Questions tagged [climbing]

Questions relating to climbing can include any activity that requires the use of your hands and feet to move vertically up an object, obstruction or terrain. This varies from trees to boulders to cliff faces and everything in-between.

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2 answers
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How do you decide on a climbing grade?

Rock climbing and bouldering tours are classified e.g. Sierra from 5.2 to 5.15c or Fontainbleau 2 to 8c+. As you advance in your climbing experience you achieve higher grades and learn new movements,...
Jon's user avatar
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25 votes
3 answers
9k views

Ideal and Minimal Rope Diameter for Lead Climbing

I'm thinking of a single rope that it's safe to take long lead falls, but also light to carry around. I weight 75 kg and I might climb with heavier partners (80-90 kg)
Miguel Madero's user avatar
36 votes
2 answers
30k views

What does it mean to cross load a carabiner?

What does it mean to cross load a carabiner? I know it's bad, and not to do it, but I don't really know what exactly it is.
Patrick Lee Scott's user avatar
40 votes
4 answers
12k views

Things to keep away from climbing ropes

There are some no brainers like don't throw your climbing rope next to car batteries in the back of your car. The effect of bug sprays containing Deet seem to be controversial. I have also heard a ...
DJBunk's user avatar
  • 1,081
40 votes
9 answers
27k views

What hand and finger exercises help with climbing?

It's been a while since I went rock climbing but I'd like to get back into it. What are some hand exercises that will help with climbing?
Kevin's user avatar
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31 votes
2 answers
47k views

Climbing rope is rated to X UIAA falls. What is a UIAA fall?

When looking at buying climbing ropes, they are rated to a number of "UIAA falls". What does that mean?
Reverend Gonzo's user avatar
24 votes
4 answers
1k views

How should I check climbing equipment to tell whether it is still safe to use?

I have, unfortunately, not had the opportunity to go climbing (and thus use my climbing equipment) for a couple years. I know that such equipment, especially the rope and webbing, can degrade over ...
Kevin's user avatar
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24 votes
3 answers
4k views

Please Explain Rock Climbing Grades

I have seen various grades for different climbs such as 5.14b, 8b+, 8b - 150m It seems there are different parts to the grade, e.g. the last one is it 8b for 150 metres? Do these grades only ...
Scotty.NET's user avatar
13 votes
1 answer
534 views

Rating unorthodox climbs

This question is sprouted from Brick Wall Rating I occasionally climb in places where it seems unorthodox, such as a brick wall. I've found that even with the plethora of hand holds that buildings ...
Liam McInroy's user avatar
38 votes
7 answers
7k views

How to overcome the fear of falling in lead climbing

I used to really enjoy climbing (almost all indoors). I was bouldering around V2-3 and leading at 5+. The mismatch was all down to fear of falling - I would repeatedly bail or fall from routes that ...
aucuparia's user avatar
  • 2,330
26 votes
3 answers
4k views

How should I vet belayers? What should I look for?

The other night I went to the climbing gym, intending to look for a climbing partner once I got there. (My usual gym climbing partner isn't available to climb as often as I want to.) The gym provides ...
user avatar
23 votes
2 answers
51k views

How do climbers retrieve anchored rope?

The following is a scene I have always been perplexed about. I’ve seen it many times. A mountain climber has no one above him as he descends and is trailing rope behind him that he is using to ...
Dick Platt's user avatar
19 votes
1 answer
958 views

Can you use a rope that has been in storage for a few years?

A guy I'm talking to about buying some rock climbing gear is getting rid of his stuff cause he hasn't used it in five to eight years. He said it wasn't used a lot, maybe 5 to 6 times, and he said no ...
user2916's user avatar
  • 191
17 votes
1 answer
35k views

What do the climbing terms "Redpoint", "Pinkpoint", "Flash" and "Onsight" mean?

In climbing what do the terms Redpoint, Pinkpoint, Flash and Onsight mean? Where does it come from?
user avatar
17 votes
6 answers
11k views

Should a carabiner ever be clipped to the tie-in loops and should anything other than a carabiner ever attach to the belay loop?

I'm a beginning climber and am trying to resolve conflicting instruction related to tying into my harness. During a recent outing a friend (an experienced climber, but not an instructor) was showing ...
STW's user avatar
  • 1,450
15 votes
2 answers
5k views

How do I set a top rope anchor?

When rock-climbing, I need to set up a top-rope anchor so if I fall, it will minimize chance of injury. So, how would I safely set one up?
Reverend Gonzo's user avatar
14 votes
3 answers
2k views

Training to prepare for oxygen deficiency in the high mountains

I would like to prepare myself for the climb in the high mountains (for now by "high mountains" I mean elevation 4000 m and more, but eventually eight-thousanders). What can I do to improve my ...
syntagma's user avatar
  • 1,113
13 votes
4 answers
4k views

How to take care of climbing hands?

Being a climber one aim is to toughen up your hands (related: How to toughen up hands?). Building up callused skin is important but how do you keep it? Having dry hands especially from the climbing ...
Wills's user avatar
  • 12.2k
13 votes
2 answers
2k views

How do I get cam slings replaced?

I bought my first set of cams and I've been curious about what happens when the slings start to wear out. Are they user-replaceable? The ones I purchased seem to be very un-user-replaceable: How do I ...
Chris Mendez's user avatar
  • 7,210
12 votes
2 answers
5k views

How should I choose between setting up a Cordelette or an Equalette climbing anchor?

I was going through anchoring techniques and I came across this well-received question: Anchor without cordelette? How should one decide when to go for a Cordelette or an Equalette?
WedaPashi's user avatar
  • 31.7k
12 votes
1 answer
11k views

What is an equalette anchor?

When setting up belay there are many ways to connect the anchors. One way is called equalette and is supposed to adapt to a certain extent to the direction of pull. How is such an equalette ...
imsodin's user avatar
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11 votes
2 answers
5k views

How to tie an EBSB bowline?

According to the most comprehensive reference ever written on bowlines, the EBSB bowline (which is a variation of another variation, called the EBDB bowline, together with a sort of Yosemite finish) ...
QuantumBrick's user avatar
  • 3,379
10 votes
2 answers
2k views

Is dyneema rope without a sheath safe for climbing?

I recently was given some old Chouinard hexes my uncle used back in the 70s. They look great, and I see no reason why I can't re-sling them and use them as perfectly safe protection. I've found some ...
user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
238 views

How to tie a figure eight on a bight?

One of the more common knots in climbing is the figure eight on a bight (being tied on a bight means that it is tied without using the ends. How exactly would one tie this knot?
Charlie Brumbaugh's user avatar
36 votes
2 answers
18k views

If the Dawn Wall had been climbed before, why was the 2015 attempt so difficult?

There's a lot of talk in the media about Kevin Jorgeson and Tommy Caldwell's free ascent of the dawn wall of El Capitan. This wall has been climbed before, but this is the first time it's been free ...
user avatar
33 votes
7 answers
12k views

Which knot for climbing: figure eight, yosemite bowline, bowline on a bight?

This is a topic often discussed online, but all I could find so far was people sharing their opinions (including numbers) on what tie-in knot is the best. Here's what I've found out from different ...
David's user avatar
  • 1,037
32 votes
1 answer
57k 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?
Scotty.NET's user avatar
30 votes
6 answers
6k views

What are the measurable prerequisites of strength and/or flexiblity for starting to climb in a climbing gym?

If I were a couple of decades younger, I would seriously consider trying climbing in a climbing gym, but I doubt I have enough flexibility, and I would feel horribly out of place. The thing that ...
ab2's user avatar
  • 23.6k
25 votes
7 answers
10k 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 ...
Roflo's user avatar
  • 2,456
24 votes
4 answers
7k views

Why are indoor climbing grades easier?

This is possibly a little of a generalisation but, why are indoor grades easier than outdoor grades? Having climbed at many many indoor walls (all over the uk) and done multiple outdoor climbs (...
user avatar
24 votes
10 answers
6k views

What are creative uses for retired carabiners?

I seem to have accumulated a good number of carabiners that, while probably still safe, I won't climb on anymore. They might be worn, of questionable origin, or just plain made obsolete by an upgrade. ...
23 votes
4 answers
6k views

What can I do with a retired rope and harness?

I've recently retired a rope (dynamic) and a harness. They're both in very good shape, but just over 8 years old. Common sense dictates I throw them away, but I wonder if there are other uses I can ...
Roflo's user avatar
  • 2,456
20 votes
3 answers
17k views

Climbing with a much lighter partner?

Both my fiancee and myself bought some climbing gear recently and we're planning our first trip to an indoor rock gym this weekend. We decided to practice our knots and belay technique before we went ...
Blackbear's user avatar
  • 1,892
19 votes
3 answers
10k views

Methods for taping hands, wrists, and fingers for climbing?

I've been climbing off and on since I was a teenager, but one thing I've never done much of is taping my hands. As I gained more experience, it's value is now apparent. What are some good techniques ...
montane's user avatar
  • 5,575
18 votes
2 answers
10k views

How do I tie a slackline with only carabiners and webbing?

Commercial slackline solutions seem bulky, heavy, overpriced, and a little too industrial for my liking. I have 6 carabiners and 50m of tubular webbing. What knots do you recommend for building, ...
Lost's user avatar
  • 19k
18 votes
3 answers
6k views

How to walk as a roped party on a glacier?

If you want to walk on a glacier you usually do this roped together as a team. How to walk as a roped party on a glacier? What I have to pay attention to when knotting the rope? Related question: ...
Jon's user avatar
  • 1,491
16 votes
4 answers
3k views

How high to climb before clipping on a sport climb?

The guy who taught me to lead sport in the gym suggested that when I'm going for a clip, I position my body so that the clip is somewhere between my hips and my chest. He claimed it was a bad thing ...
user avatar
16 votes
2 answers
388 views

Reference request: books on self-rescue while climbing

Can people recommend books or online resources on self-rescue for roped climbing? As a beginning trad leader, I think I should have a basic understanding of topics like how to escape a belay and how ...
user avatar
15 votes
3 answers
6k views

What is the correct way to attach an autoblock to your harness for rappelling?

When rappelling and using an autoblock consisting of a french prusik knot it seems there may be some options on how and where to attach the autoblock to my harness. Is there a correct placement on ...
STW's user avatar
  • 1,450
14 votes
3 answers
11k 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 ...
user avatar
14 votes
1 answer
2k views

Can a Finger Pulley injury be predicted / anticipated?

I resumed climbing a couple of months back after a gap of a couple of years. After spending a month of quality time at the wall regularly in order to get back in touch, I have started to try different ...
WedaPashi's user avatar
  • 31.7k
13 votes
1 answer
2k views

What does it mean to free a climbing route?

Sometimes I read articles about climbers having freed a route. For example: "Lynn Hill freed the Nose". What does this exactly mean in terms of how they climbed it? Specifically: Are they not ...
shimizu's user avatar
  • 3,643
13 votes
7 answers
12k views

Quickest / most efficient way to ascend a hanging rope with rock climbing gear?

Recently I saw an arborist climbing up a single rope with an unbelievable speed, as if it was just a ladder. Of course he was using all kinds of specialized gear including foot/chest ascenders and I ...
flawr's user avatar
  • 1,747
12 votes
3 answers
5k views

Is it ever necessary to double up locking carabiners?

I see people doing this a lot: My question is: Why? When is it necessary to double up locking carabiners? Ever? Doubling up non-locking carabiners with opposite and opposing gates was, and still is ...
ShemSeger's user avatar
  • 53.6k
11 votes
2 answers
3k views

How to safely train for and grip pockets?

I was spurred to post this after reading Which fingers to use in a 2 finger pocket when rock climbing? Last year I injured myself training on a shallow three finger pocket with an open hand grip and ...
Mr.Wizard's user avatar
  • 9,506
9 votes
2 answers
684 views

What are known failure modes of the auto-braking mechanism of Grigris?

Disclaimer first: The brake-hand principle (always hold the braking strand of the rope) always applies to assisted braking belay devices, including the Grigri. This question is in no way targeted at ...
imsodin's user avatar
  • 21.8k
6 votes
2 answers
3k views

Why are twist-lock carabiners considered dangerous for some applications?

There are different types of locking carabiners. A screw-gate carabiner requires multiple rotations of the screw in order to lock it. A twist-lock carabiner locks automatically whenever you close it. ...
Mehmet Karatay's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
1k views

How use a nylon cordelette as an adjustable tether for rock climbing?

Sometimes when clipping in people who are rappelling, or setting up anchors in some places from above or showing people how to get onto a fixed line, I need an adjustable tether. I often carry a ...
Charlie Brumbaugh's user avatar
4 votes
0 answers
442 views

How to abseil without a descender device? [duplicate]

Lets assume I am abseiling multiple pitches with some tuber device and at some point at a belay I dropped the device. How do I improvise something that does the braking while descending? I still have ...
imsodin's user avatar
  • 21.8k
38 votes
9 answers
605k views

How far would you need to fall for it to be fatal?

A little grim this but I was discussing free soloing with a non-climber in work and I said "Well once you get over a certain height you're not going to survive a fall anyway so anything over this ...
user avatar