Standard Equipment List for Rock Climbing


Climbing Gear






Gregory Chaos : Mid Sized Pack

This is the first midsized pack I bought. I picked it up at Tent and Trails. It was a recomendation of one of the guys there.

Why I bought it: I needed a daypack that I could use for 2-3 day hikes or for carrying climbing gear (ropes, protection, shoes, helmet, etc.) or other heavy itmes on one day treks.

Good for: Lugging heavy stuff like climbing equipment that you don't need to get to until you get to your destination.

Not for: Expeditionhikes or hikes where you need to constantly access your pack. It is a toploader so if you wwant to carry snacks, first aid or anything you need to get to in a hurry, put it in the top pocket.

Gregory Notes: Gregory makes really good packs. Their Denali Pro is supposed ot be a beautiful pack. I have not tried it, but I have only heard good things about it.

Iliniza Notes: This pack is great in terms of its comfort level. It has a very sturdy frame stay and the padding is cush on your waist and shoulders. A little bit heavy, but definately a quality pack. I used it as my summit pack.

Kilmanjaro Notes: After using this pack for the summit, I have decided that I need a lighter weight pack. There was really no need to have a pack this sturdy to carry water, camera, food and fleece.

Climbing Gear

Black Diamond Blizzard Harness

The three main companies I looked at when researching harnesses were Petzl, Black Diamond and Trango. When choosing a harness you really have to figure out what type of climbing you’re going to use it for. I know that in the next year or two, I will be attempting to summit a 18000+ mountain peak. In that case, I will need a harness big enough to fit over clothing, so I need adjustable leg straps. That, plus the Blizzrd’s seat drops out so there’s no problem answering the unavoidable “nature’s call.”

Notes: Very confortable harness.

Iliniza Notes: I never ended up using my harness because there was no ice at the top of the mountain and it was not a technical climb, so there was no need to rope up.

Petzl Meteor : Lightweight helmet

I had the Ecrin, but it felt a little heavy for me, it was not well vintilated, and quite honestly extreemly ugly. The Meteor fixes all of these problems.

Good for: Climbers who climb in hot weather most of the time and don't want to wear a big Rudolph Helmet.

Not for: Cold or windy weather conditions.

El Potrero Notes: You NEED a helmet here. There is so much rock fall here, you must wear a lid. Tabitha was quite envious of mine. I double checked when it was time to leave to make sure she didn't lift it!

Black Diamond ATC

From everyone I have spoken to, this is the belay device to own. Period. It is so good, the three wilderness stores I went to didn’t have any in stock. And rather than try to sell me on another type, they simply pointed me to another store they thought would have it in stock. I had to wait a few weeks and pick one up when a new shipment came in.

The ATC worked well for me.

El Potrero Chico Notes: On a recommendation a few years ago, I bought a Petzl Reverso (first generation). This was the first time I got a chance to play with it as I haven't been climbing in the last few years. I absolutely hated it. It was SO grippy that when I was trying to lead belay, I had to actually push the rope down through the device because it would constantly get caught. Interestingly enough, the newer generqation of reversos look much like the ATC's so apparently they have fixed that problem. But sufficed to say, I put that thing away immediately and grabbed my tried and tru ATC! :-)

5.10 Spires

These shoes were billed as a great overall shoe for beginners because they are stiff enough for a beginner’s weaker foot, which needs support. When it came down to my decision to purchase this particular shoe, It came down to that fact that they are good quality, inexpensive (as climbing shoes go anyway), and as a beginner, I am going to dog whatever shoes I buy because of poor technique. Everyone I spoke with told me that it’s a great shoe to start out with, so that’s what I went with.

Good For: Beginners who don't want to spend a lot of cash and/or haven't built up the necessary pain threshold for the more agressive shoes.

Not For: Non beginners.

El Poterero Notes: I really like these, but i think it's time to start moving up to a more agressive shoe. Had it not been for a broken toe, I would have picked up antoehr pair for this trip.

Blue Water Enduro 11mm

Since I don’t think I will be doing any Ice climbing, at least not in the first year, I didn’t need the dry finish, which adds about $25 to $45 to the cost of the rope. I had planned on purchasing the 50 meter rope, which is good enough for pretty much all beginners climbing needs. However, the only 11 mm rope they had left was the 60 meter so I took it. Of course, I could have gone with another retailer or ordered on the web, but I was there and wanted to get my shopping done in one shot.

Black Diamond Superslacker Rope Bag

This bag unzips to become a tarp to fleck your rope out onto. It’s big enough to hold 2 ropes and maybe three depending on the size and length of the ropes. A shoulder strap allows easy carrying but more than likely, you’ll want to just tie it to the top of your pack anyway.

I love this bag.

Petzl Carabiners

Petzl makes some of the best gear for rock climbing and they are well known for the quality of their carabiners. You'll need to carry at least two locking carabiners at all times and I like the fact that Petzl marks the red on the gate to show whether or not the gate is fully screwed closed.


Marmot Shell Jacket

Although I had originally planned to spend a whole lot less, I am glad I picked up this parka. It fit me well in the arms and does a good job of stopping wind.

Illiniza Notes: This jacket worked great on the climb. Period.

Kilimnajaro Notes: Really like the jacket.

Mount Washington 2009 Notes: At the top of the climb I saw that this jacket was not as good at breathing or keeping out the water as I thought it was (or used to be). Either way, this was my last time using this jacket. It's now the jacket I let friends borrow when I drag them along on some trip with me. Let's be Honest. I saw the Arc'teryx and fell in love. Gear junkies just need to buy new stuff!

North Face Fleece Jacket

This was the first fleec jacket I bought. I still have it and still wear it. It's a great jacket; warm and well fitting. The minute I started wearing it, the soft shell fleeces started becoming reasonable priced and I got the bug to start in that dierection. But for a simple fleece, great piece of gear.

Red Rocks Notes: Good jacket. You need a fleece in the desert surpisingly!

Marmot Rainier Fleece Pants

These pants are warm and comfortable, but with the reinforced knees and butt so your scrambling, dragging and scraping don’t wear them down in half a season. Nice fit, even for a spider leg guy like me and I didn’t even have to go out of my way to find the XXL because the XL fit me just fine.


Mountain Hardwear Fleece Hat

This hat is a little thin, but the fact that it completely covers the ears and ties off to stay tight against them makes it really warm. It's a great hat to have along on any trip. Plus you look funny which is always special!

Iliniza Notes: I brought this hat merely as a backup. The worst thing you can do is lose your only hat in the wild. I always bring an extra just in case.

Kilimanjaro Notes: Again, this was my backup hat. I definately pulled it out at night to sleep in.

EMS Glove Liners
A nice set of liners are a great thing to have. light enough to wear during the cool night but just engouh to keep your fingers warm.


Wet Ones Travel

It really doesn't matter which moleskin you choose. Personally, I like the thin moleskin, especially since I start applying it as soon as i feel even a hotsot. I never wait until i develop a blister so i rarely ever develop one. But i use moleskin almost every day of a hiking trip and remove it at night to air out the hot spot.

Grand Canyon Notes: Since water will be so sparse on this trip, I'll bring a pack of these for my outback shower!

El Potrero Notes: Anytime you are in Mexico, bring wet ones. They rarely have toilet paper in any of the bathrooms, so having these hand is nice.

Packtowel Camp Towel

Bottom line, this is not ever an optional item. I have to have at least one on my trips. It's really water absorbant but rings out like a shammy and packs away dry right after you've used it on your whole body!

Sigg Water Bottle

Why I bought it: I used to always use and suggest nalgenes wide mouth lexan water bottles. However, the week before my trip to hike the Grand Canyon all this stuff about PCB's and the 2,3,7 plastic recycling thing came out. I didn't want to take a chance, so I took the opportunity to switch to aluminum Sigg bottles. I know these don't leach into your body and cause chromosomal irregularities!

I haven't used these in the bottom of my boat yet, but I'm sure they'll work fine.

5 Boro Bike Tour Notes: You really only need one, and that's only if you like to sip a lot and don't plan on stopping at the rest stops. You can pretty much get water and or juices and beverages at all the rest stops. For free!

Black Diamond Gemini

This is the obne peice of camping equipment I have come to feel is essential. Once out in the pitch dark, I could not live without it. If you have any hopes of reading, writing or doing anything with both hands in your campsite or tent, you should get one of these things. With an LED lamp as well as a Halogen spotlight, the Gemini is the way to go. It’s relatively inexpensive and works well. I went to the local climbing gym (Desert Rock Sports) and snapped one up.


Gatorade Packs

Gatorade is one of the best tasting electrolyte replacement drinks. I't probably not necessary when mountaineering because you are not sweating, but it can't hurt. But if you're out there in the heat, you need to replace those electrolytes.You can get them in 1 quart packages which are perfect for your nalgene liter bottles.

Mt Washington Notes: Adding gatorade to your water on a freezing cold mountain helps to keep it from freezing. It's high salt and sugar content will add at least a few degrees to your drinks max freezing temperature.

Grand Canyon Notes: You should definately bring at least one liter per day. It gets really hot in the canyon.

Action speaks louder than words, but not as often!
Home | Trips | Calendar | Gear | Weekend Warrior | About | What's New | Email