Each week the BDN Maine Outdoors team takes a look at different gear you might need for your next outdoor adventure. For this week’s Gear Bag, we looked at the Sterling climbing ropes.

What is it? Maine-based company Sterling offers climbers a wide variety of climbing ropes that Brad Wilson, operations manager at Acadia Mountain Guides, recommends for beginners to advanced climbers.

Why do I need it? Having a reliable climbing rope will make you feel more secure during your journeys. Sterling offers climbers a variety of diameters and lengths in their climbing ropes. When first starting out, Wilson suggests a thicker diameter rope, somewhere in the 9.8 to 10 mm range. The thicker ropes will be a little more durable than the thinner ropes but will add weight if you are doing longer climbs or are hiking into a remote location. Wilson suggests 60 meters as the perfect length for beginners, allowing for enough to rope to get you to the ground in a single pitch tertain. The nice thing about Sterling is they dry treat a selection of their ropes. This protects the rope from water absorption, keeps the rope strong, eliminates weight increase, decreases the risk of freezing and helps slow the wear of the rope from dirt and debris. Unlike other rope companies, Sterling not only dry coats the sheath fibers but also the core fibers, which helps reduce the ropes ability to absorb water even further.

How much does it cost? Sterling climbing ropes can range anywhere from $200 to around the $300 range, depending on whether the rope is dry treated or not.

Where do I find it? Sterling climbing ropes are available at Alpenglow Adventure Sport in Orono.

Ashley Conti

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