Continuing on with my Living the Nomadic Life series, is the international portion of What to Pack.
- Just Leave
- The Best Car for the Road (and its addendum)
- What to Pack (Domestic Travel and International Travel)
- Where to Visit
- Tips and Tidbits
My idea of international travel (meaning travel where a flight is necessary) is on a shoe-string budget with a backpack on my back. This type of travel is fun and adventureous, but it also means you get into some crazy situations and you must lug that backpack everywhere you go.
The key for this type of travel is to pack light!
in 2007 I posted up the ideal international packing list that my friend Simon and I had derived in China. I won’t re-post this information, but instead will cover the necessary climbing items to take along.
The necessary climbing gear is, of course, dependent on the type of climbing you are hoping to do. I have climbed overseas on 4 trips (China, Ireland, Thailand, and in a joint France and England trip) but only two of these trips were solely climbing focused. I will write up the necessary gear for the trips I have done: Bouldering, Sport, and Hoping to Climb.
- Boulder pad – I did take a pad. Yes, it was a hassle, but it gave me freedom to boulder sans partner. Fontainebleau is popular enough place that you could easily find a fellow climber with a pad, or, if worst came to worst, you could rent one from one of the gites.
- Two pairs of shoes – I always take 2 pairs of shoes and know some people who take more. The only time I have wanted a different shoe than the Anasazi was in Hueco Tanks, so I usually just stick with a couple pairs of Anasazis.
- Chalk bag with spare chalk – I could have easily bought chalk in France and England, but it seems easiest just to pack extra.
- Tape – I only packed one roll of tape on this trp. At the time of this trip, I was suffering from a sprained ankle and should have packed more tape. I was still able to purchase tape overseas, but it was definitely more expensive. (For instance being $15 in England! WOW!)
Steve on “The Flying Arete” in England.
Sport climbing trip – Tonsai, Thailand (2007)
Note that certain areas can be harsh on gear. That is the case with Tonsai. Since many of the climbs are on the beach, the rope continually has sand being ground into it and the draws (especially if left hanging on a project) get splashed with salt water, quickly affecting the metal of the draws. In places such as Tonsai, take the time to wash your gear often.
A damaged draw in Thailand. Photo Credit to The Usual Suspect
- Rope – I purposely took a rope that was in climb-able condition, but I wouldn’t mind retiring. For some odd reason I brought it home with me, when I should have just donated it to the locals.
- Draws – I can’t remember the number of draws I took because I believe that my travel mate had a handful as well. Basically take enough to cover the longest climb, but perhaps split the weight amongst your climbing partner.
- 2 Belay Devices – I always pack two belay devices because they don’t take up a lot of room and it never hurts to have a spare.
- Two pairs of climbing shoes
- Chalk bag, spare chalk – I went through A LOT of chalk in Thailand. I was there on a bit of the off season and it was definitely humid.
- Tape – If climbing on a very regular basis, it never hurts to pre-emptively tape to avoid injury.
Hoping to Climb – Yangshuo, China & Ireland (2005 & 2006)
On two occasions I knew there was climbing in the area I was traveling and hoped to climb while there. In Yangshuo I only got out one day and had to use a guide service. In Ireland I got out 3 days, able to secure fabulous partners through the Irish climbing website.
The Burren in Ireland. Some friends are pictured climbing in the background.
- 2 Belay Devices
- One pair of shoes
- Chalk bag filled with chalk
Have you traveled abroad before on a climbing adventure? If so, what did you pack?