A climbing rope is the most important piece of equipment in your climbing activity. This equipment or tool is your lifeline and plays an essential role in making you safe throughout the climb. But how to store climbing rope when it is not in use? Please check our step-by-step guide to make the rope safe and ready for your next climbing activity.
Step 1: Cleaning the Rope
Before storing the climbing rope, you need to clean it first before storing it at a specified location. It is essential to clean it to reduce if not eliminate dirt buildup into the rope’s surface. Keeping it clean maintains the quality and stretchability of the rope and helps in prolonging its lifespan. To clean the rope, please follow this step-by-step guide:
Getting a Container and Filling it with Water
Get a container that is big enough to accommodate the whole rope. Fill it with water to soak up all the rope once it is inside the container. You can have the option to leave the rope in water to sanitize it.
Another option is to use a specific detergent to help enhance the effectiveness of water in removing the dirt that clings on the rope’s surface. But, do not use strong cleansers as they might damage and reduce the quality of the rope.
Putting the Rope in the Container
Once the container is full of water and detergent, the next step is to put the rope into the container. You can soak the rope and leave it for about thirty minutes or possibly more if you want to maximize the result.
After soaking for thirty minutes, you can also try to stir the water with the rope using your hands for about fifteen minutes to make sure that the dirt will be removed. Another option is to brush it to maximize the result.
Draining and Drying
The next step is to drain the water in the container then fill it up again with water. This step ensures that the rope is thoroughly clean and free of dirt. Repeat the same procedure until such time that the water runs clear inside the container.
Once you are sure that the rope is clean, remove all the water in the container and proceed to dry it. The best drying method is to let it dry naturally but avoid exposing it under direct contact with sunlight. Air drying is enough and the most effective way to do it.
Step 2: Coiling the Climbing Rope
After cleaning the climbing rope, you need to coil it before storing it properly. There are three different ways to coil your climbing rope for it to be prepared for storage. Please check below:
Method 1: Butterfly Coil Over the Shoulder
Start by putting your climbing rope on the ground. The initial step is to take both ends of the rope in one hand, pull out about an arm span, and then try to drop it on your shoulder. Do this process until you reach the end of the rope.
Once you reach the last arm span of the rope, take the coils off the shoulder. Hold the coils in one hand while taking the loose end of the rope on the other hand and wrap it around the coil. Keep the first wrap in the bottom and lock it into place while keeping it snug.
Then, you can pass a few bights of rope through the coils above, take the end at the midpoint, and pass that through the bight. This method is neat to coil a climbing rope to prepare it before storing it.
Method 2: Modified Butterfly Coil
In this method, the initial step is similar to the initial method I presented. Start from one end of the rope and coil it over the shoulder. Once you have an arms span of rope left, you can take the rope off the shoulder and line them up.
Take the loose end of the rope and make a bight. Hold that in one of your hands so it will lie with the coils, and then get it to lie flat. Then take the rope again and wrap it around both coils going to the bight. Feed the remaining loose end of the rope through the loop that you made and make it snug down.
Method 3: Backpack Coil
In this type of coil, start with both ends of the rope together while pulling out two arms lengths of rope. Then, left those down while finishing coiling the rest of the rope over the shoulders until you get it to the end.
Take the coils off the shoulder and wrap the rope, similar to the first method. You will take both ends of the rope together while wrapping it around in the middle while staying on top of the first wrap to lock it in place.
So, when you have more than an arm of rope left, take the two ends and make them pass through the coil, passing a bight. Then the two loose ends of the rope will go through the bight.
Step 3: Storing the Climbing Rope
Once the rope is already clean and coiled properly, it is now time to know the proper ways to store a climbing rope. There are two instances that you are trying to store a rope, the first method is during the climbing activity and when keeping it at home.
Storing a Climbing Rope During the Climbing Activity
The best place when storing a rope during your climbing activity is using a rope bag. The rope bag is efficient and provides a perfect storage space for your climbing rope.
Another way is to tie the rope to your bag. But, you need the third method of coiling the rope because it allows you to make the rope as your backpack. You can put the loose ends of the rope in your body by tying it to position the rope at your back just like the backpack.
Storing the Climbing Rope at Home
When it is not in use, storing your climbing rope at home is very important. You need to find a place that is safe and unreachable to any threats. The storage place should be dark and dry and must be away from acids and other halogen compounds.
It is also a must that the storage place is not exposed to sunlight. You can put the rope in an opaque plastic bag to maximize the protection. But the most important thing is the location which should provide the maximum protection of the rope.
Learning how to store climbing rope properly is just a part of good rope management. When using outdoors or storing the rope at home, it is essential for the rope to be properly arranged and not mess up for you to be able to easily retrieve it once you are doing your climbing activity.