A well adjusted vertical gear is essential for good and effective caving. The frog system has some strict (short cow's tail) and some not so strict rules on how to adjust your gear. This is a short summary about these rules and principles.




Harness should be tightened as much as possible. That way the central carabiner will be on the lowest possible position, and your vertical work will be the most effective.


Short Cow's tail



For safety reasons (during the rig keeping the rebelay loop as short as possible) the short cow's tail should be as short as possible. The lower limit is set when passing a rebelay in ascend. When you reach the rebelay and all of your ascenders are as high as possible you must be able to clip your short cow's tail's carabiner to the bolt.


With all of this said, the length will be (this length is including the short cow's tails carabiner):

Chest ascender 

+ hand ascender (only the body without the handle) 

+ length of knot 

+ loop 

= total of ~43cm (17 inch) or ~32cm  ( ~13 inch) without the carabiner.


If you don't want to measure all of this just ask somebody with a commercial cow's tail and tie yours similar to that.


 Foot loop

Stand in the foot loop as you climb; if with one leg than stand with one if with two stand with two (I encourage to use only one, left foot). 

Put your hand ascender (with the foot loop's carabiner in it) so the handle overlays with the chest ascender, or if not handled then just above the chest ascender. Adjust the foot loop to this length. 



Long Cow's tail


The length of the long cow's tail can be largely varied according to the cavers preference and body type of the caver. The maximum length is set when the caver hangs in the long cow's tail and must be able to reach and be able to open the hand ascender. However the actual length is usually set to shorter so when you are using your hand ascender for helping you up on a slight slope it's comfortable to "sit back" to the long cow's tail. It is important however to mention that in this situation the ascender is not a safety; it is only a helper device because the two points attachment can't possibly be complete.