Illinois Tree Climbing Championship – May 20, 2017

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Saturday, May 20, 2017

SALT CREEK PARK
Forest Preserve District of DuPage County
Wood Dale, Illinois

 

2017 Press Release – Illinois Tree Climbing Championship

CLIMBER REGISTRATION IS NOW FILLED.

Click HERE to Sponsor the 2017 ITCC Championship.

Click HERE for the most current Rule Book.

Work Climb Event

The Work Climb tests the contestant’s ability to move about the tree using a tree-climbing line and saddle/harness. The event setup is the same for both men and women contestants. Each contestant starts from a staging area in the tree and is required to visit five work stations throughout the tree, performing a specified task at each station. Each station in the tree is equipped with a bell (or horn); the contestant must ring the bell (or sound the horn) before continuing to the next station.

Contestants earn objective points for successfully completing the task at each station and ringing the bell (or sounding the horn) with either a handsaw, pole pruner, or hand, as indicated. At certain stations, a contestant can earn points for completing additional tasks. Contestants can also lose points for failing to properly complete certain tasks.

Contestants earn or lose subjective points based on safety, control, style, poise, and creativity at the discretion of the judges. Finally, a contestant can be penalized for unsafe or uncontrolled acts at the discretion of the head judge. A second unsafe or uncontrolled act could result in disqualification.

Contestants are allowed a predetermined time limit (men are provided 5 minutes, and women are provided 7 minutes) to complete the climb.

Throwline Event

The Throwline is a timed event that tests the contestant’s ability to accurately place a throw line and/or climbing line in a tree at heights between approximately 10 and 20 meters 32.8 and 65.5 feet). Contestants attempt to toss a throw line or climbing line through two of eight targets. Targets can be located in a single tree, four on each side; or in multiple trees as long as there are two distinct sets of four targets. The targets are worth 10. 7. 5. and 3 points, respectively, depending on the difficulty of the throw. Each contestant is allowed unlimited throws within 6 minutes, but a contestant can score in only one target on each side of the tree.

The lines may be manipulated in the tree. This includes attaching more than one throwline or climbing line together to perform manipulation techniques. A throw is considered legal and scores only when the line (throwline or climbing line) is isolated within the target area and both ends of the line are touching the ground, with no other limbs in between the two parts of the line. (‘Touching the found’ includes both ends of the line touching the contestant who is standing on the ground.) Additional points may be earned for installing a climbing line through one target on each side of the tree. The climbing line must be pulled throughout the target with both ends of the rope touching the ground in order to score additional points. The value of these additional points depends on the difficulty of the throw. Installing a line in a 10-point throw is worth 5 additional points. Installing a line in a 7-point throw is worth 4 additional points, a 5 point throw – 3 points and a 3 point throw – 2 points.

 

 Secured Footlock Event

The Secured Footlock measures the contestant’s ability to perform a vertical ascent into a tree using a Prusik hitch or other approved friction hitch for fall protection and the foot lock rope-climbing method on a double climbing line. The height is 15 meters (49 feet, 2.5 inches) for both the men’s and women’s events at international competition. A height of 12 meters (39 feet, 4.5 inches) may be used for both the men’s and women’s events at Chapter level if height constraints are an issue. The finishing bell shall be installed 38 cm (15 inches) horizontally from the competitor’s line. Mechanical ascenders may not be used. The event is timed with a maximum time limit of 60 seconds, and the contestant with the fastest time wins.

Belayed Speed Climb Event

The Speed Climb tests the contestant’s ability to climb a predetermined route from the ground to about 60 feet (18 meters) up a tree with a belayed climbing system for safety. The event is timed, and the contestant who reaches and rings the final bell of the course in the least amount of time wins. There could be more than one bell placed in the tree to determine the route; in such an event, the climber must ring all the bells in order to complete the event.

 

Aerial Rescue Event

The Aerial Rescue event is a timed event that tests the contestant’s ability to climb to and safely lower a climber who is unable to descend without assistance. This event setup is the same for men and women contestants.

Contestants must perform a risk assessment, a pre-climb assessment, and an onsite causality assessment, and should use all relevant techniques to ensure that the rescue process does not exacerbate the situation. The injured climber (dummy) should be lowered as safely, carefully, and efficiently as possible.

The contestant, as first responder, will assume control of the site, take control of all relevant safety issues, and will contact local emergency serves.

 

 Masters’ Challenge

The Master’s Challenge is the championship round of the competition. the top men and top women finishers from the preliminary round advance to the Masters’ Challenge to compete for the title. The Masters’ Challenge is designed to judge the contestants’ overall productivity and skill with a rope and saddle/harness in the tree. Contestants are judged and scored on their knowledge and their ability to demonstrate mastery of different climbing techniques, use of equipment, poise in the tree, and safe working practices.

At the event the head judge’s signal, “Go,” a contestant enters the designated work area. The contestant must perform a visual tree assessment, install any necessary climbing and/or belay equipment, and then enter the tree. The contestant proceeds to three or four work stations in the tree. In some situations, a fourth station may be added to increase the difficulty of the climb and provide additional opportunity for the judges to assess a contestant’s ability.

At each of the four stations, the contestant must ring a bell with a handsaw before continuing to the next station. One of the stations is equipped with a plumb bob suspended from the limb. If a contestant puts too much weight on the limb, causing the plumb bob to drop and activate a buzzer, no points are earned for completing the activity. A maximum time to complete the event is specified in advance. the climb is timed to assess overall productivity, but the Masters’ Challenge is not a speed event.

Illinois Tree Climbing Competition Event Descriptions


Tree climbing competitions simulate working conditions of arborists in the field. Male and female competitors perform five different events during preliminary rounds to qualify for the championship. Each event tests a competitor’s ability to professionally and safely maneuver in a tree while performing work-related tree-care tasks in a timely manner.

Preliminary Qualifying Events

Competitors are scored individually in each event: Aerial RescueWork ClimbSecured FootlockBelayed Speed Climb, and Throwline. The competitor with the highest score is the winner of that event. First, second, and third place for men and women are awarded for each event. Competitors’ total scores for all five events are combined and the male and female competitors with the highest combined score from the preliminary events move on to the Masters’ Challenge Championship.

Aerial Rescue


Aerial Rescue 2The Aerial Rescue event is a timed event that tests the climber’s ability to climb to and safely lower an injured climber who is unable to descend without assistance. Competitors are provided with details of the rescue scenario, and they are required to assess the situation and plan a rescue. This event simulates a job-site emergency. Injuries can occur and as the first person onsite it may be up to the trained tree worker to apply his/her knowledge and technical skills to rescue an injured person in a safe and efficient manner so they can recieve medical attention. Detailed Event Description

Work Climb


IMG_3362The Work Climb tests the competitor’s ability to move about a tree using a tree-climbing rope and harness. Competitors start in the tree and are required to visit five work stations throughout the tree to perform a specified task after which they must ring a bell. The stations include handsaw, limb toss, pole pruning, limb walk, and landing. Each of these stations simulate tasks that are performed by tree workers when working aloft. Detailed Event Description

Secured Footlock


The Secured Footlock measures the contestant’s ability to perform a vertical asent into a tree using a specific approved hitch for fall protection and the footlock rope-climbing method on a doubled climbing line. The men climb to 49’2.5″ and the women climb to 39’4.5″. The event is timed, with a maximum time limit of 60 seconds, and the contestant with the fastest time wins. This climbing method is often used by tree workers to ascend into the tree because it is faster and less tiring than other methods. Even though the competition judges on speed, in the work place the emphasis is on efficiency not speed. Detailed Event Description

Belayed Speed Climb


The Belayed Speed Climb tests the climber’s ability to climb a predetermined route from the ground to about 60 feet up a tree using a belayed climbing system for safety. This event is timed, and the competitor who reaches and rings the final bell in the shortest time is the winner. Sometimes multiple bells are used to mark the route, in this case all the bells must be rung in order to complete the event. Belaying is a method of securing and slowing a climbing line. If someone is belayed then that means someone is tending slack in the rope as they ascend the tree or they or using a climbing knot or a mechanical device to slow the line. This event demonstrates that tree workers must determine the best and most efficient route to take to reach the top of the tree to avoid getting the rope snagged on branches causing them to break limbs or damage the tree. Detailed Event Description

Throwline


The Throwline is a timed event that tests the competitors’ ability to accurately place a climbing line in a tree at heights of up to 60 feet. The competitor attempts to toss a line through two of eight targets. Each target is worth a different amount of points depending on difficulty. A throwline is used for climbers to set their climing line into a tree. A rope must be set and a climbing line installed in order for a tree worker to ascend a tree to perform tree work. Throwlines must be installed at a point that will be sturdy and secure to accommodate the climbers’s weight with gear while working in the tree. Detailed Event Description

Masters’ Challenge


IMG_3693The Masters’ Challenge event is the championship round of the competition. The top men and top women finishers from the preliminary round advance to the Masters’ Challenge to compete for the title of Illinois Champion. The Masters’ Challenge is designed to judge the contestant’s overall productivity and skill with a rope and saddle in the tree. The stations are similar to the Work Climb Event stations.

The Masters’ Challenge consists of one event and competitors are scored on technique and skill. The competitors in this round with the highest score are named the male and female Illinois Champions.

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Most Current Rule Book:  Click here for the 2016 RULES.
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