The Essential Gear List for Rock Climbing

America is the perfect place to go camping, hunting, climbing, fishing, or scuba diving. Americans spend a lot every year on adventure clothing, fishing equupment, scuba diving gear, and of course camping supplies and equipment. We buy camping gear alone to the tune of $1.8 billion every year. Sometimes it doesn’t matter all that much whether you’ve got just the right gear or not, but when it comes to climbing, having the correct climbing supplies can save your life. Make sure that you’ve got all the essentials when you plan your next rock climbing trip:

  1. Make sure you’ve got the basic hardware you need. This will include a daypack and rope bag, chalk and a bag to hold it in, locking and nonlocking carbiners, runners (get single and double), rope, a belay or rappelling device, quickdraws, and whatever guidebook or route guides you need.
  2. Have all your personal items in order. Here’s a minimum checklist for these climbing supplies: food and water, helmet, pocketknife, harness, rock shoes and gloves, sunscreen and lip balm, sunglasses (make sure you have a way to keep from losing them if they fall off your nose), toilet tissue, hand sanitizer, and a good first aid kit. There are some items you may or may not need, depending on where you’re going. Those include insect repellent, a camera or binoculars, socks, bandanna, and any permits you’re going to need. If you’re camping or cooking, be sure to also bring a bag for trash.
  3. Think carefully about your situation-specific climbing supplies. This can get tricky. You don’t want to add to your weight too much, but without the right items you could get in big trouble, fast. A lot of these supplies for rock climbing depend a great deal on where you’re climbing, in what season, and for how long. As you think about how long you’ll be out there and what the weather will be like, don’t forget to consider:
    • Extra clothing
    • Larger knife and/or multi-tool
    • Flashlight or headlamp with extra batteries
    • Water treatment supplies or a Lifestraw
    • Extra energy bars, gels, trail mix, or emergency rations
    • Wicking clothing
    • Insulated clothes and a change of pants, socks, and shirt
    • Emergency blanket and/or shelter
    • Raingear
    • A cell phone and/or GPS in a water-proof bag.

Wherever you like to climb, make sure you’ll come back safe and sound. Think carefully about the climbing supplies you need, plan ahead, and have a great time.

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