The increasing popularity and year-round availability of indoor climbing gyms has enabled many climbers to develop their skills and make progress more rapidly than might otherwise have been possible. Often climbers are able to venture onto the indoor "clip-and-go" lead walls without much leading background.
For these climbers, making the transition to real rock presents a high potential for discovering significant problems. Most climbing areas in the Northeast are not bolt-equipped. Thus the need for learning how to place secure and reliable protection and anchor systems becomes critical.
The key here is getting "feedback" about the quality of your gear placements. Since you may be capable of leading moderate routes without falling, the opportunity for "testing" the reliability of your gear is limited. Short of loading the gear with the force of a fall by "jumping off," obtaining an accurate assessment of your protection-placing skills is hard to come by.
Our lead training program is designed to address these issues. We will examine the wide range of protection devices currently on the market and basic mechanical concepts involved in placing gear in the rock. You will build anchor systems on the ground after which you will "lead" a pitch (on a top-rope). Then you and your instructor will rappel down stopping to critique and analyze each of your placements.
The process is painstaking and exacting with a wealth of new information to absorb. That's why we recommend a course to maximize the learning curve and to give each climber ample opportunity to explore fully the complexities of these new and essential skills.