Rock Climbing: so You Want to be a Rock Climber?

By: Len Q.


– Free Solo Climbing. This is also called free soloing. It is the most advanced form of rock climbing. The climber uses nothing for protection. No anchor points, no belay, no rope and no harness. If he falls, he falls unencumbered all the way down. It’s quite frightening. Accidents, in this case, are tragic. You’ve got to be fit, skilled and have great emotional and psychological control to do this successfully. Be more than ready. Be extremely more than ready. Your life depends on it.

If you decide to free solo, be very weary of the weather. The climbing may be going just fine and then it rains. This could prove fatal to this kind of climber. Dry, sunny days are what you want. Don’t risk your life.

– Deep water soloing. The only “safe” method of free soloing is deep water soloing. This is climbing done on sea cliffs over water. While falling into the ocean beneath a cliff face seems better than falling on hard ground, it isn’t particularly safe. You’ve got to be aware of the tides and of prevailing wave action, of submerged boulders or coral islands. Not only that but, if you’re climbing more than 80 feet above the surface of the water, the impact alone could prove fatal. Mind your elevation.

Indoor Climbing. This designation is for all rock climbing done indoors. Climbing is done on man-made rock climbing walls. Any style is permitted, although not free soloing. You’re required to wear and use all safety gear. This would be the safest and most recommended way to learn how to rock climb.

There you have it, all the ways to rock climb. It could be a highly dangerous activity where you risk your life at every moment. Or it could be very safe and protected without worry. Just use caution at all times. And, please, don’t ever climb outdoors alone. You know you’re just asking for it.

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