30 things a climber might say

I believe I have heard almost all the reasons, why climbers can’t sometimes make it to the top of the rock. Time to time it is easier to find the reason from somewhere else than the fact, that I am too weak or not good enough.


Success as a climber affects strongly on the well-being of a climber. Sometimes it is better to find a good excuse, why it’s not possible this time to make the hard send. Here are some of the reasons I have heard and maybe used (feel free to use them if needed):
  1. There is no skin left or there is a hole in the finger. If there is skin left, it then must be saved for some other route.
  2. There is tape on the fingers, since there is no skin left or the skin must be saved.
  3. The spotter is giving wrong instructions or isn’t giving instructions. The spotter is shit, the spotter is the wrong kind of a person or there is no spotter.
  4. The boulder is too high or the landing is not ideal (8 Mondos).
  5. The people are talking or making sounds or cheering wrong or not cheering.
  6. It hurts in elbows/knee/hands/feet etc.
  7. Climber can’t feel her/his hands or feet.
  8. Climber can’t see the holds.
  9. The hold is wet or somehow worse then earlier.
  10. It is too cold.
  11. It is too warm.
  12. The sun is shining in the eye or the weather is otherwise wrong (too windy/not windy enough).
  13. There was a drop of rain.
  14. It’s not good friction and this route is friction dependent (one of the many).
  15. There is distraction like an ant/spider/cockroach walking on the wall.
  16. The birds are singing too loud.
  17. There are kids/animals around.
  18. The other climber has destroyed the holds with sweat/magnesium/dirt.
  19. There are other climbers around.
  20. There are no other climbers around.
  21. People are watching.
  22. People are not watching.
  23. The pad is wrongly placed or wrong kind.
  24. The shoes are wrong.
  25. There is no tape or the tape is wrong.
  26. There is no brush or the brush is wrong.
  27. The climber hasn’t rest, eaten or slept enough.
  28. The climber is feeling feelings or thinking things.
  29. The climber is trying too hard/not hard enough.
  30. Some other climber has climbed the route first.

Or then it is of course sometimes, that the climber is not good or strong enough. But this is the worst of all the reasons. If a climber has realized this fact, prepare yourself to anger, tiers, self-pity and deep depression. And this goes on until they manage to climb again a hard send. Then they are happy, at least for a minute.

p.s. All the pictures in this post are from the moments, when the route could not be climbed. The reasons for these were all different 😉

One thought on “30 things a climber might say

  1. I was trying to make a list of all these things I’ve said in the past, but my list ended up being pretty well everything here haha I have not used the wind excuse, although I will keep that in mind for the future. Great list! Definitely relatable! Random side note, I wrote a post about the IFSC now charging viewers to watch their live streams. I was just curious what you thought of that! If you have an opinion at all, I’d love to hear from you here: http://allezgirl.com/2017/04/05/ifsc-live-streaming-no-longer-free/ Thanks 🙂


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