Climbing Thailand - Re-Bolting Information Feb 2006
The following is posted by Shamick. He has done an enormous amount
of work coordinating and physically rebolting large numbers of climbs
in Railay and Thailand. This is a hard and largely thankless task.
If you want to get involved in either helping out, or donating for
bolts, then Shamick will make sure every bucket of sweat and every
penny goes into providing a safe sustainable solution. Thanks Shamick,
we all owe you one!
Re-bolting Update: Railey/ Ton Sai & Phi Phi Climbing
Shamick working hard on Pilee Wall on Phi Phi Island
Thank you to everybody who has donated money for
re-bolting this year. The money goes directly to buy
bolts, glue and re-bolting hardware. Presently we’re
raising money for 200 Ushba style titanium bolts,
which should be arriving here at the end of the month.
This Russian-made titanium bolt has passed the test
of time in tropical conditions, and is the easiest one
to install. We have also used the titanium staple,
which is a good alternative.
The use of stainless
steel glue-in bolts is being slowly phased out.
Each year we fix approximately 15 to 20 routes here on
Ton Sai and Railey, as well as on Phi Phi Island. All
the current re-bolted climbing routes here in Ton Sai
and Phi Phi are equipped by a few individuals who take
time away from their projects to provide safe climbing
for all of us. When choosing which routes to re-bolt
we cover the full spectrum of grades, and make sure we
re-bolt the most urgent and popular routes.
Donations from the climbing community are the only
means we have to continue doing our volunteer work.
This means that all the safe routes you climb here
were paid for by climbers’ donations and installed
through the hard work of volunteers. We, at the
present time, have absolutely no sponsorship and we
don’t get paid for our work. I finance the cost of
materials by passing the hat around within the
climbing community here. To find me on the beach,
just ask around.
To give you an idea, re-bolting each route may take a
few hours to a few days of work. The work is
dangerous because the existing bolts are too far-gone.
We carefully work out the bolt placements to make the
route as safe as possible, then drill and glue. At
the cost of each titanium bolt being ~500 baht, a long
route usually costs about 6,000 baht.
This should give you an indication of the urgency for
financial support and the desperate need for
generosity from the climbers here. But please donate
carefully. For your donation to be effective be
careful to identify who is actually re-bolting. Make
sure they have a drill in hand….enough said.
Since the beginning of January 2006, we have re-bolted
two 7’s on the Hintak Wall on Phi Phi, and have begun
installing titanium anchors on all 30 routes on Ton
This season on Railey/ Ton Sai we have re-bolted Sex
Power (8a), Silk Cat (7a), King Cat (6c). We also
installed titanium anchors on all the upper terrace
routes and 5 titanium anchors on Cat Wall. Last year,
we re-bolted five grade 6 routes on the left side of
Eagle Wall, seven pitches on the North Face/Diamond
Cave, many single bolts on routes at places like the
Keep, and many others.
Our present projects on Melting Wall include Ancient
Mariner (7a), Captain Hook (6b), and Affenhitze (7a+).
Please respect our fixed lines here. These routes
are drilled but we await new titanium bolts to
complete the work.
I have opeaned a bank account for making
rebolting donations easier. The Siam Bank is located
in Ao Nang left side of main street and a bit after
Mcdonalds, email me for details
Shamicks mobile is o870002930 and firstname.lastname@example.org
My special thanks goes to Karem Roengsamut, climbing
guide extraordinaire, who has spent endless days
helping me re-bolt here for the last 3 years.
of you, thank you for your generosity!
Email address is: retroboltth99 -the at sign- yahoo.com
Shamick, February 2006
Climbing Thailand - Re-Bolting Information 2005
Message from Shamick-
Thank you to everybody who has donated money for re-bolting this
year. Special thanks to Ge Ge for his extra effort to collect money.
We now have 9,000 Baht. The money goes for buying bolts, glue and
miscellaneous re-bolting hardware.
Every year, my friends and I devote a lot of time and energy to
replace bolts on dangerous routes with glue-in bolts. Each year
we fix approximately 15 to 20 routes here on Ton Sai and Railay,
as well as on Phi Phi Island. Donations from the climbing community
are the only means we have to continue doing our volunteer work.
If you love climbing here, and appreciate our concern for our common
safety, please be generous. If every climber here contributes 500
Baht, it will give us the buying power to continue the re-bolting
project. Since there is no single organisation that is supporting
rebolting here, every time you climb a safely equipped route with
glue-in bolts, you are climbing on the equipment that is paid for
by donation money from climbers as yourselves.
Just so you know, three years ago we started using titanium bolts
as the most permanent solution, and slowly are phasing out the use
of stainless steel, glue-in bolts. The tests done over the past
few years have demonstrated the superiority of titanium bolts. For
all climbers coming to Thailand with the intention of putting up
new routes, it is absolutely essential that you research what works
and what does not work here. The use of expansion bolts with hangers
is the thing of the past. Anyone using this outdated technology
not only is creating dangerous routes with short expiry dates (two
years max) but also is disrespectful to months of the thankless
task of rebolting this area. Email me at email@example.com
and I will send you all the info. on obtaining the right bolts and
You should be able to locate the list of the re-bolted climbing
areas in one of the local climbing guidebooks. Please do not ever
climb on expansion bolts. If you cannot distinguish glue-in blots
from the former, ask at the local climbing shop.
Presently we are working on the North Face of the Diamond Cave
area: we are re-bolting 7 pitches there. Please respect our fixed
lines, and absolutely do not climb there. For our own safety the
re-bolting area has to stay closed.
Finally, I would like to give special thanks to Francesco and Daniel
for taking initiative in re-bolting Greed and the Tyrolean Wall
Sector and Sam Lightner for his pursuit and manufacturing of titanium
staples. And to all the Russian climbers visiting Tonsai over the
past two years thanks for helping us in establishing a stable source
of Russian-made Ushba type bolts that are simply the best and longest
lasting solution here in Southern Thailand.
This year more people are expressing interest in the actual work
of rebolting. Despite this being a Tsunami year more positive energy
is surfacing both in Tonsai and Phi Phi within the climbing community.
There is still dozens of routes in desperate need of bolt replacement.
The only thing we're missing is Baht - be generous. For information
on how to donate, if you don't already know, write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For an update on rebolted routes on Phi Phi island, as well as present
conditions on the island, I'm writing a separate update.
Shamick, March 2005.