fowler was once saved by his rucksack attached lanyards to get a sneeky rest on an FA in glencoe.

However, have a plan. I was almost caught out once , using the no rucksack, bandolier method. Pumped stupid on an overhanging crack , one axe was hooked above my head , but I had no strength left to pull up or unhook it. I tried to slip out of the bandolier to fall off but it caught up on my helmet. 

Very nasty hanging from the helmet strap  until I managed to free it off .

I now link the bandolier to my harness.

Even if soloing , a harness is always nice to wear to keep all your clothes snug especially if there is an updraft.

 wee jamie 02 May 2021
In reply to Rick Graham:

Thanks for the suggestions.  I have a fairly light alpine harness which I use regularly, but just feels a bit overkill for easier stuff.  I would ditch the lanyards altogether, but they certainly give a feel of security and I also stop to take photos so it's nice to feel connected when letting go completely.  As for the Mick Fowler rest on rucksack straps - I remember reading that!

 rogerwebb 02 May 2021
In reply to wee jamie:

Are your axe lanyards load bearing?

Generally if I am soloing I use leashes, it adds some security. If you lose your footing, get smashed in the face by a piece of ice or some other thing happens that causes you to let go of your axe you are still attached. At best a belay in each hand. At worst some faff you can take off. 

A friend of mine made me some load bearing tethers so I might use those in future although there would still be more impact on the axe if you slipped than there would be using a leash. 

I don't solo things where leashless would give any great advantage though. If you like going for it leashes might not be so great. 

 tspoon1981 02 May 2021
In reply to Rick Graham:

> Pre stretchy lanyards , I always attached my lanyards to rucksack shoulder straps or a sling worn as a bandolier.

I still use a 50cm sling worn as a bandolier, I find it stops the occasional clusterf*ck of lanyards and ropes tangling up.

 Nathan Adam 02 May 2021
In reply to wee jamie:

Perhaps see if you can get hold of a cheap/old harness and cut the leg loops off to make a belt and leave the belay loop on for an attachment point? 

 wee jamie 02 May 2021
In reply to rogerwebb:

Hi Roger, I have the Grivel Double Spring lanyards - axe tethers only, but certainly beefy enough to give a sense of security should a foot slip. 

I actually climbed with my old leashes (Charlet Saf locks) on Friday and found them a step backwards in terms of freedom of movement, especially when reaching into my pocket for the camera - I had to reposition the axe closer to my body or let it dangle completely.  Nathan, I like your idea!

 mike barnard 03 May 2021
In reply to Rick Graham:

> Mick Fowler was once saved by his rucksack attached lanyards to get a sneeky rest on an FA in glencoe.>

I thought it was West Central Gully? A pretty grim rest all the same... 

 waitout 04 May 2021
In reply to wee jamie:

A sling knotted in the middle then over the shoulders like a makeshift chest harness. Can be retied as a harness if needed too.

In reply to mike barnard:

> I thought it was West Central Gully? A pretty grim rest all the same... 

Pretty sure you are right. 


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