22. Portaledges

In this video we discuss portaledges. A portaledge is a hanging tent system designed for rock climbers who spend multiple days and nights on a big wall climb. They have a frame that tensions fabric for a flat sleeping surface. They can be finicky to set up, so be sure to practice before you hop on your main climbing objective.

Having a portaledge on your big wall adventure is often mandatory. Even routes with big ledges can get crowded, and arriving at the end of a long day with no space on a ledge and no portaledge can be demoralizing.

There are several models of portaledges out there, and the goal is to find one that fits your budget, meets your needs, and withstands the abuse of vertical adventures.

A few things to keep in mind when choosing a ledge are:

– Weight and size.

– Single person ledges or double person ledges.

– Simple rain-fly or bomber 5 season fly that will withstand the most abusive weather.

Whether you choose a single or double, look at the differences in length and width dimensions—as well as weight and simplicity of set-up.

Choose the one that is long for tall partners, yet still the lightest weight.

While width is a consideration, the double portaledges are designed so that partners sleep head-to-toe, so one person’s narrower legs make room for the other’s broader shoulders.

Metolius, Black Diamond, and Fish Products all make both single and double-ledges, and each of these manufacturers offer different dimensions and weights. hint — one of the major manufacturers has a double ledge that is nearly 10lbs. lighter than the others.

We hope you found this video helpful. Feel free to comment below with questions or thoughts!


Please remember, climbing is inherently dangerous. Climb at your own risk.