Top Rope

This course is designed for gym and recreational climbers who would like to learn how to set up and manage their own top rope sites.  While the Red River Gorge is not known for its top rope accessible climbing, many climbing areas in the United States require climbers to use trees, boulders, shrubs, etc. to construct top rope anchors.  With an emphasis on safety, course participants will learn the proper techniques needed to set up a top rope anchor sites using natural anchor points.

  • Knots and applications: While there are dozens of knots out there, the fact is that you can build great top rope anchors knowing only a few.  We will discuss, practice and use these different knots throughout the course.
  • Site selection and management: Choosing the right climb for you and those in your group is important.  Challenge is good, but constant failure may leave a sour taste with those new to the sport.
  • Equipment usage: Climbing equipment is great if you know how to use it.  We will discuss and practice utilizing a variety of equipment.
  • Equalization techniques: Building a sound top rope typically requires the use of multiple anchor points.  Learning how to distribute weight evenly between these points is a must.
  • Anchor evaluation: Ensuring an anchor is safe and secure for climbers to use is a great responsibility not to be taken lightly.  Participants will learn what criteria each and every anchor should meet.
  • Rope management: Would you rather be climbing or untangling a big knotted mess?  Exactly!  You will learn techniques to keep you rope free of knots and tangles.
  • Approaching the edge: When constructing a top rope anchor you may need to approach the edge for several reasons.  It is important that you are capable of doing this safely.