Bouldering, sport climbing, mountaineering, via ferrata...only with the correct climbing equipment can you be safe and really enjoy yourself! There is no absolute standard climbing equipment that covers all mountain sports disciplines. Climbing equipment is as diverse as the sport itself. Boulderers can get by with relatively little equipment (climbing shoes, crash pad, chalk bag and the appropriate clothing). Sports climbers also need climbing ropes, belay device, quickdraws, carabiners, a climbing helmet and maybe even a few cams or nuts. When it comes to the mountains and alpine walls, the choice of climbing equipment is ultimately a science. Here only the best material is good enough. Depending on the type of tour, a whole range of additional equipment including crampons, ice tools, bivouac equipment and a climbing backpack may be needed. And a whole lot of experience of course. Whether you are planning a relaxing bouldering holiday in the sunny South or a challenging tour in mountain terrain you will find the appropriate climbing gear for every purpose, every level and every budget in the Alpinetrek climbing shop. With brands ranging from Edelrid, Mammut and Black Diamond to La Sportiva, Ocun and Petzl.
Equipment for bouldering
As we touched on above, boulderers are the climbers who get by with the least climbing equipment. That's why many see bouldering as the most original, purest form of climbing. It's not about the equipment, it's not about strong nerves, it's not about the weather in the bouldering gym. It's about mastering a passage with the correct climbing moves. Originally seen as a training discipline for "real" climbing, E162bouldering has established itself as a completely independent discipline and a unique set of bouldering equipment has developed accordingly. You will find everything you need in Alpinetrek's climbing shop. The most important thing for bouldering is the climbing shoes. They should fit perfectly, offer good grip and allow a good feel for the rock. The second most important piece of climbing gear for bouldering is the crash pad, large mats that prevent impact with the ground in case of a fall. They are available in different sizes, thicknesses and designs. The last thing you need is a chalk bag full of chalk and your bouldering equipment is complete.
What equipment does a sport climber need?
Sport climbers need a bit more equipment to safely practice their sport. In addition to the climbing shoes and chalk bag, the climbing equipment of a sport climber consists of at least a climbing rope, quickdraws, carabiners, a belay device and a climbing helmet. Sport climbers tend to use single ropes. They are easy to handle and can be clipped in quickly. This type of rope is usually the best choice for relatively straight routes and secure climbing on the climbing walls. Caution: Before setting of on a tour you must make sure your rope is long enough (check the climbing topo or ask the locals). Too many serious accidents have occurred as a result of ropes that were too short. At the end of the day, the best climbing equipment is only as good as the climber using it! A conscientious climber gets acquainted with each and every piece of their equipment. Experienced climbing partners and trained climbing instructors can provide you with information about the limits and uses of climbing equipment which you won't find in the instructions. Quickdraws serve as connection between the climbing rope and the bolts. Locking carabiners can be used in various ways, in combination with a belay device, for example. Ultimately it doesn't matter which type of belay device you go for (tube or semi-automatic) as long as you are familiar with your equipment (see above). Not all sport climbers wear a helmet, but you shouldn't allow this to influence your decision. As with cycling, helmets should be a matter of course for climbers. Helmets protect against impact from a fall and falling rocks. Falling stones can even occur at busy climbing centres and stones aren't choosy, they'll hit you in the head whether you're a novice or pro! Climbing helmets no longer look like mushrooms or salad bowls and helmets for all head sizes and tastes can be found in our climbing shop.
Securing your own routes requires even more equipment
Depending on where you're climbing, bolts may not be continuous or may not exist at all. If that's the case you need to take additional climbing equipment to secure a route. Tours where you are exclusively securing your own routes are no longer classed as sport climbing. It is known as clean climbing in the climbing world, because you leave no visible trace of your route. This type of climbing is referred to as trad climbing, and it is the most popular style of climbing in the UK. In addition to the standard equipment of a sport climber, trad climbers have to carry some additional securing equipment. For example, nuts and cams (sometimes known as friends). However, clean climbing does not make use of classic pitons because placing and removing pitons leaves traces in the rock. Slings and cord can also be used to secure routes by tying them around trees growing out of the rock or looping around secure blocks. What goes for clean climbing, goes even more so for alpine climbing tours such as those in the Dolomites, for example. Bolts are rare on these tours so carrying and being able to use nuts etc. is absolutely essential. Establishing safe and secure anchors is not possible without these special pieces of climbing equipment.
Climbing equipment for ice climbers and mountaineers
When it comes to ice climbing and the great north faces of the Alps, choosing your climbing equipment becomes a science and the sport a material arms race. During long high alpine climbing tours in particular, you never know what conditions you'll encounter so you need climbing equipment for every eventuality with you. That means a full set of rock climbing equipment plus full ice climbing gear. As well as ropes, belay devices, carabiners and of course a helmet, ice climbers also need ice tools, ice screws, crampons and winter clothing. An ice climber's equipment can quickly fill up the trunk of a car and can empty a wallet even quicker. All the more reason to try and find yourself a bargain in our climbing outlet.