What To Pack

Rock Climbing

The packing list below is a general overview of appropriate clothing for your rock climbing adventures with First Descents. Outfitters will provide all gear and safety equipment including climbing harnesses, ropes, belay devices, and helmets. Never been rock climbing? No problem! Our guides will teach you the rock climbing basics so you’ll be prepared for every adventure! Be sure to look at your personal page for packing details specific to your program. Please contact First Descents if you have any questions regarding this packing list. For MS participants, you’re encouraged to bring your own cooling vests or other clothing items/gear frequently used to regulate your body temperatures at home.

Must Haves:

  • Water bottle – 32 oz preferably – no glass
  • Daypack/Backpack – normal school backpack works just fine

Clothing for rock climbing:


  • Wool or Synthetic (e.g. nylon, polyester, etc.) Base Layer T-Shirts
  • Wool or Synthetic Mid-Weight Base Layer (fleeces, hoodies, merino wool pullover)
  • Rain Jacket


  • Shorts
  • Pants – i.e. hiking pants, yoga pants – (climbing in pants helps protect your knees from scrapes)
  • Lightweight waterproof wind/rain pant


  • Closed toe hiking shoes (tennis shoes are perfect)
  • Hiking socks (non-cotton material)

Why no cotton?

Cotton is a poor choice for outdoors activities due to its high thermal conductivity (rate of energy loss). When it gets wet, cotton allows the moisture to sit on your skin, in turn cooling you instead of keeping you warm. In other words, you don’t stay very warm or dry with cotton!

Personal clothing not for climbing:

  • Warm, comfortable clothes (sweatpants, jeans, t-shirts, hoodies, shorts, etc.) nights at the lodge may be chilly. Cotton is acceptable.
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Headlamp/Flashlight

Climbing gear:

  • The outfitter will provide all of the climbing and safety gear you will need during the week. Please feel free to bring your own gear if you have it (shoes, harness, etc.)

Also to consider:

  • Camera
  • Book/Journal
  • Stocking Hat/Beanie
  • Personal hygiene items, sunscreen, instant hand sanitizer, insect repellent
  • Spending money (there may be opportunities to purchase souvenirs, if you wish)


  • Prescription and over-the-counter medications will be self-administered. If you anticipate using any over-the-counter meds such as Motrin, Tylenol, or Benadryl, please bring them with you!

Other info:

All linens – sheets, pillow, blankets, and towels are provided – you do not need to pack these!

All food will be provided – breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, drinks, snacks, snacks and more snacks!

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