I marked my single rope so I can find the middle when rappelling and also to give my belayer a warning when I'm on a route of unknown length.

I am going to purchase a set of half ropes soon for some Mixed/Ice Alpine Routes in the Rockies and am wondering if it is a good idea to mark the middle. I'm only wondering because rappelling you just tie the two together so no need there and if doing running belays and making your own belay stations in an alpine setting a middle mark warning to the belayer doesn't seem to be of concern.

Do Half/Twin/Double Ropes get Middle Marked? If so, why?

  • Twin or half ropes? They're very different. A twin rope is clipped together where as half are clipped individually. I think you mean half?
    – user2766
    Commented Aug 22, 2014 at 14:33
  • 1
    @Liam I included twins for the same reason that you can rappel with them tied therefore eliminating a need for the middle marker, as well if Trad climbing on twins a middle mark doesn't server a purpose to the belayer as even on a single pitch you could guide mode the second and both rappel or walk off.
    – AM_Hawk
    Commented Aug 22, 2014 at 15:04
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    I guess the question can be rephrased: Other than rappelling and being lowered after a sport climb, using a single rope, would you need/want to middle mark your half/double/twin rope in any other type of climbing setting.
    – AM_Hawk
    Commented Aug 22, 2014 at 15:06
  • I had the urge to ask: how do you mark your rope? So I posted this question.
    – Roflo
    Commented Aug 26, 2014 at 14:03
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    @Liam I'm thinking you're right, I was just hoping to maybe learn something new or that I didn't already know...
    – AM_Hawk
    Commented Aug 27, 2014 at 12:21

1 Answer 1


There are rope manufacturers which mark their half ropes in the middle (as an option) or even produce them with different colors on both sides (Beal half ropes). For the reasons already mentioned, this is not standard. When abseiling you use both ropes so the middle is their connection. Still, when climbing alpine routes, I like to have the middle markers for orientation. When climbing one pitch trad routes, I like to use half ropes and there it is good to know, when half of the rope is out (afterwards you cannot lower your partner anymore). Some people even put two marks in the middle and one mark each on one/three quarters. Thus you have even more information about how much rope is still left.

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