Trip Requirements

Jon on "Caustic" - 5.11b, Calico Basin

Skill Requirement

If you’re coming without a climbing partner to teach you, then you need to know how to give a good lead belay. That two hour top rope class at the gym won’t cut it, chi’ren!  This is the most important requirement by far.  It can only be waived by flirting with the HC leadership enough to convince them that if they spend several hours teaching you, there’s a conceivable chance you might have sex with them.

So to summarize: you should know how to lead belay, how to clean a route, what backclipping is, etc.  if any of that sounds foreign to you, then you need to bring a trained person with you who can climb with you through the trip, and don’t even think about offering to belay a stranger until you’ve become an experienced belayer yourself.

Climbing Grade Requirement

There are relatively few bolted outdoor routes that are less than 5.10a.  This is also a grade that most can reach on within a month or two of training.  So, there’s a soft requirement that you’re able to toprope at this grade.  I say soft because we won’t tell you that you can’t go, but you might be a little bored, particularly on rainy days when we get on overhangs.

Trad grades are, of course, their own separate world.  If you lead trad regularly at 5.7 or above, then you’ll be just dandy.

Equipment Requirement

We’re nothing if not gear whores, so we can lend spares of almost anything.  But if someone else is already borrowing, you’ll be SOL, so you need to check with the trip leaders if you’re not bringing enough camping and climbing gear for yourself.

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