Throw Bags- How to use? - Page 2 - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 07-29-2016   #11
 
Tyrrache's Avatar
 
Lakewood, Colorado
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I agree with Semi as well. Throw bags are often deployed when they shouldn't be. It's a tough call to make in the heat of a swim but a deployed rope in the water can be more dangerous than a swim IMO. I have a 70 footer and a 35 footer on my boat just in case the situation calls for a different rope length.

Best advice I can give is Practice, Practice, Practice. Go down to Golden Play park with a buddy and take turns swimming and throwing rope. This time of year you might even find a drunk tuber that needs a safety rope.

Re-Coil practice is just as important as throwing a packed bag. Good point made about dunking the bag prior to throwing, that will give it more weight to really clear a long distance.

What often gets people and it has happened to me before is not being prepared for the weight of a swimmer on the rope. I threw a perfect toss to a customer swimming below Phoenix holes and once they connected the rope ripped right out of my hands. I have made sure since that day to fully secure the rope prior to throwing.

Last item before I get off my soap box is to make sure of the "downstream swing?" I've seen safety ropers set up in a position where if the do hook a swimmer the rope will Swing them direct into a strainer, ledge, or other nasty feature.

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Old 08-05-2016   #12
 
Evereywhere, State of Bliss
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyrrache View Post
What often gets people and it has happened to me before is not being prepared for the weight of a swimmer on the rope. I threw a perfect toss to a customer swimming below Phoenix holes and once they connected the rope ripped right out of my hands. I have made sure since that day to fully secure the rope prior to throwing.
What do you mean by "fully secure the rope" exactly?
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Old 08-09-2016   #13
 
OTR, Colorado
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There are so many complexities to consider when dealing with white water and ropes (used from shore, let alone from a raft on moving water) that it would take reading a full book or much more preferably take a swift water rescue class to decide the safest and most effective course of action for the particular situation. Tidbits from buzz posts can be helpful and potentially life savers so keep up the conversation but to ensure a solid base to add good advice to, take a class.

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Old 08-10-2016   #14
 
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Golden, Colorado
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Originally Posted by tteton View Post
What do you mean by "fully secure the rope" exactly?
Please tell me you are not referring to attaching the rope to a fixed anchor. If so, obviously a HUGE SWR no-no. Very important to be able to release the rope if the swimmer gets into an entrapment situation with the rope.
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Old 08-10-2016   #15
 
Evereywhere, State of Bliss
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Please tell me you are not referring to attaching the rope to a fixed anchor. If so, obviously a HUGE SWR no-no. Very important to be able to release the rope if the swimmer gets into an entrapment situation with the rope.
Agreed
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Old 08-10-2016   #16
 
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Lakewood, Colorado
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Originally Posted by tteton View Post
What do you mean by "fully secure the rope" exactly?
Tight Hand Hold. It's amazing how quickly the rope can get pulled from your hands in the event you are not holding on well enough.

I would also advise against putting your thumb in the rope loop (seems basic but the temptation is there) as you may not have a thumb after a swimmer connects.
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Old 08-10-2016   #17
 
Rifle, Colorado
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Last year was my first year of boating, so I took a guide course down in Durango to learn some of the basics. My instructors advised to NEVER throw a rope from a boat, and that ropes were only to be used from shore. Any thoughts on where you should be when deploying a rope?
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Old 08-10-2016   #18
 
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Wheat Ridge, Colorado
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Originally Posted by JPG87 View Post
Last year was my first year of boating, so I took a guide course down in Durango to learn some of the basics. My instructors advised to NEVER throw a rope from a boat, and that ropes were only to be used from shore. Any thoughts on where you should be when deploying a rope?
Lots of good points in the discussion here.

As others have pointed out, you should be in a stable position ready to get yanked around when throwing a rope. If the boat is a kayak, I can see the instructor's point, but I don't think this precludes lots of situations involving rafts.

I've always got a couple of throw bags on my raft and have used them to bag swimmers from an eddy with a raft passenger pulling the swimmer in. It's tricky throwing from a raft and the person on the oars should be ready and in position to work with someone else who's throwing or pulling in the swimmer. I think a lot of it depends on the character of the river / rapids and the judgement / skill of the person on the boat throwing the bag. It takes skill and teamwork but I don't see why it should be a "never ever" deal.

Flip/swimmer situations happen too fast to pull over and throw from shore. I can't imagine having to pull over below every rapid that may have a swimmer and set safety from the shore.

What do others with experience think about this?

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Old 08-10-2016   #19
 
Austin, Texas
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Agreed
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Old 08-10-2016   #20
 
pojoaque, New Mexico
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agreed also. i hope that the message that comes through is that throw ropes are an important part of a safety/rescue arsenal from shore or boat, but they require care, judgement, and practice to avoid their being useless or worse, dangerous.
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