Best Climbing Ropes- Buying Guide & Reviews – The Adventure Gypsies


best climbing ropesClimbing ropes are some of the most important pieces of equipment used by climbers for both practical and safety purposes. However, there are many different types, lengths, and widths of climbing ropes and each is used for different types of climbing activities. It is important to buy the correct climbing rope to meet your needs. If you are buying climbing rope for the first time, the vast array of different ropes for climbing may seem confusing. Even experienced climbers can find choosing the best climbing ropes a tricky process simply because of the sheer volume of options. The reviews of the best climbing ropes available along with a buying guide will help you to maneuver your way through the decision-making process as it highlights all the factors you need to consider when making your decision.

Best Climbing Rope Reviews

As there are so many different sizes and types of climbing ropes that you can buy, the following are reviews of some of the best climbing ropes available. The climbing rope reviews are divided into categories to help you to choose the most suitable climbing ropes to meet your needs.

Overall Best Climbing Ropes

Winner: Mammut 9.5 Infinity Dry

Mammut - 9.5 Infinity Dry

Available in either blue or green, the Mammut 9.5 Infinity Dry is a popular choice among climbers and is widely considered one of the best all-around climbing ropes available. These single ropes are dry-treated, so they are suitable for a wide range of climbing activities in different conditions. They are also available in lengths of 30-meters to 80-meters, depending on your needs and the type of climbing activities you enjoy. The weight of these ropes is 59 grams per meter, so the overall weight depends on which length of rope you buy. They are made from top-quality nylon, which is a Bluesign approved fabric. These ropes have a fall rating 8-9 and impact force of 8.4 kilonewtons. The static elongation is 6.5% and the dynamic elongation is 30%. Overall, this is a low weight, high-performance, and versatile climbing rope.

Key Features:

  • 5mm diameter
  • Two colors and various length options
  • Top-quality nylon
  • 59 g/m
  • Good safety ratings

Buy Now From Amazon

Runner-Up: Petzl- ARIAL 9.5 mm, Single Rope for High-End Climbing

Petzl - ARIAL 9.5mm, Single Rope for High-End Climbing

A thin rope at just 9.5-millimeters, this is aimed at experienced climbers and it has an excellent balance between weight and performance. The rope undergoes the Duratec Dry Treatment process, so it is resistant to abrasion, water, and dirt. This makes it suitable for use in all conditions, including cold and wet weather. It is constructed in such a way that the core and the sheath are bonded together at the rope ends using a process called UltraSonic Finish. This improves the durability of the ropes and prevents them from developing frayed ends. The rope is also thermal treated with EverFlx to improve the consistency and to stabilize the core strands. This gives the rope more consistent handling over time and improves the rip. Each rope has a middle mark, which is a helpful feature during maneuvers. They are available in a choice of gold, orange, or black.

Key Features:

  • UltraSonic Finish bonded sheath and core
  • Dry-treated
  • Durable and versatile
  • Middle mark
  • Water, dirt, and abrasion resistant
  • Three color options

Buy Now From Amazon

Best Workhorse Climbing Rope

Winner: PETZL- Mambo Wall 10.1 Single Rope for Indoor Climbing

PETZL - Mambo Wall 10.1, Single Rope for Indoor Climbing

PETZL is one of the leading brands in the rock climbing equipment industry and this product is one of the best rock climbing ropes for indoor climbing and also one of the best climbing ropes for beginners. Intended for gym use, these ropes have handling characteristics that mean you will have good control during the learning phases. However, the durability of these ropes for climbing means they are also great for lead and top-rope climbing. A special thermal treatment called EverFlex is used during the production process and this improves consistency and stabilizes the core strands. These ropes feature a middle mark, and this facilitates maneuvers. The Mambo wall ropes have excellent safety ratings, with both a low static elongation and a low dynamic elongation. It has a fall rating of seven but will withstand more than double this. These ropes are available in various lengths between 30 and 200-meters and in either blue or green.

Key Features:

  • Best climbing rope for beginner
  • Durable
  • Thermal treated
  • Middle mark
  • Good safety ratings

Buy Now From Amazon

Runner-Up: Workhouse Climbing Rope- Sterling Rope Marathon Pro Climbing Rope

Sterling Rope Marathon Pro Climbing Rope

This Sterling climbing rope is one of the best all-around climbing ropes as it is suitable for a wide range of climbing activities.  It is an all-purpose certified single rope that is both versatile and durable. Made in the United States, these ropes are given Dry Core Treatment. This means they are suitable for using in various conditions outdoors. You can also use them indoors as they have a thicker diameter of 10.1-millimeters, which is ideal for gym climbing. Another great feature of these ropes in the bi-pattern as this makes it easy to identify the two halves and the midpoint of the ropes. These single ropes have a fall rating of 6 and an impact rating of 8.6 kilonewtons. They weigh 63 grams per meter and dynamic elongation of 35.3%.

Key Features:

  • Good safety ratings
  • All-purpose certified single rope
  • Versatile and durable
  • Dry Core Treatment
  • 1-millimeter diameter
  • Bi-pattern

Buy Now From Amazon

Best Medium Climbing Rope

Winner: Sterling Rope Evolution Velocity Climbing Rope

Sterling Rope Evolution Velocity Climbing Rope

Another fantastic option in the medium climbing rope category is this Sterling climbing rope. Available in five color options and in lengths ranging from 35 to 80-meters, this is one of the best medium ropes for climbing on the market. This single rope has a diameter of 9.8-millimeter and is intended for onsighting, redpoint attempts, and for long routes when both durability and low weight are important factors. These ropes have a stiff feel because Sterling decided this was important for reducing drag and easy clipping. Despite the durability of this rope, it is a lightweight rope thanks to a revamped core and sheath construction. They also have excellent safety rating with an impact force of 8.8 kilonewtons, static elongation of 8.6%, and dynamic elongation of 26.4%. A further feature of these ropes is the middle mark, which gives you guidance when climbing.

Key Features:

  • 8-millimeter medium thickness
  • Durable yet lightweight
  • Stiff feeling
  • A revamped sheath and core construction
  • Middle mark

Buy Now From Amazon

Runner-Up: BlueWater 9.9 mm Dynamic Climbing Rope- Double Dry

BlueWater Pulse 9.9mm Dynamic Climbing Rope - Double Dry

This medium single rope has a diameter of 9.9-millimeters. It is a firm rope because of its 40 carrier sheath construction and this extends the life of the rope. It holds its profile without flattening out so that it is easy to clip. They have an impact force of 7.8-kilonewtons and are lightweight considering the diameter range in which they fall. The fall rating is 7 and the ropes have static elongation of 8.4% and dynamic elongation of 35.5%. The sheath mass is 31% and the ropes have 0-millimeter sheath slippage. This affordable single dynamic rope for climbing has a double dry coat that may seem a little sticky initially but becomes less sticky with use. According to those who use these ropes, they are kinder to your hands than many of their competitors, even for those with sensitive hands.

Key Features:

  • Good sheath construction for extended life
  • Double dry coat
  • Kind on the hands
  • Easy to clip
  • Holds its profile

Buy Now From Amazon

Best Lightweight/ Thinnest Climbing Rope

Winner: PETZL- Volta 9.2 mm Ultralight Rope

PETZL - Volta 9.2 mm, Ultralight Rope

For climbers who want to keep the weight they carry to a minimum, this is the best lightweight rope available. It is made from top-quality materials and is manufactured by one of the leading brands in the climbing equipment industry. These ultralight rope measures just 9.2-millimeters in diameter and this allows for optimal functioning in the belay device. Despite the thinness and low weight of these ropes, they are unbelievably durable. This is partly because the ends of the ropes are bonded together using a process called UltraSonic Finish. This prevents frayed ends and increases the lifespan of your ropes. Another feature of these ropes is the Duratec Dry Treatment that makes the ropes water, dirt, and abrasion-resistant. This treatment also means that characteristics such as the handling and the grip are retained for longer in cold and wet conditions. Each rope has a middle mark, and this makes belaying more effective. A further feature of these ropes is the special thermal treatment called EverFlex. This improves consistency and stabilizes the core, while also improving the grip and handling.

READ  Best Climbing Shoes for Beginners - 19 Great Pairs Reviewed!

Key Features:

  • Ultra-lightweight and thin
  • Quality materials
  • Durable
  • Dry treated and thermal treated
  • Good grip and handling
  • Bonded ends
  • Middle mark

Buy Now From Amazon

Runner-Up: Beal Joker 9.1 mm Golden Dry Rope

Beal Joker 9.1mm Golden Dry Rope

Not only is this lightweight, but it is also one of the best sport climbing ropes. However, these ropes are just as suitable for many other climbing activities, including trad climbing, alpine climbing, and ice climbing. It is dry-treated using the Golden Dry process, and this makes it both abrasion and water-resistant. These lightweight ropes measure 9.1-millimeters in diameter and are available in 60-meter and 70-meter lengths. This is the only rope in the world that conforms to the norms and is certified for single, half, and twin dynamic ropes. This means that although it is a single rope, it also has the features of twin or half ropes. Traditional climbers will love the multi-purpose aspect of this rope, while extreme climbers will enjoy the smooth running and the lightness. Of all the ropes that are made by BEAL, this is their ultimate creation so far.

Key Features:

  • Ultralight
  • Conforms to all three dynamic rope norms
  • Multi-purpose
  • Dry-treated
  • Water and abrasion-resistant

Buy Now From Amazon

Best Climbing Rope for the Money

Winner: Sterling Rope Evolution Velocity Climbing Rope

Sterling Rope Evolution Velocity Climbing Rope

If the price of ropes is one of your biggest concerns and you want value for money, then the best cheap climbing rope is the Sterling Rope Evolution Velocity Climbing Rope. Already listed as one of the best medium climbing ropes, this Sterling climbing rope is clearly an option that will suit many people. These ropes have a diameter of 9.8-millimeters and are available in various lengths between 35-meters and 80-meters. One of the advantages of these ropes is the excellent safety rating. They can withstand an impact force of 8.8 kilonewtons, have a static elongation rating of 8.6%, and a dynamic elongation rating of 26.4%. These ropes are ideal for long routes where durability and low weight are important. They are also great for onsighting and redpoint attempts. The ropes are designed to feel a little stiff as this reduces the drag and makes clipping easier. You can buy these ropes in five color options, including turquoise, ice blue, neon green, orange, or purple.

Key Features:

  • Excellent safety ratings
  • Good value for the money
  • Easy clipping
  • Stiff feel for reduced drag
  • Color and length options

Buy Now From Amazon

Runner-Up: BlueWater Ropes 9.7-Millimeter Lightning Pro Double Dry Dynamic Single Rope

BlueWater Ropes 9.7mm Lightning Pro Double Dry Dynamic Single Rope 2

Another fantastic option for those who are looking for cheap climbing ropes is the Lightning Pro Double Dry Dynamic Single Rope by BlueWater Ropes. These ropes have a diameter of 9.7-millimeters, and they are available in various lengths. One of the best features of these ropes is the bi-pattern, which helps climbers to differentiate between the two halves of the rope and to identify the mid-point. Another benefit of choosing these ropes is that they have excellent safety ratings. The impact force rating is 7.9 kilonewtons, while the falls rating is 8. They have 8.5% static elongation and 34.9% dynamic elongation. The weight of these ropes is 61 grams per meter. The ropes have a Double Dy finish, which means they are water, dirt, and abrasion resistant. They are easy to clip, easy to handle, low bulk, lightweight, and high-performance. These ropes are suited to a range of climbing activities, including sport climbing to alpine routes.

Key Features:

  • Cheap climbing ropes
  • Bi-pattern
  • Double Dry finish
  • Water, dirt, and abrasion-resistant
  • Easy to clip and handle
  • Low bulk and lightweight
  • Versatile

Buy Now From Amazon

Best Gym Climbing Ropes

Winner: Sterling Slim Gym Climbing Rope- Blue 30 Meters

Sterling Slim Gym Climbing Rope - Blue 30M

One of the best gym climbing rope is this Sterling climbing rope. Sterling is a reputable brand that is known for producing quality products, and this gym climbing rope is a fine example of their wares. With a diameter of 10.1-millimeters, this is a thicker rope that is ideally suited to indoor climbing activities. They are perfect for testing your indoor lead skills and for practicing during the off-season. Therefore, you can enjoy climbing throughout the year and even in city environments. These low-cost ropes are produced to the highest standard and have excellent safety ratings. They have a UIAA falls rating of six and can withstand 8.6 kilonewtons impact force. The dynamic elongation rating for these ropes is 35.5%, while the static elongation is 8.4%. They have better abrasion-resistance than many other indoor climbing ropes from competitor brands.

Key Features:

  • Best gym climbing rope
  • 1-millimeter diameter
  • Excellent safety ratings
  • Low cost
  • Abrasion-resistant

Buy Now From Amazon

Runner-Up: TRANGO Gym Cuts 9.9-Millimeter Climbing Rope

TRANGO Gym Cuts 9.9mm Climbing Rope

The TRANGO Gym Cuts Climbing Rope is another great option if you are looking for the best gym climbing rope. These affordable and funky looking gym climbing ropes are available in either blue or pink. There is also the option to buy a 30-meter rope or a 40-meter rope. Both these lengths are sufficient for indoor climbing activities. TRANGO claims that these ropes are just as good as their pro-performing outdoor lead ropes in terms of how they glide and feed. Although these are designed for indoor use, you can also use them for shorter outdoor routes. The ropes have a diameter of 9.9-millimeters, and they weigh 62.6 grams per meter. The fall rating for these ropes is seven, and the impact force is 7.9 kilonewtons. Each rope has a sheath dry finish that increases the lifespan of the ropes.

Key Features:

  • Good length
  • Funky colors
  • Great glide and feed
  • Low cost
  • Also suitable for short outdoor routes

Buy Now From Amazon

Other Recommended Climbing Ropes

There are many other fantastic ropes available for different purposes, and each of these has its own pros and cons. Here are reviews for eight more of the best climbing ropes.

1. Black Diamond 9.9-MIllimeter Climbing Rope

Black Diamond 9.9 Mm X 60M Climbing Rope

This rope is available in 35-meter, 40-meter, 60-meter, and 70-meter options. They are designed for heavy use throughout the year, so they are a versatile and multifunctional option. The 9.9-millimeter diameter is thick enough to meet various climbing needs. This is an affordable option that may suit beginners, but also has all the features that an experienced climber would need or expect. These single dynamic ropes have a standard sheath with a slippage rating of 0. They weight 64 grams per meter and have a UIAA fall rating of six. In terms of other safety ratings, these ropes have good results. The impact force is 8.4 kilonewtons, the static elongation is 7.6%, and the dynamic elongation is 32%. Overall, these ropes perform well both indoors and outdoors. Customers who have bought this product think it is good value for the money.

Key Features:

  • Good value
  • Decent safety ratings
  • 9-millimeter diameter
  • Indoor and outdoor use
  • 64 grams per meter

Buy Now From Amazon

2. BlueWater Ropes 10.2-Milimeter Eliminator Standard Dynamic Single Rope

BlueWater Ropes 10.2mm Eliminator Standard Dynamic Single Rope

Usually, ropes with a diameter of over 10-millimeters are heavy, but that is not the case with these dynamic single ropes by BlueWater Ropes. Although the diameter is 10.2-millimeters, they weight just 64 grams per meter. For this reason, they have become the rope of choice among climbers who want to shed some weight when they set out on their climbing adventures. These ropes have a standard finish, a sheath mass of 34%, and 4-millimeter sheath slippage. They also have excellent safety ratings as the UIAA falls rating is eight, and the low impact force is 8.1 kilonewtons. The dynamic elongation is 34% and the static elongation is 7.5%. These ropes can withstand heavy usage, and climbers who use them say they find them easy to handle. Overall, this is a thick but lightweight rope that offers versatility that serious climbers will love.

Key Features:

  • Thick but lightweight
  • Standard finish
  • Excellent safety ratings
  • Easy to handle
  • Withstands heavy usage

Buy Now From Amazon

3. Elderid Python 10.0-Millimeter Dynamic Climbing Rope

Edelrid Python 10.0mm Dynamic Climbing Rope

Elderid is a brand that has manufactured ropes since 1863, so it is one of the longest-standing rope manufacturers in the business. This is one of the best climbing ropes for beginners as the manufacturers describe this single dynamic rope for climbing as entry level. These high-quality ropes are treated with Therma Shield, which makes them easier to handle and makes the sheath resistant to abrasion. They are very strong, and they weigh 64 grams per meter. You can choose between 60-meter or 70-meter rope lengths. The safety ratings of these ropes are good as they have a fall rating of seven and an impact force of 8.9 kilonewtons. The dynamic elongation is 33%| while the static elongation is 10%. They are 3D lap coiled so that you can use your rope straight away without worrying about it tangling or kinking.

READ  Best Climbing Harness for Beginners - Buying Guide & Reviews!

Key Features:

  • Reputable brand
  • Therma Shield treated
  • Abrasion-resistant
  • 9 kN impact force
  • 3D lap coiled

Buy Now From Amazon

4. Edelweiss Curve Arc 9.8-Millimeter Rope

Edelweiss Curve Arc 9.8mm Rope

Available in 60-meter or 70-meter lengths, this rope has a diameter of 9.8-millimeters. This is one of the best ropes for sport climbing and trad climbing, although they are a multifunctional rope that you can use for various activities. These single dynamic ropes have a bi pattern weave. This helps the climber to distinguish between the two halves of the rope. It also clearly marks the midpoint of the rope better than a simple midpoint marker. They are high-performing and dependable ropes that will withstand heavy usage. Another feature of these ropes is the HD cover. These Unicore ropes are also easy and comfortable to useand have a weight of 61 grams per meter. They have one of the highest falls ratings in this list as the test results show that they can withstand nine falls and have an impact force of 8.1 kilonewtons. These ropes are certified by both UIAA and CE.

Key Features:

  • Great for sport and trad climbing
  • Bipattern weave
  • Dependable and high-performing
  • HD cover
  • CE and UIAA certified
  • 61 g/m

Buy Now From Amazon

5. Sterling Rope 10 Millimeter Safety Pro Climbing Rope

Sterling Rope 10 Millimeter Safety Pro Climbing Rope

This is one of the best climbing ropes as it is made by a reputable brand and has many features that will appeal to people who use rope in a professional capacity. They are available in three colors, including red, black, and blue. These ropes are also available in three sizes, which include the standard 60-meter rope, the smaller 51-meter rope, and the extra-long 200-meter rope for climbing. They are intended for use in either rescue situations or for working environments. These ropes are manufactured to the highest standard to ensure they meet the demands of those who use them. Measuring 10-millimeter diameter, these ropes have a balanced construction. This means they are ideal for light rescue loads that use the plaquette method, anchor systems, taglines, and rappelling. Despite the heavy-duty nature of these ropes, they are relatively lightweight at 62.5 grams per meter. They are a super strong and durable option for work and rescue purposes.

Key Features:

  • Strong and durable
  • Work and rescue climbing ropes
  • Balanced construction
  • Length and color options available

Buy Now From Amazon

6. Sterling Rope Fusion Nano IX Dry Climbing Rope

Sterling Rope Fusion Nano IX Dry Climbing Rope

You can choose between 70-meter rope length or 80-meter rope length, and between blue, orange, or purple when you buy the Sterling Rope Fusion Nano IX Dry Climbing Rope. This is a thin and lightweight rope with a diameter of nine millimeters and a weight of 52 grams per meter. It is a popular choice among climbers who enjoy activities where rope drag is potentially an issue because this rope is designed to reduce this problem. Some activities to which this rope is ideally suited include long routes, alpine climbs, and extended expeditions. This shows the versatility of this triple-certified rope. These ropes are also dry-treated to give the ropes some water and abrasion-resistance. In terms of safety, these ropes have an impact force of 8.5-kilonewtons, static elongation of 7%, and dynamic elongation of 33.1%.

Key Features:

  • Length and color options
  • Dry treated
  • 9-millimeter diameter
  • Reduces drag
  • Triple-certified

Buy Now From Amazon

7. BEAL Tiger 10-Millimeter UNICORE Dry Cover Climbing Rope

BEAL Tiger 10 mm X 70 m UNICORE Dry Cover Climbing Rope

The Dry Cover dry treatment of these single dynamic ropes means that they are resistant to dirt, abrasions, and water. Therefore, they are a durable option with a decent lifespan. With a 10-millimeter diameter, this rope is the perfect example of an all-around performance cord. It is ideal for auto-locking belay devices and it is easy to clip. This means that these ropes are ideal for either climbing in the gym or sessions at the sport crag. Thanks to the dry treatment, it is suitable for year-round use and is just as good for alpine adventures and wet ice routes. These ropes use UNICORE technology in the construction, and this addresses the problem of slippage and wrinkles. The static elongation of these ropes is 10%, while the dynamic elongation is 37%. They are available in either green or fuchsia and the rope length is 70-meters.

Key Features:

  • Dry Cover dry treatment
  • UNICORE technology
  • Durable and long-lasting
  • Multi-purpose

Buy Now From Amazon

8. Sterling Rope Rock Gym 10.4-Millimeter Climbing Rope

Sterling Rope Rock Gym 10.4mm Climbing Rope Red 30M

Designed specifically for use in indoor climbing gyms, these ropes are a sturdy and durable option. With a diameter of 10.4-millimeters, these thick dynamic ropes have had their sheath construction improved more than any other ropes that are made by Sterling Ropes. One advantage of this is that the sheaths have zero slippage. The ropes are available in 40-meter or 100-meter lengths, depending on how you intend to use the rope and in what setting. Of all the gym climbing ropes on the market, this is one of the most affordable options. Although the ropes feel sturdy, they are lightweight compared to many other ropes with the same diameter. Climbers who use these ropes say they are easy to handle and have plenty of stretch with a good stop. Overall, this rope is one of the best rock climbing ropes for use at a climbing gym.

Key Features:

  • Sturdy and durable
  • Improved sheath construction
  • Zero slippage
  • Affordable option
  • Easy to handle

Buy Now From Amazon

How to Choose a Climbing Rope- A Buying Guide

When choosing climbing ropes, there are many factors to consider so that you can make sure you make the right decision. The following are some of the points you should think about before buying climbing ropes.

Types of Ropes

The most important thing to understand before even beginning to choose your climbing ropes is the different types of climbing ropes available. The main options include:

  • Single ropes- These are the most commonly bought and used type of rope for climbing. They are marked with a circled number one on the end of each rope and this indicates that you should use them alone and not with another rope. Single ropes come in various lengths and diameters and each is suitable for different climbing activities. However, they are usually used for trad climbing, top roping, or big-wall climbing. An advantage of single ropes is that they are easier to handle than a two-rope system. Single ropes are sometimes also rated as either half ropes or twin ropes
  • Half ropes- The most suitable uses for half ropes are trad climbing on wandering multi-pitch rock routes, mountaineering, or ice climbing. If you are using half ropes, they are always used in conjunction with another half rope. One rope is clipped to the protection on one side of you and the other rope is attached to the protection on the other side so that the two ropes run parallel. Compared to dingle ropes, the advantages of a half rope are that it reduces rope drag on wandering routes and you can go twice as far while rappelling. Also, you have some back-up if one rope gets damaged in a fall. The downsides of a half rope are that they require more effort and skill to manage and they have a greater combined weight than that of a single rope. It is important to note that half ropes are made in pairs and you should not mix brands or sizes.
  • Twin ropes- You would usually use twin ropes for ice climbing, mountaineering, or trad climbing on non-wandering multi-pitch rock routes. These are like half ropes in the sense that they involve using a two-rope system. Unlike half ropes, you always clip both ropes through both pieces of protection like single ropes. Usually, twin ropes are thinner than half ropes and this means a system using these ropes is less bulky and lighter. Compared to single ropes, they have several advantages, including going twice as far and having a spare rope if one gets damaged. On the downside, they take more effort and skill. Also, they are heavier than a single rope. Like half ropes, they are designed in pairs and you should never mix brands or sizes.
  • Static ropes- The final type of rope to consider is static ropes. These ropes for climbing are usually used for caving, rescue work, hauling loads, and climbing fixed lines with ascenders.
  • Workhorse ropes- This is just another name for the thicker, single ropes for climbing, and it is not a separate type of rope.

Rope Diameters and Their Uses

The diameter of the rope can also make a difference in how you can use it and its pros and cons. Some points to consider are:

  • In most cases, the smaller the diameter, the lighter the rope.
  • Thinner ropes are less durable, and you need greater skill to belay with them.
  • Thicker ropes can usually withstand more frequent use and have better abrasion-resistance.
READ  13 Best Climbing Quickdraws - Buying Guide & Reviews - The Adventure Gypsies

The following is a guide to the different diameters available and their uses:

  • Single ropes less than or equal to 9.4-millimeters- These are ideal for long multi-pitch climbs as they are very lightweight. However, they are less durable, harder to handle, and they are not rated to hold as many falls as thicker ropes. A climber needs experience and skill to use skinny ropes because they move so quickly through belay devices.
  • Single ropes between 9.5 and 9.9-millimeters- These are good for all-around-use, including both sport climbing and trad climbing. They are durable enough for top-roping, while still light enough to carry them into the mountains. Ropes of this size are easier to handle and more durable than skinny ropes.
  • Single ropes above 10-millimeters- Ropes of this size are best-suited to big-wall climbing, gym climbing, top roping, and figuring out moves on sport routes. This is because ropes wear out faster during these styles of climbing, so a thicker and more durable rope makes sense.
  • Half, twin, and static ropes- Usually, twin ropes have a diameter between seven and eight millimeters, while half ropes typically have a diameter between eight and nine millimeters. In most cases, static ropes measure between nine and 13-millimeters. However, this is usually stated as a fraction of an inch, such as 7/16.

Rope Lengths and Their Uses

Climbing ropes are usually between 30 meters and 80 meters and standard ropes are 60 meters. In most circumstances, a 60-meter rope will meet your needs.

  • Indoor climbing ropes- For indoor climbing, you generally need shorter ropes, so 35-meters ropes are commonly used for indoor routes while gym climbing. It is important to make sure that the ropes are long enough to lower a climbing from the climbing route.
  • Outdoor climbing ropes- To decide on the length of rope you need for outdoor climbing, you must know the length of your route. You need double the length of your climbing route so that you can climb up and then be lowered back down from another anchor at the top. For example, you need a 60-meter rope for a 30-meter climb. However, you may need a 70-meter rope for some modern sport-climbing routes.
  • Static ropes- These ropes are often sold by the foot instead of the meter and this means you can get the exact length you need. They come in various lengths to meet the needs of the activity, whether this is caving or rescue work. If you are climbing in a new area and need static ropes, you should either consult a guidebook or speak to other climbers about the length you need.


Another consideration is the weight of the rope, especially for longer climbs. Some points to consider include:

  • Thinner ropes are usually lighter than thicker ropes.
  • The core construction of a rope can sometimes make thinner ropes heavier than thicker ropes.
  • Regardless of the length of the rope, you can easily compare their weights. This is because the weight is listed as grams per meter.
  • To calculate the overall weight of a rope, you should multiply the grams per meter by the length of the rope.
  • Static ropes are slightly different as their weight is given as grams per foot.

Safety Ratings

Safety is one of the predominant functions of a climbing rope, so all ropes are tested for their safety levels before they are sold. The safety standards are set by the Union Internationale des Associations d’ Alpinisme (UIAA). This is the international mountaineering and climbing federation. If you look at the packaging of dynamic climbing ropes, you will see the test results listed for different aspects of safety, and these can help you to choose a rope for climbing. Some of the test results may include the following:

  • Fall rating- This is one of the most important tests as it shows how many falls a rope can take before it will fail. It is only a comparative value that is given because the falls in lab conditions use greater force than real-life situations. The ropes are tested by dropping weights on to them, and different weights are used for different types of ropes. The higher the rope rating, the more falls it can withstand. However, other factors can impact the damage to your rope. If you detect rope damage, you should consider retiring the rope, regardless of the number of falls.
  • Impact force- This is the amount of force that is put on the falling weight during the first fall during UIAA testing and it is measured in kilonewtons. If the number is low, it indicates that there is less force on the climber, belayer, and gear during a fall. The lower the impact forces, the softer the landing on the rope if you fall. The downside to this is that lower impact forces usually come with greater stretch and this is less efficient if you are top roping. There is a direct correlation between the impact force and the dynamic elongation as higher dynamic elongation means a lower impact force.
  • Static elongation- This is the amount that a dynamic rope will stretch with a weight of 80 kilograms hanging from it, and it is sometimes called working elongation. Static elongation on half ropes cannot exceed 12 percent of the total rope length, while it cannot exceed 10 percent. This safety rating is most important for climbing fixed ropes with ascenders, hauling gear, and top-rope climbing. If the static elongation is high, it means the rope is less efficient and energy is wasted when the rope stretches.
  • Dynamic elongation- This is the distance that the rope stretches during the first fall of testing. A lower number is better because higher elongation means a longer fall. There are pros and cons to each as a lower number means that the rope may prevent a fall because it has less stretch. On the other hand, it also means that there is more impact on the climber, belayer, and gear.


There are some features of ropes that can make a difference to their ease of use and their performance. Some features to look out for include:

  • Middle mark- This is the mark made from black dye that helps you to identify the half-way point along the rope when you are rappelling.
  • Bicolor- A bicolor rope has two different weave patterns that mark the two halves of the rope. This helps you to identify the middle mark. This is better than having a simple black middle mark as these can fade and are sometimes difficult to see.
  • End warning marks- Some ropes have a mark made from thread or dye that acts as a warning that you are close to the end of the rope. These marks are useful if you are lowering a climber or you are rappelling.
  • Dry treatment- A rope is heavier if it absorbs water. In turn, this makes it less able to withstand the forces of a fall. If a rope absorbs water and it freezes, it becomes unmanageable and stiff. Climbing rope manufacturers have resolved this problem by dry treating ropes. This process reduces the amount of water a rope can absorb. Ropes that are dry-treated are usually more expensive than ropes that do not have this treatment. Therefore, you need to carefully decide whether you really need this feature or not. You probably do not need these ropes if you sport climb because most sport climbers pack up and go home in the rain. Dry-treated ropes are ideal for mountaineering, ice climbing, and multi-pitch trad climbing.


There are climbing ropes available at various prices, from a cheap climbing rope to expensive ropes for climbing. Therefore, there are many options available. As the price is one of the biggest considerations for people when they are deciding which ropes to buy. In terms of the price, you should think about the following:

  • The price of climbing ropes depends on the brand, the length, the materials, the diameter, the safety ratings, the type of rope, and any extra features.
  • The price does not always reflect the quality of the ropes and you can sometimes get excellent climbing ropes at a low price. However, you should not put price as a priority above the safety and quality of climbing ropes.
  • You can often save money when buying climbing ropes if you buy them online and not from a bricks-and-mortar store. Online retailers have fewer overheads and this is often reflected in the lower price of their products.
  • Shopping for climbing ropes online also gives you the chance to compare products, prices, and reviews. This means you can get the best products at the best prices.

The Final Verdict

Climbing ropes are some of the most important pieces of equipment needed by every climber. There are different types, lengths, and thicknesses of available, and each is suited to different climbing activities. Some ropes also have additional features that differentiate them from their competitors. As ropes play such a major role in your safety while climbing, it is essential that you take the time to check what you will need and compare the products available. By doing this, you will improve your chances of finding the best climbing rope to meet your needs in your price range.

Content Protection by

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *