Jake McCrary's Reviews > Climbing Anchors

Climbing Anchors by John  Long
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review

it was amazing
bookshelves: non-fiction, non-tech, read_2016

I thought this was a pretty great book on climbing anchors. I should preface this review by saying I don't have on-the-rock experience with the subject matter nor have I done extensive research on the subject. At the time of reading this book my background in climbing has been limited to single pitch sport climbing and bouldering. I have never needed to setup an anchor or place a piece of gear.

This book starts with an introduction to to anchors and a brief history of rock hardware. The first four chapters cover using natural anchors, types and placement of trad gear, and fixed gear. An explanation of fall forces and the "Jesus Nut" continues the discussion on anchors and is followed by discussions on direction of pull. Next some basic knots are taught.

The second part of the book is all about anchor systems. It covers SRENE anchors and presents using cordelette, sliding x, and equalette methods for setting up a belay anchor. It explains where each one fails the SRENE guidelines and suggests scenarios where each is appropriate. It provides references to studies and suggests more topics to review. The final part of the belay anchor section covers some research done by Sterling on forces on various belay anchor setups (method of rigging, materials used, evenness of anchors).

The final chapter covers other anchors; toprope, rappel, etc.

Its not a super long book. A motivated reader could get through it fairly quickly.

There is also a bunch of discussion about materials used for slings. Which should you use? Nylon? High-tensile materials? Basically it depends. If you are building an anchor and aiming for equalization between the points then, according to their limited tests, nylon either equalized better (in the cordelette case) or the differences between materials were small (sliding x and equalette). The material seemed to matter more in the cordelette case because of the poor job it does actually equalizing, the stretch of the nylon helps equalize this extremely difficult to equalized rigging.

I came out of this book slightly biased towards nylon as the material of choice for slings and cord. I'd need to re-read (or skim) the book to figure out what text is making me lean that direction.

Great book. I'd recommend this book to any climber. The only people who might not benefit from reading the book are those who have a large amount of experience with anchor building and have kept up with research done by groups on anchors.

The book is full of nice color photos of what it is explaining.


Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Climbing Anchors.
Sign In »

Reading Progress

December 25, 2015 – Started Reading
December 29, 2015 – Shelved
December 29, 2015 – Shelved as: non-fiction
December 29, 2015 – Shelved as: non-tech
January 21, 2016 – Finished Reading
January 23, 2016 – Shelved as: read_2016

No comments have been added yet.