Tag Archives: Colorado

Mystery Knot

Mystery Knot

Mystery Knot

Time to play “guess that knot!” Observe the mystery knot above (part of a top rope ice climbing anchor). What the heck is that? I know what you’re thinking: bowline. But I saw it up close and observed it from several angles. It’s unlike any bowline I’ve ever seen. It looks more like part of a trucker’s hitch or something, or maybe one of those knots you use to tie monofilament fishing line to a fish hook. Clinch knot? Is that what it’s called? My knot geekness is sort of limited to climbing knots, so I can’t say for sure. What I do know is that it looks like it’s about to come undone! The other end of this anchor has a similar “looks like it’s about to come undone” mystery knot.

Oh yeah, ice climbers were top roping off of this thing.

Location: Ouray Ice Park, Ouray, Colorado, USA

Mystery knot

Mystery knot from another angle

Is it Redundant?



The single loop of one inch webbing is backed up with a carabiner clipped to the chain. Does that make this anchor redundant? I suppose if the steel chain or the forged aluminum carabiner failed, then that back up ‘biner would secure that ‘ultra bomber’ bit of nylon, right?

Discuss amongst yourselves…

Location: Ouray Ice Park, Ouray, Colorado

Girth Hitch Death Wish

Girth hitched soft goods

Girth hitch nightmare

Non-redundant anchor consisting of soft goods (webbing) girth hitched to soft goods. Is it an “EARNEST” anchor? Yeah, right. Maybe “_ _ _ _ _ ST” For a more detalied analysis of girth hitching soft goods to soft goods, see Hot Spectra-on-Spectra Action!).

Location: Ouray Ice Park, Ouray, Colorado

Close up of soft goods girth hitched

Close Up