If you are looking for A TON of tricks than will truly count the day things go south, this is the book you want to have read. And you must have practiced the techniques and put yourself in situations.
Because this book about getting down (essentially by rappel) is NOT your average piece of literature: the book is 420 pages. My kindle edition is more than 1000 pages!!! If you are looking for a short and sweet manual, look elsewhere! (See about the other book below: “Down Core: Rappel Fundamentals (Cragmanship)”) Also if you want only some super safe methods, look elsewhere! If this book contains all the most useful and safe methods out there, it also has some of the scariest methods that exist: some of them I ask myself if it is not better it would be forgotten!!!
So if you think you know it all, I think this book will still show you a thing or two, or twenty!! I am often humbled by learning from professional climbers. But never I would have thought that I could learn so much about how to get down (and I still have to read some of the book!!). Some tricks I simply had forgotten because they show nowhere in other books, and others that are just totally novel to me! And yes: one technique (I had forgotten) I now use weekly and another one it was very cool to show a partner four months ago. It allowed us to get down faster and safely! Still: it was an advanced technique that I would not recommend to anybody…
For everyone who makes climbing (or mountaineering) an important part of their lives, I think this book is mandatory. It will open your mind to many ways of doing things that will make your life easier or will save your life when you will have to think out of the box. I wonder why I don’t hear more about this book on social media! I believe it is because it is not for everyone, and not for the faint of heart.
– How to deal with stuck ropes?
– How to deal with one (or multiple) core shots on your rappel ropes?
– How to rappel safely on ropes of different diameters?
– How do you rappel 60 m with a 60 m rope?
– How to rappel 90m with 3 ropes of 60m?
– How do you deal with being 10m short from your next belay station?
– Why do you want to know the rescue spider?
And much much more!
This book should make you much more self reliant in the vertical. It will also challenge your judgment as you will need to decide what is good for you and what is not (depends on your tolerance to risk).
Thank you Andy to have produced a book that contains so much information for the next generations of climbers.
PS: To get a more concise book, I suggest you look into “Down Core: Rappel Fundamentals (Cragmanship)” also by Andy. It is 160 pages (about 40% of the “full” Down book). I will ask a copy to read to Andy and edit this review eventually 🙂