Climbing Lingo

Did he say pumpiest?

Q: I can’t seem to maintain my juice when liebacking for more than a few feet before totally pumping out. So far I’ve logged a 40-footer and a 25-footer trying them. Now I’m trying a lieback dihedral in my gym, and the crack is too big for finger jams and too small for good hand jams. Help? -Andrew Barnes

A: Andrew, you’re right. Liebacking is one of the pumpiest moves in trad climbing. It’s also a committing position, and many people tend to overgrip because it feels precarious. Here’s what I do in dihedrals to keep my mojo… -Tommy Caldwell”

Heh heh…I laugh every time I read that!

(From an “ask the experts” section of the June 2003 issue of Rock & Ice magazine, which I read while visiting my sister, in Alaska.)