How do you get "up&onto" a trunk-fork when the trunk's large and your ascent leaves you short? (difficulty- no spurring)

cerberus

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Title says/asks it really...am trying to get onto the trunk-fork, my drawing is not to-scale (I'd be far smaller relative to the tree, as would the ropes) but the blue rope is blue moon that's over a limb ~5' above the union but not that strong a tie-in and certainly not one I'd be able to pendulum confidently from (it's Oak but it's on the thin side) and red rope is mercury which goes up the rear of the trunk & through the crotch.

I ascend the Mercury (hand&foot ascenders), w/ or w/o having a second hitch on the blue moon, and get to where my head is still several feet below the union.....let's pretend I have no side-branch since this one isn't of much use, how do you get-over a crotch when your line has to go-through the crotch(meaning you can't climb the last portion of rope since your bodyweight is pegging it into the tree, like I could slide my ascender to maybe 3' below the union that the mercury comes-up&over-through here....

Have it all setup still, it's a friend-customer (lol this was actually day 2, and the graphic is for illustrative purposes of the union/fork "overcoming" problem when you can't spur it, hell I'm tempted to take a 1/2 or 5/8 scrap, put big knots every 6" on it, and throw that over so I have a 'rope to climb' that I can actually grab :P )

Graphic I drew for this thread I know it's crude but shows what I'm dealing with, I only got that side tie-in bercause of throwballing from within the tree on a branch-stub from an earlier cut but it is not high or close enough to be of much use for this and I wouldn't even climb on that tie-in if it were my sole line (I actually always climb 'dual SRT' when you have 2 separate ropes, and use 'squeezers' or 'treesqueeze type/configured lanyards', got used to the setup quickly and now feels incomplete when not using it :P The mercury & blue moon contrast awesome for this, have mercury to last years but b.moon is getting shorter <100' now, will be getting blue mercury when it's gone as the colors make so much difference if you're managing your own ropes and have 2 climb lines & bullrope and anchors all hanging on the way up gah today there was a metal-wired fence topping that I kept swinging-into the TEC really loved that :P amazing how you can work that stuff back into-shape though!! getting up & over.jpg
[i actually am quasi-capable of sketching....this isn't my bonsai forum am just trying to show where my lines are (for instance I started w/ line going over crotch frm the other side, the tree's leaning that way so it made it even harder had to re-set line and try again and still couldn't get up onto that crotch was sitting there for like 40min just moving my lines & flipline and could not get over it.....almost thinking to build one of those foot-loop slings, that'd choke the trunk and give me stirrups at key points, so I can get up-onto that crotch. Once I'm there I'm pretty sure I can throwball my way up to the top, otherwise I won't be the one finishing this job :P ]
 

cerberus

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crap my photo doesn't show but both ropes are tied/basally anchored at same spot on this trunk, as-is a rigging anchor or rather there will be once I'm done getting the climb-anchorage in place to make the cuts. The lines do not rub and the "paths are in-line" ie the rope doesn't take a sharp 90deg bend from the basal tie-off to the upward/standing portion :) Am just hitting this spot where the rope is so tight to that trunk I can't even push the hand-ascender up 1mm further and that's still several feet shy of where I need to be and I'm great at those "can get-up-onto-it when barely gripping" guys, like pullups / dips / etc because I'm especially light&small and strong so I know it's technique, I have spurs (suck at using them..) but can't spur as owner's unsure if we're taking the top yet right now it's just some key problem limbs and trying to get onto that last fork to reach the last one!!
PS for fun & help balancing my horrible art, and because I'm always trying to encourage people to try "treesqueeze" lanyards if they haven't (can't imagine going back, this pic is from a day where I was doing 'finer branch removal' on a healthy, spreading Camphor over a really nice garden, was able to limbwalk out further than I ever could've by using this combo both the two-SRT setup as well as the squeezers, the squeezers actually let you cinch an anchor 'remotely' IE you can be in-canopy, throw an end up&over something, and once you feed the line through it you can hold the Squeezer's hitch and tighten & pull-up the other end so you get the cinch on something you couldn't physically reach & cinch yourself they are just such a great/obvious lanyard so surprised they're not more popular considering you can make them as easily as any flipline..) 19700106_011850.jpg

^funny to think how much stronger the Mercury anchoring is....pretty sure it's like 80% as expensive too, and lighter (and firmer jacket, when I've got throwline through a spot I'm afraid will jam on the line, always go for the Mercury even if b.moon would've been a better color-choice at the time) When I was doing the tree where I took ^ that pic, I was able to anchor higher than usual by 'equalizing' multiple branches, together, to make each of my anchors and made a kinda "left and right" setup and it was great, also used that same equalizing principle - along with a 9.5' diesel "rig&ring" sling - to wrap-together branches/forks to create stronger anchorage at that height than any one union could've done, obviously I couldn't go smashing stuff into that system but worked very well for my uses that day when I had to take limbs that were too large to handle, get them out & away, targets were way too close to do any zip/slideline stuff, just had to rig/cut/snub and then we'd carefully maneuver them downward lol, got the job done though!
 
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ruel

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What is the purpose of climbing this tree?

Can you make the cuts needed with a polesaw? Webbing sling as footloop girth hitched around t trunk can help get you up and over, but then your base tie becomes pretty useless as life safety.

Try getting better line placement from the ground?
 

lxskllr

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Pretending you're dealing with exactly what's shown(a tree with a Y that simply ends in 2 stubs with nothing above), perhaps you could "walk" a line up one of the stubs, girth hitch it, clip in, then use that to take up some weight while you work your way over the crotch.
 

Jonny

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Man that’s a lot of words. TL/DR how do you climb a tree?
Your tie in needs to be higher than where you’re going. Get good with throwline and bag, and get yourself a set of poles with a polesaw head minus the blade, or similar hook. It’s incredibly handy for setting ropes exactly where you want in dense canopy.
 

cerberus

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What is the purpose of climbing this tree?

Can you make the cuts needed with a polesaw? Webbing sling as footloop girth hitched around t trunk can help get you up and over, but then your base tie becomes pretty useless as life safety.

Try getting better line placement from the ground?
I have 14' echo ppt266 and already did everything that could be done from the ground. That V/crotch is actually the start of the remainder of the trunk's vertical (and the other half of the V is a stump, a limb lost to a storm years ago)

Re line placement from ground, the tree leans into neighbor's yard that is so dense I could hardly get pics of the top, couldn't get any angles to throw higher from the ground in fact my higher line right now was set from throwline in-tree :/

The sling-with-footloops idea is all I can really come up with, I get what you mean Re base-tie becoming obsolete, but I'd be doing that maneuver while having my flipline up-through the crotch and with my tie to the line coming from the side (which isn't that great but think it's OK, cannot be sure til I get back on-site because I set that second line [anchored on same trunk's base) last night from within tree and it was dusk so I didn't get a chance to really assess as I'd have liked, for instance I did not/wouldn't have ridden my fig.8 down that line!)

If you are going to climb trees efficiently in a rope-dependent manner, you need to develop better line setting skills.
I'm seeing this more and more.....I feel I've gotten pretty good with my throwlines, using 3 different bag/line combos depending what I'm doing, but I don't have any Big Shot or one of those air-cannon devices (is this the kinda stuff you refer to? Gotta say I'm not at all hesitant to go to home depot and make one of those cool air-cannons that you prime/pump with a bicycle-pump, they look pretty epic if that's what you're referring to I'm eager to hear -- for regular throwlining I'm 'ok' but this particular tree leans-into a neighbor's yard and I can't get a good angle to throw from anywhere, whole top half of the tree is gonna be a "throwline from within-canopy" type of progression, just moving one anchor then the other over&over, to be clear I always use my flipline in-addition to this two-SRT setup)

Pretending you're dealing with exactly what's shown(a tree with a Y that simply ends in 2 stubs with nothing above), perhaps you could "walk" a line up one of the stubs, girth hitch it, clip in, then use that to take up some weight while you work your way over the crotch.
By "walking line up stub" do you mean like "cowboy lasso" a rope around that trunk, girth to itself and use that? Good thinking, in fact I'll probably set the footloop-sling as a girth hitch from through/over the crotch now, but in this instance the rope would never cinch higher than the crotch it'd fall down into the crotch well before I could cinch it :/

Man that’s a lot of words. TL/DR how do you climb a tree?
Your tie in needs to be higher than where you’re going. Get good with throwline and bag, and get yourself a set of poles with a polesaw head minus the blade, or similar hook. It’s incredibly handy for setting ropes exactly where you want in dense canopy.
Problem is I cannot get a higher tie-in, otherwise this would be easy-peasy of course:) And I know what you mean & do use my non-petrol polesaw very often in this manner, also have smaller extendable hooks for grabbing lines in-canopy, but this isn't a lateral issue it's basically moving-up a leaner that's got a limb every 10' or so and I'm at the biggest crotch/fork now and can't get-onto it, once I do it'll just be scootin & re-setting lines upward til I've gotten it where they want it :)
Do you recommend those DIY air-cannons? I'm decent enough with regular throwlining but don't have a powered unit...in this case it'd be a lifesaver!!
 

lxskllr

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Cowboy lasso should work if you have a comfortable position to work the line. What I was specifically thinking of was doing it like rolling a flipline up a tree. Give it a snap to set a wave in it, and it should climb up the stem. How well that works will depend on the variables, but a tree with beefy bark like an oak should get you some good height, and "stick" in place while you get it set.
 

cerberus

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You should include pictureS of the tree itself....folks will have a better chance of suggesting solutions.
touche, was afraid it'd look like "Oh just reach up and do a pull-up you pansy" but I'm just not tall-enough to make it over!
Here's how it was before I moved my lines upward again (in this pic my red/orange Mercury is still on a stump of a removed limb, and the Blue Moon is going through a friction saver that's on this fork I can't mount:
19700105_172058.jpg
But now the Mercury is the line running-over the fork/crotch, and the blue moon is up higher on a branch that protrudes from that left-side trunking (about 5' above the fork/crotch, out of picture here although the foliage that's on it is very clear!)

[note- never was I on that Mercury line, from this ^ pic's setup, as a primary life support, I left it on like that so I could make-use of it on my way back up in the form of a redundant 'backup line', although I'd messed-up and had the b.moon going through that crotch from the close side IE I was climbing-into the lean which wasn't helping get onto the fork, once back up there I set the Mercury to come through the crotch from the other side and it was a lot better but still just a bit too short / crotch still too-far away!]

Gonna go back and check the quality of that higher tie-in, also see if I can get a higher throw from in-tree (ie being on-top-of that stub, fliplined to the tree of course / firm base, and throwing-upward from there which is basically the whole ascent plan here since I can't set anything higher from ground..)
 

cerberus

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Cowboy lasso should work if you have a comfortable position to work the line. What I was specifically thinking of was doing it like rolling a flipline up a tree. Give it a snap to set a wave in it, and it should climb up the stem. How well that works will depend on the variables, but a tree with beefy bark like an oak should get you some good height, and "stick" in place while you get it set.
I *totally* get you now(thanks a ton btw!!) and think I can even do 1 better-- the treesqueeze lanyards let you choke them if you've put your line through, I may be able to 'do the wiggle/snap waves' and work a squeezer anchor into place a few feet up that left side trunking(I posted a pic while you were posting, if you didn't catch it) and if I've got a real climb line securely anchored on that trunk I'll be able to simply step-over-onto that crotch, thanks a ton :D

[edited-to-add: Yup I'm about to head back there now am gonna ascend on both lines and once I get to the stump(that's holding Mercury in that ^ pic) I'll pull my b.moon off of that branch I have it on, get a squeezer over that fork and feed the b.moon through it and let its tail go back to the ground, then I can use 'lasso/wiggle/snap wave' to work it up the fork, cinch it, then climb 5' and simply stand-onto the crotch :) Let's see if it's as easy as that once I get there lol!]
 
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DMc

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So mister 'three headed hound from hell' be sure you are not getting into more than you are ready for. What is it you are hoping to achieve with this tree?

Setting a line can be done in so many ways, both from the ground or in the tree. My go-to and by far favorite is the APTA, air powered tree access, throw line setter with a laser sight. Long poles can be used from the ground or in the tree with either hooks or a special line setting tool. In the tree throw hooks are also good.
 

pantheraba

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but can't spur as owner's unsure if we're taking the top yet right now it's just some key problem limbs and trying to get onto that last fork to reach the last one!!

I don't see much tree worth saving. That broken right lead is going to be a big wound/entry point for decay. That left lead looks paltry...and when the decay hits that crotch will just break off. Spur up and drop that left lead or just drop the whole mess perhaps. But in the meantime use it as a learning tool to figure out how to overcome the problem you have with getting past that crotch.
 

lxskllr

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Yea, it doesn't look like much of a tree to me, but taste is subjective. I have a rotted out weeping cherry in the front yard that's full of carpenter ants, and is mainly sustained by the hail mary production of suckers. That tree will stay until it no longer gets green in the spring. As ugly as it is, it was my daughter's favorite tree, and it's staying.
 

pantheraba

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I agree. It's like worrying about a hypodermic needle stick after you've been hit with the 12 gauge shotgun. Spiking is not going to be a big deal.
 

cerberus

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I see new posts but they're answered here anyway :) --

I have absolutely no idea what you are trying to achieve or ask.
Why can’t you use spikes? It hardly looks like a delicate prune from the photos.

Why not simply cowboy up with spurs and flipline?
So mister 'three headed hound from hell' be sure you are not getting into more than you are ready for. What is it you are hoping to achieve with this tree?

Setting a line can be done in so many ways, both from the ground or in the tree. My go-to and by far favorite is the APTA, air powered tree access, throw line setter with a laser sight. Long poles can be used from the g'm round or in the tree with either hooks or a special line setting tool. In the tree throw hooks are also good.
I don't see much tree worth saving. That broken right lead is going to be a big wound/entry point for decay. That left lead looks paltry...and when the decay hits that crotch will just break off. Spur up and drop that left lead or just drop the whole mess perhaps. But in the meantime use it as a learning tool to figure out how to overcome the problem you have with getting past that crotch.
Yea, it doesn't look like much of a tree to me, but taste is subjective. I have a rotted out weeping cherry in the front yard that's full of carpenter ants, and is mainly sustained by the hail mary production of suckers. That tree will stay until it no longer gets green in the spring. As ugly as it is, it was my daughter's favorite tree, and it's staying.

Sorry so much confusion, please consider this thing a 'practice tree', yes it lost half its canopy to a storm a few years ago (that dead part I was climbing to, the limb it once held got stuck in those shorter oaks behind the fence I'm the one who freed/felled/bucked it ... ) but is now to come out entirely. It is plenty healthy to be done slow / not a hazardous/rush job, at a friend/professional-acquaintance's (both the lot it grows in, and the yard it leans-into)

Was posting to learn specifically about tricks for up&over in that case if spurs weren't allowed, when I went-back I actually had my spurs tied to one of my 'pull bundles' (most of my ropes, where they touch the ground, I'll make a bite & a knot so I can clip stuff like saw/bullrope/anchors/polesaw/etc to pull-up once I'm up, hate climbing with 20lbs pulling my belt :P ) and would've used them but found I could shimmy into place with what I had, am soreAF right now lol but got where I wanted and tested the configuration I wanted (5/8 polydyne, through two XL's first then through Safebloc's 3 holes) and next cut will be same configuration but taking that dead stump where the right-side of the treetrunking used to be (which'll let me verify trunk integrity before going spurring up & rigging from the top)
Once at the top, I think the plan would be maybe half dozen pieces max taken on a vertical/nearly-vertical speedline(errr 'controlled-speedline' that is), I have 1/2 polydyne and too-many anchors including reallllly long ringed ones so can 'float'/satellite position the dropzone and the dropzone is pretty much dead-center yard it's just any bounce could/would be bad bad bad!!

Would LOVE to hear how you guys would take pieces from the top if you were trying to get a feel for different solo-rig configurations, I guess I'm aiming to make cuts that look like ~200lbs because that's basically every individual 'pad' up there and that's what I can simply control with 1 hand even if let-run although I usually try to do finishing cuts w/ my handsaw in those cases.

But yeah I'm not a gecko on my spurs, I could've gotten up an easy arched 'wall' like that with but need to improve there, they could very well stop me from doing this tree (my friend w/ bucket would do it instead) but I'm not on-deadline and the tree is healthy now or seems to be and obviously removing any 'desperation growth' is weakening but not in the short term not when >3/4th / top-most apex foliage is intact, so can basically experiment how I wanna with it, was thinking goal would be having the lines (for vert speedliing top pieces) tight but also have the control line bullrope be fish-poled up the tree and back-brace the tree (this is presuming, of course, that when I take that piece of what's-left of the right side trunk, that the decay isn't spread into the whole heartwood of that crotch, if it is I don't think rigging up there is an option anymore....would need bucket...right? I know my gut says No lol)

So thanks for advice on anything about how you guys would tackle that tree, I'm able to continue when I choose...I am sore from 3d there (was doing other trees on-site!) and my next move is taking that dead section, hopefully leave a perfect foothold on its base so I can throwball-up to the next crotch & setup there, think I'm then just a few 'anchor advancements' from the top...my ideal would be to get to the top of the tree w/o spurs, have anchors set properly, use double srt as I practice spurring-around it, probably try a few/several various systems for getting pieces down with the goal of increasing size each piece til I'm getting to the end of where I'm 1-hand-comfortable (I usually have 2 hands if needed, usually have my chainsaw racked and push or handsaw to finish a piece and am on the rope before the log catches it, so can usually just hold myself more stable with the extra hand as I control the log / rope with the other...the 5/8 is my go-to now both because it is better to grip than the 1/2 p.dyne, and the fatter rope responds better to my anchors of course(more surface area)

((any thoughts on the DIY guns? Or get the pre-made's, laser-sights? The idea of launching a throwball with a cannon is incredibly appealing there's no way I could get anything over 25'ish on this tree the surroundings didn't permit (maybe I need to learn better throw-posture..)
 
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cerberus

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I agree. It's like worrying about a hypodermic needle stick after you've been hit with the 12 gauge shotgun. Spiking is not going to be a big deal.
Oh and to be crystal clear, while I think I'm ok spiking to the top, I'm uncertain and really doubt I'll know til I'm up there...as said in above post though this isn't anything approaching a typical job, ideally I'll have climbed it (w/o spurs) and have anchors set this week, and begin testing a handful of things -- with high-anchor I'll be comfortably/confidently spurring right up, am in a lucky spot with this 'job' :)
[want to add: I'm not just "gonna climb & hope" I've spent so long w/ binoculars and, with what I can see of it, there looks to be a spot I'll have to spur to traverse and I'm not confident it's "in my comfort zone", I get to find-out and back-off on this job....w/o it being any skin off my back, so to speak. Great circumstance to be in for me right now :) ]
 
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lxskllr

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How are you throwing your line? My accuracy/distance improved dramatically when I went to a two hand toss instead of one handed. I won't be winning any competitions, but I'm better than I was.
 

cerberus

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How are you throwing your line? My accuracy/distance improved dramatically when I went to a two hand toss instead of one handed. I won't be winning any competitions, but I'm better than I was.
1-handed, I can't really do 2-hand I never practiced it enough....reading ^that is awesome (and appreciated :D ), am going over to this tree again shortly and'll be seeing if I can get a line anywhere higher than I've already got an anchor/rope (I left my gear in-tree, have multiple climb setups thankfully)
Do you own, or contemplate buying, any of the air-cannon type launchers? For their price-point (hell it seems you can reliably DIY one for ~$50 and I'm 'real good' at mcguyvering lol), and what they seem to be able to do - IE let you set a line nearly anywhere with 1-or-2 tries - they seem almost a must-have...

I'll be practicing today, they cleared a good bit of the obstructions around that tree that were blocking me from "winding up" a pendulum swing on the ground, I've gotta improve this I've always just found other, less efficient ways to get up & around trees (throwing from in-tree is super routine for me) and suspect the slow advancement in this manner is adding plenty of unnecessary time to my climbs :/ [edited-in: and wearing me out on parts of the job that shouldn't be so hard!!]
 
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lxskllr

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ust how dramatic are you meaning like what kind of heights are in your range?
I went from struggling to hit a big target at ~35' to hitting a small target at ~40'. Might not sound like much, but I have the confidence to go farther than 40' if needed. When I was throwing one handed, my accuracy wasn't that great, and I wasn't getting the height. Keep in mind, I'm only a hobbyist with this stuff. I could count my climbs this year on one hand. If I were out throwing every day, I'm confident two hand throwing would take me much farther than single.

I also found I like using 12oz bag. I was using 14oz. If you only have one weight, try some others. It's good having a backup line anyway in case yours gets stuck. I have 10oz-14oz. I wouldn't want to go any heavier, but I could foresee an 8oz being useful in-tree.
 

pantheraba

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Cerberus....if you are going to be a tree guy and actually remove trees you need to learn to use the tools that have developed over ages to make it as safe as possible.

Spurs are dangerous but so is a knife in the kitchen. Do smart things with each and they are great tools. You need to take several hours at least and just spur up a spar, circle it, descend a few feet, ascend to the first limb on your spurs and lanyard in. Set you life line from there so you are safetied in while passing the limb when you have to release your lanyard and reset it above that limb.

You can use your lifeline for a high TIP while spurring to get your confidence up. But if you don't have complete confidence in using your spurs then you don't need to have a chainsaw in the tree with you. Cluster frig factor is real high with low skill, low confidence in spurs with a chainsaw.

Treework is mostly about work positioning. Sometimes the difference between safety, being relaxed and straining to hold a position and being in danger is just a matter of inches.

Learn what those inches are. Many times I have adjusted my position just a few inches and the strain I was in disappeared.

Type less about how you have analyzed things and go do things. Analysis paralysis is how it was described to me. Don't overthink it...put the gear on and practice. You know the ideas and theories...bring your body into the equation...discover what it FEELS like to gaff out...intentionally gaff out...it's not the end of the world...you can learn to treat it like a misstep on flat ground. You trip in the kitchen, catch your balance and move on.

Learn to think about WHAT you are doing, not WHERE you are doing it. Mindset.

Damn, man...you got 3 f'ing heads...don't think 3x as much....go do. :D
 

Marc-Antoine

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Actually you can go over the crotch as is, just with your srt line and a hand ascender. I don't say it's easy, more on the hard side, energy wise, but doable.
You said that your rope is pressed so hard on the bark that you can't push your handle any farther. All you need is lifting the rope away from the bark just a bit to slide the handle in the gap. You achieve that by pushing the trunk with your feet. Your butt goes outside and move your rope past the vertical, so the contact of the rope at the tangent point is a bit higher, allowing you to push the handle up. Move there, repeat, then do the same with your knees when it becomes too tight. Keep the handle in close proximity, not at arm length, to be able to use the little gap. The neck tether can help to get a tad more each time, pushing out with your neck, while sliding up your main ascender.
 
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