2020 has been an exciting year for innovation, with climbing’s inclusion in the Olympics and our ever-increasing knowledge of materials, engineering, performance, and training. We curated six kits—Sport, Bouldering, Alpine, Gym & Training, Multi-Pitch & Trad, and Basecamp—based on how we typically use gear. We also present our Editors’ Choice awards here.
La Sportiva Solution Comp
"The gym-focused Solution Comp features a softer midsole, bigger scumming patch, and narrower heel than the original—and was a runaway hit with testers." Read full review.
Metolius Light Rail
"At the crag to warm up, I did deadhangs and pull-ups—the smooth texture was spot-on (no wasting precious skin), and I was warm by go-time." Read full review.
Five Ten Hiangle
"Of special note was the thin, sensitive, ergonomic heelcup, which rolls high over the Achilles and locked in hooks to a 'supernatural degree.'" Read full review.
Edelrid Boa Eco 9.8mm (70m)
"'The Boa Eco was stretchy enough for a soft catch, but not so much that I was a pissed-off toproper,' said one tester of the rope, which has an impact force of 8kN and weighs 62 g/m." Read full review.
Black Diamond Camalot Z4 and Z4 Offset
"Their most epic feature was the new RigidFlex tech, an accordion sheathe that stiffens the stem when retracted to let you bury the unit, but then softens up once placed to reduce walking." Read full review.
"The Birdie has a reaassuring heft in the hand and an extended lowering lever whose only ding is that it can heat up on long, single-rope rappels." Read full review.
"The Booster got a big makeover for 2020 with Scarpa’s new PAF heel, which splits the tension rand behind your Achilles, letting you downsize for max precision." Read full review.
Mystery Ranch Tower 47
"While we just reviewed the Tower 47 (No. 371), we would have been remiss not to give Editors’ Choice to what testers called 'the best crag pack ever made.'" Read full review.