While rock climbing may be a fun activity, it is also one that is potentially hazardous. If you are going rock climbing, you are taking your safety into your own hands, and you have to be prepared for the responsibility that entails. Safety is an essential part of any climb, and should always be your primary focus.
How can you stay safe, however? Over the course of today’s article, we are going to be discussing some of the best ways that you can stay safe over the course of your climb. While there is too much on climbing safety for us to cover the entirety of the topic over the course of the article, we will provide a thorough overview.
Some of our rock climbing rules and climbing safety tips may end up surprising you. Even veteran rock climbers may not be acquainted with certain unsafe practices that they are using. While some of these tips may sound a little more tedious, they are all necessary to ensure that you are still safe at the end of your climb.
If you want to safely plant both feet back on the ground when you have completed a climb, these tips should help you make sure of that.
Never Take On A Climb Unprepared
Preparation is everything for a rock climber. In this sport, you will find that preparation can end up saving your life. If you find that you are not ready for a climb, you will want to avoid it. Being unprepared can mean any number of things to a rock climber, and it can pertain to equipment, physical state, and even mental state.
For example, if you forgot to bring a first aid kit along with you, there is no going out for a climb, even if the hill is at the easiest grade imaginable. Your first aid kit could mean the difference between a minor injury and death in certain situations, and you should only climb without it if there is immediate aid present at your climbing venue.
Keep in mind that your equipment is not the only area in which you should be prepared. For example, if you have never tackled a climb at a particular grade, you may wish to bring a more experienced friend along to help you through it. Taking on a hill that you may not be ready for is a dangerous proposition.
Even bringing the wrong climbing clothes can end up going wrong for you. For example, if you are climbing during an unexpectedly cold fall day, and you are wearing the wrong clothes, you can end up catching a chill during your climb. There are many ways that being unprepared can affect your health, and not all of them are obvious.
Don’t Be Afraid To Anchor
When you are laying down anchors, don't be afraid to take some time to put down some extra ones. While one anchor is meant to support you and potentially save your life, you will find that two anchors are always a better option. Almost every climbing school in the world will teach you to lay down two anchors.
Some climbers will even recommend putting down three anchors at a time if you have enough of them and you want to make sure that you will be safe regardless of what happens. It is up to you to decide whether you prefer three anchors or if you would instead stick with two, but never go below two anchors at a time.
Always Wear Your Rock Climbing Helmet
One of the most crucial pieces of safety gear that you will come across as a rock climber is your rock climbing helmet. Your helmet is designed to protect you from all manner of possible injuries that can occur while rock climbing. You may be surprised at the variety of injuries that can occur while climbing.
While it is evident that a rock climbing helmet can protect your head in the event of a fall, there are a few other situations in which your helmet can provide protection as well. For example, if a member of your group ends up dislodging some rocks while they are climbing, your helmet will protect your head.
If something hits your head while you are climbing, there is no guarantee that you will be able to hold on. A rock climbing helmet can help you avoid potential head injuries, but it can also help prevent falls from occurring due to falling debris or any other number of reasons.
Bring Backup Equipment
You never know what will happen over the course of a climb. If you are trying to avoid any unpleasant surprises, it will be crucial to bring enough gear with you to make up for anything that breaks. Failing to bring enough equipment can cause many different complications for your climb.
The best thing that can happen if you fail to bring backup gear is that your climb will come to an end.
In the worst case, a missing piece of gear could potentially result in a climber being stranded halfway up the climb. Always make sure that each member of the group has more than what they need, safety climbing gear is crucial.
Always Check Your Rope And Harness
Before you start a climb, you will want to check your rope to see if it is knotted correctly. Even if the knot is tied correctly, you may have forgotten something, like a backup knot.
When checking your knots before a climb, you will want to go through a mental checklist to make sure everything is normal.
You should also check your harness before you start a climb. Make sure that your legs are securely looped through your harness and that it is not loose on any part of your body.
The last thing you want is to start slipping through your harness halfway through your climb.
As you can see, rock climbing safety is a serious concern. We hope that we have been able to summarize some of the most crucial tips for staying safe during your climb. Let us know what you think down in the comments section.