Learning to lead is often the most daunting thing a climber will do. Tying on to the sharp end of the rope, and setting off up a route, placing your own protection as you go is both serious, and rewarding. For many, it is the ultimate in trad climbing. But it's not just about getting yourself safely up a piece of rock. It's also about thinking about your second, where they will climb, if they need protecting on traverses, and it's about building a solid anchor at the top of the pitch or crag so that you can belay them safely up.
This is a two day course that starts with the basics of understanding lead climbing equipment and how it works. We begin by looking at building belay anchors using slings, nuts, hexes, and cams, and teach you how to link two or more pieces together to create a bombproof anchor. We'll look at the pros and cons of different way of tying in to those anchors, using the rope, and using slings, and discuss the difference between having your anchors within reach and out of reach.
We also teach you about making anchors independent, equalised, loaded, directional, and demonstrate the importance of the angle between anchors, so you fully understand not only how to build an anchor, but why it matters.
Once you can build solid anchors placing your own gear, you will also have a good understanding of how to place the same gear on the lead.
We have various methods of letting you experience lead climbing whilst also being protected by a second safety rope, so for your very first leads you'll be able to concentrate on climbing well and placing gear well, rather than worrying about falling.
By day two, if you're ready and you choose to, you can start to lead your own climbs properly, and build anchors to bring up your second too!