CEM Releasable Knot

The CEM (for Cañonismo En Mexico) is a releasable knot, similar in function to the macrame. It can be used around natural anchors, especially trees, when insufficient webbing is available.

CEM Instructions

PDF Document

Which bend for joining two ropes?

Tests conducted by Grant Prattley of Over the Edge Rescue comparing several variations of the flat overhand bend for joining two ropes.

Answering the question – Is there a bend that is easy to tie, easy to undo after normal loading, has a snag-free surface while having reasonable strength?

Which bend for joining ropes?

PDF Document

VT Instructions

Designed by Rich Carlson and manufactured by BlueWater Ropes, the VT Prusik features a super tough, heat resistant Technora aramid sheath over durable nylon core strands. The core in this kernmantle design keeps the VT from flattening and binding up. The VT performs well when used for ascending, self-belay while rappelling, as a traveling rope grab or in conjunction with a Prusik minding pulley in haul systems.

VT Instructions – 8mm

VT Instructions – 7mm

Totem Instructions

The original Totem is the ‘Swiss Army Knife’ of rigging devices. Deceptively simple looking, the Totem is remarkably versatile. Use it for belaying, releasable rigging and hauling systems, or as a rigging plate. Use it for rappelling – it’s simple to add friction mid-rappel and simple to lock off. You can even ascend with it.

Totem Instructions

VT Prusik Video

The VT Prusik – designed by Rich Carlson and made by BlueWater – is an indispensable tool for rope work. In this video Rich explains and demonstrates just a few of its many uses.

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Single Point Anchors




In this video Rich explains and demonstrates how webbing can be tied and rigged on single-point anchors for position, redundancy, strength, efficiency and equalization.

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Quick Links, Bolt Hangers, Bailout Rings

Words like “Always” and “Never” apply only when we look for rules instead of learning to apply good judgment and develop the ability to discern for ourselves.

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Overhand Knot

An overhand knot is an overhand knot is an overhand knot. NOT! Watch this video as Rich explains the critical difference between an overhand knot and an overhand bend and the appropriate uses for each.

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Munter-Mule-Overhand

Your partner is stuck on the rope or is at the end of a rope that doesn’t reach the ground. What do you do? If you had the fore-thought to rig a releasable contingency system the solution would be simple. The munter-mule-overhand is a basic releasable system that everyone should know. Watch this video to learn how to tie it and use it.

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Flat Overhand – European Death Knot

The flat overhand knot, AKA the European Death Knot (or EDK for short), is a very popular way of connecting two ropes for long rappels. It has been the subject of much misinformation leading many to have misgivings about its use.

In this video Rich demonstrates the correct way to tie and use the EDK and a few variations.

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Canyon Cordelette

The CRT HauLine (aka Canyon Cordelette) has been around for a number of years. Rich originally came up with the idea while teaching Boy Scout leaders how to do pick-offs with Purcell Prusiks. More recently it occurred to him that the CRT HauLine could be used to make a sort of “poor man’s version” of the Petzl JAG system.

Two versions available: 18 ft with a sewn eye on one end or 36 ft with a sewn eye on each end.

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