We have seen many climbers having trouble choosing the right rope for scrambling. But as always your wish is our command. Therefore, in this article we have written about the best rope for scrambling!
Which rope would be best to scramble with? Scrambling ropes should be 30 to 35 meters in length and 9mm to 10mm in diameter. It is ideal for the short steep sections you would normally encounter on a scramble. In general, scrambling ropes wear out more quickly. Ropes that are thicker will last longer.
Your questions are no doubt still numerous. Wouldn’t a longer rope be better? Dynamic ropes or static ropes? Continue reading to learn more.
How To Scramble With A Rope
First, let’s look at how you will use ropes during a scramble before you choose the type of rope you need.
In most cases, climbers use their ropes for belaying. When you are scrambling, you can use several belaying techniques:
You can see how to do a belay directly here:
When you cannot find a suitable anchor point, you will have to body belay. Anchoring will be done primarily by the belayer. An additional anchor point is then fastened to the belayer. The belayer will catch the impact first if a climber falls. As a backup, the second anchor point becomes the belayer’s point of balance in the event he also loses it.
Watch this video to learn how to body belay:
How To Choose The Right Length Of Rope For Scrambling
A typical climbing rope spans between 30 and 80 meters (100 to 260 feet). Climbers typically use lengths ranging between 60 and 70 meters (200 and 230 feet).
The length of the rope that you need to climb the route should be at least twice the length of the rope. As an example, you should have at least 30 meters of rope for climbing a 15-meter high wall.
The sections you deal with when scrambling tend to be short.
Having a longer rope is usually a good idea. A rope that’s too long is always a worse problem than one that’s too short. You will, however, have to carry a heavier rope and your backpack will be larger and heavier.
How To Choose The Right Rope Diameter For Scrambling
The climbers attached their ropes to the carabiners in the videos above. However, in some cases you may have to belay the rope directly on the rock instead of using a carabiner.
This is what you can see here:
A thicker rope with a diameter of 9mm to 10mm will last longer for scrambling ropes, which are prone to wear and tear quite readily.
Single, twin, and half ropes are the three types of climbing ropes.
Their labels help you distinguish them. Labels are usually found on the ends of the ropes.
Labels will have one of the following symbols:
- It indicates that it is a single rope by the number 1.
- Twin ropes are indicated by the infinity symbol.
- It is half a rope, as signified by the number 1/2.
Single ropes can be used on their own. The ropes must be twined and half roped with each other.
The thickness of single ropes varies between 9 mm and 11 mm. The typical diameter is 10 mm. Single ropes with a diameter of 9 mm are lighter, but will require a premium.
Ropes with twins and half are typically thinner, between 8mm and 9mm. Since half ropes are cheaper than single 9 mm ropes, some climbers use them instead of single 9 mm ropes. However, this is not recommended. Whenever using twin ropes or half ropes, make sure you use them together. The strength of one 9mm twin rope or half rope will be less than that of one 9mm single rope.
What To Consider When Choosing The Right Rope For Scrambling
A one-size-fits-all solution is, of course, impossible. Your scramble rope should be based on many factors:
The Profile Of The Trails
Scrambling is only a small part of some trails or routes. Others are more like rock climbing, where you must scramble over long sections from start to finish. Longer ropes are needed for longer scrambles.
The Climbers’ Profiles
Competent scramblers may not need ropes if they are comfortable and competent. Ropes are sometimes brought along for emergency purposes only. In those cases, climbers can sometimes even bring just a 15-meter to 20-meter rope with an 8mm to 8.5mm diameter.
You may need longer ropes to cover longer sections of the routes if you have beginners in your group. Longer ropes increase the flexibility of the climber in such circumstances.
It is essential that at least 1 climber in the group is competent and has experience with climbing and scrambling. It is even more dangerous to use a rope incorrectly anchored or belayed than not using one at all.
Use of the scrambling rope for rappelling or abseiling
Ropes that are longer and thicker are necessary if you plan to rappel or abseil while climbing. Your scramble can be done with this rope as well.
It can also be useful for climbers who are uncomfortable going down steep routes to rappel or abseil. A quick turn around is possible when they are rappelling or abseiling. To know about rappelling by dynamic rope you need to read this article!
What Rope Should You Use For Scrambling Dynamic Rope Or Static Rope?
While a static rope cannot stretch and absorb impact, a dynamic rope can.
Scrambling and climbing should always be done with a dynamic rope. When a fall occurs, the rope will absorb some of the impact and it is less likely that you will get injured.
A static rope should only be used for transporting equipment or performing rescues.
Most rope labels do not specify whether a rope is dynamic or static. Since all climbing ropes are dynamic, the easiest way to tell is to check whether they are rated as single, half, or twin. These ratings are only available for dynamic ropes. Such ratings will not apply to static ropes.
Is Dry Treatment Necessary for Your Scrambling Rope?
In order to make a rope more water-resistant, it may be dried. This can be useful when you are anticipating bad weather or rocks that are wet from ice and snow.
Ropes Recommended For Scrambling
In the market, it is quite difficult to find ropes of 30-meters. Unlike longer ropes, shorter ropes are less common. There are also some ropes that are designed for indoor gym use rather than outdoor use.
There are two proper options of ropes for scrambling on the market::
Mammut Infinity Dry 30 m, 9.5 mm
It’s hard to go wrong with the name Mamut. Despite being strong, it is also lightweight. A 30-meter rope weighs 59 grams per meter, which is equivalent to 1.78 kg (3.9 pounds). There are also different lengths available, ranging from 30 meters to 80 meters.
Edelweiss 9.8 mm Rocklight II
This is the budget-friendly option. The difference between this rope and Mammut Infinity Dry is that it is not dry treated. The rope is also slightly heavier at 61 g/m, which works out to 1.83kg (4 pounds) for a 30-meter length. There are also different lengths of this rope, ranging between 30 meters and 80 meters.
Edelweiss also makes a rope very similar to this, the Flashlight II, 10 mm.
How Often Should You Replace Your Scrambling Ropes?
About ten years is the average lifespan of a climbing rope. These are the average lifespans based on frequency of usage:
- Using it twice a year (once every 7 years) for 7 years
- When used regularly (once a month) for 4 to 5 years
- For up to three years, using it frequently (once a month or more)
Before using a rope, you should, however, inspect it. Replace them when:
- The ropes have been damaged, e.g., they have been cut, frayed, and abraded.
- There are places on the ropes where they are flattened or stiff.
- You can see sun damage, for example, badly faded, dry, and stiff fabric.
- A climber falling on the ropes has a big impact on the ropes. Even when there is no visible damage, ropes should be replaced after such an impact.
A rope’s recommended lifespan is stated on the container and even if the ropes have not been used, you should replace it when it exceeds its lifespan.
Your ropes will get damaged if you scramble. Use a rope protector to prevent wear and tear. A rope cover is essentially a cover that wraps around your rope. The Petzl Protec Rope Protector is an excellent rope protector that’s easy to use and quick to install. Climbing ropes can be expensive, so this simple protector allows you to scramble with peace of mind.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):
How do you use a rope for scrambling?
To know that how you should use a rope for scrambling, you need to check this video!
What do you need for scrambling?
You will need a rope, harness, belay device, a small rack for your gear, and perhaps a helmet if you are climbing higher grade scrambles. Typical Trad Racks will have a few nuts, slings (different lengths), a couple of quickdraws, and some spare HMS carabiners.
How do I choose mountaineering rope?
To choose mountaineering rope check the diameter because the diameter of the rope can affect its abrasion resistance, which is often beneficial for ropes that are frequently used. You might want a thicker rope if you’re top roping at the local crag. You’ll need a lighter rope if you’re hiking long distances for multi-pitch climbs.