Maybe one of the must overlooked pieces of gear while climbing in the gym is the beloved rope - diaper ... aka harness, for the uninformed. In my time as the gym's Retail Manager I have noticed that we tend to buy 10 different pairs of shoes before we even think about maybe replacing our harness. So with that in mind, maybe we should put a little more thought into that piece of gear that saves your life every time you fail at climbing — or succeed and now need down.
Buying climbing gear is not normally a casual ordeal. There's a reason stores like REI don't have a drive-through — there is a lot of time, and especially $$money$$ that goes into getting gear, so climbers will definitely use their acquired gear to an inch of its expiration date. But when that old gear eventually does wear out, disposing of it feels like just casually throwing $20s into the garbage disposal. But old, worn climbing gear is not safe, so there's gotta be a way to retire old gear that doesn't put you in mortal danger or consist of just throwing it in a Dumpster, right?
Another week and another shameless post reason why you should be signing up for our 12 Hours of Summit Suffering (as if you needed another reason), as brought to you by Retail Manager Trevor Whitis, aka guest blogger extraordinare.
As I illustrated in my previous post on the history of many climbing terms, climbing's past isn't the neat, sensible topic you'd read in a history book. Our ancestors were a nutty bunch, inventing words and gear on the fly, with little thought as to how much they were affecting the future of climbing, they were so into the now. Without these brave, often impulsive souls making the sport into what they wanted, we would not have many of the gear and phrases we readily have access to today.
Sometimes it's hard to see the forest for the trees, the details in the big picture — or, the little, essential climbing items through our mounds and mounds of climbing gear. It's fairly easy to gear up for a climbing sesh at the gym — harness; check, shoes; check, chalkbag; double check cuz I got TWO to choose from — but there are quite a few items we usually forget to keep handy, that aren't absolutely essential until you, holy crap, need them. Here's the quick and dirty list of the small stuff that you would want to keep in your bag at all times, to bust out and show off your preparedness, you little boy scout, at those times when you really need them most.