The art of ice climbing, mountaineering, bouldering, and tree climbing. ! Please note that climbing can be dangerous to your health (sometimes fatal) if you attempt to try it without the proper training and skills. Use caution, know your limits, and above all, have fun.

Equipment A-Z

Want to learn about a specific piece of climbing, mountaineering, or bouldering equipment? Then you have come to the right place. This is the basic guide to climbing equipment from A-Z. Click on one of the links below to jump to the section which most interests you or feel free to scroll down through the entire list. Remember that not all pieces of equipment are needed for each type of climbing. Also check out links to gear reviews in the External Links section below.

Basic Gear

For the majority of climbing sports you will need a few basic items (and some are just plain fun to have). !

Avalanche Beacons

Usually used for mountaineering and ice climbing (versus other climbing activities), avalanche beacons serve skiers, backpackers, snowshoers, and other winter adventure enthusiasts. The major point of having one is for safety reasons. If, for any reason, you or another member of your team gets trapped under an avalanche slide, a beacon will help track and pin point the person as quickly as possible in order to make an efficient rescue. * They typically cost between $200 and $300. * Brands include Backcountry Access. !

Ascenders and Belays



internal frame pack. Packs can cost as little as $60 and as much as $160. Another piece of climbing equipment in this category is a rope bag. Rope bags are designed either similarly to a duffel or to a backpack. The backpack style rope bags are convenient and comfortable, but they tend to be on the small side. ! You may also be interested in hydration packs. !

Cams and Nuts

Black Diamond are other options. Wild County. !

Carabiners and Quickdraws

Carabiners, sometimes called biners, are a very common piece of climbing equipment, often made of aluminum alloy so that they are strong and lightweight. You've probably seen carabiners used as key chains. In climbing they attach a rope to an anchor such as a cam or nut. Each carabiner style has a different shape and locking mechanism to suit a specific type of climbing. This guide to carabiner types is a good overview. Generally, carabiners with more room inside the loop give the rope more leeway and prove stronger, but they can be unwieldy and not particularly versatile. A wide gate makes it easier to clip and unclip. But a smaller gate can be better for securing. ! Dcarabiners'>locking. Locking carabiners, being the most secure, are used in belaying and rappelling. Wire models are thin, with lots of room. Bent, also roomy, are easy to clip. Straight are the most common and versatile. Quickdraws, or draws, are a similar piece of equipment to a carabiner. Essentially, quickdraws are two carabiners attached to one another via a nylon loop or rope webbing. Both carabiners and quickdraws cost $10 or less a piece for a generic model. The highest grade screwgate locking carabiners will cost under $30. !

Chalk Supplies

Climbing chalk is made of magnesium carbonate and magnesium sulfate and is used to keep your hands dry and provide a better hand grip. It is useful for all varieties of climbing, except perhaps, ice climbing. The essential chalk supplies include the chalk ball. By rubbing the chalk ball or sock, some resin is released onto your hands. In addition to chalk, an option that might suit some climbers are belay gloves. These tough synthetic gloves are meant to protect your hands from heat and friction when descending. !

Cleats and Crampons

under $50. The most secure styles will feature a strap on the top and back of the foot, versus only over the top. Cleats on the other hand, are usually made of heavy duty plastic and are not meant for ice climbing. Want a pair of awesome crampons? Check out this article from or some of the options below. ! * Grivel G14 * DMM Terminator * Cassin C14 * Trango Hyper Harpoon !

Crash Pads

Misty. Cost varies between $100 and $200. !


This is one of the most important pieces of equipment in climbing. Without it, climbing could be very dangerous because you would have no way of securing yourself to the mountainside. Harnesses come in both beginner's there are special harnesses and there are even harness kits. ''Although comfort is the number one priority when choosing a harness'', give these popular harnesses some consideration before you look further:


Keep your noggin protected for falls and falling objects with a Petzl. !


Indoor Climbing ** Jasin Nazim ** Tradgirl FAQ


Ledges provide an artificial location for sitting or sleeping between climbs. They come in models for one or two people and will cost about $400 per person. A key element to these items are lightweight but durable construction materials. Try some of these well rated models: *Cliff Cabana Yosemite Fly * Sky Lounge Double * Bomb Shelter Double !


If you plan to scale anything above 5m, you will definitely need safety equipment, and that includes climbing ropes (along with all the belaying gear that goes along with it). They come in different lengths, diameters, and strengths. Check out the top rated ropes by ! * Beal Stinger III 9.4mm GoldenDry Climbing Rope * Petzl Nomad 9.8 Rope * Sterling Rope Marathon Sport 50 Meter Rope * Sterling Rope Marathon Sport 70 Meter Dry Rope You may also be interested in rope brushes. !


Climbing shoes and climbing slippers are one of the most important pieces of equipment for both an avid climber and a novice. edging shoe, constructed specifically for being able to adhere to steep inclines and overhangs. Overall, the velcro options are not only the least expensive, but also score the highest in the ratings.

Popular Picks

'''Men's '''


Planning a long trip? Expect to do some cooking? Haven't mastered the art of starting a fire (or simply the elements won't allow for it)? You need a backpacking stove, a small thing with a single burner. Models vary based on the type of fuel they run on. Look also at the design of its cookware. Some stoves come with deep pots that are no good for stirburner'>Coleman. For full information, read the Camping Stoves buying guide.


Major Manufacturers

* Arc'teryx * Beal * Black Diamond * CampUSA Climbing * CaVa * CMI * Edelweiss * Five Ten * Franklin * Grivel * Kong * La Sportiva * Mammut * Metolius * Montrail * The North Face * Patagonia * Petzl * Prana * Scarpa * Sterling '''BY GEAR''' Avalanche Beacons: * Ortovox * Mammut * Pieps * Backcountry Access

Movies That Feature Climbing

* Cliffhanger * Everest * Vertical Limit * Mission Impossible 2