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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!

Shamick rebolting beers of singha  pilee wall, PeePee Island
Shamick working hard on Pilee Wall on Phi Phi Island

Re-bolting Update: Railey/ Ton Sai & Phi Phi Climbing Areas Feb.‘06
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 Sai Tower. 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.

Donations
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 retroboltth99@yahoo.com

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.  
To all 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 retroboltth99@yahoo.com and I will send you all the info. on obtaining the right bolts and glue.

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 retroboltth99@yahoo.com. 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.