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New climber in need of some advice


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Hey everyone, I have been interested in climbing for some time and just found out about Edgeworks, which is easier than driving up to ballard everytime I wanted to climb... laugh.gif Anyways, I wanted to invest in a pair of climbing shoes and harness, are there any brands that I should stear clear of, or ones that I should look for, considering I am new to the sport and in college so I dont want to shell out a bunch of money at first. Also are there any stores I can go to besides REI? The REI in Tacoma did not have a very big selection for shoes, does the Seattle REI have a better selection?


BTW, I am not sure if this is the right forum for this, but I assume somebody will inform me of my error.

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Here's your first generic reply. I kinda like REI but dont go there for stuff if your a newbie. Go to a real shop where they have staff that know what they are talking about. There is a good place in Puyallup that would be closer. Next would be, don't but any of the specialized stuff and don't fall for the "buy them 2 sizes too small" line. As a newb get something that is as tight as you can wear comfortably with a good sole for edges. When you get better there is a place for thin painful shoes and you will know what your looking for.


For a harness the Momentum is a good choice. The Momentum AL might be a good idea. Same as the standard but with adjustable leg loops. If you really get into climbing you may find that your legs change before the harness needs replacment. Here again go to a real shop that can help you fit the harness and avoid any "issues."

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Ok, could you please give me a name of the Puyallup store so I could get directions off of google? I also go to Seattle quite often, I've heard mention of a place called Feathered Friends, is that place good? Any other places I can go in Seattle or in that area?


Issues? Is fitting a harness a pain in the ass?

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Ive found that Second Ascent in Ballard (possibly called "Second Bounce" in the yellowpages) has always taken good care of me.

They often have decent deals on used and new gear and are patient with my questions. You can also bring in some of your used stuff and they should give you store credit toward your new purchases.

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Don't know where in Tacoma area you are but here's the phone # and address for 2 places you might find useful.


as mentioned, second ascent has used gear at reasonable prices.


backpackers has a decent assortment of good climbing gear.


you can rent shoes and a harness at the gym if you want to give it a try first.


Second Ascent

(206) 545-8810 - 5209 Ballard Ave Nw, Seattle, WA


Backpackers Supply

5206 South Tacoma Way

Tacoma, WA 98409

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Just make sure you don't skimp on things, especially the harness. Typically "beginner" gear is actually "cheap and uncomfortable," so be sure the harness is comfy and well-built; hopefully the store you buy at will let you hang in it for a while to test the fit. It might seem like a keen idea to save 10 or 20 bucks up front on a cheapo harness, but when you're hanging in it a lot, you'll be wishing you had spent the extra dough on something nicer. Likewise, a lot of "beginner" climbing shoes are high-topped, uber-stiff, totally non-sensitive affairs, that, especially for gym climbing, are as much hindrance as help. If you're going to be doing a lot of gym climbing, find a more sensitive shoe (ask the sales help; and if they don't seem to know what they're talking about or try to push you into a certain model that doesn't fit well, go elsewhere!); there are plenty of good options. And by all means, try on as many different brands and styles as possible. Everyone has different feet, and some brands of shoes simply do not fit some people's feet well, regardless of how bitchin' the sales clown says they are. Again, you will thank yourself later for finding the shoes that fit you well, and not skimping. Note that shoes that might be considered "expert" shoes or whatever can be a perfectly good bet for a beginner; don't get too hung up on that kind of label--fit first!


And good luck!

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