Intro to Trad Climbing

Looking to break into the heady, challenging and rewarding world of trad climbing?
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Intro to Trad Climbing
Looking to break into the heady, challenging and rewarding world of trad climbing?

Imagine this:  You’re standing at the base of a cliff, looking up at several hundred feet of impressively blank rock.  No bolts.  No anchors.  No signs of anyone else ever having passed through.  Just pure, unadulterated rock.


Do you have the skills to safely get up and back?


Trad climbing is the ultimate expression of climbing skill.  It requires strong technique, a calm, clear head and the ability to make critical decisions under pressure as you place protection while you climb.


This two day course will teach you all the fundamentals of trad climbing, from basic principles to the intricacies of gear selection and placement, safe anchor building practices, how to read a route, keep a clear head and even basic self-rescue skills.


As a trad climber you’ll have access to some of the world’s most breathtaking climbing and experience the reward of being entirely self-sufficient.


Move beyond the bolts.  Begin your trad climbing journey today.

Cost per Climber*
One on One
By Arrangement. Please Inquire.

*this price reflects a minimum enrollment of two participants.

This is a group course that runs on pre-scheduled dates.


Current Dates:  No Dates Currently Scheduled, however…


Want to schedule a date of your own choosing?  We can arrange to run this course on dates that work for you*.


Send us a message and we’ll see if we can make it work!


*may require a minimum number of participants

This is a two-day intensive course and both days will be full.  Plan to begin around 8am.  We will aim to end each day around 5pm, but may continue until dark.  Please block out the entire two days.

The emphasis of this course is on education and learning rather than hard climbing.  As such, it is open to a wide variety of fitness levels.


You should be prepared to hike over uneven terrain continuously for up to 30 minutes, climb multiple routes through throughout the day at a 5.6 level or above, and spend a long day outdoors.


We remain flexible throughout the day to respond to energy levels and ability on a moment-by-moment basis.  You’re in great hands with our guides.

Prior outdoor climbing experience required.


Sport leading experience and knowledge of basic toprope anchors highly recommended.

More Details

Throughout Vermont, New Hampshire and New York state.
Skill Level
Experienced Climbers with top rope anchor experience. Experience sport leading highly recommended.
2 Days
18+, under 18 with parent/guardian consent and guide approval.
What's Covered?

Traditional (“trad”) climbing is your gateway to true freedom and exploration in your climbing.  Demanding creativity, intense problem solving, routefinding ability, supremely good climbing technique and a cool head under pressure, it’s both a physically and mentally demanding sport – but also one of the most liberating and rewarding.

Your journey to becoming a competent trad climber will be a long one.  It requires lots of study, immense practice and the experience of having followed many routes.  This intensive two-day course will teach you the fundamentals of the sport, providing you with everything you need to be able to successfully lead your first trad climb.

Some of what you’ll learn in this course:

  • Essential Knots & Hitches

  • The Climbing Rack

  • Setting Active & Passive Gear

  • Natural & Fixed Protection

  • Evaluating Rock Quality

  • Gear Anchors

  • Anchor Building Material

  • Following & Cleaning a Route

  • Common Mistakes & How to Avoid Them

  • Principles of Load Distribution & Vector Angles

  • Lead & Top Belaying for Trad Climbers

  • Double Rope Rappels & Rappelling Considerations

  • Evaluating Fall Zones & How to Fall Safely

  • Routefinding

  • The Mental Game of Trad Climbing

Your two-days will include ample hands-on time to place gear and build anchors on the ground, as well as the opportunity to mock-lead a route on toprope.  The possibility of climbing an easy route on lead may be offered to those feeling confident and showing competence.

Make no mistake – your journey to becoming a trad climber will be long and involved, requiring dedication and experience.  Let Remarkably Human Adventures start you off on the right foot by giving you a solid foundation from which to build.

*for those seeking to continue their journey beyond this introductory course, we offer one-on-one opportunities for study and practice as well.


Prior outdoor climbing experience required.


Sport leading experience and knowledge of basic toprope anchors highly recommended.

A full list of suggested gear will be provided in your pre-trip planning packet that you receive after booking your program with us.


The gear requirements specific to the Intro to Trad Climbing course include:


  • Personal Climbing Gear (shoes/harness/helmet/belay device/chalk bag)
  • 4 to 5 Locking Carabiners
  • 4 to 5 Non-Locking Carabiners
  • 18 to 20 feet of 7mm Nylon Accessory Cord
  • 4 ft of 6mm Accessory Cord (or your preferred rap backup if you carry one)
  • 2, 120cm slings (nylon or dyneema)


Note:  Harness should be of a style that has gear loops.  Belay device should be a tube-style device like the BD ATC Guide, Petzl Reverso or DMM Pivot (suitable for top belaying).


You should be prepared with clothing appropriate to the weather that allows good freedom of movement.


We also recommend:


  • Long Pants
  • Closed-Toe Shoes
  • Small Backpack
  • Lunck & Snacks
  • Water (1 liter minimum)
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Camera
  • Bug Spray

Transportation to and from the meeting location is not included, but carpools can often be arranged.


Depending upon location and plans for the day, guides will meet up with clients in a variety of locations to start the day, including a convenient local cafe that serves as a rendezvous point, the trailhead to the cliff, or at the crag itself.


All details, from carpooling options, meeting locations and start times will be covered in your pre-trip email provided by your guide.

For clients that are coming in from any distance and are making a significant investment in their guided or educational experience in the form of money, time and travel, we recommend acquiring trip insurance.


Trip insurance is by no means required, but when we ourselves travel we find peace of mind knowing that we have coverage should the worst happen.


A good travel insurance policy will cover trip cancellations, interruptions and delays, lost or damaged gear and luggage, evacuations and medical expenses.  While we don’t endorse any particular insurance company, nor do we have any relationship with any of the companies, we ourselves have used World Nomads and have had great experiences.  They are affordable, easy to deal with (and we’ve had to use our insurance before, so we speak from experience), and cover all of the adventure activities that we offer.


Regardless of which company you choose, many clients find that having travel insurance to cover their investment and well-being helps them sleep at night.

Once you’ve connected with us and we’ve locked in your dates and details, we will issue an invoice.


We require 100% payment at the time of your booking.


Payment can be made by a variety of methods, including PayPal (debit and credit cards), Venmo, check or cash (if you are local).  All details will be outlined in the invoice that will be issued.


Question:  Should I tip my guide / instructor?

Answer:  Guiding is a part of the service economy, and much like at a restaurant, offering a gratuity (or “tip”) for your guide’s services is customary, though certainly not mandatory.  If all you can afford is the purchase price of the adventure, our guides understand.  But we do work hard to make sure that you have the most enjoyable time outdoors with us, and always maintain the highest professional standards and certifications so that you are in the safest hands in the industry.  If you had a good day out, feel that the guide did a good job, and have the ability to do so, tipping your guide is always appreciated.  Much like other service industry jobs, a gratuity of 20% is a common benchmark for a job well done.

Cancellations and changes happen.  We get it.  If you need to cancel or change your trip for any reason, please be advised of our policies.  Cancellations of:​


  • 30 days or more prior to your trip will receive a full refund minus a 25% booking and administration fee.
  • No refunds will be given for cancellations of 15 – 30  days prior, but you will receive a 50% credit*.
  • Cancellations of 14 days or less will receive no refund and no credit.

Programs will not be cancelled due to weather conditions unless the weather has been deemed unsafe for the scheduled activity by Remarkably Human Adventures.  If this occurs and the trip is cancelled by Remarkably Human Adventures, the opportunity to reschedule will be offered or a full refund will be issued.


Refunds will be issued via the same method by which they were originally paid.


*credit valid for one year

  • AMGA Certified Guide
  • Technical Climbing Equipment (ropes, draws, cams, nuts, slings, etc.)
Not Included
  • Personal Climbing Gear, Including:
  • Harness, Shoes, Chalk Bag, Belay Device, Helmet
  • Lunch / Snacks / Water
  • Transportation
  • Parking Permits (typically not required)
  • Guide Gratuity
  • See “What Should I Bring” for addition items specific to this program.
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We are based in beautiful

Burlington, Vermont

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While our programs take us all over the country, we are proud to call Vermont home.

Not only is Vermont a beautiful state, it provides us easy access to the best climbing in the Northeast, including the White Mountains of New Hampshire, the Adirondacks in New York, and of course the Green Mountains right at our doorstep.

As climbers, we proudly support our local climbing organizations and are advocates for conscientious access to the outdoors, conservation of our land and resources and the protection of our wildlife.

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