Click the images to play videos of basic climbing techniques that Arborists require to safely access, move and work throughout the crown of a tree
Step cut tutorial
In this high quality video we describe in detail why and when you would want or need to make a step cut. We discuss the subtle changes you can make to your cut as the diameter of wood gets larger and we give you some clear and concise examples. All of this information is aimed as a guide to help you not waste time and energy making multiple cuts if you can get it right the first time.
Video filmed and edited by InTree Media
Using a throw ball
This technique is used to insert a thin line over a high branch in a tree. A climbing rope can then be tied to the throw line and be pulled into over the limb and back down to the ground so the climber can ascend the tree.
If a high point is isolated in the tree that can be used for the final tie in point a cambium/friction saver can be interred with the throw line.
Using climbing spurs/spikes
To ascend a tree by creating a false platform by digging the spurs into the bark of the tree and leaning back on a lanyard to hold you in place.
This technique should only be used when removing a tree as the spurs can damage the cells of the tree (the exception being using them on palm trees in countries such as australia where it can be the only method to ascend the tree).
Rope throwing bundle
This technique is used to install your rope over a low limb so that you can start a basic ascent with a rope and lanyard.
A carabiner can be clipped to the end of the rope to add additional weight to aid with getting the end of the rope to the ground, but this should not be done if the branch being aimed for has a tight union in which the carabiner may get stuck.
To walk out on the limb of a tree so the branch can be pruned or removed in sections.
Body thrust technique
To ascend a climbing rope using a friction hitch in a double rope system.
Repositioning of the climbing system
A time and energy saving technique to prevent the climber from having to ascend and then descend for better positioning.
Using this technique requires forward planning of the climb. The tail of the climbing system must then be set through a fork that eventually the system would be going through.
Simple method of ascending a tree
Note:The climber must always be tied into the tree with at least one point of attachment.
To allow an Arborist to safely climb a tree in order to select a good high tie in point to work from, using a climbing rope and a safety lanyard.
This technique is very simple but in a lot of cases the quickest and most effective way of ascending a tree to the point where the arboist selects their final tie in point. When the climber has their lanyard securley fastened they can then take the climbing rope and use a throwing bundle to advance up the tree in situations where the above branch cannot be reached.
Hitch climber setup
The use of a triple attachment pulley (hitch climber) keeps the ropes inline and neater than if a regular single point attachment micro pulley is used.
The use of a pulley underneath the friction hitch gives the climber the advantage of tending slack by taking the rope coming through the bottom of the pulley and pulling it upwards, in turn the pulley the pushes the friction hitch upwards. This can be done with a single hand. This setup also makes coming back in from a limb walk a smoother and easier transition.
The hitch climber also has the third hole available which can be used for a second positioning system to keep things tidy.
This system can be setup to the climbers preference, with many different friction hitches working well. Testing different ropes, hitches and cords is the key to getting a smooth system. This video demonstrates the system on double rope technique but can be taken and setup in the same way with a rope wrench and used for single rope technique.