3 Climbing Getaways for the Bucket List

3 Climbing Getaways for the Bucket List

There’s a long list of places I want to go for a climb that includes the Andes in Peru and Costa Blanca in Spain. It would be fair to say that I’d probably not be able to see every single one of them much less discover new heights that I still don’t know about. But the idea that there are still many left for me to explore only deepens my desire to conquer as many as I can. Here are some of the climbing destinations that are on top of my travel list:

Banff National Park, Canada
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Banff National Park in Canada is one of the world’s most beautiful places to go for a climb. The place lures not just adventure seekers looking for more climbing routes. It’s also a perfect getaway for anyone who’s looking for the most scenic spots imaginable. I’ve seen photos some of my friends brought back from their mountaineering and rock climbing adventures in the area. Each provided a glimpse of the scenic landscape’s splendor. I can’t wait to explore some of the alpine, iced, and rock climbing routes amidst a backdrop of incredible scenery.

Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
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Climbing the peak of Africa’s tallest mountains is right on top of my must-do list. Located at the northern part of Tanzania, Mt. Kilimanjaro draws thousands of climbers every year. Reaching the peak is not easy feat. Many fail at the attempt. But the trek to the summit is just part of its appeal. It is said that the unbelievable scenery throughout the journey makes every step to this spectacular part of Africa an unforgettable and worthwhile experience.

Mount Everest, Nepal
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Climbing Mount Everest has always been risky. The earthquake in Nepal in 2015 further underscored the dangers climbers face. If you ask me why I’d still want to climb it despite the risks, I’d probably answer as George Mallory did — “Because it’s there.” Mount Everest represents a seemingly insurmountable challenge given my current level of skill and experience. It’s something I want to experience for myself – to discover how far I can push myself and what personal limits I can smash through in the process.

A Beginner’s Guide on Picking the Right Rock Climbing Gears

A Beginner’s Guide on Picking the Right Rock Climbing Gears

Rock climbing is not for the faint of heart. Standing on the ground staring up at an indoor climbing wall gives me the same feeling of apprehension mixed with excitement that I get when looking up a boulder or cliff face. Climbing has its share of risks and embracing this lifestyle means keeping a healthy level of awareness of the dangers involved. I find that I’m more confident to take on the challenge if I’m well-equipped for the task. Assembling a rock climbing kit can be a daunting task given the wide array of choices available. Here are some videos that provide tips and insights on selecting best gears that fit your needs:

1. The 4 Things You Need To Consider When Buying A Climbing Rope

Finding the right rope can be a daunting task if you’re unfamiliar with the pros and cons of the choices available. This video provides a fairly straightforward explanation of the things you need to look out for like rope rating, diameter, length, and treatment. Price is often one of the biggest factors that influence many climbers’ choices. I personally prefer a good quality rope that’s easy on the pocket. But I don’t mind paying extra for a first-rate climbing rope that I could trust with my life.

2. How To Pick Rock Climbing Shoes

I pick climbing shoes that not only match the requirements of the type of climbing I do. I also look for a seamless fit that provides me with maximum comfort without sacrificing efficiency and performance. In this video, you will find information on the different types of climbing shoes to choose from and helpful tips on how to get the right one that suits you best.

3. Rock Climbing Helmet Buying Advice

A climbing helmet is another essential that should be picked with care. I often choose designs that offer durability and maximum protection although they are generally “heavier” than the lightweight helmets I’ve seen. On this video, you will get some useful tips on which type of helmet to buy to complete your climbing kit.

4. 2016 Rock Climbing Harnesses

This video shows the latest climbing harnesses from some of the well-known brands in the community. It also provides brief explanations about the technology and the advantages of each product.

Three Things I Learned from My First Climb

Three Things I Learned from My First Climb

If there’s one thing my first climb taught me, it would be this: Nothing prepares you for the experience. Climbing was not on the list of things I planned to do. It just sort of happens after I finally gave in to my friends’ repeated attempts to invite me to join them in one of their outdoor adventures. I was promised an easy trail with the added bonus of watching the others practice their bouldering skills once we get to our destination. Looking back, I realized how clueless I was to the challenges of even the easiest climbs. Here are some of the things I learned from the experience:

Limits are temporary

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I’ve broken self-perceive limits in my first trek to the mountains. The hike didn’t turn it to be “easy” as I imagined it to be. It was far from the difficult climbs my friends were used to. But it was a difficult one for someone who was not used to more challenging physical activities. The rugged and uphill terrain made progress slow. And the heat seemed to make every step more tiresome. The group’s pace was fairly slow, but I found myself having a hard time catching up.

At some point, I began to doubt if I’d be able to finish it much less muster the strength to go back. I felt like I’ve reached my limits and there was no way I could carry on. But since heading back in the middle of the climb was not an option I wanted to take, I kept going. It was not long after we arrived at our destination. The feeling of relief was intense but not as overwhelming as the spectacular view that greeted us. As I sat there enjoying the scenery and waiting for my friends who went on bouldering, I realized that I’ve just broken my own self-perceived limits and lived to tell the tale.

Expectations don’t match reality

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No matter how beautiful you imagine a place to be, it doesn’t give justice to what you see once you’re out there. Nature’s colors appear more vibrant up close. The grayness of rugged paths with little vegetation stand in stark contrast to lush vegetation as you go deeper into the row of trees you pass by. The silence is as vivid as the noise from the myriad of sounds you hear around you.

Even the best photos you see don’t capture the breathtaking beauty of the real thing. Spending time in the midst of scenic landscapes make you wonder about the places you still haven’t seen. This is probably why climbing can be addicting. The spectacular sights make even the most difficult trek worth it.

It’s a great character-builder

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Climbing builds character. It puts you in situations that challenge you. It lets you face your doubts and fears. Once you’ve scaled a mountain or a wall, you can take on a lot more than you thought you can. You learn to push forward regardless of how difficult things get.

I may have suffered in the first and succeeding climbs I’ve done. But the experiences taught me a lot about determination and perseverance. It doesn’t matter if it’s an easy or difficult climb. There’s always something to learn along the way.