Search found 20 matches

by tom_brennan
23 Nov 2018, 09:04
Forum: Gear questions, suggestions and reviews
Topic: What to look at when buying a canyoning rope
Replies: 2
Views: 467

Re: What to look at when buying a canyoning rope

Good summary Tim. I agree with your comments about polypropylene core ropes. They might be good in some parts of the world where the canyons are all wet, and the flotation is an advantage, but they don't really make much sense for most Australian canyons If you're not canyoning that often, polyester...
by tom_brennan
23 Nov 2018, 08:46
Forum: Technique, ropework and skill development
Topic: Figure 8 descenders and larks foots
Replies: 3
Views: 281

Re: Figure 8 descenders and larks foots

Flipping the 8 on the carabiner is a handy trick, though I don't always show it to beginners. Depends a bit on how much info I think they can absorb.

I do use the "Into the frying pan, over the handle" mnemonic to make sure they rig the 8 with the rope running on top, in order to avoid girth hitches.
by tom_brennan
21 Sep 2018, 09:00
Forum: Technique, ropework and skill development
Topic: Rescue knife: yes or no?
Replies: 15
Views: 543

Re: Rescue knife: yes or no?

Good to see some live testing. I'm happy that no-one ended up impaled by a knife!

Having sliced a lot of cord under moderate tension, I was more surprised at the resistance of the rope in the video. Though once it started to go, it went explosively!
by tom_brennan
12 Sep 2018, 18:33
Forum: Closures, access changes and condition reports
Topic: Campfires banned in Blue Mountains until April 2019
Replies: 3
Views: 10224

Re: Campfires banned in Blue Mountains until April 2019

I'm not sure what to think about this. Certainly, all reports suggest it has the potential to be a bad fire season. But to make the call now that it's going to be until March 2019 is a big one. It would be easy enough to impose a park fire ban for say a month, and extend it by a month at a time if c...
by tom_brennan
07 Sep 2018, 14:51
Forum: General discussion
Topic: Movie featuring Blue Mountains canyons
Replies: 4
Views: 310

Re: Movie featuring Blue Mountains canyons

I did watch it all the way through, but only for the fun of spotting scenery! It was hard to maintain the fiction of remoteness when all of the sweeping cliff shots were of the Grose Valley! I assume most of the canyon shots are of Dargans Creek. This one towards the end is definitely The Grotto (th...
by tom_brennan
06 Sep 2018, 13:10
Forum: Technique, ropework and skill development
Topic: Rescue knife: yes or no?
Replies: 15
Views: 543

Re: Rescue knife: yes or no?

I've never carried one. I can see Richard's points. However, I can also still see value in carrying one.

It's just that reaching for the knife when you're around a loaded rope should be the last resort, not the first.
by tom_brennan
18 Aug 2018, 17:22
Forum: General discussion
Topic: Publishing details of wilderness / remote canyons
Replies: 9
Views: 583

Re: Publishing details of wilderness / remote canyons

Warning: long and rambly comment, cobbled together from various posts I've made over the years and other bits of text ... ---- Publishing track notes and making route information public has long been a fairly divisive topic in the local canyoning community. There is a range of views from the publish...
by tom_brennan
13 Aug 2018, 21:57
Forum: Gear questions, suggestions and reviews
Topic: Wetsuits Advice...
Replies: 5
Views: 335

Re: Wetsuits Advice...

Everyone is different. A 3mm steamer will get you through pretty much all the canyons around Sydney in the summer months, and they are usually quite flexible. Some people will get away with a 2/3mm spring suit, but for some of the longer swimming canyons (eg Bell Creek), it can be rather chilly. I'v...
by tom_brennan
22 Jul 2018, 22:05
Forum: General discussion
Topic: Publishing details of wilderness / remote canyons
Replies: 9
Views: 583

Re: Publishing details of wilderness / remote canyons

When you look at the 9 Gardens of Stone and beyond books now published there's not too much Keats and co find that they don't publish (And/or rename). Why is it ok for them to publish "bushwalks" but as soon as we deem it "canyoning" it's all secret squirrel? I enjoy their books immensely and have ...
by tom_brennan
25 Jun 2018, 16:46
Forum: General discussion
Topic: How to get into canyoning?
Replies: 5
Views: 358

Re: How to get into canyoning?

If you live in the Blue Mountains, then joining UBMBC would certainly be worthwhile.
by tom_brennan
08 Jun 2018, 16:15
Forum: Technique, ropework and skill development
Topic: Thoughts on single rope techniques and releasable anchors
Replies: 25
Views: 1365

Re: Thoughts on single rope techniques and releasable anchors

[This is almost a separate thread, since it's only loosely related to DRT vs SRT] As I see it there are two main methods of failure of an abseiling rope over an edge. Catastrophic - the rope is cut or badly damaged immediately. I would say this is only likely to occur where a loaded rope is pulled r...
by tom_brennan
05 Jun 2018, 07:46
Forum: Gear questions, suggestions and reviews
Topic: What belay/rappel device do you use?
Replies: 25
Views: 1395

Re: What belay/rappel device do you use?

I'm not at all familiar with the Stop, but like Tim, I'd question whether it would be much good for general purpose canyoning. It seems to require 2 hands to operate, and this would make the awkward starts that you regularly get in Aussie canyons difficult. Maybe there are some cavers lurking on the...
by tom_brennan
04 Jun 2018, 22:08
Forum: Technique, ropework and skill development
Topic: Thoughts on single rope techniques and releasable anchors
Replies: 25
Views: 1365

Re: Thoughts on single rope techniques and releasable anchors

Good summary Kosta. The previous posts make it sound like there is toss-and-go (the classic double rope technique) and one version of SRT. However, there are many different versions of SRT and they all have different purposes and use cases. Thus, when we talk about using SRT, we should also specify ...
by tom_brennan
04 Jun 2018, 18:03
Forum: Technique, ropework and skill development
Topic: Thoughts on single rope techniques and releasable anchors
Replies: 25
Views: 1365

Re: Thoughts on single rope techniques and releasable anchors

Rope wear is an issue no matter what technique you use. I would point out that the kind of actions that slice ropes -- such as someone abseiling off to the side then being swung back across a sharp ironstone edge -- can cut on double ropes too. That's one of the reasons that, when using double rope...
by tom_brennan
04 Jun 2018, 17:52
Forum: Technique, ropework and skill development
Topic: Thoughts on single rope techniques and releasable anchors
Replies: 25
Views: 1365

Re: Thoughts on single rope techniques and releasable anchors

There are a range of benefits that come with abseiling on single ropes. In particular, drops can be set to the precise length, saving time getting off rope and avoiding having a coil of rope at the bottom that gets trodden on and tangled in branches etc. <snip> Another point is that the main wear p...
by tom_brennan
04 Jun 2018, 08:50
Forum: Gear questions, suggestions and reviews
Topic: What belay/rappel device do you use?
Replies: 25
Views: 1395

Re: What belay/rappel device do you use?

I "just abseil on a belay device"! I've largely used an ATC for the past 5 or 6 years. They are cheap, lightweight, have pretty good friction across a range of ropes, have other uses (belaying), and the rope doesn't twist much. I used a Hydrobot for several years before that, but with skinny ropes i...
by tom_brennan
04 Jun 2018, 08:43
Forum: Technique, ropework and skill development
Topic: Thoughts on single rope techniques and releasable anchors
Replies: 25
Views: 1365

Re: Nightmare canyon. Can an old dog learn new tricks. Thoughts on SRTs and releasable anchors

I'll keep referring to SRT here, even though SRT historically has been more about ascending single fixed lines for caving/tree climbing. Rachel and I did a fair bit of SRT when we were in the US last year. We found it was generally slower, but being new at it, that's probably not surprising. I've pr...
by tom_brennan
30 May 2018, 15:21
Forum: Technique, ropework and skill development
Topic: Do you need to retire carabiners that have been dropped
Replies: 6
Views: 375

Re: Do you need to retire carabiners that have been dropped

I always thought the issue with dropped Aluminium compounants was not with static strength but with the effects heating and cooling have on possible mirco fractures. The "micro fracture" theory was what I heard when I first started canyoning. And that was why you were supposed to retire any piece o...
by tom_brennan
25 May 2018, 12:59
Forum: General discussion
Topic: Canyoners Code of Ethics
Replies: 8
Views: 468

Re: Canyoners Code of Ethics

Also worth noting that the Code of Ethics was actually developed by NPWS and was on their website for some time, but got replaced with the similar documents referenced by Dylan - not sure when.

The original can still be found on the signs at many of the trackheads.
by tom_brennan
25 May 2018, 12:54
Forum: Closures, access changes and condition reports
Topic: Long-term closure of Spring Creek Canyon (Bungonia)
Replies: 7
Views: 448

Re: Long-term closure of Spring Creek Canyon (Bungonia)

It is interesting that there are no notices on either the website, or in the Plan of Management, regarding the closure of Spring Creek. However, they do state in the PoM that you need to register for Adventure Activities, and I'm pretty sure that the register at the Visitor Centre states that Spring...