Whether it’s Christmas, a birthday, or an anniversary, gift shopping is stressful, and most of us spend quite a bit of time scratching our heads trying to figure out what to get for our loved one.
So, let me ask you a question: is that loved one in your life obsessed with rock climbing? Do they spend their weekends, holidays, and precious downtime after work scrambling up walls? If you said yes, good! Because gift shopping for this person is not going to be stressful. No sir or madam, not anymore! That’s because you’ve got my handy list of gifts for rock climbers.
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The beautiful thing about rock climbing is that it’s a pretty gear-dependent sport. Whether your friend or loved one climbs inside, outside, or both, this list will have something that they’ll love! So here we go, my ultimate list of gift ideas for rock climbers!
25 Awesome Gifts for Rock Climbers
Rock climbers have this terrible habit of always tearing the skin on their hands up. I’m not kidding, a week doesn’t go by where I’m not having to put tape or Band-Aids all over my hands because I’ve beaten them up on the wall. My mom is constantly giving me containers of Vaseline or Neosporin, but those never seem to help me out. It wasn’t until I had been climbing for 4 or 5 years that I finally started using climbing salves. These bad boys are specifically designed to treat the type of scrapes, cuts, and chafing that climbers deal with on a daily basis. My favorite is Joshua Tree’s Organic Climbing Salve. Made with 100% organic ingredients, this stuff reduces pain, accelerates healing, and saves calluses!
If you’re at your wits end with trying to find a gift for the climbing friend in your life, you absolutely can never go wrong with chalk. Climbers go through chalk like nurses go through gauze. No joke, I feel like I’m constantly borrowing my friends’ chalk – maybe I shouldn’t have said that on here. Either way, quality chalk is a climber’s best friend, and Black Diamond’s White Gold Loose Chalk is one of the best ones out there.
While it doesn’t sound like the sexiest gift, your climbing friend will adore you if you gift them a reliable hand and finger file. As you climb for long periods of time, you start to build up some pretty gnarly calluses, and you can actually rip your hands up on the wall if you don’t take care of them. This double-sided hand and finger file from Climbskin is the perfect tool for that. They’ve designed the file so that it’s perfectly curved to the natural contours of your fingers and hands, and have also made all the sandpaper replaceable, so you can get as much use out of it as possible. This particular product comes with 6 total sandpapers (3 smooth and 3 abrasive) to help you keep your skin smooth, strong, and tear-free!
If you have a friend who’s pretty serious about their climbing, another great gift idea is this super versatile hangboard from Metolius. With its variety of holds and tapered design, it’s the perfect way to get strong and work on your endurance. You can crank out some pull ups on it, do some dead hangs, power up with some lock offs, and much more. That’s the beauty of Metolius’s hangboard; the types of training you can do on it are limited only by your imagination!
Training gear can make for an expensive gift, and sometimes they’re not always convenient. Many types of training set ups that climbers use require space and structure to set up. So, if you still want to hook your climbing friend up with a gift that helps them train, I recommend these grip trainers from Pnrskter. The finger stretcher and grip trainer are the perfect way to strengthen the forearms and fingers. Not only do they come in 3 degrees of resistance, but they are also super lightweight and convenient to take with you on the road!
If you need a stocking stuffer for your climbing friend, it doesn’t get much better than this climbing and bouldering brush pack from Dyno Climbing! It’s designed with super dense boar’s hair, which is perfect for digging excess chalk out of a climbing route without damaging the holds or rock underneath. You can take it from the gym to the crag and it’ll get the same great results. These bad boys are also 100% recyclable and come with a lifetime guarantee!
In the big, beautiful world of climbing, it’s pretty common to have a preference in terms of style of climbing. For me, I prefer sport climbing, which requires all types of gear like rope, quickdraws, a harness – you get the idea. Lots of other people, though, prefer bouldering, which requires far less gear – think chalk and shoes. So, if your friend is a notorious boulderer, a perfect gift for them is this slick Bouldering Bucket by Psychi. It stores way more chalk than your average chalk bag and comes with tons of storage along the exterior of the bag for tape, brushes, and other climbing accessories. And Psychi’s bucket also comes in SEVEN awesome colors. So, choose wisely!
If you rope climb enough, you eventually get this constant ache in the back of your neck from craning your head back to look at your partner as you belay them. BG Climbing came up with a pretty snappy solution to this downside of sport climbing. They designed these great Climbing Belay Glasses that are super durable and lightweight as they serve their main purpose – keeping you comfortable while you belay your climbing partner. So, if you’ve got a friend who rope climbs religiously, these belay glasses are perfect for them!
As much fun as climbing is, it’s important to remember that it’s an inherently dangerous sport when not practiced with care and foresight. But thanks to advances in technology and companies like Black Diamond, climbing is miles safer than it was just a decade ago. If you’ve got a friend who rope climbs outside a lot, you can give them the gift of safety with Black Diamond’s Half Dome Helmet. This is Black Diamond’s toughest helmet yet and is super easy to adjust so you’re getting the snuggest fit possible. It also comes with a headlight mounting, as well as plenty of ventilation openings so they can stay cool -and most importantly, safe – on the wall.
I remember when I started getting really into my sport climbing. One of the most iconic upgrades I made was switching from an ATC (air traffic control) belay device to Petzl’s GriGri 2. Although it’s designed to be used just like traditional belay devices, it comes with a number of features that make it safer, easier to use, and much more versatile. And with its auto locking feature, it can give your friend an edge on unexpected falls and mismatched climbing partners.
Ropes are expensive and can be complicated to buy. So instead of gifting your friend with a rope to fuel their sport climbing adventures, hook them up with this Rope Cleaner by Beal! Inevitably, a rope will get dirty over time, especially if your friend is predominantly climbing on it outside instead of a gym. If you’ve heard them complain that their hands look like they work in a coal mine, that means it’s time to give that rope a good washing. Beal’s rope-friendly detergent won’t just clean the external part of the rope, it’ll get into the sheath without harming any of the fibers. Hook your friend up with this gift and add years to their rope!
When it comes to climbers, we love versatility. If we can get our hands-on gear that serves more than one purpose, it means we save money and have less to bring out to the crag when we go climb outside. These static slings from Black Diamond are the perfect answer to that! With dynex fiber running the middle of these slings, they’re incredibly durable, light weight, and straight up strong, which makes them perfect for belay anchors, alpine draws, and extending gear for decreased rope friction!
Another multi-purpose gift for your climbing friend! Weight-bearing carabiners are a climbers best friend, and you can never have too many of them. These auto-locking, weight-bearing carabiners by Favofit are crafted with aircraft grade aluminum and a one-hand twist-lock design, which spring loads upon immediate release. They’re also certified with a weight limit of 25 KNs – meaning they can hold over 5,000 pounds! Hook your friend up with this 3-pack and they’ll love you for it.
Want to give your friend a gift that helps them strength train but you know they don’t have a lot of room to set up a hangboard? A great alternative is Metolius’s Rock Rings! These guys are designed with a variety of holds, including a large jug on top, a deep 4-finger pocket, and a 3-finger pocket. Much like the hangboard, you can do pull ups, dead hangs, and lock offs on these. And because they hang off of weight-bearing cords, you can also do some balanced training. No doubt, though, one of the best things about these rock rings is that you don’t have to worry about mounting them in a door frame or wall!
No gift list for rock climbers would be complete without throwing a headlamp into the mix of things. Whether it’s hiking, setting up camp, or night climbing, there’s no doubt that a headlamp is essential for anyone who rock climbs outside on a regular basis. And as far as headlamps go, it’s hard to beat Black Diamond’s Astro 175. This product is lightweight, compact, and can take some damage. Built with three adjustable modes – full strength, dimming and strobe – and powered by AAA batteries, this little guy is convenient, reliable, and the perfect gift to surprise your beloved climber with!
Rough holds and crack climbing aren’t the only reasons a climber’s hands take a beating on a regular basis. For those who sport climb enough, and especially on big walls, the rope can do just as much damage. So, it’s not uncommon to see some climbers sporting a pair of rope gloves to protect their palms. If you’re looking for a set of gloves as a gift, check out this pair from Seibertron. They’re lightweight, breathable, and super cost effective!
There are lots of cool mugs for camping and climbing out there, but what I love about this carabiner mug by Life Gear is that it’s super durable, easy to clean, and lightweight. With all the gear that climbers have to carry already, having gear that you can easily clean and keep out of the way is a life saver. Plus, Life Gear’s mug comes in three fun colors!
Trad (traditional) climbing is not for the faint of heart. Nor is it for those faint of cash. It sounds weird, but compared to other types of climbing, trad climbing is definitely one of the more expensive styles. To trad climb properly, you need a whole bunch of gear. And the last thing you want to happen as a climber is to be forced to leave a piece of gear behind. But it happens on occasion. And just because you were able to perfectly place a bomber nut while you cling for dear life doesn’t mean you’ll be able to get it out of the wall when you’re done climbing. Black Diamond’s Wiregate Nut Tool though is the perfect solution for making sure you don’t have to leave any gear behind. Super lightweight and easily accessible, this gear-saving tool is a trad climber’s best friend!
I am that person in my climbing friend group who is constantly bashing my hand into the wall and accruing flappers left and right. I go through so many Band-Aids and gauze that a local hospital should probably sponsor me. So, if you know an accident-prone climber who wants to keep on sending, definitely snag them this premium athletic tape by Hampton Adams. Made for rock climbers and other athletes, this stuff is designed specifically for wrapping hands and fingers. It doesn’t lose its grip when you start sweating, works well with chalk, and actually stays in place without leaving a weird gummy residue all over your skin.
They say climbing shoes are the most essential piece of gear that a rock climber can have, but I can make a pretty good case for Mad Rock’s Mad Pad crash pad for outdoor boulderers. Whenever you take the climbing shenanigans outside, there are a ton of different factors to consider when it comes to climber safety. That’s why having a reliable crash pad is so critical. This pad by Mad Rock is 5 inches thick and designed with a high-quality, cell foam that provides a firm, comfortable place for climbers to land. It also comes with adjustable hip and chest straps for the climber on the go!
Who doesn’t love a 6-pack?? No, not the muscle kind. And no, not the beer kind, although we can talk about that later. No, we’re talking about the Omega Pacific Dash Dirtbag Quickdraw 6-pack! Any sport climber who’s regularly leading on those walls needs a reliable set of quickdraws to get them up and down safely. Each draw holds up to 4,954 pounds, and only weighs 3 ounces!
For climbers, and really any athlete, staying hydrated is critical. And whether you’re in the gym or spending a day at the crag, Skratch Labs sports hydration mix is the perfect tool for fighting off dehydration and keeping your body performing at the optimal level. I swear by this stuff. I’ve used it for long climbs, cycling competitions, and long hikes. I love it. And aside from actually working, the best thing about this mix is that it tastes great. It’s not sugary sweet like Gatorade and doesn’t clump up like other powdered drink mixes. Plus, this product is gluten free, vegan, and organic!
When I first got into climbing, I didn’t pay much attention to what I was eating or drinking. And when I started exercising to lose weight, I only focused on eating a calorie-deficient diet. But I eventually got to a point in my training where I wanted to stop plateauing and also see some muscle gain. My friend showed me the light and introduced me to protein supplements and actually using nutrition to improve my performance. If you’ve got a friend who’s trying to do the same thing with their climbing, or any sport really, get them this whey protein supplement by Gnarly Nutrition. This mix is full of probiotics, digestive enzymes, omega-3 acids, and free of hormones, antibiotics and soy. But most importantly, it tastes DAMN GOOD!
Much like a weight bearing carabiner or a durable sling, there are a few, simple essentials that every climber needs. Especially when they’re climbing outside. And especially when they’re doing some big wall climbing. If you or someone you know fits that description, the NIAD climber’s knife designed by Hans Florine is the gift they need. This little guy was designed specifically for climbers and no one else. It’s ridiculously lightweight, comes with a simple design because the last thing you want on the wall is something complicated, and can be safely secured with its handy loop handle feature.
Whether its camping on the weekend or taking a nap at the crag, a hammock is a great gift for any climber. And I can’t suggest anything but ENO’s doublenest hammock. I got my first and only ENO hammock back in 2012 and I haven’t had to buy another one since. It’s super lightweight, packs up really small, and is tear resistant. The only regret I have is not getting the doublenest. Not to say that my singlenest is too small, but for camping purposes, having a bit more real estate to work with is definitely helpful. Especially if you’re using bulkier gear to ward off the cold.
Need more gift inspiration? Check out my Ultimate Gift List for Travelers!
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