This Rock Climber Takes the Gym Outdoors With this Awesome Deepwater Solo Route

Many rock climbers use the gym as a training ground for getting outdoors. The gym provides a controlled environment for building a climber’s fitness in an arguably safer space. However, if you know anyone who rock climbs, you know they’re always looking for something to climb. A recent video captured someone using gym holds to climb a bridge in Chile.

Watch the video:

The video starts with a climber known on Instagram as @climberjean, who’s close to the top of the route. The plastic holds create a route on the bridge over a river. Jean tops out the route and then drops down to the water below.

The route is what’s called a deepwater solo. It’s similar to bouldering, where gear like harnesses and ropes are not used. However, climbers can freely climb higher than some bouldering problems thanks to a softer landing in the water.

While this route was human-made, there are plenty of deepwater solo routes around the world.

The British Mountaineering Council (BMC), an organization that promotes climbing and access, says the first step to deepwater soloing is to check the water. Be sure you know the water is deep enough, and there are no rocks hidden below. You wouldn’t want to hit something after falling into the water. The organization also recommends checking the tides to know if the water level may be going down. 

It’s also important to remember that water doesn’t always equal a soft landing. Especially once you begin climbing higher. The BMC recommends climbers “kick and move in the air until you hit the water, at which point become a pencil.” This should help reduce injuries from landing too hard on your back or face.

Would you try deepwater soloing, whether it’s on real rocks or gym holds?

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