Coppertone, of course it's up to the individual, and for most people there are more reasons *not* to solo than there are to do so. So while I agree with the basic point of your post, I disagree with this:

Originally Posted By: Coppertone
A bee could sting you, a hold could break, a foot could slip just to name a few. When soloing this could be catastrophic, while when using gear this would simply be and enjoyable ride.

I don't know about you, but when I solo (which is rare) - I do so on relatively easy ground for me. Which is not to say that something bad might not happen - that's not my point. My point is that on that same type of ground, climbing roped, I typically place very little gear.

So a roped fall in the same place would not be "an enjoyable ride". It might turn out fine if I was lucky, but more likely it would mean broken bones at best.

I'm not saying you should or shouldn't solo. I agree that the consequences for a lapse or an unlucky event can be much more severe when soloing. But IMO, all the same things that should make one think twice about soloing (additional family responsibilities, lessened capabilities due to age or injury, out of practice, off your mental game, etc) should equally make one think twice about all kinds of _roped_ objectives.

I wonder if this is part of the reason why some climbers seem to gravitate toward sport climbing as they get older.