What is a Courtesy Anchor? A "courtesy anchor" (more properly a courtesy rigging): For rope retrieval, in most cases the ring at the end of the rigging should be past the edge of the cliff, providing a line of sight from the bottom to the ring. This not only makes retrieval easier, it also prevents making rope grooves. But the forward position of the ring makes starting the rappel difficult - thus the courtesy rigging aka courtesy anchor. Only the last person rappelling needs to do the difficult start. For everyone else, the rope can be rigged higher up where getting on the rope and starting the rappel is easier. Often, this can be done by rigging for retrieval, then clipping the ring up higher on the anchor. Other times this is easiest done by tying a big knot in the webbing to shorten it - helpful to include a carabiner in the knot so it will be easy to undo. In other cases, it is easier just to provide a meat anchor for all but the last, and the last person rigs the rope for retrieval. A key point here is to separate, in your mind, the task of retrieving the rope from the task of setting up the rappel for the people in your party.