16 August 2012

Smith Rock Rope Swing Shenanigans

I've been to Smith Rock many times now - it's become somewhat of a tradition for THE GROUP - but until recently I had never seen the legendary rope swing. I had heard of it, but it always eluded me. Well, on this last trip, we lucked out, because in May some hooligans (get off my lawn!) set up the rope swing at the top of Monkey Face, a free standing pillar formation ideal for swinging - refresh your memory of Monkey Face here.

To set it up, the young rope guns first had to climb to the top of the face and secure their "system". This included a cardboard box, about 8 anchors, lots and lots of webbing.

Would you trust this?
They used a 2nd rope/pulley system to pull the jumping rope back up after someone jumped. Unfortunately, on their first leap they didn't secure the return rope properly, so it took another two hours to get everything set back up for the other jumpers. Luckily the 2nd time was the charm, and once they got the system worked out, they were able to have people jump every 15 minutes or so.

In between jumps, there was some high-wire slacklining of course. Yeah, I would not do that.

No big deal, just tight rope walking over a 400' drop

To jump, they simply attached a GriGri (auto-locking belay device) to their harness and took a leap! Once they stopped swinging, they would pull a 2nd rope out of a bag and drop it to rappel to the ground. As you can hear in the video below, the spectators were more nervous than the jumpers. Would YOU do it?

 

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