Multipich climbing : mastering rappelling techniques

multipitch climbing rappelling techniques

On a rappel descent, the rope rappelling techniques require vigilance and organization. All maneuvers at the station must be done while tethered to the station. Mastering these techniques requires specific training.

Warning. Work with a professional to confirm your ability to perform these rappelling techniques safely and independently before attempting them unsupervised.

Rappelling techniques : installing the rope in the station

Make sure that the rappel station consists of two connected points. Tie a flat overhand bend. Securely tighten the knot connecting the two rope ends.

Note: a knot at the end of the rope is a necessary precaution in a variety of situations (long rappel, poor visibility, fatigue…).

multipitch routes climbing

Installing the friction hitch

The friction hitch can hold the user if he needs to release his hands during the rappel (falling rocks, knots in rope…).

  • Installing the friction hitch before installing the descender helps create slack, which facilitates descender installation.
  • Attach the friction hitch to the belay loop of the harness with a girth hitch, to make it drop resistant.

Installing the descender

  • Attach the fixed arm of the lanyard Dual Connect Adjust to the descender.
  • Install the strands of rope in the descender, remembering to lock the carabiner.

Rappelling techniques : reaching the next anchor

To more easily reach the anchor, set the adjustable arm of your lanyard to its maximum length. Once you have clipped the anchor and are on your feet, adjust the length of your lanyard.

Setting up for the next rappel

  • Remove the rope from the descender and friction hitch.
  • Attach the two ropes to the station so as not to lose them and to back up the second climber’s descent.
  • Remove the knots at the ends of the rope if necessary.
  • Pass the rope end to be pulled through the quick link

Rappelling techniques : recovering the rope

Once the second climber is tied in, pull the rope.

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