After a wayyy-too-long winter here in North America, summer—the season most beloved by rock climbers—is finally back. With the long days, cobalt skies, and friendlier temps, the approach trails are drying out, the stone is warming up, and the climbing bug is biting harder than that tick that hitched a ride home on your neck after a day out at the crags. It’s time to get your climb on!
To get the most out of your season, however, two key things need to happen. First, you need to be in passable shape, so we hope you put your time in breathing chalk dust and doing pull-ups at the rock gym last winter. And second, you need the right gear for summer’s fluctuating weather, which varies from clear, cool mornings at the cliffs to the hot midday doldrums to massive afternoon thunderstorms.
Ranging from stretchy, breathable, lightweight apparel with a touch of warmth, to technical gear like ropes, chalk bags, and hangboards to keep your fingers in “crux-ready” trim, here are seven summer-climbing must-haves from Backcountry. These products have been developed in conjunction with and tested by the company’s famous “Gearheads”—those passionate practitioners of outdoor sports who work in customer service at Backcountry.com and can speak with deep, firsthand knowledge about the products they sell. The seven items below are all part of Backcountry’s 2019 climbing collection. Get 20% off of them with the code CLIMBINGMAG20 and make this your best sending season ever.
Men’s Tollgate Short-Sleeve Active T-Shirt
When you’re hitting it hard, especially on a road trip, you’ll probably be wearing the same shirt for at least a few (ahem) days in a row. The Tollgate, with its moisture-wicking polyester and anti-odor polygiene treatment, has you covered—go out in public and you won’t get weird looks, even after a long, sweaty day of redpointing. With four-way stretch, this T is a bind-free, climbing-focused performer that’s great for big, dynamic moves and long, physical pitches. ($23.96 using CLIMBINGMAG20 at checkout)
Men’s Steort Climbing Short
Named for the classic three-pitch quartzite knife-edge in Big Cottonwood Canyon, in Backcountry’s backyard above Salt Lake City, Utah, the Steort is a gusseted, drawstring-waist short that’s perfect for diehard climbers. Whether you’re flying up a 5.6 romp before work or hitting your sport project hard after escaping the office in the p.m., this four-way-stretch, DWR-treated short gives you the room and freedom to move your legs just how you need to send fluidly and in style. ($55.96 using CLIMBINGMAG20 at checkout)
Women’s Coral Bells Tech Tank
When temps sizzle in July and August, the less you wear the less you’ll sweat, and the better your rock hands will stick to the rock. The sleek, minimalist Coral Bells Tech Tank offers a nylon-modal-spandex blend with four-way stretch that’s great for vertical motion, plus a cross back strap that adds just enough style for about-town wear. Polygiene anti-odor treatment rounds out the package. ($39.96 using CLIMBINGMAG20 at checkout)
Women’s Double Dyno Climbing Pant
Psssaaattt! This is the sound, known round to world to climbers, of someone sticking a double dyno, one of the wildest, scariest, but also most athletically pleasing moves in the movement lexicon. These hardwearing, quick-drying cordura-nylon-spandex pants offer a big leap up into bouldering and cragging performance, with climber-friendly flourishes like an adjustable waist, UV protection, and a streamlined yet stretchy fit that will keep up with you from punishing cracks to dynamic cruxes. ($79.96 using CLIMBINGMAG20 at checkout)
Backcountry x So Ill All Chalk No Action Hangboard
Nobody knows holds and training tools like the hardcore boulderers at So Ill, a company founded by the Midwest-based Chancellor Brothers with a cult following around the world. Backcountry teamed up with the Chancellors to offer one of the best hangboards on the market, the versatile All Chalk No Action, made of grippy, long-lasting Ultra Bomber Urethane. Cleverly integrating offset hold pairs so that whatever grips you choose are at a consistent shoulder’s width, the All Chalk No Action mounts quick-and-easy and has a variety of grips, including jugs, slopers, pinches, various-sized crimps, and pockets. Keep your fingers tuned up this summer without going to the gym—that air conditioning is too dang cold anyway! ($87.96 using CLIMBINGMAG20 at checkout)
Backcountry x Edelweiss 9.6mm Echo Climbing Rope
Teaming up with the venerable French ropemaker, which produced the first kernmantle (braided-sheath-over-a-core design) rope back in 1953, Backcountry is offering a smooth-handling, supple 9.6mm dynamic rope that’s ideal for intermediate and advanced climbers pushing redpoint and onsight limits. Dry-treated to protect against water absorption, the Echo is made for long sport and trad pitches and big days on alpine rock; meanwhile, the Unicore design minimizes core-sheath slippage, and the rope comes in lengths from 40 to 70 meters ($79.96 using CLIMBINGMAG20 at checkout).
Goodro Chalk Bag
Named after Harold Goodro—who climbed what is likely America’s first 5.10, a pumpy crack up the sheer Goodro’s Wall in Big Cottonwood Canyon in 1949, in cowboy boots—this tougher-than-nails yet lightweight (four-ounce) chalk bag is perfect for summer cragging. With its bomber polyester body and shock-cord closure, the Goodro will hold up forever; meanwhile, a fleece-lined interior is super-cush on the palms and fingers, key for those repeated dips on sccchhhweaty days. ($15.96 using CLIMBINGMAG20 at checkout)