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Wade Bieber



Basic, But It Holds Up

Nice Catch
Feels Good, Ties Well
Very Basic
I’ve used it a ton

This was my first rope, and I have used it extensively around the country. It has proved it's worth, but it is really a "first rope" product.

I have loved using this rope while learning to lead climb. It is a workhorse rope. This allowed me to top rope off of it when a friend would lead something above my level, and we didn't need to worry about extra wear on a thin rope. It also feels very sturdy, and as a new leader, that extra millimeter of confidence makes a difference in your headspace.

However, it is a new climber's rope. This is a good rope, manufactured to be affordable and provide an economically sound, and very safe, introduction to climbing. There is no middle marker. There is no dry treatment. I got a 60 meter. All of this, because I only needed it for relatively short single pitch climbing. It wasn't done in poor weather (usually), and it wasn't being used for multipitch. Since starting climbing, I have moved on to multipitch, and I do find myself climbing even under the threat of rain. Because of this, I now need a 70 meter, bi-color, dry treated rope. That said, a new climber does not need that rope. I have taken this up a multipitch trad route in Yosemite, and it performed well, because I knew it would be long enough. I still love this rope for runs up a sport climb or a short trad climb in Joshua tree. It is the only rope I don't feel bad rigging for a long session of top roping for new climbers my wife and I take outside. If you outgrow the rope before you wear it out, it will continue to serve you well. And there is nothing wrong with that.

Bottom line, I recommend this rope to anyone looking to buy a first rope as a new climber, or for a passionate young climber you love taking to the gym (Thanks go out to my mom and dad for supporting me when our climbing gym was 35 minutes away and I wanted to go all the time). It will make a great rug when retired too. Or clothes line.


Legitimately my Favorite Carabiner

Strong Gate Action
Strong Sleeve Spring
Durable Metals (Don't Groove Too Fast)...
Tested to Higher Standards than USA Companies
Hard to find in USA
I’ve used it a ton

KONG is a remarkable Italian manufacturer. Both their hard and soft goods are wonderful.

I have retired one of these carabiners, and now have two more of this type, and one extra large. Their gates have a wonderful action. The one I had to retire was used as my main belay and rappel biner for 8 years, and the gate never once failed to close fully on its own, and it has been put through a lot. My new ones are just a good, and I will continue to buy from Kong.


Metolius Session Pad

Great for Dirtbag Sleeping

Comfy Bed
I’ve used it a ton

First crashpad. I have two of them now. They work great. You can also stuff them full of things like ropes and harnesses for the hike in. Also great for sleeping.

GriGri 2

Petzl GriGri2 Gray

Its never lazy.

Saves lives, even when you don't...
Not too heavy
Wide range of ropes
Smaller and Lighter than first model
Isn't Cheap (But I say Worth It)...
I’ve used it a bunch

Got this about 4 years ago, and love the functionality. It is great for multipitch when you might have to pay attention to many other factors on the wall. I even use it for sport, just make sure you know what you are doing. Read up on the Petzl approved belay method, and stick to it. If you practice, it works exceedingly well and is efficient.

I think that this is an important piece of equipment that you should have if you can afford it. And you should make an effort to afford it.

ATC Guide 2018

Black Diamond
Black Diamond ATC Guide Green

Go-To Manual Life Saver

Variable Friction
Guide Belay Setup Option
Can be Rigged to create and Auto-Blocking Setup
Newer Designs are very light
None in my opinion
I’ve used it a ton

This is a wonderful device. I have been using it for years for belay and rapel, and have just started learning how to take full advantage of it's guide features. I love it.

My model is older, so it doesn't have the cut-outs. This means there are lighter ones on the market than mine, and there one ones lighter than the current design. I have not personally used them. I can only recomend this one. It is durable, light enough, and a design that has stood the test of time all over the world.

Most people will not need the guide features, but its worth having them if you think you might venture into that realm (multipitch or big wall).


Misty Mountain
Misty Mountain Intrepid

Been Saving My Life For 10 Years

Ridiculously Durable
High Quality, yet Affordable
Generally Comfortable
Made in the USA, by Hand
Can be Customized when Purchased Direct
None. Read on for situational shortcomings.
I’ve used it a ton

This was my first harness, and it will be ten years old next month, and therefore, I must retire it. I am a guide in Northern California, so I have to be "responsible" or something like that and not ever use it again after replacement. It started life in a gym in Southwest Indiana, and then saved my life many times while I learned to lead outdoors in Southern Illinois. Then it rested for a few years in college while I took a sorrowful break fromm climbing. Jump to my move out to California in 2015, when my climbing picked back up for my last two years of college. The harness is still kicking, still saving my life in Joshua Tree, Yosemite, and the Tahoe area, and I still love it. Here is why, after ten years, we have a good relationship.

The harness stood up to years of use, and it being retired because of age, not wear.
This harness has been comfortable in pretty much every situation I faced in climbing so far. 
It has enough room to rack for moderate multipitch.
Its made in the USA, 
Mine is old and has double back buckles, which never creep. I love that. 

Here is the only downside I have found with my harness. It is not going to be comfortable on big wall or even any longer multipitch if there are hanging belays. Now, I don't list this as a con because anyone with an understanding of the demands of big wall or hanging belay climbs knows this. Mine also is an older harness model, and edge tape design on harnesses wasn't common yet. So don't count this against the harness. That would be like being upset that your 2003 Camry wasn't a good off-roading vehicle. It just wasn't made with that in mind.

Misty Mountain is a wonderful company. Their harnesses have kept up with technology, and having tried on some of their current models in search of a replacement, I am still very impressed with their products. I highly recomend them. 

I will be replacing this harness with a Cadillac from Misty Mountain, with the old double back buckles. I also will order direct from them. By doing so, they offer to stitch in a second belay loop and an extra gear loop for ten bucks each. As a guide, and for big wall, that will come in handy.