This Summer, Arêt Basewear had the opportunity to partner with Sierra Mountain Center, located in Bishop, CA, to kick off a Women’s Trad Clinic. Apart from taking the avid sport climber to next level trad climbing (short for traditional climbing), ladies learned the skills necessary to master single pitch trad climbs including placing active versus passive gear, anchor building and cleaning, considerations while leading trad, and beyond.

Alicia Trigeiro (above) was one of the women who participated. She raves, “The clinic was such a great experience, especially since it was all ladies, including our awesome guide Lindsay! I regret not taking a trad clinic sooner since I learned so much from it …It's hard to pin down what was the most valuable piece of information that we took away from the course since Lindsay (Fixmer, certified AMGA Rock Guide with SMC) taught us so much, including some things that weren't originally in the clinic agenda (e.g. multi pitch climbing techniques). Several of the most valuable things that I'm planning on practicing this week are anchor building (including natural and fixed anchors), ideal cam and nut placements, rappelling with an extension, and several knots that we went over, including the clove, munter, and bowline.”


Trigeiro is already planning the rest of her Summer after partaking in this clinic: “I have lots of trad climbs that I want to do… My husband and I are going to the Tetons in September, and if the weather is good, we're hoping to climb the Grand Teton via the Owens Spalding Route. We would also like to do Matthes Crest and Snake Dyke this summer or the next. Our home crag is Tahquitz, and there are many trad routes that we want to do this year, we just have to get better at crack first.”

Crack climbing and trad climbing go hand in hand because when trad climbing, you are generally following a system of cracks up a route. Most sport climbers used to climbing rock faces full of jugs, crimps, and slopers can most likely attest to how foreign it felt the first time they tried to climb a crack.It is its own style of climbing that involves jamming body parts such as hands, feet, elbows, and legs into a crack and twisting them so they stay in place. Although that might sound horrid to some, it can be a fluid and enjoyable experience swimming up a crack that is sized perfectly to the width of ones hands. Every avid climber is bound to try crack climbing at least once in his or her career but as Trigeiro insinuated, crack climbing takes a little practice and technique.


Furthermore crack climbing and trad climbing coincide because when trad climbing, you often need slots and cracks to place protection. Gear such as cams and stoppers are placed in cracks to protect the climber in the event of a fall. Unlike sport climbing where bolts are pre-placed and all one has to do is clip in a quickdraw, trad climbing requires crack systems in which the climber determines where to place gear.

Amongst the many other things learned on this course, Lindsay taught these ladies tips and tricks to use when looking for good gear placements. She also gave them advice to enhance their crack climbing abilities.

Arêt is honored to be a part of the invaluable experiences these ladies had with Sierra Mountain Center. With this partnership, each fearless participant received a TOURA top through the program. Participants at this event and future Women’s Climbing Clinics with SMC will also receive a “Refer a Friend or Family member” discount to use exclusively at Arêt Basewear so be sure to don your tops and spread the word!

Want to join in our next clinic?

Sierra Mountain Center
200 S Main St
Bishop, CA 93514

Phone: (760) 873-8526
July 13, 2017 — Bridget Kilgallon

Leave a comment

Please note: comments must be approved before they are published.