Gear in trees

Back climbing today. I keep coming back to the fact that I struggle to think of something I’d rather be doing, especially on a lovely, late summer day like today. Perfect conditions to work on a group of enormous beeches, they must be pushing forty meters at their very tips.

I was using the treeMOTION evo with the Transformer on the bridge, as well as the Hitch Climber eccentric – and was absolutely loving it. Or actually, let me rephrase that: my rule of thumb tends to be that if I can put gear on my harness and forget that it is there, then it is doing its job well. If it is clunky and unwieldy, forcing me to focus on it all the time – it is not. These two tools definitively fall into the former category, the rotation-limiting swivel on the Transformer allowing me to effortlessly switch between the free-spinning and the locked position. I found this especially useful today when using the Captain hook to move around the canopy or when traversing, as then I attach both connectors, the Ultra O of the work positioning system, as well as the connector attached to the Micro Traxion I use on the 10mm Sirius on the Captain. In these situations it is a big help to be able to go into free-spinning, preventing a twisting motion on the bridge.

Yes, it adds weight to the harness. But to be honest, once I am off the ground, the benefits easily outweigh any negatives from the slight increase in weight, in fact, I am not even aware of the weight on the harness once aloft.

The other thing I have found is that I use the Hitch Climber eccentric somewhat differently than the original model in that I use the top karabiner, the one attaching to the termination to the middle hole. This allows the stitched terminations to line up nice and flush in the profile of the body of the pulley. Also, this way, the top hole always remains free to pop a Revolver Rig into when running a V-Rig. All of the applications I would normally run off the free middle hole, I now run off the second bridge of the harness – or off the swivel on the Transformer, depending on whether I want manoeuvrability or stability.

So, I had a good time. Look forwards to more climbing tomorrow…