FT4 Rock Eval Instructor Info

Last updated:  3/2/12

Note:  This is a Pass/Fail fieldtrip.  Students who do not successfully complete this fieldtrip will not be allowed to continue in the 2011 climbing course!


Equipment:  same as students.  Continental breakfast and lunch will be provided.  


This is the rock evaluation for the 2012 basic class.  Except where noted, students should show proficiency such that you would be comfortable with them as the second on your rope on a basic climb of The Tooth.  Any student that does not meet this benchmark should be referred to an Area Leader and/or the Fieldtrip Leader prior to being given a grade of “Fail”.  Any grade of "needs improvement" for the non pass/fail climbing activities will necessitate a note to the student's SIG leader.

Safety is the utmost concern.  Be vigilant and ready to correct students or stop activity at any time if you see something that can result in injury, even if not under your direct supervision. 


Knots:  If you are assigned to this station, please be sure to review and practice as necessary.  Don't think that because you learned these years ago that you are still proficient.

Belay Escape Station (Basement)

Station Set-up. There are 6 stations pre-set up in the south basement bay.  Floor bolts for belaying have been pre-drilled; you may need to install the hangars.  To use the weight drop set up, the bay door will need to be opened to provide enough room for belaying and pulling the weight back up to the ceiling after each drop.

Students will perform the following, once with belay device on one hand, and once with munter hitch using the other hand:   

    • Set up a belay.
    • Catch a falling weight.
    • Execute a fallen climber tie-off and escape.  See description and video here.

Climbing/Rappeling Station(s)

Station Set-up. Provide 2 ropes at each climb/rappel route as directed by the Field Trip Leader. Radios should be used to communicate with the instructors at the top of the towers.


1.  Students will top-rope climb to the rappel station belayed by another student under direct observation of an Instructor. 

2.  Rappeling is the most risky activity that the students will perform in the field trips.  Please enforce the following safety measures:

    • Upon arriving at the rappel ledge, require students to use their safety line from before they announce "off belay" until after you've verified a safe rappel connection (below)
    • It is imperative that you personally verify each student's setup before allowing them to rappel--anchor,rope,rappel method setup, rappeler.  
    • Require a person to attend the bottom of the rappel rope and ready to apply a fireman's belay
    • On all rappels require the students to use the proper rappel signals, “On Rappel” and “Off Rappel.”.
3.  The Munter Hitch is our newly approved backup rappel method, in place of the carabiner brake.  If you have not rappeled with a munter hitch, notify the Field Trip Leader so that you can practice before the FT begins.  For instruction, watch this video.
3.  In 2014, carabiner brake rappel returned to the curriculum in place of Munter rappel.  Students will perform carabiner brake rappels and no Munter rappels.  (KHT March 20th 2014)


The students are expected to climb at least three 5.4 routes in a manner which demonstrates enough proficiency to safely and successfully participate in a Mountaineers Basic Rock climb.  The gradebook includes a section on "concepts" and a section on "skills".  All of the "concepts" are pass/fail, as are skills of "route up to 5.4" and "cleaning pro" and "gear management".  For the other "skills" listed in the gradebook (e.g., friction, face, stemming, etc.), concerns with time and/or availability forced those to be listed as "proficient/needs improvement".  The FT Leader and/or Area Leader will designate specific routes that the students are to climb.  On those routes, observe and evaluate the student on the "concepts" and all "skills" that can be demonstrated.  Demonstrating the "concepts" requires physical fitness, use of elementary technique, and judgement (climbing within abilities).  If you have any question at all whether the student has an adequate level of proficiency to be graded as "pass", please consult the Area Leader and/or Field Trip Leader.  In regards to the non pass/fail skills, preferably observe the student demonstrating the skill.  If the student cannot demonstrate it, have the student discuss the skill and/or simulate the skill.  Feel free to provide prompting and advice for the non pass/fail skills as time warrants.

Extra Notes:

  • The outside climbing station can potentially be very cold and wet.   Be on the lookout for under prepared students and notify your Area Leader and/or the Fieldtrip Leader of any students lacking the proper clothing.
  • Students MUST always use a personal anchor at the top of ALL climbing routes when not on belay or rappel.

Thank you for volunteering your time and sharing your enthusiasm for mountaineering!!