Climbing Course

Crag Climbing

Crag climbing course for the Bellingham Branch

Info
COVID-19: Learn about our most up-to-date guidance for participants and leaders on our COVID-19 Response page. All participants and leaders must agree to the COVID-19 Code of Conduct before participating in this Mountaineers course.

Course Description
The Crag Climbing course is designed to teach the skills, knowledge, and techniques needed to safely lead traditional routes on outdoor crags. Topics include safe use of active and passive protection needed for lead climbing in the crag environment, construction of safe anchor systems for top-rope/lead climbing, swinging leads on mid-5th class (5.4 - 5.8) multi-pitch climbs, belaying a partner from multiple directions, and rappelling in a variety of settings

The course consists of one hands-on Class for skill assessment/review, one one day field trip on basic anchors and belaying a second, and at least 2  weekend field trips. The Crag course is NOT an introductory climbing course.

Eligibility
The course is open to climbers age 16 and over.Prerequisites include the ability to CLIMB 5.7 or better outside or inside and Repelling. Knowledge of basic climbing knots, safe belay technique and setting and cleaning sport anchors is also required. Acceptance is based on meeting the course's prerequisites and acceptance of the course application by course leader. Other factors considered are based on past and current climbing experience. Students are screened to select those with the highest potential for course completion. The class size will be limited to 6 QUALIFIED applicants.

DOWNLOAD THE CRAG COURSE APPLICATION HERE. 

Please make sure that you are available for ALL field trips prior to sending your application. Students are required to be present for ALL field trips and there are no opportunities for make up. Please note this course requires each student to own or have access to their own rack of climbing gear.

Course Requirements
Course Activity Date Availability Leader
At the Anchor - Basic Skill Check
Mount Erie
Sat, Aug 21, 2021
Registration opens Aug 12; Instructor registration open now
6 participants
2 instructors
Leading on Rock 1 Field Trip
Leavenworth
Sat, Sep 4, 2021 -
Sun, Sep 5, 2021
Registration opens Aug 12; Instructor registration open now
6 participants
5 instructors
Leading on Rock 2 Field Trip
Squamish
Sat, Sep 18, 2021 -
Sun, Sep 19, 2021
Registration opens Aug 12; Instructor registration open now
6 participants
5 instructors

Additional badges needed to graduate

Completed

Roster
Required Equipment

Gear each student MUST HAVE for Class - Pro Will be available for the class:

  1. Helmet, harness, rock shoes
  2. 1 personal Anchoring device with a locking biner
  3. Auto blocking belay device with locking Belay biner
  4. 4 Alpine slings 60cm 
  5. 2 Alpine Sling  120cm
  6. 1 Alpine slings 240cm
  7. 12 standard sized biners (2 for each sling)
  8. 3 locking biners in addition to the others already mentioned (standard sized)
  9. Small water hydration pack with water pouch and enough room for food and warm layers.
  10. 20' Cordalette.  This can be made out of 20' of 7 mm Nylon Cord,
  11. Nut tool and carabiner does not need to be full size) and a knife

 Gear will be discussed at first class. Bring what you have but do not purchase new before class

For your own climbing after class you will need:

  1. Set of Cams - one cam each matching the following Black Diamond sizes: .3, .4, .5, .75 #1, #2, #3
  2. One biner (7 total) for each cam to rake them (these do not need to be full size)
  3. Set of Nuts/stoppers,
  4. Hexes & Tri-Cams

You will be climbing in groups of 2 when you go out to do your multi pitch routes and will be combining your gear to make one full rack and sharing these items as your climb.  Please make sure to purchase 2 to 3 colors of electricians tape or duck tape and mark ALL your gear.  You can find this tape online or at Home Depot.  We will be discussing gear and have some brands on hand for your review at the kick-off party so if you have questions you may hold off purchasing gear until afterward.  

All Students will receive a copy of Climbing Anchors, Leuben at first class meeting.

Optional Gear you will want to consider:

  1. Ropes will be provided for this course but if you plan to continue climbing after the course you will need to purchase a light weight 60m, preferably bi-colored and light 9.4-9.8 rope.  See crag course packages at Promountain sports it is a killer deal!
  2. Light weight approach shoes.  Many multi pitch climbs have walk-offs so you will need to have a good pair of shoes to hike in and off. You will need to carry these shoes on the climb with you, so the lighter the better. FiveTen brand has a couple of really nice models--their Guide Tennie and the Warhawk are a couple of examples.
  3. Additional set of small Cams. The recommended set of MUST have Cams is meant to cover most bases and not overwhelm your budget. However you will very quickly find that having a set of cams in the smaller range of sizes gives you more options and is much needed so if you can afford to purchase these cams to start with it would be highly advised.
  4. Having some light weight warm layers that can stuff down very small inside of a pack or attached to a harness can be essential.  Sometimes on multi pitch climbs you can end up on Belay stations waiting for a very long time and it can get very cold/hot depending on the weather so you need to be prepared with appropriate clothing options for your safety and comfort.  We'll discuss gear more at the kick off party.
  5. 2 short runners ( 30cmx8mm)
  6. 2 Pearbiners (aka HMS) for master point, belay and rappel
Course Materials