HomeOutdoor activitiesRock Climbing Gear List

Rock Climbing Gear List

If you’re planning to do any type of climbing, whether trad or sport, there are a few essential pieces of gear that should be on hand. These include:

Climbing nuts (also referred to as cams) are a type of protection you can use in traditional climbing without the need for bolts in the rock face. These metal wedges slide into cracks in the rock and expand to provide a secure hold, creating an anchor point.

1. Harness

Harnesses are essential items of rock climbing equipment, allowing you to attach your belay device and rope. Furthermore, they serve as a safety measure that cushion any falls you may take.

When it comes to climbing harnesses, there are various options depending on your sport or gym activity. Sport, gym and competition harnesses are just a few examples.

You can also choose from multi-purpose harnesses, designed for all types of climbing. These are perfect for both novice and experienced climbers alike.

Once you’ve selected the type of harness to purchase, it is essential to learn how to wear it properly. To ensure proper fit and comfort while climbing, put on your harness before heading out so that it fits securely.

2. Boots

Rock climbing boots provide the grip you need when climbing and also support for your feet while working. They come in various materials and sizes to fit any foot size perfectly.

When selecting climbing shoes, look for ones with a snug fit and excellent ankle support. This will make it easier to climb safely without worrying about your feet getting hurt.

Furthermore, selecting shoes with deep indentations on their soles is ideal for improving traction on rocks and other surfaces. This way, you won’t lose traction while walking or hiking.

If you’re new to running, a good strategy is to start with some inexpensive boots that will teach the basics. After some time has passed, however, you may wish to upgrade to more comfortable shoes that feature sleeker design and increased durability.

3. Carabiners

Carabiners, commonly referred to as “crabs,” are metal loops with spring-loaded gates that enable you to clip various pieces of gear together. These come in various shapes, sizes and materials and serve multiple purposes when rock climbing.

Climbers now mostly opt for lightweight aluminum alloys instead of steel, which are lighter and more durable than their steel counterparts, though they do wear out over time.

When selecting a carabiner, take into account what functions it must perform and its strength rating. This will help determine the ideal option for your requirements and budget.

Carabiners come in various shapes, such as D-shaped and pear-shaped models. D-shaped carabiners are considered the strongest and most durable, featuring larger gate openings than oval ones. As such, they’re popular climbers’ choices for strength at an affordable price point.

4. Slings

Slings are essential pieces of equipment for attaching ropes to anchors, setting up quickdraws and carrying gear. They come in various lengths and materials – nylon webbing or Dyneema depending on your requirements.

Slings are most commonly used to extend climbing protection, reduce rope drag on the leader, or equalize placements at anchors. These slings come in various lengths like 60cm (24″) or 120cm (48″) but you get to decide what uses they provide.

Many climbers utilize slings to connect their rope to bolt anchors and other traditional protection, allowing the rope to move through with minimal friction. Slings can easily be racked on harness gear loops and offer a faster alternative than using two non-locking carabiners for connecting to a bolt.

5. Belay device

A belay device is a piece of climbing gear that uses friction created by a bend in the rope to catch falls and lower climbers. They can be used for top-roping or lead climbing and typically attach to the belayer’s harness with an attached locking carabiner.

Three main types of belay devices exist: manual tube-style, assisted braking and figure eight. Each type is tailored for specific types of climbing and situations.

Tubular belay devices are the most frequent and user-friendly climbing style, suitable for top roping, sport climbing, traditional routes, alpine routes, gym workouts, single pitches or multi-pitch pitches.

To use a tubular, insert your rope through one slot and clip in a locking carabiner through the loop. Some models feature ridges on the braking end to add extra friction – ideal when climbing with someone larger than yourself!

6. Rope

Rope is an essential piece of climbing equipment. Whether you’re sport climbing, trad climbing or redpointing, having rope on hand for belaying and safety reasons is a must.

Rope’s primary purpose is to secure you to the rock face and prevent falls. It also has the capacity of tying into anchors and belaying people up on walls.

Ropes come in various thicknesses and diameters; thinner ropes may be lighter but won’t last as long.

Generally, opt for a dynamic rope that has some stretch and plenty of absorption to absorb the impact of a falling climber’s fall. Static ropes don’t offer this feature and should only be used in rescue situations or hauling gear uphill.

If you plan on using your rope in harsh conditions, dry-treated rope is recommended. This treatment helps keep the rope dry, reduces abrasion and keeps dirt and sand out of its core.

7. Anchors

Anchors are a type of protection used in rock climbing. These anchors are secured to the rock face, and you attach rope to them with quickdraws or runners.

Anchors come in two varieties: express and hammer-in. The former is the most popular option as it’s simple to set up.

Additionally, high-holding anchors offer greater strength and retention than their regular counterparts. To qualify for this classification, the anchors must have been tested and proven to work in various soil conditions.

There are also specialized nuts for grainy or awkward rock, pin scars, and micro cracks. These pieces are lightweight and cost-effective to purchase in various sizes.

8. Tools

Rock climbers require a range of tools to stay safe and perform at their highest potential. There are specific tools designed for different climbing disciplines, such as ice axes or dry tooling.

Climbers often use chalk to increase friction between their hands and the rock face. They may either dip their hands into a loose powder or use a small mesh bag with a draw cord closure to keep the chalk in place.

Chalk absorbs sweat and keeps your hands dry, helping prevent them from getting wet and unable to hold onto the rock. Some climbers also use chalk balls – fine mesh sacks designed specifically for this purpose which allow chalk release with minimal leakage when squeezed.

Belay devices are essential equipment for climbers, as they increase safety when belaying. Functioning like a mechanical friction brake that controls the rope during belaying, these devices help minimize the risk of falling while increasing control over the rope’s trajectory.

9. First aid kit

Climbing, whether for recreation or sport, necessitates having a first aid kit on hand. Not only does having the correct equipment and knowledge prevent minor infections but it can even save lives!

A comprehensive first aid kit should include bandaids, butterfly bandages and Neosporin for any injury that arises.

Climbing accidents happen, and you may end up with a scrape or cut on the rock face. To treat this wound properly, clean it thoroughly, apply antibiotic cream, and cover it with bandaids or other protective material to keep it closed and prevent further damage.

Companies offer first aid kits designed specifically for outdoor and wilderness use, in various sizes and price points.


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