This seems like the best place to ask this question.
I make my living as an arborist, climbing trees professionally and recreationally too. Ever since I read the first edition of On Rope I began to realize that accessing trees on single rope was better than traditional arborist techniques.
Over the years promoting SRT to arbos has been a minor passion of mine. Finally this has become more standard and accepted.
The system that I use seems to be a hybrid. From the waist up it looks exactly like a Frog. But I use a single foot loop on the left, attached to the upper ascender and a Pantin on the right foot.
When I ascend I don't 'Frog' it is more like a Ropewalker action using both feet.
Another minor change that I made is to offset the chest ascender attachment. Using a delta on the right and a longer sling on the left allows the rope to tail straight into the Pantin. The small offset also makes the ropes a bit neater in front of my face.
Post by Chad Dubuisson on Apr 14, 2007 11:15:31 GMT -5
I too use the hybrid system you mention. The addition of the Pantin is a dream when starting out for pulling the rope down through the croll once you get the hang of kicking it up the rope.
Sharon had asked: "is that what some people are calling a frogwalker?"
I wanted to say that I remember reading in Alpine Caving Techniques, a French book on European SRT. In it, they talk about another Hybrid frog system that they call a "frog walker". In that system, you retain your croll in the normal position. The difference is that you reposition the upper ascender (and it helps to have a basic here!) below the croll. You short rig your foot cord to the stirrup part of your cord, so that you effectively create a knee-cam arrangement out of your foot cord. One then attaches a bungee cord from the back of the waist belt of the harness, up over one shoulder & back down all the way to the top of the new knee ascender. When rigged this way, one climbs very much like a rope walker, without the chest roller. Between the Pantin on the right foot & the knee cam on the left foot, you can simply reach up hand over hand & climb up the rope without too much effort. There's some friction in the rope channel of the croll, but it's not too bad.
If anything, it's a different way to climb with a frog, it uses different muscles & allows the user to break up a long climb into a couple of different styles of movements & could be of use if someone started cramping really bad on a long climb, to be able to change things up & use different muscles.
The setup that you describe is interesting. Tomorrow I'm going to muddle around with it. One concern that I have is that the 'knee' ascender is below the climber's waist. This would not be a good place to have a backup attachment point. For tree climbers I think it's a good idea to have to attachments for ascent. Ropes can be directed over limbs and through brush. If something got into a mechanism causing a failure it could lead to a fall, maybe not a grounder, but a fall.
Post by John Lovaas on Apr 18, 2007 7:57:03 GMT -5
I was thumbing through my copy of Alpine Caving Techniques(2002), and realized that they discussed your setup(minus the Croll displacement) as "Frogging with a foot ascender" or "The New French Method". The authors mention that the addition of the foot ascender had become more and more popular since the early 1990s..
They discuss using the system as a standard sit/stand, as well as symmetric and asymmetric stepping patterns. There's a Pantin on my gear wish list.