How to Pack Rock Climbing Equipment Efficiently

How to Pack Rock Climbing Equipment Efficiently
Packing your rock-climbing gear should not only be an exciting routine but one that involves proper care and placement of the items. Ultimately every climber develops his own system of packing gear, but there are several things you can do to make the process easier. And if you are new to packing up all that gear, here are five tips on a system that works for many climbers.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Climbing Backpack
  • Climbing Backpack
Step 1
Prep your backpack by dumping out any stuff from the main compartment left from your last climbing trip. A proper pack for carrying rock-climbing equipment is one that can fit a climbing rope, helmet, extra clothing and pair of shoes, a harness and any climbing protection such as cams, nuts or chocks. Many packs are made specifically to hold a coiled rope over the top of the main compartment and under the lid, and some have a special stretchy pocket on the front or top for easy access to your helmet. A pack with bottom access is always helpful too.
Step 2
Pack extra clothes that you might need for your climb. Place these either in an accessible midsize pocket or in the bottom of your main compartment under your rope. After you take out everything else for the climb, these extra clothes should be about the only thing left in your pack and will be easily accessible.
Step 3
Coil your dynamic climbing rope before placing it in your pack. This way it will be kept neat and untangled and will be easier to flake out at the base of your climb. Place your rope either at the very bottom of your main compartment or on the top of your main compartment and under the lid.
Step 4
Pack your protective climbing gear, such as cams, nuts and chocks, on a rack. This can be done by slinging them together with carabiners on a sling of webbing (the cheap way) or by purchasing a fabricated padded shoulder rack piece and putting them on that. Whichever way you choose, make sure you don't just throw them loose into the main compartment of your backpack. Keeping them on a rack is a way to organize them by size and makes it easy to take them out of your pack all at once. Pack this jingling collection of metal on top of your rope and clothing.
Step 5
Pack your harness, helmet and sealed-up chalk bag toward the top of your backpack. Chalk bags fit nicely inside the dome of a helmet to save space. Pack any accessories such as athletic tape, gloves, first-aid kit, energy bars and extra carabiners in a smaller, easily accessible outer pocket.

Article Written By Naomi Judd

Naomi M. Judd is a naturalist, artist and writer. Her work has been published in various literary journals, newspapers and websites. Judd holds a self-designed Bachelor of Arts in adventure writing from Plymouth State University and is earning a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from the University of Southern Maine.

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