Review Potpourri

Review Potpourri

One thing I’ve been a bit behind on of late are reviews of a few products I’ve been trying out over the past few several months.  Without further delay, he are my thoughts on the following items:

Sport Climbing:  From Top Rope to Redpoint…

Last year, Rock & Ice editor Andrew Bisharat released a How-To book on sport climbing called Sport Climbing: From Top Rope to Redpoint, Techniques for Climbing Success.  The book covers a wide range of topics from the basics of climbing to more advanced topics like how to give a soft catch and strategies for working a project.  It’s filled with excellent action photos from around the world (most courtesy of Keith Ladzinski) as well as numerous photos that do a good job illustrating the various techniques detailed in the book.

Whether you’re a beginner just learning how to sport climb or you’ve been on the sharp end for years, I think there is plenty to be gleaned from this book.  I’ve been climbing many years myself and the book helped reinforce things I already knew and introduced a few new techniques like how to onsight smarter that I actually utilized with a decent level of success this past spring.  Even if you are already familiar with most of the concepts or they seem obvious, I think the way everything is laid out in one book makes it a valuable reference if, like me, you tend to be more of a visual learner.

Get the book for $19.75 at Amazon

Interview with Andrew Bisharat about the book

Five Ten Team 5.10 Shoe & Yosemite Jeans

It’s no secret that I was disappointed when Five Ten discontinued their V10 shoe a few years back.  It’s also no secret that I was the opposite of disappointed when the Team 5.10 shoe was released last year and I got my hands on a pair.

I’ve been climbing in the Team shoe as much as my body has allowed over the past year and I’m happy to say they were everything I was hoping for.  I’ve used them bouldering and sport climbing both at the gym and outside at diverse areas like Devil’s Lake, Hueco Tanks, Ten Sleep and HP40.  Their downturned style worked especially well in Hueco and they even performed surprisingly well on the slick, vertical quartzite at Devil’s Lake.

The only real negative is how difficult they are to get on.  Several people I know gave up on them because of this, and there have been times when I longed for a shoe like the Dragon that is a breeze to get on and off.  That being said, I’ve been yarding on the pull tabs with all my might and I’ve yet to have any problems with them ripping.

Team Five Ten Shoe – $119.95 at

Team 5.10’s in action in Hueco Tanks

Babyface (V7)

Photo:  Danielle Vennard

When I first heard about the Yosemite Jeans I was admittedly a bit skeptical.  What was Five Ten doing making jeans?  Well, I’ve had the chance to wear them around the gym, at the crag and on the town and I have to say I like them quite a bit.  They’re comfortable and flexible enough for climbing yet you don’t have to look like a scrub wearing them out in public.  The only real problem I have with them is the price.  I’m not really the kind of guy who pays more than $20 for a pair of pants if I can help it.  I’m just not.  If you are, give these a look.

Five Ten Yosemite Jean – $64.95 at

Perfecto & Herakleia Downloads

Downloading climbing movies is all the rage these days, and one of the best aspects of this in my opinion is the ability to download older movies that you might have passed on when they were originally released for a reduced rate.  Two such movies that I had the opportunity to watch recently are Perfecto and Herakleia.

Perfecto follows the likes of Ethan Pringle and Katie Brown as they splash around the deep water soloing world of Mallorca, Spain.  The most interesting parts of the movie for me were the on-land sport climbing (which is something not seen much of in other Mallorca videos) as well as watching Pringle work the famous Es Pontas arch.  The rest of the DWS footage lacked a certain freshness though, something I would attribute to the fact that DWS footage has been in abundance the past few years.

Herakleia on the other hand offers a fresh look at a bouldering area in Turkey being developed by Jon Cardwell, Isaac Caldiero and Lauren Lee.  Here Mike Call does an excellent job weaving a  story around the great climbing visuals that includes both the usual climbers-being-inspired-by-new-rock-talk as well as some cleverly produced ancient history about the area itself.  I’m not sure that I had any expectations when I sat down to watch Herakleia, but I definitely enjoyed what I saw.  If I were to pick between these 2 movies I’d definitely go with Herakleia. Perfecto download for $9.99 Herakleia download for $9.99

Perfecto from Mike Call on Vimeo.

Herakleia trailer from Mike Call on Vimeo.

All of these items except the 5.10 Team Shoe were provided free of charge to for the purpose of this review

Posted In: Reviews


Subscribe to the RSS feed to receive updates, and follow us on Twitter & Facebook

One Response to Review Potpourri

  1. Luke August 17, 2010 at 11:32 am #

    I was also really impressed when I saw Herakleia. There was a bit more story and adventure than the typical bouldering flick. Turkey looks like a beautiful place to climb!

    GD Star Rating

Leave a Reply