Let’s climb a mountain!
To those that have never climbed a mountain, it may seem unappealing, unfathomable, unnerving or even ludicrous to climb many of the world’s highest mountains. However, for every passionate mountain climber, there is at least one person wanting to get their boots on the ground and get started. Climbing a mountain is unlike anything else you will ever do. The sense of accomplishment and the memories of the views stay with you for your entire life. If you are an avid mountain climber, or a Floridian that has never been higher than 20 feet above sea level, you will enjoy the following ten websites for education and inspiration. They are listed in order of their Alexa traffic count rating.
1. Summit Post: http://www.summitpost.org/
Global Alexa Rating: 19,743
Summit Post is a collaborative content community focused on climbing, mountaineering, hiking and other outdoor activities. As a member you can contribute by posting photos, trip reports, events, logs and albums as well as sharing your expertise by submitting how-to articles and informational posts. With thousands of visitors a day, this is an extremely popular site and it shows in the sheer volume of contributions. You’ll love the photos and articles for inspiration, and the routes, trip reports, gear and database of areas, ranges and mountains for researching your next mountain climbing expedition. You can also connect with other enthusiasts in the forum.
2. Mountain Project: http://www.mountainproject.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 49,101
This site is a wonderful climbing resource allowing you to locate a route that meets your criteria, such as location, quality, type and pitches and then sort the results. The site also includes rock climbing guides for over 118,000 routes which are well organized by state in the U.S. and also some international locations. You’ll also find a listing of the top 20 classics routes, links to various climbing news sites, over 200 rock climbing tips and technique, photos, a forum and much more.
3. Rock and Ice: http://www.rockandice.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 108,145
Rock and Ice is one of the most popular magazines out there and their website is pretty amazing as well. You will find useful information such as medical advice, training, gear advice, safety tips, epic tales, expert advice and more. You can subscribe to the magazine from the site as well as view digital back issues for free. Tons of videos and photos for inspiration. An interesting feature is the climbing accidents section, which could help you avoid the same types of mishaps. Check out the resource section also for a gym finder, guide finder, store locator and gear finder.
4. Climbing: http://www.climbing.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 110,188
Climbing is another popular magazine for mountain climbers that also has a pretty decent website. The page includes a routes section so you can find a climb, climb guide, gym or shop. The skills section includes a learn to climb section as well as rock climbing techniques, bouldering, training, ice climbing and dealing with climbing injuries. The site includes news, photos, videos, interviews and profiles of well-known climbers and information on gear. You can also sign up for their newsletter, subscribe to the magazine or view back issues.
Global Alexa Rating: 132,583
This site enjoys over 55,000 members and includes such things as the most popular crags, recommended ascents, forums and comments section, articles, videos, gallery, gyms, blogs and much more. The site also includes route ranking and boulder ranking so you can keep up with what the pros have done and see how you rank. The photos on the site are incredibly inspirational – some look as though the climber was able to defy gravity!
6. 14ers: http://www.14ers.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 135,525
Colorado is able to boast an incredible number of mountains that are all higher than 14,000 feet which are affectionately called the “14ers.” These mountains draw in more than 20,000 visitors a day during the summer and it is the goal of many enthusiasts to climb each and every one of them at least once in their lifetime. This site gives you all the information you need to plan this lofty endeavor or just pick one for this year’s vacation. You’ll find a map, stats, photos and more for each peak. The site includes an online 14er guidebook, 14ers grouped by difficulty and exposure, list of the easiest ones, topo maps, a route selection tool, trip reports, condition reports, trailheads, weather, a forum and much more.
7. Climbing Narc: http://climbingnarc.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 357,462
This is one of the more popular blogs written by a climber. It was began in February 2007 and includes blogs on a variety of subjects including bouldering, deep water soloing, ice climbing, mountaineering, sport climbing, youth climbing and traditional climbing. A nice feature is the Hard Boulders section which is a list of hard (V14 and up) boulder problems that have not been repeated in North America and a list of confirmed V14 and up problems that were established and repeated in just the past five years or so.
8. DPM Climbing: http://www.dpmclimbing.com//
Global Alexa Rating: 422,871
DPM Climbing is rock climbing’s only free climbing magazine and website. They offer rock climbing and bouldering news, videos, blogs, photos and gear reviews. There are almost 30 issues in the archive section. The videos of actual climbs are inspirational and amazing and you can post your reaction to them as nuts, epic, dull, sweet and LMAO. You can also start your own DPM blog for free.
9. Steph Davis High Infatuation: http://www.highinfatuation.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 766,068
Steph Davis is an amazing climber that professes that climbing is her way to live life as intensely and simply as she can. This site is her blog and she has also written two books – High Infatuation: A Climber’s Guide to Love and Gravity and Learning to Fly: An Uncommon Memoir of Human Flight, Unexpected Love and One Amazing Dog. In 2011 she began a business with her husband, Mario, to guide and train base jumpers, do occasional stunt work and host climbing clinics. Her blog page includes articles, videos, pictures and techniques about climbing and BASE jump. She also writes about veganism and simple living. Be sure to check out the recipes section for fuel for performance and mindful living.
10. International Mountain Guides: http://www.mountainguides.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 865,809
If your goal is to conquer mountains all around the globe, you will love this website as it provides guides for climbing the world’s greatest mountains. The directors of International Mountain Guides have conducted hundreds of expeditions since 1986. To locate an upcoming expedition, go to the expedition section and select by location, date, type or skill level. It is easy to sign up for a trip right online. They specialize in Mt. Rainier, but have plenty more locations from which to choose. The site also includes news, photos and videos.
Whether you plan and execute your own mountain climbing expeditions or use a guide’s services, these ten websites can provide valuable information so that you reach your goal and survive to tell about it. Getting in condition, learning the safety issues and preparing mentally are all part of the process. One word of warning – mountain climbing is addictive!