Hooked reloaded

Ray and Taylor recently put together a rather nice video, filmed in sunny north Wales, giving an overview of the features of the self-orientating positioning aid, Captain Hook.

Captain self-orientating positioning aid

Taylor Hamel outlines the features of the Captain: a self-orientating, high strength hook that is designed for technical jobs. More details on the website –> http://dmmprofessional.com/products/captain/

Posted by DMM Professional on Friday, 23 December 2016

The Captain is another one of those tools I love. If I had to strip down my climbing kit to the bare essentials, I reckon this one would still be in there… it does require diligence and a bit of practice to use and set it correctly, but in many situations it significantly expands the range of possibilities on offer when planning a climb through a canopy – or when moving from one tree to the next.

Some advice on use of the Captain?

Well, Taylor covers a number of the key points in the video above.

Apart from that I would suggest that you set your aim on a realistic goal. Make sure you are in a good and stable position prior to throwing (this greatly improves your aim), aim for a limb that is well visible and defect free. When throwing, use the actual amount of line you need to reach the target (more line adds unnecessary weight and will tire you).

Define a number the number of throws you are going to allow yourself before you consider alternatives. This prevents getting fixed on a target and maybe ending up settling for a dubious compromise which is almost there.

Avoid loose stuff flapping around, have the line well cinched up against the shackle and hold the lower part of the Captain, this again improves your aim and will allow the Captain to fly true.

Aim for the empty space above the target. Get the Captain right up against that base of the limb or hooked on a limb below, rerouted around the target limb, as in this instance the Captain cannot rotate out during the traverse.

If you are using an extra piece of line attached to the Captain (i.e. not your climbing line), make sure this attached to you – there is nothing more frustrating than seeing the Captain nicely set on the target limb with the line dangling ineffectually below it, out of reach.

So there you go, not rocket science.

But as with any tool, the Captain also needs to be treated with respect, be aware not only of its qualities but also of its limitations: The Captain is not a primary suspension point, whilst it may be rated, it is essential that you remain attached to your primary anchor point at all times while using the Captain. Consider the consequence of a failure of the point you have snagged with the Captain – if in doubt, do not use it and re-throw.