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Rock Climbing

Sept. 17, 2015, 12:21 p.m.
Posts: 3349
Joined: Nov. 19, 2002

Hello everybody been a while! I got back into biking recently and figured I'd start trolling the NBR again haha :woot:

Anywho, I was thinking about getting into rock climbing. I was wondering if anybody could share their knowledge and experience on the subject.

Mostly wondering how much it would cost me to get some solid gear, and what type of places I could find it at? Is it too risky to buy used? I would be starting out with somebody who has done it a bit, but I wouldn't say she's experienced enough to be a trusted guide. I'm guessing I would need to train under somebody to a certain degree?

Any info/advice would be awesome thanks!

tommrorow. mom took the van/

Sept. 17, 2015, 12:45 p.m.
Posts: 90
Joined: March 2, 2011

Your timing is a bit off as it's starting to get into the rainy season. But its a great time to go to the climbing gym. If you've never climbed, its a good place to start as well. You only need a harness, shoes and an atc for that. Mec has a deal for harness and atc.

Climbing outside is quite intimidating for a beginner, especially on lead. You'll need a friend to setup top rope for you. For sport climbs you'll have to buy a rope, 12 draws, a helmet, gear for an anchor.

Basically, if you have no or very little prior experience, I would spend the winter in the gym and get a feel for it all. Without the proper knowledge or training it's easy to kill yourself doing this. My wife and I just had our first summer climbing outside, and while we're fairly confident, we still have small mistakes every once in a while.

BCpov on YouTube

Sept. 17, 2015, 12:48 p.m.
Posts: 1869
Joined: Nov. 22, 2002

Don't fall

Sept. 17, 2015, 4:25 p.m.
Posts: 168
Joined: Sept. 19, 2010

Is it too risky to buy used?

Yes. Strongly discourage you from doing that. The synthetics used in climbing rope, slings and harnesses deteriorate with age, and can be seriously weakened by exposure to a lot of stuff that might be lying around the typical garage. I have a bunch of gear I bought right before my second kid was born (which resulted in 8 years of very little climbing time) - looks brand new, but I would be extremely nervous taking a big fall on it. And the last thing you need is extra head space issues worrying about your gear when you are looking at a big fall.

Solid hardware - nuts, cams, maybe carabiners - might be okay but at the end of the day, just imagine you are looking down at your last protection somewhere below you, thinking about a 15' fall - do you really think you'll be happy you saved a few bucks getting beat up crap off craigslist?

You could go used on shoes for sure, but knowing what even my new shoes smelled like after the first 2 days of climbing in the gym, I'd say ewww. Sort of like buying used wetsuit booties, or a used jockstrap. Just…no.

Spend the money, go new on everything you will be hanging from, IMO.

And I second the suggestion of learning in a gym so you are 100% confidence around ropes and belay techniques before you head outside. Easy progression that way.

Sept. 17, 2015, 4:29 p.m.
Posts: 299
Joined: June 21, 2010

squamish rock guides is a great place to start.

Used gear is a real toss up, like kendaf said, maybe stick to the hardware, and re-sling all the cams. Never buy a used rope. your life depends on it, and a new rope costs the same as 2 tanks of gas.

Sept. 17, 2015, 4:37 p.m.
Posts: 5731
Joined: June 24, 2003

I wouldn't buy used gear unless I knew the seller really well and the history of use. Oh I only fell on that stuff three times. Well really fell. And I dropped the gear once when my sling came undone..100 metres up … but I didn't see any damage from the gear clanging down to the ground.

Debate? Bikes are made for riding not pushing.

Sept. 17, 2015, 5:33 p.m.
Posts: 763
Joined: March 12, 2004

A gym is an OK place to start to learn a little bit, but it is nothing like climbing real rock.

Don't worry about sport/lead climbing to start with.

Find someone who will show you how to safely set up a top rope, and learn the basics before you start worrying about how to lead/place protection.

For toproping you can get by with pretty minimal gear, a couple slings, a couple locking carabiners a rope and a harness for each person and a belay device.

It is probably worth the extra to buy a locking belay device since you don't have any experience.

I would stay away from used gear, you are quite literally trusting your life to it.

As well, learn the proper communication etiquette/language for climbing. I had a friend who was an experienced climber get injured pretty badly because of lax communication between the climber/belay.

It is a lot of fun, well worth spending the time to learn.


Sept. 17, 2015, 7:26 p.m.
Posts: 221
Joined: Nov. 18, 2012

i started indoor two years ago at cliff hangers but i soon discovered i had way more fun climbing at the hive without a harness

You know you went to far when even Tungsten thinks your a Jack Ass.

Sept. 17, 2015, 7:33 p.m.
Posts: 1752
Joined: Aug. 6, 2009

Spend the winter at a gym learning the basics of belaying, maybe even how to set up a top rope. In the spring, check out the BC Mountaineering Club or Alpine Club of Canada, both of which usually offer introductory rock climbing courses specifically for people making the transition from the gym to real rock. Squamish Rock Guides, or any of several other commercial outfits, also offer courses, but they will be more expensive.

The ideal situation is to have access to a partner who has a couple solid years of lead climbing experience. The climbing clubs are a great way to meet people. Assuming that they know what they are doing, you will learn a lot from them.

The initial basic investment for climbing (harness, shoes, chalkbag, belay device, a few slings and 'biners) is pretty cheap compared to many other outdoor sports. It's taking the time to learn how to not get killed that is the major investment.

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