This tag should be used for all questions about the activity **rock climbing**, books, gear and accessories used or necessary to do rock climbing. The term Rock Climbing is an activity in which participants climb up, down or across natural rock formations or artificial rock walls.

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11
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2answers
113 views

What is a “sling belay?”

Rock climbing topos have various standardized symbols, such as xx for a bolt anchor, or a dashed line for face climbing. In keys of symbols, I've sometimes seen SB defined as a "sling belay." What ...
9
votes
2answers
197 views

Climbing: fear/panic on boulder wall

I am wondering if anyone else has experienced fear/panic that gets in the way of bouldering, and what their tips are for dealing with this. (There is a prior thread on fear in lead climbing, but my ...
9
votes
3answers
5k views

What to teach someone who wants to start lead climbing?

I have a friend who climbs with another group. She recently had her first couple of experiences as lead climber (sport climbing). I'm concerned that she doesn't have the required theory for lead ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

How can I practice Climbing without the actual wall and/or equipment?

I had never been a gifted kind of a climber being more fascinated by Backpacking than Rock Climbing. Its been almost 2 years that I did some genuine climbing. And, I am planning to resume it very ...
4
votes
1answer
313 views

Precautions needed to be taken regarding bee hives (honey) during Climbs

I am a regular climber and a hiker. Having an experience of more than 600 hikes and around 30 technical climbs, I have realized that during rock-climbing, the climbers are bound to face Honeybees ...
15
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1answer
6k views

What's the difference between Sport Climbing and Traditional Climbing

What is the difference between Sport Climbing and Traditional (Trad) Climbing? Is it just that sport climbing uses bolts?
9
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3answers
475 views

Rock climbing over edge - What can I put under the rope to protect it?

I am working on a very fun problem with an overhung roof that induces serious rope drag (Goat Rock Roof @ Castle Rock if you know it). I am very nervous about training this beta intensive problem ...
24
votes
4answers
1k views

What to do if the second seems stuck and absolutely no communication is possible?

Backstory: A few months ago, I experienced the following situation: We (two people) were climbing the last pitch of a multi-pitch route. Near the end, there was a cave-like chimney. Basically a ...
12
votes
5answers
869 views

Is clipping directly onto a dyneema sling safe?

I was recently doing a scramble route in North Wales. We needed to get past a large rock spike, though easy climbing, it was quite exposed and not a good place to take a fall. As a safety backup I ...
22
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8answers
5k views

What are the advantages of short climbers?

My girlfriend often complains that a route or boulder was created for tall climbers. In my experience that sometimes is true: I easily get a hold, she has to jump. However, Lynn Hill proved that a ...
9
votes
5answers
2k views

Is this Chinese rock climbing gear manufacturer reliable?

Most (if not all) rock climbing big brands do manufacture their gear in China. Carabiners, cams, slings, whatever. Now, I stumbled upon this. ...
11
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3answers
4k views

What to do at the top of a sport climb

I dabble a little at leading trad, but have never led a sport route. If I do a sport lead, I want to make sure I don't make some stupid mistake when I get to the top. For example, I don't want to ...
4
votes
1answer
71 views

BMC Discount on Climbing Walls

What does the BMC membership discount encompass? Is it just climbing and mountaineering shops or is it other paid for services? More specifically, would the BMC membership discount apply to the ...
16
votes
3answers
2k views

Is it realistic to teach yourself rock climbing?

I've been wanting to get into rock climbing for a while but I live in a very flat area with no climbing gyms around. I'm planning on moving to the Pacific Northwest soon and I wanted to know what the ...
5
votes
1answer
144 views

Is rope-soloing inherently dangerous, and if so, why?

I've never tried rope-soloing and don't have a very detailed idea of how it's done. But reading the 2015 edition of Accidents in North American Mountaineering, I was struck by how many accidents ...
8
votes
1answer
72 views

What climbs at Tahquitz were the original definitions of YDS class 5 grades?

From what I understand of the history, Yosemite Decimal System (YDS) grades came about when class 5 in the preexisting system was subdivided into 5.0 through 5.9. This was done by Chuck Wilts, Royal ...
10
votes
3answers
151 views

Should you occasionally use locking biners on pieces of protection when using alpine draws?

Since I mostly climb trad style, I don't use quickdraws for leading outside of the gym. I use alpine quick draws (two biners joined by dyneema slings) which offer benefits of adjustable length, ...
6
votes
1answer
94 views

What's the easiest to release, though solid, knot “on a bight”?

I am practicing falls with a self belay device indoors and I am tying the rope to the anchors so to fall on a single strand of rope as I would in real life. I used the figure eight on a bight but I ...
9
votes
1answer
363 views

What are offwidth cracks and what makes them so hard to climb?

There is a notorious kind of crack called offwidths. Several friends of mine stated, that they were pretty devastated at first when they were not able to do 5.8 offwidths in the valley. Later they ...
8
votes
4answers
401 views

Belaying two seconds?

I'm planning on doing some Grade III scrambling/low grade multi-pitch climbing this weekend. Normally just me and my girlfriend would do this kind of thing, I'll lead she'd second. But I'm thinking of ...
16
votes
6answers
3k views

How to safely mark a rope

I was reading this question and the first thing that popped into my head is what do you use to mark the middle of the rope? I was taught not to use any kind of marker on the rope (because there's no ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

Anchor without cordelette?

I have the John Long book on climbing anchors and also a couple of others that describe the subject more briefly (Pesterfield, Traditional Lead Climbing, and Freedom of the Hills). When it comes to ...
1
vote
2answers
151 views

Would tied strips of webbing have similar strength to a climbing rope?

i have a bunch of several-feet-length strips of webbing (polypropyrene) and was wondering if tied together, it can maybe be used as a climbing rope?
6
votes
2answers
272 views

Back-stepping versus a layback?

At the gym today, a climber referred to "back-stepping" for a move that I would have referred to as a layback. I said, "I would have called that a layback," and he said, "Yeah, the difference is kind ...
3
votes
1answer
111 views

What do you hang on 1/4" bolts while rock climbing?

So 1/4" bolts, although not suitable for free climbing protection, are apparently still used for aid climbing to hold body weight, and for alpine rappels. What I want to know is, what do you use for ...
8
votes
3answers
816 views

Avoiding a “ding-dong” when lead belaying in the gym?

I sometimes climb in the gym with a partner who outweighs me by about 50%. When he's leading and falls from above his protection, I can get pulled up to the first clip. If he's not very far up, this ...
9
votes
2answers
912 views

What happens to rappel anchors?

When setting up a rappel anchor, using things like webbing, rings, that kind of stuff, what happens to the anchor when you get to the bottom? Assuming you can't hike to the top and grab it, do you ...
8
votes
2answers
6k views

How to use a Rap Ring

I have never used a Rappel Ring before but I am told they are really useful. Apparently, if you're trying to rappel in a situation where you have to leave gear at the top to get down safely: use a ...
12
votes
3answers
625 views

How can I safely practice trad climbing?

I have climbed indoors and outdoors for several years, both top rope and sport, and I somewhat recently took an outdoor trad climbing class. In the class, we placed protection while on top rope and ...
9
votes
2answers
150 views

Rope between legs while leading on rock, ice

When you're lead climbing, the most common way for the rope to hang naturally, if you don't do anything special, is usually between your legs. Is this OK on rock? On ice? Why or why not? On rock, the ...
9
votes
1answer
3k views

How to calculate the force (kN) generated by a falling climber onto their protection?

What method would I used to calculate the likely force placed on a piece of protection if I were to fall onto it. Using knowledge of my weight, distance between myself and the gear and the amount of ...
8
votes
1answer
244 views

When should you remove old pitons?

We were up above the treeline below the final climb to a scarcely visited cave and discovered an old rusty piton with a length of weathered webbing tied to it. It was obviously there as a safety for a ...
17
votes
4answers
4k views

How to carry dslr camera when rock-climbing

I am interested in hearing how people take their dslrs onto multi-pitch-rock-climbs. I have carried mine up in a small pack, but I end up taking hardly any pictures, since it is so cumbersome to get ...
12
votes
2answers
297 views

How to go about replacing sport climbing bolts?

There has been handful discussions about How to fix a bolt on a climbing route. But there seldom any point made about How the one should go about when removing/replacing the bolts. When to decide in ...
10
votes
2answers
618 views

Are manual double-back buckles on harnesses considered obsolete?

My current harness has these single-piece buckles: (source: http://www.mountaineeringmethodology.com/harness/) It might be due for replacement in one or two years, and I really like these buckles, ...
9
votes
1answer
132 views

Bolt Conditions at the New River Gorge

I am getting back into sport climbing and I am planning a trip to the NRG. I get very nervous about safety issues in regards to climbing, almost to the point where I don't want to start again. One ...
25
votes
1answer
445 views

What sort of rock climbing grade can a goat do?

It is quite well known that goats are into free solo rock climbing. Is there any evidence (even if anecdotal) of the highest grades they are able to climb?
4
votes
0answers
49 views

What is the best rope material to use for climbing protection? [duplicate]

I've been doing some research on what type of cord to use for resligning some hexes, and I found something very surprising here. Basically, the paper seems to suggest that while the tensile strength ...
16
votes
6answers
5k views

Why do many climbers appear to not trust their belay loops?

The belay loop is the strongest part of the climbing harness, so why do so many climbers not trust it? It’s very common to see climbers backing up their belay loop with a separate piece of webbing or ...
8
votes
2answers
374 views

How can you safely set up a climbing anchor from above?

Let's say I'm walking to the top of a really nice cliff. Take a look at this beauty: And there are some nice cracks to place some protection in, with the slings/rope coming off the cliff, kinda ...
14
votes
1answer
427 views

Why do big wall harnesses have two belay loops?

I've been looking at big wall harnesses and I've been noticing that a lot of them come with two belay loops: I know that it isn't there as a back up. What's the advantage of having two belay ...
9
votes
2answers
550 views

“Used” top rope when bouldering

My friend and I often boulder around my home instead of driving to the local area, and when attempting some more challenging features, such as overhangs and slightly taller cliffs, we would feel ...
9
votes
1answer
192 views

Big Wall Rock Climbing - Harness Off

Do climbers ever remove their harness when they are sleeping on the side of cliffs or for going to the bathroom? I imagine I would want to keep my harness on and be roped into the anchor even if the ...
17
votes
1answer
592 views

If the Dawn Wall's been climbed before why is the current attempt so difficult?

There's a lot of talk in the media at the moment about Kevin Jorgeson and Tommy Caldwell Free ascent of the dawn wall of El Capitan. This wall's been climbed before but this is the first time it's ...
10
votes
1answer
3k views

Bouldering vs aid climbing vs free climbing vs free solo climbing

What re the differences between these 4 styles of rock climbing? Bouldering Aid Climbing Free Climbing Free solo climbing
12
votes
2answers
1k views

Is there any difference between a harness used for rock climbing vs for mountaineering?

I've recently taken an interest in both rock climbing and mountaineering. Both require a harness, but is there any difference in the harness used for each activity? I understand that the most basic ...
2
votes
2answers
95 views

Guidelines for safe use of ATC Nano? [closed]

The photo below shows my new ATC Nano. Sweet! This is an innovative new belay device that is definitely going to be in my ultralight mountaineering setup from now on. After all, when you're bagging ...
4
votes
2answers
880 views

Lowering a climber from above using a belay device in autolocking mode

I recently gave a belay from above to a group of five people who were all doing the same single-pitch climb and then being lowered off. (In this case the reason for belaying from above was that the ...
9
votes
1answer
330 views

Statistics on types and survivability of anchor failures?

The most recent (2013) edition of Climbing Anchors, by Long and Gaines, makes some interesting statements in the preface about catastrophic failures of anchors. Long first says that: when belay ...
6
votes
2answers
166 views

What is the term for/manufacturer of belay devices with a clip that holds the ATC onto the carabiner?

I broke my friend's ATC, and am trying to find a replacement, but I don't quite know what to look for. It was a somewhat unique unit, at least among those I've seen; it was a standard "basket" ATC ...