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KOTR is looking for a new owner. Are you a developer, a climber and have plans to stay in Korea for a while? If so, email me at [email protected]
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Unread 10-19-2004, 09:12 AM
CHOI BAWI's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 59
I think the anchor revolution is great.

It may NOT be a good idea to set up NEW belay stations for single 25M abseils because it may alter the make-up of the original route. I'll get to that point later, bear with me.

Insubong is definitely in need some equalized anchor-slings. I have personally fixed quite a few on my own, but they never last long enough. Luckily, Insubong does get enough traffic that these slings are changed from time to time by the local Korean clubs. A lot of the anchors, not slings, seem to be in good shape, it might just be easier to just bring up a lot of webbing, cut off the death triangles and re-thread and equalize the anchors while on your abseils. That's what I do.

From an objective standpoint, please keep a few things in mind. Regardless of how you do things, you will more than likely draw quite a bit of attention. So, keep a cool head no matter who may be giving you a hard time. Although the language barrier will likely be a problem, be patient and try to explain to them the good of what you are trying to achieve. Who knows, they may also have a special process or code that has to be followed before setting bolts; it is in a national park. But, to my knowledge, there isn't one. Let's face it though. As much as we love Insubong, too, Insubong is their granite treasure, not ours.

From their point of view, to go up there on your own pounding bolts in may be taken as an "arrogant" foreigner who is messing up their routes. The biggest concern by them would be that they may think you are also going to alter the character of routes, not understanding that you are only interested in replacing the old anchors.


I have no opinion on the matter of adding bolts on run-out sections of routes; however, I do know that if you do so, it will more than likely be hacked off in the future. As much as I like the insurance of an extra bolt on run-out sections, I have not bothered to place bolts where I have thought would have been nice simply out of a twisted sense of respect for the club that put the route up.

Keep in mind that the classic routes were not set from a top-rope, but on a very bold lead. That is the character of how the classic routes at Insubong are intended to be climbed. There is a lot of pride and ego involved for those who pioneered these routes for the obvious risks that were taken.

Please don't take this posting negatively, folks. I have heard and discussed all the arguments on this subject before several times. If you set a new bolt on a run-out section of a route, whether it's right or not, I can practically guarantee you that it will be hacked off by someone in the near future. I've already seen it done several times.

PS: I'm also sure there are Koreans out there that will definitely appreciate the safe anchors you set up, too. Good luck!
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