Sometimes it feels that being a climber and an engineer is a gift and a curse. On the one side, you analyze every part of your system from placement to fall factors….and on the other side, you analyze everything….
So when is enough, enough? Considering myself a novice sport and trad climbers I’ve been actively been trying to build some personal “Rules to Live By” where I establish my own code of risk assessment, comfort level and skills.
One topic that has been plaguing my engineering OCD is how to properly evaluate fixed bolts. Over the years I have come across many “questionable” bolt situations and haven’t had much more to go off of, other than my own intuition, when evaluating the quality and condition of the piece.
Bellow is what I’ve found to be a great summary of the good, the bad and the ugly underbelly of the bolted rock world.
- “The Status of Bolts in America” my current go to bolt bible
- A good perspective of bolt replacement practices outside of New England
- The American Safe Climbing Association’s guide to bolt evaluation and saftey
- Great read from Outside Magazine
- Great read from Climbing Magazine
So now that you can properly identify bolt issues, what do you do next? Well, I must admit, I’m at this stage and haven’t done anything…so its time to get involved. AccessFund has a great Bolt Replacement and Next Steps to Safer Climbing article which will point you in the right direction. Im looking for opportunities to get involved so if you read this and know of groups that need assistance please comment below.
Also, thanks to the AccessFund for the great pics all they do for the outdoors and climbing communities, pledge your support today!