Rope Soloing on Single Pitch Routes


Rope Soloing on Single Pitch Routes - Cougar Mountain Crag

A one day top rope solo clinic for advanced rock and ice climbers looking to get out to places like Index, Squamish and Ouray to work routes on top rope.

COVID-19: Learn about our most up-to-date guidance for participants and leaders on our COVID-19 Response page. All participants and leaders must agree to the COVID-19 Code of Conduct before participating in this Mountaineers activity.
  • Sat, Mar 30, 2019
  • Seattle Climbing
  • Climbing
  • Adults
  • Challenging
  • Mileage: 0.1 mi

We'll meet at the Issaquah PCC at 8am and carpool over to the drytool crag. 

We'll be learning a system for top rope soloing  on single pitch routes while anchored from above.  We'll set up the system on the ground and then participants can set up and practice the technique at the drytool crag.

Focus of workgroup will be:

  • Preparation of climbing site for solo toprope.
  • Backup anchor above the cliff/ Primary anchor below the cliff.
  • Toprope solo system and backup.
  • Escaping system at top or midclimb, and retreat.


Please review backside and three-in-one anchor systems: Rock Climbing: The AMGA Single Pitch Manual by Bob Gaines and Jason D. Martin. pages 175-181 (let me know if I need to send you a PDF of these pages.)

Read before class and practice in your living room:


Cougar Mountain Crag

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

  • Students will need ALL required gear. No exceptions.
  • 50 - 60 meter STATIC rope. 10mm in diameter or thicker. 
  • Two progress capture devices: minitraxtion, microtraxion, microascender, ascender, soloist (for this class a GriGri doesn't count as a progress capture device). Preferably two different kinds.
  • Two locking carabiners designed to prevent crossloading. 
  • Enough anchor material for 2 anchors (a backup anchor above the cliff, a primary anchor below the cliff). 
  • Extra material to potentially extend those anchors.
  • Enough lockers for those anchors. 
  • 2 PAS
  • Extra prussiks and slings for escape system
  • Rappel system
  • GriGri (optional. for this class, does not count as a progress capture device.)
  • Extra single and double slings to assemble chest harness. 
  • A backpack or other object to weigh down a dangling climbing rope.
  • Helmet/ harness/ standard climbing stuff
  • Belay gloves are helpful for learning / ascending ropes but optional. 
  • Eye protection (optional)
  • This is a drytool crag, so I will be bringing ice boots, steel monopoints and technical tools with mixed picks for my climbing.  You can bring this or try to climb in rock shoes... up to you! 
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