Video: Trad Climbing Draw Review

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I am proud to announce the first video for Rock Climber Life!  In this video, I review my favorite trad climbing quickdraw/sling setup.  This draw is composed of the Black Diamond Positron carabiner, Black Diamond Dynex Sling (24″), and Black Diamond Hotwire carabiner.  Tune in to see why this is my favorite setup, along with a bonus tip at the end on how to properly “triple” a draw!

What draw do you use when trad climbing?

Do you carry your draws on your harness tripled or do you sling them over your shoulder?

I apologize for not posting in a while.  Rock Climber Life has been going through some growing pains in effort to bring you video and audio podcasts!  Stay tuned for more video and my first podcast coming soon!

  • I like the dynex or mammut slings with oz or neutrino biners. sometimes I use the metolius long draws, which are great in certain situations.

    • Gif

      I have one of the Metolius draws and they are nice. Have to tape the rope biner though so it doesn’t spin around. For me, it will be useful on a bolted route where the bolt is under a lip or roof.

      Thanks for checking out the site and commenting, BJ!

  • Jeremy

    When I began trad climbing, I used to rack up with these triple looped trad draws exclusively. After climbing with other folks, I’ve realized that I’m carrying too much weight. Often, your cams are individually racked, each with it’s own carabiner. When you attach one of these triple looped trad draws to a placed cam, you have an extra biner just hanging there doing nothing. I now place a few 24″ runners, with a single biner on them, over my shoulder in addition to a few less triple looped draws on my harness. When I’m in a position that I can easily remove on of the shouldered slings, I do that, and clip the sling to the biner already on the cam. When I can’t easily free the correct arm to remove the shouldered sling, I use one of the draws from my harness. I find that the shouldered slings in a multipitch setting are very useful and not having to triple loop them after each use saves time at belay change overs.

    As the difficulty of the route increases, I’ve found the need for these extended slings to be less and less. Often, just clipping the biners directly on the pieces is more than adequate, especially for single pitch trad. When the climbing gets tough, standard sport draws are significantly easier to clip and often provide enough extension on the pieces.

    Another option is to have your cams re-slung with extendable slings. Yates will do this for you at a very reasonable price.

    • Gif

      These are some great tips Jeremy! I will definitely consider shouldering a couple slings and keeping some on my harness. With small cams, I will put a couple cams on one biner. I agree, that it takes some time to re-triple them, but if you have a good groove going with your partner, belay changes can get really fast and efficient. Both climbers working to re-rack gear, etc.

      I’ve found that the easier trad pitches traverse a lot, requiring the gear to be extended. On some of the harder, single pitch routes, they seem much more in line. I can see why gear wouldn’t need to be extended on many of these shorter, straight pitches. It still scares me to not extend nuts, for fear that they will pop from rope drag if they aren’t extended.

      Good to know about Yates. When my slings are shot, I will take a look at them for a re-slinging service. Thanks so much for a great comment!!

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