Climb Smarter – Strategies for improving performance and safety

On this storm-damaged eastern hemlock, planning, friction management and redirects were all essential.

A safe climber always takes time to perform a pre-climb inspection of the tree before ascent. An efficient climber will also start to plan out the climb at the same time. For instance, does one side of the tree seem to require more work than the other? If the work at hand is a removal, does one section of the tree require more precise cuts, hence better work positioning? How many tie-in-points (TIPs) does the tree offer? Can one be used efficiently for the whole tree or will multiple TIPs be more effective?

If multiple TIPs are the answer, a climber may opt to use two or more climbing lines. Often, the climber can set the first line and start to ascend the tree. As the climber gets set, they may have the ground team set the other lines. Many times the ground crew may simply set a throw line and leave it. As the climber progresses to that area of the tree, he will transfer the climbing line to the new TIP.

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