Tagged: climbing

Extreme Solutions for Extreme Conditions

When undertaking “normal” activity, that is in essence what we would describe as everyday life, our instinct is usually to travel as lightly as possible. Generally speaking heavy clothing will make us slower, more tired and less agile. This is why most sports involve some form of “kit” which is appropriate to the activity in question. At the light end we swim wearing one solitary item of clothing and play field sports often wearing shorts and a short sleeved shirt.

Climbing however, in its various forms, is not a normal sport in the sense that the objective is to complete an assignment successfully whilst remaining safe at all times. It is seldom a race, and even when time is a factor it is never placed ahead of safety. Making the wrong choices could result in serious trouble and, in extreme instances, even death. Being properly equipped is not a choice, it is an obligation.

Outdoor Research

One company manufacturing various items of climbing gear is Outdoor Research, which describes itself as “an outdoor gear company focused on creating functional solutions for human powered adventure”.

“Functional solutions” in this instance refers to heavy duty balaclavas, gaiters, fleece beanies, cold weather suits and ski gloves. The challenge is to employ modern materials and designs in making products which are as light as is possible without compromising on their ability to successfully discharge their role. For instance balaclavas worn when climbing are not merely the light woollen items protecting the ears that we see some children wearing to school on cold days, but rather a carefully constructed solution involving maximum face coverage and neck gaiter with warm synthetic material for ultimate protection even in sometimes perilous conditions.

Keep a Warm Head

Retaining warmth to the head is one of the most important factors in adventure sports, and as well as being small and light headwear is so easy to adjust, add or discard according to circumstances and to individual preference.

Similarly gloves for climbing need to be so much more than a simple means of keeping the fingers warm. Instead they strike a calculated balance between insulation and dexterity, with ample nylon lining and a waterproof insert.

Outdoor Research’s ultimate warmth-giver is a one-piece, all in one winter Saturn suit that is often worn underneath more standard outdoor gear for climbing. Made from nylon and Lycra it is highly breathable in spite of its heavy appearance, and is ambitiously guaranteed by the manufacturer to last forever.

Article brought to you by David, a keen rock climbing enthusiast.

10 Terrific Rock Climbing Gyms in the USA

What if you lived near one of the top rock climbing gyms in the entire United States and didn’t even know it?

If you’re a rock climber, you’ll likely go into full-blown panic mode. How could I be so ignorant of basic cartography?, you’ll think.

But even if you’re not a rock climber, the prospect of living near a top rock climbing gym is a little enticing, isn’t it? After all, if living near one of the top rock climbing gyms in the USA made you feel a little like taking up rock climbing, maybe it’s a hobby worth exploring further.

Is one of these top rock climbing gyms near you?

1. Climbmax. Climbers not only built this, but they designed it as well, right here in Tempe, AZ. Being family people, they have a children’s area, to boot. Upstairs bouldering features cracks, dihedrals, aretes, and caves. A super bouldering cave is two stories high and it has fifteen thousands square feet of climbing area along with extreme rope climbing.

2. Paradise Rock Gym. With a name like “Paradise,” it’d better live up to the billing. This rock gym in Denver, Colorado not only features reasonable day-pass rates, but offers almost 10,000 square feet of terrain for you to get the most of your dollar.

3. Hangar 18. Actually a series of gyms in Southern California – locations include Upland, Riverside, and Southbay – Hangar 18 clocks in at an astounding 37,000 square feet of bouldering, making it a roomy place to enjoy your rock climbing with some degree of indoor privacy. That is, of course, unless the secret’s out.

4. Solid Rock Gym. Solid Rock is the Hangar 18 of San Diego, which still technically makes it southern California but deserves a listing of its own. With three large lead areas and four bouldering areas, the Solid Rock Gym series offer a number of great locations for kicking some rock.

5. Planet Granite. San Francisco’s contribution to the list is a most worthy addition particularly because it’s so serious about the sport. Though the name of the gym might fool you, this is a great place even for the pros.

6. Planet Rock. We couldn’t leave out the Midwest; Ann Arbor’s Planet Rock offers self-belay routes and climbs, which is great for someone who wants a more private experience.

7. Rocksport. Kentucky might be more famous for its horses than its rock climbing, but you can’t deny the impact of the Rocksport Indoor Climbing Gym.

8. Climb Time. Not far from Rocksports in Louisville, Cincinatti, Ohio’s Climb Time is a well-reviewed rock climbing gym that rivals anything else you’ll see in the area.

9. Red Rock Climbing Center. You think Las Vegas wasn’t going to be on this list? Though it might be hard to reach unless you have your own car, the Red Rock is a great western climbing experience.

10. Brooklyn Boulders. Finally, there is a way to go rock climbing even if you live in Metropolis – and Brooklyn Boulders, hands down, is it.

Meg Jones works with a Phoenix, AZ locksmith company by the name of Phoenix Lock Master. Rapid service at competetive prices and always there when you need them. She loves the Arizona skies and beautifully picturesque landscapes.