Ever imagined the thrill and pride of standing on top of the world? Impossible as it may seem, countless people have achieved it by bracing themselves, toughening their endurance and setting out on the mission of Rock Climbing.
Scores of natural rock formations exist throughout the world and the aim of rock climbing is to reach the peak using pre-defined trails. The task is accomplished only when you reach the base after climbing to the zenith and back. Physical and mental strength, balance, agility and forbearance are challenged in this thrilling extreme adventure sport. The descent is usually trickier than the ascent as it is steep. It is usually done in pairs as one climber belays the lead climber. Here is the beginners guide to rock climbing.
Two types of rock climbing exist.
- Outdoor – Usually outdoor rock climbing is carried out on sunny days on natural rock formations. Wet days are avoided as the surface becomes slippery and getting a tight grip becomes difficult.
- Indoor – This activity is carried out indoors using artificial walls and artificial rock formations. It is ideal for beginners and can be performed any time of the day. It is usually seen in shopping malls where an artificial wall with holds, supports and cracks helps you reach the top and as you progress, the difficulty increases.
Rock Climbing Gear
Rock Climbing is incomplete without the right kind of sports accessories. Highly essential and recommended gear and equipment to facilitate this exhilarating extreme adventure are
- Rope: Tough and durable rope is the most essential as it is imperative to be strong to carry the weight of the person.
- Harnesses: Refers to padding strapped to a person to protect the body. The rope is locked to the harness using buckles.
- Shoes: Specially designed to suit the terrain of rocks.
- Locking Carabiners: Oval or D shaped, used to connect a rope to harness.
- Belay device: Main purpose is to stop a fall.
- Stoppers and Hexes: Manoeuvred where crevices and cracks are too small and fingers cannot fit.
- Backpack: Containing water and a little food to sustain.
- Ascenders and Descenders: Aids in climbing and smooth descending.
Safety & Precaution
A few safety checks to safeguard and protect climbers and to make the mission a success are
- Always climb with a professional if you are a beginner.
- Make certain that the rope is tied to two places on the harness.
- Ensure that the harness is double backed i.e. buckled twice.
- Don’t be in a hurry to start. Spend sufficient time checking for safety.
- Ensure you have a grip on your hands n legs before making a move.
- For the successful completion of the task, thorough knowledge of techniques, skill and familiarity with equipment is mandatory.
Best Rock Climbing Destinations in The World
- Canyon de Chelly, Arizona
- Dead Horse Point, Utahl Kalymnos Island, Greece
- Paarl Rock, South Africa
- Indian Creek, Utah
- Skaha Climbing Bluffs, British Columbia
- Matterhorn, Switzerland
- Mount Buffalo, Melbourne
- Mount Roraima, Brazil
- El Capitan, Yosemite National Park, California