Thursday, October 6, 2016

Packing for your El Potrero Chico trip

Thinking about planning a trip to El Potrero Chico?  What do you need to bring to this winter sport climbing paradise to have fun and stay safe?  Below is a list of the essentials you want to bring to maximize your enjoyment of the Mexican Limestone Paradise.

Climbing Gear
  • Climbing shoes:  Comfortable multi-pitch shoes and a tighter shoe for the harder single pitch routes. I like a comfortable La Sportiva Muira that does well in pockets but isn't too aggressive
  • Climbing harness
  • Climbing helmet -  Rock fall is not uncommon especially on the multi-pitch routes that become a little alpine with loose blocks towards the summits.
  • Chalk bag
  • Rope- many routes require a 70 meter to get down.  I would highly recommend a bi pattern rope to help with all the single rope rappels you will be doing.  Always tie knots and consider if the few minutes saved simul-rappelling is really worth the added risk.  Almost all routes can be descended with one rope Sendero Liminoso being one exception.
  • Belay device (ATC Guide style, and GriGri style for single pitch)
  • Locking Carabiners
  • 20 Quickdraws.  I like to have about 10 shoulder length draws with two carabiners to reduce rope drag while linking pitches.
  • 4 Locking Carabiners
  • Two double length slings for anchors 120 cm
  • A PAS if you like for rappelling I prefer to just use my slings
  • You might consider a few trad pieces popular routes like Agujas del Rey are a lot less runout if you have a few trad pieces.
  • Small climbing pack that fits food and water for the day for multi-pitch with a hydration pack
  • A larger crag backpack for cragging days 
  • Approach Shoes

Paper Work

Camping Gear  -This can be avoided by booking a house or room rental through us here:
  • Sleeping bag rated to 30° F
  • Tent
  • Sleeping Pad
  • Duffel bag
The weather can vary a lot week to week.  You might be down there for a perfect 70 degrees and sunny week or you might get one of the few weeks of cold rainy weather so be prepared for both.
  • Rain jacket,
  • Synthetic insulated jacket with hood
  • Winter hat
  • Long underwear bottoms
  • Soft shell climbing pants
  • Warm weather climbing clothing
  • Warm Gloves

  • Headlamp and extra batteries.  A good new high power one for working your way down in the dark as many people seem to end up doing in Potrero
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen and lip balm
  • Toiletry kit
  • Towel (showering)
  • Toilet Paper most camping places do not provide
  • Cell phone and charger.  Some campgrounds have wifi and you can pick up cellular data on certain carriers
  • Your favorite climbing snacks as you will not be able to find these products in El Potrero Chico