Perfect Tool For Traversing (vid)

Why do traverses have to be so complicated? Let me try to explain this simply:

I personally only have two reasons to traverse in the trees. The first reason is if I can’t find a good spot to hang my hammock near the tree trunk and the second is so that I can get a wider view of camp for recording videos and taking pictures. Traversing in the trees is easy or hard depending on your tie in point (TIP) location. If your TIP is 50 feet high and your goal is to traverse 15 feet out onto a limb that is 15 feet off the ground you are relatively safe because if you fall off the branch you will swing in towards the trunk with very low momentum. HOWEVER, if your TIP is 50 feet high and you want to traverse 15 feet out onto a branch that is located at the same hieght as your TIP (50 feet high) then you are in a very bad scenario because falling would result in a huge downward pendulum that would end with you slamming into the tree trunk with ALOT of momentum (think: broken bones, traumatic brain injury, etc)

An easy solution to this is just make your TIP as high as possible. Unfortunately for me my rope is very short which means my TIP is never very high which means I have to do fancy ropework whenever I want to traverse near my TIP which means I get stuck building temporary TIPs for my traverses. Don’t worry if you are now confused because I am too.

I posed the following question to the professionals on the Treebuzz forums:

In the drawn picture below my anchor was at point B and I wanted to get to point A. Even if I brought my throw line into the tree with me and tossed it into the crotch at point A I would not be able to retrieve the thrown side unless I used a small grapple hook to swing it over and retrieve it. I assume you guys RARELY use the grapple hook technique, is that correct? What I ended up doing was rappelling to point D and then girth hitched a sling (since I don’t have a lanyard) and moved it up as I climbed my way up the left branch. I ended up with an almost horizontal main climbing line so I brought up the tail end of my climbing line and built a second anchor at point A. I could then lower myself to which ever side I needed but I still had to climb back up. Is there an easier way of doing this?

A bunch of the Treebuzz forum members answered my question by recommending that I check out the MagThrowBag. I had never heard of it but luckily for me I had UNKNOWINGLY been talking with the inventor of the MagThrowBag over the past few weeks and he sent me a PM asking for my address. Eight days later and I became the proud owner of my very own MagThrowBag:

You just witnessed a sneak peak at the video that I will be publishing next week called “SLAYING THE DRAGON” so don’t just watch it and scoff at how simply I used this tool. If you want to place your line over some crazy branch or maybe you want to traverse into another tree without going to the ground then you need to watch the MagThrowBag demo video:

Pretty intense huh? In the future I plan to learn a bunch of those crazy techniques but for now, I honestly just enjoy the simple swing technique that you saw in the first video. (you might ask, “why don’t you just use a grapple hook for the swing technique?” and my answer is “because grapple hooks will grab and get stuck to literally every single branch and they are the most frustrating of all climbing gear to use!!!!”). Anyways, if you love traverses definitely pick up a MagThrowBag and the extra benefit is that you will be supporting a super cool guy with a great passion for tree climbing.



Tags: TREEfool mag throw bag magnet throw bag magnetic throw bag tree climbing magnet magthrowbag review review of the magthrowbag for tree climbing tree camping mag throw bag


2 thoughts on “Perfect Tool For Traversing (vid)

  1. I’ve been meaning to ask you for an update on the MagThrowBag. Do you still find it useful? Is it just as easy to use as a normal throw weight for simple throws?


    • Yup! If I am throwing my throwline (as opposed to using a slingshot) I always use the MagThrowBag in the case that my line ends up out of arms reach. I tried doing a technical traverse between two spruce trees but ended up getting my lines all tangled (tons of branches!), getting the magnets stuck to the wrong pieces of metal, and figuring out that I didn’t have enough rope for the traverse. Since that day I have only used the MagThrowBag for grabbing branches while advancing my line. I don’t climb without the M.T.B. Hopefully when I purchase a longer rope I will have better luck with the traverse. You should check out the following video. It shows Richard (the creator of M.T.B.) setting up a wicked traverse:


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