The 10 Most-Read Climbing Articles of 2015

The most popular climbing stories of the year, as chosen by the eyeballs of our readers.
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#10 The 10 Best Climbing Instagrams


It's easy for pro climbers and seasoned photographers to have badass Instagram accounts, but here are the 10 best climbing accounts from the rest of us.

#9 Climbing Magazine Introduces New Objective Climbing Grade Scale


To improve the lives of climbers everywhere, we have devised a simple, objective grading method called the RDRDHAWRDRBKOFLKBKOFLK Scale. (It’s an acronym.) Since it is now the end of December, we feel obligated to inform you: this is an April Fool's joke.

#8 The Over-Gripping Myth


Most climbers have experienced this unfortunate situation: When you get scared, you hold on too tight and waste precious energy. The perceived solution: Focus on relaxing your hands to stop over-gripping the rock, thus lasting longer. While this does seem to make logical sense, over-gripping is actually not a significant factor in this perceived fatigue. Here we’ve provided some tips and tricks to conquer your fears and prevent the dreaded pump.

#7 24 Innovative Carabiners


Just for fun, a survey of the current state of carabiner innovations. Some are mild improvements on existing technologies. Some are proven designs that stuck around. A few are so different that they don't even look like carabiners.

#6 The True Cost of #Vanlife


Living out of a van is romanticized on social media, but it ain't free. Climbing senior editor and van dweller Julie Ellison breaks down how much ‪#‎vanlife‬ actually costs to get up and running.

#5 Unbelayvable: 5 Photos of Absolutely Awful Belayers


Unfortunately, the world is full of people that think merely clipping a rope to their belay device is enough to ensure the safety of their partner or, worse yet, that they can figure out how to belay on their own. Here is a collection of those dangerous people, captured in the wild by our readers.

#4 Climbing Media Is Not Sexist, You Are


Our female editor has a rebuttal to the widespread claims that all climbing media is sexist.

#3 Are You a Real Rock Climber?


Gym climbers aren't rock climbers. Or are they? We settle the debate once and for all. What’s actually rock climbing? Since this article has been out for a while now, we'll tip you off in advanced: it's satire. It sure was fun reading comments from the people that didn't realize that.

#2 Key Section of Famed Half Dome Route Falls Off


Big news from Yosemite Valley this summer! A key section of the historic Regular Northwest Face of Half Dome disappeared. The rest of the saga, as it unfolded:
• What’s Next For Damaged Half Dome Route?
• The Regular Northwest Face of Half Dome has Been Restored
• Interview: Joshua Reinig on Restoring Half Dome

#1 Dean Potter, Graham Hunt Killed in BASE Jump

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We shared this story with heavy hearts. The climbing community lost an absolute legend this summer. Dean Potter was one of the most innovative, energizing, and controversial figures in modern climbing.