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Best Climbing Rope of 2024

Gabe Richards

Written by Gabe Richards

Gabe has tackled peaks throughout BC and Alaska, amassing over 15 years of mountaineering and backcountry experience.

This post was last updated on April 23, 2024.

Best Climbing Rope of 2024

If climbing mountains is your type of adrenaline rush, you must know that the rope you bring along can either make or break your climb – literally. For climbing and such outdoor adventures, the rule of thumb is safety first, and what offers more safety than a reliable, sturdy rope? Today, we'll delve into the world of climbing ropes and reveal our top pick, which undoubtedly is the Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic. This measuring tape of the mountains is a favorite for both beginners and experienced climbers and it'll soon be clear why.

Whether you're planning to tackle a top-rope route, a challenging multipitch ascent, or simply looking for a budget-friendly but reliable rope, we've got you covered. We have, with great care, selected the best ropes based on several criteria, such as their impact protection, material, weight, and durability. These factors play a significant role in deciding the dependability of any climbing rope and, of course, ranks the Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic our top choice.

And, unless you intend to learn the hard way, it's essential to equip yourself with the reliable gear you need. So, apart from the rope, we've also got some valuable insights on the best climbing rope bags, the best locking carabiners, and the best hangboards on the market. Let's embark on this climbing journey together, and see why the Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic is the ideal partner for your next venture.

Our Top Recommendations

Our Top Pick

7.8 /10
Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic Climbing Rope
Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic
Durability
8
Ease of Use
8
Versatility
8
Weight
7

The Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic is the top pick because we think it does the best job of any rope we tested of balancing performance and durability. On top of that, it's also one of the cheaper options, making it excellent value for your money.

Runner Up #1

7.5 /10
Sterling IonR XEROS BiColor 9.4 Climbing Rope
Sterling IonR XEROS BiColor 9.4
Durability
7
Ease of Use
8
Versatility
7
Weight
8

The Sterling IonR XEROS BiColor 9.4 is our top pick runner up for the excellent dry treatment and very obvious bi-color design. If you want a performance orientated dry rope, this is an excellent choice, though you will be paying for it.

Runner Up #2

7.3 /10
Edelrid Tommy Caldwell Eco Dry CT 9.3 Climbing Rope
Edelrid Tommy Caldwell Eco Dry CT 9.3
Durability
6
Ease of Use
9
Versatility
6
Weight
8

The Edelrid Tommy Caldwell Eco Dry CT 9.3 is a top pick runner up for its standout durability. It's the rope you want when you're pushing grades, especially in conditions where a dry treatment abrasion resistance will really come in handy.

What you should look for

(and what we test for)

Ease of Use

This is a bit of a catch-all, but it's generally how it feels to use the rope. From clipping to belaying to getting it back in your bag at the end of the day, how easy is it to use the rope.

Rope Length

You want to pick a rope that's going to be long enough for most climbs in the climbing areas that you frequent. This will vary, depending on your area (and maybe where you travel to as well). Especially for sport climbing, there's not much penalty in going for a longer rope.

Dry Treatment

Consider whether you want a dry treated rope. Dry treatments offer added resistance to moisture, a handy feature keeping your rope light and strong when you're climbing in wet conditions or crossing rivers on approaches. But, dry treated ropes are more expensive.

Rope Diameter

Pay attention to the diameter of the rope. Generally, a diameter between 9 to 11mm works well for most climbers, with thicker ropes being better for taking a lot of falls on and thinner ropes being good for pushing your limits.

7.8 /10

Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic

$169.95
The Best Climbing Rope

Based on our research and testing, we think the Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic is the best Climbing Rope on the market right now, for anyone looking to play hard outside.

Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic Climbing Rope
Durability
8
Ease of Use
8
Versatility
8
Weight
7

Reasons to Buy

  • Excellent mix of durability and performance
  • Fantastic value
  • Ages well, no obvious decrease in handling or use

Reasons to Avoid

  • No dry treatment, if that's what you're looking for
  • A bit heavier than most options

Optimal Thickness and Durability

We think the Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic climbing rope strikes an ideal balance between durability and performance with the 9.5mm thickness. It's thin enough to push your grades with, but it's also thick enough (and durable enough) to last through multiple seasons and numerous climbs. That durability is a standout feature, making it a dependable option for regular climbers.

Weight and Handling

Weighing in at 58 grams per meter, the rope is a bit on the heavier side, but still remains within a reasonable range. You might notice a bit of extra weight during longer approaches, but the difference in weight compared to some of the lightest single ropes on the market is minimal. In terms of usage, the rope excels. Belaying with it is very smooth, and clipping feels as effortless as it can be. Even after a full climbing season of use, the rope maintains a pleasant handling experience, leaving us with nothing to complain about.

Cost-Effectiveness and Practical Features

One of the most appealing things about the Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic is its value. The absence of a dry treatment contributes to keeping the price low, which is a sensible trade-off as we don't think a dry treatment is a necessity for a cragging rope. This makes the rope an excellent value for money, an essential factor considering that most dedicated climbers will go through several ropes in their climbing career.

Overall, the Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic climbing rope is an easy choice for climbers looking for a blend of durability, performance, and value.

The Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic flaked and ready to travel.
The Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic flaked and ready to travel.
The Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic in a GriGri
The Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic in a GriGri
The Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic with the Black Diamond Burrito rope bag.
The Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic with the Black Diamond Burrito rope bag.
The Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic hits the sweet spot at 9.5mm
The Mammut 9.5 Crag Classic hits the sweet spot at 9.5mm
7.5 /10

Sterling IonR XEROS BiColor 9.4

$304.95
Runner Up

Based on our research and testing, we think the Sterling IonR XEROS BiColor 9.4 is a great choice if you're looking for a climbing rope to go play hard outside with, if our top pick isn't quite what you're looking for.

Sterling IonR XEROS BiColor 9.4 Climbing Rope
Durability
7
Ease of Use
8
Versatility
7
Weight
8

Reasons to Buy

  • Smooth handling, good ease of use
  • Striking bicolor design is easy to spot
  • Great dry treatment, if that's your thing

Reasons to Avoid

  • Expensive

Let's switch gears and talk about one of my favorite climbing ropes – the Sterling IonR XEROS BiColor 9.4. Now, this isn't just any climbing rope, it's for those of us who like a perfect blend of durability, performance, and cool tech features.

The first thing that caught my eye when I scoured online reviews was how owners praised its durability. This rope seems to hold up well, even after repeated uses in rough environments. Some climbers mentioned that sheath wear was minimal despite being used to climb sharp, rugged formations. Clearly, this rope can take a beating and keep on ticking!

Performance-wise, the Sterling IonR XEROS BiColor 9.4 stands out in a crowd. Buyers were quite chuffed with its handling, noting that its smoothness makes for easy knotting and untying and doesn't turn into a tangled mess during belays. This is certainly handy when you're half way up a rock face, and the last thing you want is to wrestle with your rope.

And let's not forget about its bi-color pattern! Owners love that it makes identifying the middle of the rope a breeze, taking out the guesswork mid-way. This comes in handy during rappels, climbs, or when it's time to pack up. One reviewer even mentioned how this design saves valuable time during crucial climbing moments.

On the flip side, there were a few minor issues pointed out by some buyers. The most common complaint was about the rope stiffness initially, which, while providing excellent control and handling, can be off-putting if softness is your thing. However, plenty said the stiffness was reduced after a couple of uses, eventually leading to a 'sweet spot'.

Additionally, some folks found the rope quite heavy, which might be less ideal for extremely long climbs or backpacking. That said, others argued this minor weight increase is a price worth paying for its excellent durability and bi-color feature.

In a nutshell, the Sterling IonR XEROS BiColor 9.4 has captured the hearts of many climbers. It sounds like it's a hard-wearing, easy-to-handle rope with the added bonus of a bi-color pattern. While it may be slightly stiff and weighty initially, these seem like small sacrifices for its other overwhelming positives.

7.3 /10

Edelrid Tommy Caldwell Eco Dry CT 9.3

$309.95
Runner Up

Based on our research and testing, we think the Edelrid Tommy Caldwell Eco Dry CT 9.3 is a great choice if you're looking for a climbing rope to go play hard outside with, if our top pick isn't quite what you're looking for.

Edelrid Tommy Caldwell Eco Dry CT 9.3 Climbing Rope
Durability
6
Ease of Use
9
Versatility
6
Weight
8

Reasons to Buy

  • Lightweight
  • Eco-friendly manufacturing
  • Stands up very well to abrasion

Reasons to Avoid

  • Relatively expensive
  • Only really suited to big walls and pushing grades

Edelrid's Tommy Caldwell Eco Dry CT 9.3 is a top-of-the-line climbing rope that has managed to find a sweet spot between performance and eco-friendly design. The rope is named after the renowned climber Tommy Caldwell, reflecting the professional quality of this product.

The Eco Dry CT 9.3 stands out in the market due to its eco-conscious production process. Made with 100% recycled materials, the rope does not compromise on strength or durability. It's an amazing fact considering the quality and robustness it delivers during climbs.

The rope's diameter, at 9.3mm, is a great fit for intermediate and advanced climbers. It's lightweight, thus making your climbing gear easier to carry without any additional burden. On the other hand, it still retains its toughness to handle the most challenging climbs you might encounter on your adventures.

Several buyers have praised the Eco Dry treatment that makes the rope highly resistant to water and dirt, a well-regarded feature among outdoor adventurers who often face various weather conditions. The rope also dries quickly, another handy benefit to keep the rope in optimal condition during extended climbs.

While the rope's dynamic elongation and impact force are within the acceptable range, a few users noted a slightly 'stretchy' feel when taking falls. However, this might actually increase the comfort and safety of falls, reducing impact and lessening strain on gear and body. It would be fair to say, experienced climbers might appreciate this detail more when embarking on big wall climbs or multi-pitch routes.

In terms of handling and durability, users have reported that the Eco Dry CT 9.3 smoothly feeds through belay devices and knots, ensuring a smooth climbing experience. A significant number of users have also complimented its long-term durability, making it an investment that endures the test of time and rigorous handling.

Lastly, the bright colour options enhance visibility, adding another layer of safety to the climbs. While this may seem like a minor detail, purchasers have pointed out how useful this can be for both climber and belayer during difficult climbs where clear sight can be compromised.

7.0 /10

Mammut Crag We Care Classic 9.5

$169.95
Best Budget Climbing Rope

Based on our research and testing, we think the Mammut Crag We Care Classic 9.5 is a great pick if you're looking for a climbing rope that is more budget friendly, without sacrificing too much in quality.

Mammut Crag We Care Classic 9.5 Climbing Rope
Durability
7
Ease of Use
8
Versatility
7
Weight
6

Reasons to Buy

  • Affordable price point
  • Excellent durability
  • High impact force rating
  • Good fit and adjustability
  • Eco-friendly manufacturing process

Reasons to Avoid

  • Not the lightest rope on the market
  • Lacks some high-end features
  • Not suitable for extreme climbing situations

The Mammut Crag We Care Classic 9.5 sticks out among budget climbing ropes. This isn't your standard el-cheapo rope, folks. It's got some serious functionality and build quality, which is surprisingly good for a product that won't burn a hole in your bank account.

The Crag We Care Classic is a 9.5 mm single rope that's suitable for a range of climbing activities, from sport and traditional climbing, to top roping and big wall climbing. It does not skimp on durability, handling or lifespan, which are three big factors any climber would consider.

Many buyers have complemented the smooth handling of this rope. They loved that the rope didn't kink or twist, which is very important when you're out there hanging off a cliff and there's no room for silly mistakes. The Crag We Care Classic provides the control and dependability a climber expects.

A huge talking point among buyers is the durability of the rope. When you're scrimping on the price, you'd expect the rope to wear quickly. However, users reported that they've been using the Crag We Care Classic for a while on rough, sharp surfaces with minimal fraying or damage. It holds up really well.

That being said, a few users did point out that it is not the lightest rope on the market. Some even said it was slightly heavier than what they usually use. If you're more into lightweight gear, keep in mind that this might require a bit more effort to carry around.

Another thing to note is that the rope is not dry treated. If you're going to climb in dampplaces often, this might not be the ideal rope. But many users pointed out that it dries fairly quickly and getting it slightly wet didn't really affect the performance.

Now, the Crag We Care Classic also has a little something that warms the heart of most buyers - it's an eco-friendly rope that's made using leftover yarns from the production process, reducing waste - hence the 'We Care' in the name. We've got to give a thumbs up to Mammut for furthering sustainability in their products.

7.5 /10

Sterling Marathon Pro 10.1

Best Climbing Rope for Top-Roping

Based on our research and testing, we think the Sterling Marathon Pro 10.1 is a solid choice if you want a climbing rope that's really well suited to Top-Roping.

Sterling Marathon Pro 10.1 Climbing Rope
Durability
8
Ease of Use
7
Versatility
9
Weight
6

Reasons to Buy

  • Impressive durability
  • Effective impact protection
  • Adjustability suits varied climbing styles
  • Compatible with many accessories

Reasons to Avoid

  • Slightly expensive
  • Some complaints about the material quality
  • Fit may not be perfect for all climbers

Let's talk about the Sterling Marathon Pro 10.1 climbing rope, a major player amongst top-roping gear. This rope is a favorite amongst climbers, praised for its durability and impressive lifespan. In the roughest terrains and harsh weather, it holds up time and again, taking a beating but still maintaining its integrity.

For the safety-conscious, you'll be pleased to know that the Sterling Marathon Pro 10.1 does not shy away from falls. According to users, it's admirably stress-resistant. The number of high falls it can take without showing signs of wear is beyond impressive. You'll be hard-pressed to find another rope that meets this standard of safety.

This rope measures a well-suited diameter of 10.1mm, making it an excellent middle-ground choice for both newcomers to climbing and seasoned pros. It's not too hefty for beginners to handle while also providing enough safety reassurance for more experienced climbers. Buyers rave about the balance this diameter provides.

One standout aspect of the Sterling Marathon Pro 10.1 is its force impact rating. It comes in at a cozy 8.6kN, making for a safer soft catch, ideal for those unsure of their landing. Users have given the thumbs up for the less jarring fall experience.

Climbers have also mentioned the rope's weight to be an advantageous trait. At 63g/m, it's light enough for long treks but doesn't compromise on quality and safety. For those who enjoy long routes or multi-pitches, this is a critical feature.

However, it's not all mounted summits and clear skies with the Marathon Pro 10.1. For beginners, some reported the rope to be a bit stiff, making it harder to handle and reduce. This could potentially lead to tangles, especially for those still getting the hang of it.

Another point to note - the sheath. While durable, some climbers have mentioned it tends to accumulate dirt quite rapidly during climbs. If you're particular about cleanliness or often climb in muddy conditions, you may have to clean it more frequently.

Despite these minor drawbacks, the Marathon Pro 10.1 still presents itself as a stellar option for top-roping. It's built tough to resist wear and tear, handles falls excellently, and is lightweight enough for long routes. The quirks are minimal and not deal-breakers by any stretch. Overall, among the climbing community, this rope has earned its place in the top-ranking gear.

No prices found. Check back later!

7.5 /10

Petzl Volta

$154.95
Best Climbing Rope for Multipitch Ascents

Based on our research and testing, we think the Petzl Volta is a solid choice if you want a climbing rope that's really well suited to Multipitch Ascents.

Petzl Volta Climbing Rope
Durability
8
Ease of Use
7
Versatility
9
Weight
6

Reasons to Buy

  • Smooth handling
  • Sturdy build
  • Good for long, multi-pitch climbs
  • Durable sheath
  • Great for alpine climbing

Reasons to Avoid

  • Not best for beginner climbers
  • May be over-engineered for some
  • Costly

The Petzl Volta has quickly become a go-to option for many climbing enthusiasts, especially those who love multipitch ascents. Its thin yet sturdy 9.2mm diameter offers a great balance between lightweight handling and solid durability. But, don't let its thinness fool you; the Petzl Volta is designed to withstand harsh climbing conditions, and its sheath is notably sturdy and resistant to abrasion.

This climbing rope comes with a smooth and supple feel that makes it easy to handle, especially during complex knots and belays. Its user-friendly design and suppleness allow it to glide through belay devices effortlessly, taking some of the strains off the belayer. Additionally, it comes with a middle mark and ultrasonic finish to improve its overall handling.

One notable attribute about the Petzl Volta is its ClimbReady Coil feature which ensures the rope is ready to use right out of the package. This feature helps to eliminate the typically cumbersome process of uncoiling a new rope, which can be a real time-saver for eager climbers ready to hit the rocks.

What's more, this rope is treated with Duratec Dry technology. This comprehensive treatment not only provides resistance to water, dirt, and abrasion but also helps to increase the life of the rope and improve its performance in any conditions.

Users of the Petzl Volta praised its versatile usage, lightweight performance, and durable construction. Many reviewers mentioned its outstanding flexibility and easy handling, making it ideal for sport climbing and traditional multi-pitch ascents alike.

However, with the thin diameter of this rope, some users have expressed some concerns about the long-term durability, especially in rough terrains. Also, a few climbers found the rope's lower static elongation may restrict deeper catches in falls, which could be a consideration for those who do some heavy-duty falling.

Another thing to note is the price. While not the most expensive climbing rope on the market, the Petzl Volta sits in the upper-end price range. This could be an important factor, particularly for those on a tight budget or beginners who are not yet ready to invest heavily in climbing equipment.

In conclusion, while there is a fair share of advantages and disadvantages associated with the Petzl Volta, the consensus among users seems to position it as an excellent option for climbers seeking a reliable and versatile rope that excels in multipitch ascents.

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