10 Things That Are Missing from Your Climbing Pack

Photo credit: Gideon Haden ChomphosyIf you’re rope climber, your gear bag will look different than if you’re a boulderer. That’s because you need different gear and equipment depending on the type of rock climbing you do. Traditional climbing requires the most equipment, followed by sport climbing, and then bouldering. You can get by with a pair of shoes, a crash pad, and maybe a little bit of chalk and have everything that you need for a full day of bouldering. Trad, on the other hand, requires draws, cams, nuts, slings, a rope, and a knowledgeable and capable climbing partner. No matter what type of climbing you’re into, there may be a few items that you are forgetting. Here are 10 items that might be missing from your climbing pack.

Items that should be in your climbing pack.

  1. A sturdy brush is by no means necessary to climbing, but it can make a huge difference in your performance. A brush can be used to clean holds, remove excess oils, and improve the friction, making your problem that much more doable. Boars hair brushes work best and are safest for the rock, but nylon bristle brushes are also used.
  2. Athletic tape is a must have for all types of climbing, so throw a roll or tow in your pack. It’s great for first aid, protecting flappers, or fashioning a makeshift stick brush.
  3. Hand salve is soothing, and it will help your skin recover faster after you climb.
  4. There’s something to be said for adventure climbing, but it’s also nice to know what you’re getting into. A climbing guidebook can give you insight to the area, and give you the names, difficulties, and information on the climbs that you may come across.
  5. Super glue was invented by accident. Researchers were trying to develop clear plastic gun sights during World War II, but instead created the super sticky cyanoacrylate we refer to as super glue. It’s great for model planes and works well as artificial skin when your callouses split.
  6. When you’re packing for a day of climbing, you’re of course going to grab your chalk, shoes, and pad or rope, but you might blank on a very important item. Food keeps you climbing at your hardest. Don’t just pack a lunch, but also snacks to keep your belly quiet and your strength up.
  7. Also make sure that you bring enough water to stay properly hydrated.
  8. Sandals/slippers/shoes that are quick and easy to put on and take off are especially nice to have while bouldering. Easy shoes are nice any time you’re going to be changing shoes frequently.
  9. Nail clippers are borderline necessary in your climbing pack. Long fingernails will snag and grind, and long toenails will leave you wincing in your tight fitting climbing shoes.
  10. A laser pointer is a clever addition to any climbing pack. It can be used to help climbers share beta and point out specific moves that are hard to describe or hard to reach.

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