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Gates In vs. Gates Out: Opinionated Climbers Weigh in on the Great Carabiner Debate

This one’s for you, climbers. In fact, if you’re not a climber, you’re probably wondering what the heck this title even means. Here, “gates” are referring to the gates of a carabiner and the “in vs. out” is talking about how we “rack” or clip them to our harness. Alright, with those definitions out of the way, let’s move on to the debate.

Image of a carabiner at an anchor by Laurel Walker

When it comes to racking your carabiners or quickdraws, there are decidedly two camps among climbers: gates in and gates out, and with inspiration from Black Diamond, where they ask pros this burning question, we decided to head to the crag and see if we could settle the debate. 

Here are some quotes from anonymous, opinionated climbers we ran into:

“As a climber, I believe that the only way to rack carabiners is with the gate facing out. It’s like telling your gear, ‘Go ahead, breathe!”

“My carabiners have a serious personality disorder – they can’t decide whether they want to be open or closed. They’re like indecisive teenagers choosing their outfit for prom.”

“I once asked my carabiner which way it prefers to be racked, and it just shrugged. Typical indecisive carabiner.”

“Racking carabiners with the gates out is like saying, ‘Hey, I want my gear to be ready for action at all times!’ It’s like the superhero version of climbing gear.”

“I asked my climbing partner if he prefers racking his carabiners gates in or out. He said, ‘I’m more of a ‘whatever gets the job done’ kind of guy.’ Well, that’s one way to look at it!”

Image of a “gates in” racking style by Patrick Hendry

“Racking carabiners gates in is like choosing to wear your shoes on the wrong feet – it just doesn’t feel right.”

“My climbing mentor once told me, ‘Rack your carabiners gates out, and you’ll be on your way to becoming a climbing Jedi. May the force be with you!’”

“I always rack my carabiners gates out because it gives me a sense of rebellion. It’s my way of saying, ‘I make my own rules on the wall.’”

“Some people say that racking carabiners gates out is unprofessional, but I say it’s a form of self-expression. Plus, it looks cooler.”

“Racking carabiners gates in is like choosing vanilla when there’s an ice-cream shop with 31 flavors. Why limit yourself when you can have it all?”

As for me, I say…”Gates out for Harambe, it’s the only way”

As you can see, everyone has an opinion and reason for doing things the way they do. However, contrary to many things in climbing, there isn’t a right or wrong way to rack your carabiners, so if you haven’t picked a side, experiment and find what works best for you. Most importantly, make sure you have a strong opinion about it.

Image by Fionn Claydon

The post Gates In vs. Gates Out: Opinionated Climbers Weigh in on the Great Carabiner Debate appeared first on Outdoors with Bear Grylls.

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