When I climbed my first mountain, which was Mount Washington in New Hampshire, I carried way too many things. For example, I brought a climbing rope, which I haven’t used even once. Still, I had the feeling that even that made my backpack heavy. That brought me the question of how much does a climbing rope weigh. To answer that, I did in-depth research, dividing ropes into different categories, and writing down their weight. It took more than six hours, and now, I am willing to make your life easier by sharing it all with you.
Here is a summarized table that describes how much does a climbing rope weigh:
|Type of Rope||Weight (lbs)|
|Static Ropes||1.10 – 5.45|
|Dynamic Ropes||4.93 – 9.41|
|Single Ropes||4.19 – 10.74|
|Twin Ropes||2.44 – 6.87|
|Dry Ropes||6.60 – 8.00|
|Workhorse Ropes||2.20 – 9.00|
|8mm Climbing Rope||1.30 – 2.44|
|10mm Climbing Rope||3.20 – 5.40|
|12mm Climbing Rope||3.64 – 9.24|
For the sake of easy comparison, the rope weights which I have highlighted below are of ropes measuring 30 meters. In case that particular rope model is not available in the 30m variant, I have measured the weight nearest to 30 meters. In case the length is different than 30m, I have mentioned the same to provide a clear idea regarding the rope weight.
You might be thinking about how many types of climbing ropes are there? While the fundamental distinctions are 2 or 3 but the total categories of climbing ropes are 9. I would highlight the different types of climbing ropes and their respective weights.
The 1st distinction to classify the climbing ropes is the stretch that they have on offer. There are static ropes that have no elasticity on offer. On the other hand, dynamic ones can stretch up to 10%.
You might think that stretchability is a great feature to have, but it is not always so. I will go into the details of both these types below, their applications, and their weight range to help you understand more (source).
1. Static Ropes
A static rope does not stretch even when the load is attached to it. The applications for which it is suitable are:
- Rescue operations
The static rope is also suitable for a bounce-free descent. Thus, not always you should go with the stretchable rope. I will share with you a few examples below, along with their weight, so that you can get an idea about the static rope weight.
- NIECOR 12 MM Outdoor Static Rock Climbing Rope: 4.62 lbs
- Static Reflective Outdoor Rock Climbing Rope: 5.45 lbs
- X XBEN Outdoor Climbing Rope: 4 lbs
- Aoneky 10 mm Static Outdoor Rock Climbing Rope: 1.1 lbs
- Liberry Outdoor Static Rock Climbing Rope: 4.7 lbs
The weight of the static ropes can vary between 1.1 lbs to 5.45 lbs. Thus, these are not that heavy.
2. Dynamic Ropes
Dynamic ropes can offer stretch up to 10%. That is why they are suitable for applications like:
- Ice climbing
- Rock climbing
The advantage of dynamic ropes is that they can absorb the energy due to any sudden jerk or movement of the load. That is why they can adjust to any fluid moment quite quickly.
It also means that they can handle any sudden unexpected jerk at a faster pace. Thus, the risk of any injury or failure of the climbing rope reduces significantly. Therefore, the dynamic rope is the option to consider when going for any of the above types of climbs.
I will now go into the details of the dynamic rope weights below.
- EDELRID Eco Boa 9.8mm Dynamic Climbing Rope: 5.29 lbs (40m)
- BlueWater Ropes 9.7mm Dynamic Single Rope: 9.41 lbs (70m)
- Sterling 9.8mm Dynamic Climbing Rope: 5.46 lbs
- ALPS WILD Climbing Rope Set: 4.93 lbs (35m)
- Mophorn Dynamic Climbing Rope: 7.93 lbs (50m)
The weight of dynamic rope can vary between 4.93 lbs to 9.41 lbs. Thus, the extra security of the dynamic ones comes at the cost of added weight.
Types of dynamic ropes:
Dynamic ropes are of 3 different types. I will go into the details of these three below. I will also share with you a few examples along with their weight so that it becomes effortless for you to pick the right one.
3. Single Ropes
Single climbing ropes as the name itself suggests a singular in nature. While you might be thinking that due to their structure, they might not be sturdy, but this is wrong. The construction of the singular climbing ropes is such that they can handle a significant amount of weight (source).
Generally speaking, the thickness of these ropes varies between 9mm to 10.2mm. However, these days, due to increasing demand, other thickness variants are available as well. I will go into the details of some of these ropes below to help you understand more about these ropes.
- BlueWater Ropes: 10.22 lbs (70m)
- BlueWater Ropes 9.1mm: 6.61 lbs (60m)
- Mammut – 9.5 Infinity Classic Single Rope: 10.74 lbs (40m)
- PETZL – Mambo Wall 10.1 Rope: 4.19 lbs
- Sterling Marathon Pro Dry Single Rope: 9.32 lbs (60m)
The weight of single climbing ropes can vary from 4.19 lbs to 10.74 lbs. It indicates that the rope does not compromise on strength.
4. Twin Ropes
The twin climbing ropes are ropes tied at the ends. When you want to attach any piece of gear, you will attach it to both the ropes. It means that the weight distribution is even. Mountain climbers attach these ropes between themselves.
One of the main advantages of twin ropes is that the deterioration is on the lower side. If you’re looking for some redundancy when it comes to climbing, the twin ropes are a good option. Before you make any decision about them, take a look at their weights below to understand if they are easy to carry or not.
- BlueWater Ropes 7.7mm Twin Rope: 3.09 lbs (37m)
- Beal Rando Rope 8mm: 2.44 lbs
- BlueWater Ropes 8.8mm: 6.87 lbs (60m)
The weight can vary from 2.44 lbs to 6.87 lbs. Thus, in spite of the twin design, they are not that bulky. That is why they certainly provide you with an advantage when it comes to redundancy.
5. Dry Ropes
Do you know what dry climbing ropes are? Have you tried using these climbing ropes when the moisture is high?
If yes, you would know that they become more challenging to use during the monsoons. The same is not the case with dry ropes.
The dry ropes undergo treatment, which ensures that the core does not dry-out. As a result, shrinkage is not a problem. It also means that you will get a proper grip even during the monsoons.
Moreover, they do not become heavy and unusable in such weather. That is why, if you want to be ready to tackle any weather up there on the mountains, the dry rope is the perfect option for you. It ensures that you get an excellent grip in rainy or icy weather (source).
I will highlight some of the examples of the ropes below.
- BlueWater Ropes 9.7mm: 10.2 lbs (70m)
- BlueWater Ropes 9.1mm Dry Dynamic Rope: 7.74 lbs (60m)
- Mammut – 9.5 Infinity Dry: 7.8lbs (60m)
- Black Diamond 9.4mm Dry Climbing Rope: 6.61lbs (60m)
- Black Diamond 8.5 Dry Climbing Rope: 6.6lbs (60m)
If you are planning to buy a dry rope, it can vary between 6.6 lbs to 10.2 lbs. Thus, the dried core increases the weight.
6. Workhorse Ropes
Are you looking for the thicker climbing ropes that can handle even more weight?
If yes, workhorse ropes are the perfect option for you. It can help you tackle any terrain, and also, they do not suffer from much wear and tear. Generally speaking, the thickness is also on the higher side.
Due to this very reason, they can stand the test of time. If you haven’t seen any examples of such a rope below, I will highlight some of them below.
- GINEE Outdoor Static Climbing Rope 16mm: 9 lbs
- KTYXDE Long 16mm Climbing Rope: 2.2 lbs
The weight can vary between 2 lbs to 9 lbs. Thus not always a thicker rope means a bulkier one.
One of the most important distinctions when it comes to climbing ropes is the thickness. So, it is crucial to look at the rope weight as per their thickness.
7. The 8mm Climbing Rope
The notation of mm for the climbing rope indicates its thickness. The beauty of climbing ropes is that, as per thickness, the construction materials do not vary. That is why, if you’re looking for a rope made from a particular material, it would be available across the thickness.
The thickness does have an impact on the load-carrying capacity of the rope. However, not always, it is directly proportional. On the other hand, when you are speaking about the rope weight itself, lower thickness generally means lighter weight.
I will share with you some examples of climbing ropes, which are 8mm thick.
- Wukong Rock Climbing Rope: 1.3 lbs (20m)
- BRYUBR Rock Climbing Rope: 1.4 lbs (20m)
- NewDoar 8mm Climbing Accessory Cord: 2.2 lbs (6m)
- Kissloves Outdoor Rock Climbing Safety Rope: 1.4 lbs (10m)
- Beal Rando Rope – 8mm: 2.44 lbs
The rope’s weight can vary from 1.3 lbs to 2.44 lbs. As you can see, these ropes are some of the lightest options available.
8. The 10mm Climbing Rope
Apart from the thickness difference, there is not much difference between the 10mm climbing rope and 8mm ones when it comes to construction quality. They can offer even similar carrying capacity. However, durability is better.
Of Course, the weight of these ropes would be a bit higher than the 8mm variants.
- Static Reflective Outdoor Rock Climbing Rope: 5.4 lbs
- Sunzor Rock Climbing Rope | Outdoor Rope: 5.2 lbs
- TOPNEW Outdoor Climbing Rope 10 MM: 3.2 lbs (20m)
- GM CLIMBING 5400lbs 10mm: 4.8 lbs
- MaxS Climbing Auxiliary Rope Static Rope 10mm: 4.62 lbs
They can weigh from 3.2 lbs to 5.4 lbs. If you’re looking for that extra security of 2mm, you need to compromise on the weight.
9. The 12mm Climbing Rope
The 3rd most common thickness variant of the climbing rope is 12mm. The weight of this climbing rope is even higher, but in most cases, its weight handling capacity is also higher than the 8mm one. You can go through the examples below to get an idea regarding the weight of these climbing ropes.
- NIECOR 12 MM Outdoor Static Rock Climbing Rope: 4.62 lbs
- Rock Climbing Rope, 12mm: 3.64 lbs (28.62m)
- Syiswei Static Rock Climbing Rope 12MM: 5.29 lbs
- Mophorn Dynamic Climbing Rope 12mm: 37.1 lbs (183m)
- Arbormaster Bigfoot Climbing Rope 1/2″ 12mm: 9.24 lbs (36m)
The weight can range from 3.64 lbs up to 37.1 lbs for the longer variants. That is why you should go with this option only when you’re prepared to carry the extra weight.
There are a few other thickness variants as well, but these are the three most common ones.
Thus, if you previously had no idea regarding the weight of the climbing rope, you can go through the examples below to get an idea about the same.
What Makes Climbing Ropes Weigh Differently?
The most crucial factor of climbing ropes weight is the fiber used for manufacturing. The fibers can vary from one option to another. These can include (source):
As you can see, there are numerous fiber options. Broadly speaking, you can divide them into two categories, which are natural fiber and synthetic fiber ropes.
Due to this very reason, you must first decide if you want to go with the natural ones or the synthetic ones and then take a call. The good idea is to pick one depending on the weight of the rope and its load-carrying capacity.
The second factor is the length of the rope. As common sense suggests, the longer the rope, the heavier it gets. Hence, I suggest that you make well-done research of the particular type you need for your journey.
Do Heavier Ropes Last Longer?
The life span of the climbing rope depends more on your frequency of use, rather on the rope’s weight. If you use it multiple times throughout the week, it will last only around a year.
If you’re using it on a couple of weekends a month, it can even last for 3 to 4 years. Still, when you pick a thicker rope, for example, 12mm over 9mm, it would probably last longer.
Are Lightweight Ropes More Likely to Break?
Climbing ropes are most likely to be cut rather than be broken (source). It can happen when they rub on the sharp edges of the rocks. In most of the cases, the climbing ropes are such that they can handle a significant amount of weight. Usually, the maximum weight limit is generally not put on them, and that is why they are not likely to break.
If you go with the dynamic ones, they can handle large loads more effectively as they are bit stretchable and elastic. Thus, the answer to this question is that they are more likely to be cut rather than be broken, and the weight itself plays a less significant role.
Additional Weight Factors
So climbing ropes have their impact on your back when it comes to weight. Still, in comparison to other equipment, I treat them as a lightweight gear.
If you are going to camp on a mountain, for example, you would carry much heavier stuff. For that, I highly recommend that you read an article I’ve written on how much should your backpack weigh. I included there 50 examples of camping gear, divided into nine categories, and mentioned the weight of each one.
Also, you should know that your boots play a significant factor in terms of weight and long term hikes. On that topic, please read another article by me on how much do hiking boots weigh. You will find there how lightweight boots play a role in allowing you to hike much longer distances with ease.
The weight of the climbing rope can vary from 1 lb to 38 lbs. The significant variation is because climbing ropes can be of different types. The difference is not just in length but also in type and construction quality.
That is why, rather than just looking at the generalized range, it is a good idea to look at the weight of the specific type of climbing ropes above.
So, are you planning to choose the lightest climbing rope which you can find?
If yes, my guide above can help you out. I shared the numerous examples of climbing ropes that can help you gain a general idea regarding the types of climbing rope and how much do they weigh.
As a result, choosing the perfect one will become easy for you.