Gym2Crag: Anchors, Cleaning, and Rappelling


Anacortes, Washington

Group Size

5 people per guide


8 hours

This clinic will cover principles of safe anchors, various types of anchors for sport climbing, and how to set up and take down a top rope safely.

In this one-day course, we focus on supporting climbers in their transition from climbing indoors to outdoors, as well as supporting outdoor top rope climbers in learning to work with anchors and evaluate anchors others have built. 

Building and cleaning (breaking down) anchors are fundamental skills for budding outdoor climbers looking to build their skillset and independence. Rappelling is also an important skill to build in your progression - with applications in multi-pitch climbing, mountaineering, and canyoneering, beyond single pitch rock climbing. 

Learning Outcomes

During this course we will teach topics including:

  • Discussing differences between indoor and outdoor rope systems and belaying 
  • Physics of weight difference, friction, and different positions and stances
  • Environmental considerations 
  • Basic knots and introduction to the gear required to build basic anchors and their care
  • Assessing fixed hardware and evaluating bolted hardware to set up basic anchors 
  • Principles to evaluate strong, secure, and simple anchor systems 
  • Cleaning bolted anchors 
  • Mock rappel rig on the ground, and if time allows, rappelling under supervision! 

This course does not include a focus on natural or gear anchors. 


  • Has taken OITW “Intro to Climbing - Basics of Outdoor Top Rope” Course 


  • Knows how to tie into the rope for climbing
  • Can independently perform safety checks before climbing
  • Proficient belayer with at least a tube style belay device 
  • Has experience top roping at least 5 climbs (indoor or outdoor)