Climbing is an exciting and diverse activity. Originally carried out as training for mountaineering many modern climbers however will never set out to summit a major peak instead enjoying the challenge of climbing itself.
There are several distinct types of climbing they are:
Bouldering started off as a way to train and or warm up for climbing but has now become popular in it's own right with some climbers (boulderers) who specialise in this type of climbing alone. Bouldering is quite simply climbing hard moves just a few metres of the ground. Often with a Bouldering mat (a small crash mat) bellow to soften your landing and/or a spotter. A spotter is somebody who guides your fall away from a dangerous landing towards your bouldering matt. There main job is to protect your head. If you have a good internet connection the video on this website will give you a good idea of what bouldering is all about.
This type of climbing is very popular in Europe (except the UK). It is where bolts are pre-bolted into the cliff inorder to guarantee the safety of the climber. This allows the climber to climb hard routes safely.
Trad or Traditional
Trad is where the climber climbs a route using protection that won't leave any trace of being climbed. This can consist small wedges of metal that are jammed in cracks called nuts after the originals that were just nuts with some cord route them (although crude this method is still effective or at least I'm still here). Other popular forms of protection include camming devices and slings. Trad is a lot more dangerous than sport as equipment needs to be carefully placed and a placement is not guaranteed.
This is when a route is climbed without any form of protection with the exception of deep water soloing (DWS) where the ocean or lake may provide some protection.
there are many ways of getting involved in this exciting sport. the best way is to join a local climbing club where for a pint or two you can persuade an experienced climber to teach you the ropes. This is by far the best way to get involved as this will open up a large number of climbing partners and give you access to people with local knowledge. Another way to get started is through your local climbing wall. Most walls have programs to teach you the basics and all good walls have a program to get you climbing outside. The British mountaineering council who look after the interest of climbers is the best place to look inorder to locate your local wall or club. if the above don't suit you you can hire a private guide or go on a set course.
The website has become outdated so I'm working on adding new content from my recent expedition/the last 3 years and am having the site redesigned so check it out on a few weeks time.
- I've been playing in the Himalayas check out Steffi's blog
- I'm now available for public speaking
- Check out Jon's diving website
- I've just returned from the UAE for some winter action. I plan to return early Feb.
- My attempt to be the first to circumnavigate the Musandam peninsular in Oman ended for me in deportation. Here is a link to the trips facebook page.
- I've just spent few epic days climbing in Scotland. Here is a link to Steve's article on the trip.
- Visit my Old News