Top 5 Sport Climbing WISH LIST Gear
I’ve been climbing for almost 3 years now my kit could use a little update. I’ve compiled a gear dream list. All products that I don't necessarily need but I feel I need in my life. Autumn is rolling in and I believe its send season! Temperatures are plummeting, as the days get shorter, so it's the perfect time to spend weekends at the crag trying to chase that next grade. I've been thinking of how I can update my sport climbing gear in order to have the ideal set up to send my project!
Let’s start off with ropes...
I always wanted to invest in a Beal Joker until I was at a crag one day and a friend leant me a Beal Opera 8.5. Is the lightest and thinnest single rope on the market. It’s triple rated, has Beal's UNICORE technology, and is available with Golden Dry (UIAA certified Dry) or Dry Cover. This rope is so ridiculously light that it feels like you’re climbing on a half rope. Handling it is smooth and easy to belay with. I’d specifically use it when I need to send a project and I want the lightest gear possible but it would be a fantastic rope for ice, alpine, and multi-pitch rock where weight is critical.
I’ve actually lost my GriGri so I’ve been belying with whichever auto-blocking device my partner has. I’ve tried the Edelrid Megajul, the Mammut Smart, the Climbing Technology Click-UP but the only belay device that stood out was the Black Diamond Pilot. If you already know how to use an ATC, the Pilot is such an intuitive belay device. Giving out rope is easy, lowering feels always controlled and in the hand, it feels pretty light compared to a GriGri. Plus after seeing this gear show I was sold on it!
I already have 3 different harnesses, one for alpine climbing, a sport climbing specific one, and a comfortable one to use on multi-pitches. However, I keep seeing all these climbing videos with the pros who have a Petzl Sitta. The S version comes in at 240 grams! That's super light, it's even lighter than my climbing shoes! However, this harness isn’t just for die-hard sport climbers, this really is an ultralight all-rounder. Excellent for trad climbing, and has all the essential gear loops for ice climbing, mountaineering, and alpine climbing. The construction is next level: it gives you the support and comfort that you need, thanks to its Wireframe Technology design. This technology provides optimal load distribution to avoid any pressure points. It's created with Bluesign fabric, this harness is helping to sustain the earth, as well as you on the rock.
My set of quickdraws is a mess! They are a combination of hand me downs and a couple of quickdraws I’ve found on routes… anyway I’ve had my eye on these DMM Alpha Sport quickdraws for a while now. Thick dogbone, easy to grab while working a route, solid gate carabiner for a quick clipping action, and a rubber keeper on the rope ensures the carabiner loads in its strongest orientation. The only downside (besides price) is the weight. It comes in at 112g per quickdraw which means they are not the lightest quickdraws you can have on your harness while on-sighting but would be great for working a project and hopefully making a redpoint.
It's 25 years to the month that Adam Wainwright made the first ascent of Melanchollie (8b) at Lower Pen Trwyn. The guidebook has it as August '92 but Adam assures us it was July. Being too hot the other day to get on her project @emmatwyford revisited this route she redpointed back in 2015. By the look of it '80s lycra tights are making a comeback but will men be wearing them this time round? @ray_wood
Last but not least climbing shoes!
I prefer to wear La Sportiva shoes although I've been testing a few others recently. Some of the best sport climbers in the world like Adam Ondra, Stefano Ghisolfi, and Margo Hayes are sponsored by them and rock this new La Sportiva Solution Comp.
I made it into the finals from the first place here in Briancon on the first (and possibly last one) World cup stage of the year! Qualifications went very smoothly as I was the only one to top out both qualification routes. Semifinal round was a super powerful route with pumpy headwall where we had a lot of question marks during the observation. Route that did not really show any mercy if you make a tiny mistake. The psyche and hunger for the competitions made it easier to deal with the pressure and I could make the same highpoint as @jakob.schubert just a few moves below the top. Then there was a bit of a drama as I was accused of stepping onto the bolt while toe-hooking (time 2:29:37 of YT lIFSC Livestream). Luckily our appeal was accepted and my score corrected. It was great to see more Czech climbers in the semifinals, 5 competitors made it into the semifinals and on the top of that, czech-speaking @rishat_khaibullin from Kazachstan, who ended up on solid 11th place. Final round is starting tonight at 7:30 PM, first women, then men. Pro Čechy je skvělá zpráva, že přenos bude i na České televizi od 19:30. @ifsclimbing #worldcup #briancon #sportclimbing @pet.phot
Even though the Solution Comp is made for competition climbing it also excels on the rock. Its midsole it's designed to support the foot while standing on small edges but it also has enough flex for smearing, making it a great shoe for bouldering and sport climbing. It's known to be a boulderers' favorite thanks to the giant rubber toe patch, but what I’m most excited about is the simpler heel design compared to the previous Solution. This new thinner heel should add a great amount of sensitivity to the shoe giving loads of feedback when heel hooking. Available in a men's and women's version which is a little softer because it is designed for lighter climbers.
KRYPTONITE 1999 It was a privilege to climb this route a few weeks ago. Thank you, @tommycaldwell, for the diverse and endless list of contributions you’ve made to our sport. Cheers to my friend, @paigeclaassen on her ascent as well! @thenorthface @petzl_official @stancesocks @lasportivana @frictionlabs
The obvious downside of all these products is...price. But this is a wish list! Perhaps I'll slowly upgrade with the items above as budget allows. I do believe in the concept of Quality over Quantity, and knowing that this gear will stand the test of time, which makes me seriously consider updating my rack... What's on your wish list?