The most important part of any climber’s gear is the climbing rope. Choosing your climbing rope may sound like a trivial matter. But, that couldn’t be further from the truth. Your climbing rope is literally your lifeline. And If you are a beginner and new to climbing, choosing a rope can lead to confusion and uncertainty.
As with almost any adventuring equipment, climbing ropes come with many and varied options. A highly recommended rope designed for one type of terrain or environment may be almost useless in another. We hope this list may help you better understand the different ropes and how the manufacturers design them for various tasks. We hope it provides the information you need to stay safe, wherever you choose to climb.
Whether you are climbing for the first time, have climbed a time or two before, or you know the sheer rock face like the back of your hand, having the right climbing rope makes it easier. A climbing rope that stretches may be perfect if you slip from a rock face and need a cushioned fall, but it may be inconvenient if you require a rope with a firm tension. New climbers and old veterans alike can appreciate the reliability and security of a quality climbing rope when the going gets rough.
How We Determined The Best Climbing Rope
Our ratings of these climbing ropes were determined by analyzing sales figures and reviews from distributors such as Gear.com, Backcountry.com, and Amazon.com. We also consulted several manufacturer's websites for their information. Most importantly, we considered the reports and experiences of customers like you collected from several sources.
While it is unlikely that this list will reflect the results of any of these resources rope by rope, they do reflect results from analyzing all the available data and applying it to the specific parameters of our list. Comparing different ropes can be a confusing and time-consuming process. We have attempted to make that process somewhat easier by doing some of the legwork for you.
Finding The Right Climbing Rope For You
In our opinion, these are the nine best climbing ropes for 2018. We have listed them by type of use, so please consider where you plan to climb and the conditions when choosing your next rope.
- Length:10 meters( 32feet ), Diameter: 12mm(0.47inch), Static Tension: 21KN(about 4600lbf); weight:80g/m; Core Strands:...
- Double braid construction: Made of Polyester of High Tenacity + reinforced inner core, which is durable, long lasting...
- Sturdy and high quality: High abrasion resistance with firm braiding sheath for a longer service life. The rope is also...
Syiswei ropes, or tree-climbing ropes, are specially manufactured for those who climb trees either professionally or recreationally. You'll find they're stiffer than rock-climbing rope, which has more stretch. The Blue Ox 1/2-inch, 12-strand polyester climbing rope is available in 60, 100, 120, 200, 150, and 300-foot lengths. Sturdy and robust, boasting of roughly 8,000 pounds of tensile strength, this rope has low stretch properties and excellent knot retention. Made in America.
- Designed for year round rock climbing
- Thick diameter built for day in, day out use
- Regular Sheath: Utilizing a 2X2 weave construction, our standard sheath is built to withstand everyday use
The Black Diamond Infinity Classic is the best climbing rope available for the widest variety of uses. Lightweight, smooth, durable, and very easy to handle, it offers a firm catch and easy clip into almost any belay and GriGri. The 9.5mm diameter may be on the thin side as “all-around” ropes go, but the give and take of any rope is diameter vs. weight. The Black Diamond Infinity weighs in at a lightweight 58 grams per meter. The sheath accounts for about 40 percent of that overall weight, and the Teflon coating makes it very durable and robust.
Excellent for use in harsh Alpine and multi-pitch climbing, as well as controlled conditions of sport and gym climbing, the Infinity can do it all. Among the most noted benefits among consumers was the fact that it required minimal breaking in and that it seldom kinks. Available in bi-pattern, Black Diamond Protect and, dry variants, it also comes in lengths of 50m, 60m, 70m, and 80m, making it easy to find the length you require.
We are not saying that with the Sterling 9.8mm Evolution Velocity climbing rope you are settling for a down-market, low-priced concession. Not true at all. You may not be looking for the best climbing rope available, but, rather, the best climbing rope available for the price. For that reason, we have included the Sterling Evolution Velocity on this “best of” list.
The Sterling 9.8mm still falls within the diameter range of “all-around” single climbing ropes. Like the Mammut Infinity, the Sterling Evolution Velocity is versatile. It is particularly suited to beginners who don’t want to invest too steeply into a new sport at first. The seasoned climber looking for a well-rounded rope will find it quite adaptable to many climbing situations.
Many customers found that the Evolution Velocity has just the right amount of stiffness and durability. Even though relatively light in weight at 62-grams per meter, it still stands up to friction, sharp edges, and abrasions. The Sterling 9.8mm Velocity comes in lengths of 35, 50, 60, 70, and 80 meters, and has bi-pattern coloring, which helps climbers find the middle point of the rope. Sterling also offers the Evolution Velocity with several options for an additional fee.
- Type: single
- Diameter: 9.1 mm
- Dry Treatment: yes, Dry Cover
For those who climb in damp conditions or on ice and snow where ropes can absorb moisture, dry-treatment prevents your climbing rope from becoming heavy and stiff. At a diameter of 9.1mm and 53 grams per meter, the Beal Joker Golden Dry is an extra-lightweight rope that combines low-weight and reliability. The Unicore technology means it won’t fray when cut, water shrinkage is reduced by 50 percent, and it prevents “milking” when using bobbin-type descenders.
The Beal was the first rope available to meet all three dynamic rope standards. Alpine climbers looking for a rope to tackle classic, mixed, or snow routes will want to take a good look at the Beal.
- AOSExpert climbing rope meets the CE industry standard, the outer skin sliding rate is less than 0.05%, made of...
- The rope is fitted with a 4-inch stainless steel carabiner(D-type ) with a load of up to 3,000 pounds (15 KN). The head...
- All of our climbing ropes are 10mm in diameter, and the length of the ropes can be: 32FT, 65FT, 98FT, 164FT, with a tote...
Designed for Alpine and sports climbing, the AOSExpert is lighter, has a very high fall rate, and has a lower impact force than almost any other 9.7mm rope. Easy to handle and easy to clip, the Lightning Pro comes in black with an olive drab stripe, coyote brown with a black stripe, and olive drab with a black stripe.
Weighing in at 61 grams per meter, the AOSExpert comes in both 60- and 70-meter lengths and constructed in the USA.
- 【Long with Thick Diameter】- Diameter/ Length：9.5mm/35m, 9.5mm/35m, 9.5mm/60m, 9.5mm/70m, 10.5mm/25m, 10.5mm/50m,...
- 【High Quality Material】- Made of robust nylon material, the dynamic climbing rope is durable and reliable with high...
- 【High Performance】- The dynamic climbing rope features white with black color, simple and stylish, portable light...
There can only be one choice for best “workhorse” on our list, and we selected the Sterling Marathon hands down. In climbing, “workhorse” means incredibly durable and can handle a great deal of abuse. Generally, a bit heavier than typical rope, the tradeoff is that they can take a lot of punishment and still get the job done. The Sterling Marathon Pro fits that description was designed to provide maximum durability for all-day cragging and multi-pitch situations.
Coming in at 10.1mm, the Marathon Pro is definitely a thick climbing rope. Despite that thickness, however, it still clips and catches well. It is also compatible with GriGri and GriGri+. Naturally, because of the thickness, it is also heavier than most climbing ropes. Because of that, we don’t recommend it for long approaches or climbs where weight is a primary factor.
As technology produces skinnier ropes that are increasingly stronger, the need for the thicker ropes will dwindle, and they will go out of fashion. But for now, there is still a place for the heavy workhorse-type rope, and the best of those ropes is the Sterling Marathon Pro.
- Length:20 meters (65feet); Diameter: 10mm(0.39inch).
- Package contains: 1 premium safety rope, 1 buggy bag, 2 hooks and 1 pair of anti-slip gloves.
- CE Standard: This Outdoor Climbing Rope meets the CE standard. The Max tensile force is up to 12KN(about 2700lbf), the 2...
The Huvai earns a spot on this list. It may not be the top of the heap, but in several categories, it keeps popping up near the top. Customers highly recommend the Volta's ultra-light 9.2 mm diameter for both classic mountaineering and entry-level climbing.
Because of the Duratec dry treatment, the Huvai has not only the lightweight rope for elite users, but also gives maximum performance and longevity in all terrain conditions.
- Compare with competitors climbing rope, the outer skin sliding rate of our rope is low (less than 0.05%),not easy...
- High quality :Unlike other cheap stitch rope, our rope was made of 13 whole core rope(32ft, 64ft, 98ft, 160ft). Moderate...
- Professional design: Low ductility static rope can reduce the security risks caused by the extension of the rope,...
The Xben is another great workhorse rope for beginners. Weighing 64 grams per meter, the Eliminator features a low impact force as well as a low static elongation. Designed for the serious climber who wants a lighter 10.2mm rope, the Eliminator seems to be a favorite of beginners based on the reviews. Customers looking for a first rope that they can call sturdy and trustworthy will find it in the Eliminator.
It rates as best for beginners due to its durability and reliability, which is vital for new climbers. With an International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation (UIAA) fall rating of 8, the Eliminator rates as high as any other rope on the list. It clips easily and works with all belay devices and locking carabiners. What else makes the Eliminator a beginner favorite? The price. It comes in at a price as low as some of the much thinner ropes represented here.
Even though it appears on this list as best for beginners, climbers of all skills will appreciate the features of the Eliminator. All climbers appreciate additional safety in their ropes. The only downside was that the Eliminator has no half-way point marker. Being a rope for beginners, one would think that a half-way marker of some kind would have been a welcome feature. They're a critical feature for rappelling.
Designed for general use, The Singing Rock R44 shines in areas such as rescue, object lifting, and as a safety rope while working at height. The R44 meets the requirements for firefighters, rescuers, and ironworkers. With a thickness of 11mm, the R44 may be difficult to feed into some smaller belays. Some customers also cited that the R44 was a bit stiffer than they like and that it also stretches a bit much for specific applications. Additionally, they felt it gets a bit “bouncy” at over 100 feet.
Despite these drawbacks, customers and officials alike still widely recommended the R44 as the rope to get when safety becomes your priority. Singing Rock developed the Route 44 technology used in the R44. This sheath-braiding procedure provides a better way to manufacture rope. Route 44 is the patented technology that makes the rope more perfectly round. This gives the sheath thickness, durability, and precise handling characteristics. This makes it a favorite among professionals, military, and police.
- Materials: Rock climbing rope made of polyester of high tenacity + reinforced inner core,durable braid construction,...
- Widely application : Escape, Fire Survival, Backup, Climbing, Hiking, Camping, Downhill, Tree Stand Accessories
- Diameter:10 mm, Pull (Max tensile force) : 12 KN（2645lbs) length:32FT
Our climbing rope made of high strength polyester yarn, strong, durable. it could bear different kinds of friction with branches, rocks.
The professional climbing rope ends are sewn together, shrink wrapped, and protected by hard plastic. It is safe and of high tensile strength to be a climbing equipment Due to its all high tenacity polyester material, it is quick drying and soft . which is adaptor to wild environment.
High tensile strength, low coefficient of friction, which is easy to tie knots in outdoor activities.
Not easy to dirty,The two ends of the rope are the sewing process,more durable.
The carabiner climbing rope head is treated with a edging to effectively reduce the friction between the lock and the rope
Light and compact in your backpack
Final Word On Our Recommendations For The Best Climbing Rope
Hopefully, with this list, we have given you something to consider as you make the decision which climbing rope is best for you. As we have seen here, how much you choose to invest is only a small part of the decision-making process. Considerations such as size, braiding, and weight can mean the difference between a safe, enjoyable climb and a trip to the store for a different rope.
Remember, these are just recommendations made by our criteria mentioned above. Why you need a climbing rope may have nothing at all to do with the parameters we set up here. You may not care about anything but strength, or thickness, or weight. This is your choice, and its safety we're dealing with. You should select the rope that you think is the best choice for you and your adventures.
However, no matter which rope you decide on, always remember to do your homework now as it may save you much aggravation later. As I mentioned at the beginning of this list, we are literally talking about your lifeline. Stay safe and enjoy the view.
Featured Image via Pixabay