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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Scary trashing of gear in Thailand

I'm sure anyone who's been to Ton Sai, or plans to visit, will have heard of the issues with the bolt disintegration here. Basically, due to the salt water, and some crazy gas that leaks from the limestone, the bolts here have a lifespan of about 20 minutes. O.k. maybe a bit longer but there are stories abound of bolts failing after only 3 months!
It's always a bit hard to believe though, and while I always followed the rules of clipping the newest bolt on each climb, I hadn't seen anything particularly crazy to show me how fast everything metallic gets destroyed here. Until I saw this....

A friend, lost his quickdraw on the beach. It was returned to him after two days by some people who found it. We guess it's been in the tideline so actually got wet from saltwater, but this is only two days worth of damange. Both gates on the quickdraw are sealed solid and there's mountains of calcite all over the exterior. In other words, completely destroyed. Scary.....


  1. Wow. That IS scary! My draws were definitely damaged, but I would never guess the damage could be that quick. Eek!

  2. I know, it completely freaked me out after seeing it also!
    Replacing all my gear after I leave now (it was well on it's way to a replacement anyway so this just gives me an even better excuse...).
    But hope your climbing is going well now :)