Longest single pitch rappell??

Longest single pitch rappell??

David
David

July 12th, 2001, 1:49 pm #1

I'm trying to fnd out what the longest single pitch rappell ever completed is. I found a reference that was several years old for a 550Meter, which is only about 1800 ft. I'm planning a trip which will include a rappell of aprox 2500ft, and was suprised not to find reference to anything higher. This is not that difficult of a rappell, and I would have expected this to be a record that many people would be interested in breaking. Any reference you could provide would be appreciated.
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Scott Surgent
Scott Surgent

July 12th, 2001, 6:38 pm #2

I'd be interested in the logistics behind a 2,500-foot rappel. Assuming you are using 7/16 or 1/2 inch rope, this would be an awful heavy batch of rope! I've lugged 600-foot bags and they weight about 20-25 lbs, including the bag itself. Also, the weight of 2,500 feet of rope below you might be so much so as to effectively act as a bottom-belay; i.e. depending on your rap device, it may stop you before you get started (what type of rap device are you using?). On a figure-8, it could be a problem. Maybe not so on a brake bar.

I know two people (cavers) who rappeled down to the bottom of a vertical 5,000-foot mine shaft in AZ. However, they did a series of rappels and had the extra bonus of having to ascend mechanically out of the shaft.

Good luck!
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Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

July 12th, 2001, 11:13 pm #3

I'm trying to fnd out what the longest single pitch rappell ever completed is. I found a reference that was several years old for a 550Meter, which is only about 1800 ft. I'm planning a trip which will include a rappell of aprox 2500ft, and was suprised not to find reference to anything higher. This is not that difficult of a rappell, and I would have expected this to be a record that many people would be interested in breaking. Any reference you could provide would be appreciated.
I posted this to rec.climbing
http://groups.google.com/groups?hl=en&s ... e252d77,11

Here are some responses:
At one time the longest single rappel was the one by cavers off Mt. Thor
(Baffin Island) in 1982. The rappel was on the order of 3,300 feet. I know
several parties have rapped off El Cap on one rope, that should be over
3,000 feet.
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At one time the longest single rappel was the one by cavers off Mt. Thor
(Baffin Island) in 1982. The rappel was on the order of 3,300 feet. I know
several parties have rapped off El Cap on one rope, that should be over
3,000 feet.
==============
It was not the rope that melted, it was his body. I think his body was at the
end of the rope at the base.

Just getting on rappel is way dangerous. On must rappell over the lip at the
top of El Cap on a seperate rope. The tension in the main rope is to great.
Then rig your super rack just right on the main rope - its more like a cable at
that point.

Well he lost control, and entered a runaway situation. Gear Failure or missuse?
The rope running across his body sawed him to death before ground impact.
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Scott Surgent
Scott Surgent

July 13th, 2001, 3:56 pm #4

The rope sawed this guy in half? Interesting, in a gruesome sort of way. This begs the question of his rap method- sounds like he had the rope wrapped around his waist or butt as a sort of self-belay method. This is a typical approach but not for really long raps.

I've rapped 300 feet and even then, pulling up the rope at the top to lose tension and allow me to attach my device to the system is difficult: the rope is downright heavy! I had one instance where I descended too quickly and only a herculean yank on my line allowed me to stop. On a long rappel with these possibilities, I'd personally attach a prusik onto the main line above my rap device so that if I got going too fast, the prusik would (should) catch and stop me. However, undoing the prusik under tension would require some skill, too.

Based on my admittedly average experiences on rope, I am still extremely curious as to the logistics of rapping 1000+ feet, not the least of which: how do you lug all that rope up anyway? Why not just do a series of 300-foot raps instead? I'm interested to see the results and learn about the methods.
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Roy Schweiker
Roy Schweiker

August 2nd, 2001, 4:51 pm #5

I read the article on the Mt Thor rappel in the NSS News when they did it, please forgive me if I don't remember it perfectly from that long ago.

They did the long rappel for itself, there was no cave deep enough for a 1000 meter single rappel so they had to go to Baffin Island to find a suitable overhanging mountain, El Capitan wasn't a long enough free drop. The rope was custom made as most rope isn't that long and was low-stretch caving rope and not dynamic climbing rope. I think it did most of the trip by snowmobile but they had several people carry attached coils over to the base. They had a large support party and spent several weeks on the project. I think somebody climbed the mountain the easy way and dropped a long string by which they pulled up the rope, maybe there was a thinner rope in between. Several people did the rappel and at least one climbed back up using mechanical ascenders.
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Joined: December 16th, 2004, 9:33 pm

December 16th, 2004, 9:37 pm #6

I'm trying to fnd out what the longest single pitch rappell ever completed is. I found a reference that was several years old for a 550Meter, which is only about 1800 ft. I'm planning a trip which will include a rappell of aprox 2500ft, and was suprised not to find reference to anything higher. This is not that difficult of a rappell, and I would have expected this to be a record that many people would be interested in breaking. Any reference you could provide would be appreciated.
A 21-men and one-woman fire team in the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur pulled off this record-breaking feat on the world's tallest office building – the Petronas Twin Towers – which stands at 451.9 m (1,483 ft) from the street. The rescue began on the top storey – the 88th, which is 378.25 m (1,241 ft) high. (The building's spires take it to over 1,400 ft!) There was no actual fire – this was just a training excercise – but strong gales and building design meant the "victims" had to be carried down in stages, from the 88th to the 82nd floor and so on, in either a gondola lift or strapped to a rappelling retriever.
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