The Smooth Operator (sometimes affectionately called the Smoothie) is a releasable canyoneering anchor device which can be retrieved after rappelling, leaving nothing behind. Employing retrievable or releasable anchors falls in the category of a leave no trace technique sometimes referred to as ghosting. Trees, rocks, arches, and other pre-existing anchors can be used as well as many other creative options.
Anchors can be set 20, 30 or more feet back, reduced consumption of webbing and rap rings, reduced rope grooves, in some cases is faster than traditional anchors, provides opportunity for ghosting a canyon.
The Smooth Operator requires advanced skills and judgment requiring constant attention to detail with every use. As with any anchoring system, there is always potential for failure and human error which can result in injury or death to you and or others. With proper use the last person will take the highest risk. Carefully read instructions and practice in a safe environment BEFORE use in a canyon.
The Smooth Operator has been tested to failure with various rope sizes and brands by placing the Smooth Operator in a stone knot then tensioning the rope until the system failed. When tested to failure, the Smooth Operator was not the weak link. The point of failure in every test was the rope breaking where it exited the stone knot. Sometimes the Smoothie would fold a little and sometime fold a lot but would always stay securely in the knot. These tests were not meant to be definitive but did show the weak link is the stone knot / rope and not the Smooth Operator.
Dimensions: 7.75x1.25x0.375 inches / 197x32x9.53mm
Weight: 1.95oz / 55.4g
Instructions and other links
Download instructions for Smooth Operator
Download infographic for adding safety-carabiners
If you want to go down a rambling rabbit-hole with maybe too much information, see the Smooth Operator pages at BluuGnome.com