Traditional Lead Climbing

Traditional Lead Climbing


2nd Edition

A Rock Climber’s Guide to Taking the Sharp End of the Rope

Learn the basics of rock climbing and how to lead with gear from an experienced rock-climbing instructor.

It is one of the world’s most exhilarating sports, and this book can help get you going! Traditional Lead Climbing teaches you the rock-climbing basics, and it’s the first and only guidebook intended to teach you how to lead with gear! Written by Heidi Pesterfield, a rock-climbing instructor for more than 17 years, the book is filled with step-by-step directions that you can trust.

Unlike other types of climbing, such as sport and direct-aid climbing, “trad” climbing relies on placing your own gear as you climb from the ground. It’s also one of the more dangerous climbing activities, where expert guidance is a must. Heidi’s invaluable book provides essential details about everything from equipment to rope management to climbing techniques. This guide helps you learn how to safely tie in to the “sharp end” of the rope and lead both single and multipitch trad routes.

Dozens of close-up photos, along with fun yet informative drawings, show situations that climbers might encounter and how to deal with them. Plus, in addition to covering the basics, Traditional Lead Climbing offers sidebars that showcase the experience, wisdom, and advice of a number of world-class climbers. Regardless of your climbing background—bouldering, sport climbing, top-roping, or mountaineering—you will learn how to

  • Transition from the gym to the great outdoors
  • Place protection on lead
  • Build multidirectional anchors
  • Navigate routes and climb cracks
  • Explore the multipitch adventure
  • Employ basic self-rescue techniques

Additional information

Weight 14.5 oz
Dimensions 7.25 × 9 in

Heidi Pesterfield



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Publication Date



Wilderness Press


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