Gear Institute Expert Test Menu

Climbing Harnesses

What separates the good from the great all-purpose climbing harnesses are the times when you're rapping or lowering off ice, trad or sport routes and racking draws, cams and screws between pitches.

Over one month this winter, with the car packed with sport, trad and ice gear, I hit the road from Colorado to California to test fully adjustable harnesses with auto-locking buckles at various climbing areas. By trip's end, I aimed to find which ones performed best based on comfort and support, gear loops and overall functionality.

Petzl Sitta

86

2016

Petzl Sitta

The Petzl Sitta is a lightweight harness for sport, ice and alpine climbing.

Arc’teryx AR-395a

84

2016

Arc’teryx AR-395a

The Arc’teryx AR-395a is a lightweight, compact harness filled with features for all around climbing use.

Singing Rock Onyx

80

2016

Singing Rock Onyx

The Singing Rock Onyx is a lightweight harness for sport and trad climbing.

Mammut Zephir Alpine

80

2016

Mammut Zephir Alpine

The Mammut Zephir Alpine is a lightweight harness for alpine and ice climbing and moderate rock climbing.

C.A.M.P. Air

80

2016

C.A.M.P. Air

The C.A.M.P. Air CR is a lightweight, fully adjustable harness for rock and alpine climbing.

Beal Rebel

79

2016

Beal Rebel

The Beal Rebel is a lightweight harness for sport climbing.

Metolius All-Around

75

2016

Metolius All-Around

The Metolius All-Around is a comfortable harness for rock climbers with SafeTech high strength components throughout. 

Petzl Aquila

90

2015

Petzl Aquila

The Petzl Aquila is a lightweight, fully adjustable harness with attractive features for sport climbers and mountaineers.

Mammut Zephir

81

2015

Mammut Zephir

The Mammut Zephir is a lightweight harness designed for weight conscious sport climbers. 

Black Diamond Momentum

86

2015

Black Diamond Momentum

The Black Diamond Momentum is a lightweight all-around harness with elastic leg loops and plush padding that should please sport and trad climbers alike.

Edelrid Wing

86

2015

Edelrid Wing

The Edelrid Wing is a lightweight, fully adjustable harness that is designed for alpine climbing.

Metolius Safe Tech Comp

82

2015

Metolius Safe Tech Comp

The Metolius Safe Tech Comp is a lightweight and compact harness packed with Metolius’ SafeTech features.

Trango Liberty Harness

80

2014

Trango Liberty Harness

The Trango Liberty is a great choice for traditional climbers who want a comfortable harness for carrying a lot of gear and hanging at belay. 

Petzl Sama

86

2014

Petzl Sama

The Petzl Sama is built for sport climbers who want a simple, comfortable and lightweight harness. 

Metolius Deluxe

79

2014

Metolius Deluxe

The Metolius Deluxe is a great harness for trad climbers looking for a comfortable harness with the extra safety features found in Metolius’ SafeTech line of harnesses. 

Edelweiss Placebo

81

2014

Edelweiss Placebo

The Edelweiss Placebo is designed with the weight conscious sport climber in mind. Lightweight, anatomic design for ease of movement and rigid gear loops are tailor built for sport climbing. 

Edelrid Orion Harness

88

2014

Edelrid Orion Harness

The Edelrid Orion is attractive for mutli-pitch trad climbers looking for a harness packed with features that has a mix of comfort, durability and lightweight. 

Black Diamond Momentum 3S

87

2014

Black Diamond Momentum 3S

The Black Diamond Momentum 3S is designed as an entry-level harness that can do it all and its price and favorable features make it a great value for price conscious climbers. 

Arcteryx R320a

91

2012

Arcteryx R320a

Chris Van Leuven's review of the supple, supportive, slightly spendy Arc'teryx R320a.

Metolius Safe Tech Trad

90

2012

Metolius Safe Tech Trad

A versitile do-it-all harness with extra-bomber construction.

Petzl Adjama

85

2012

Petzl Adjama

CVL takes a whipper and scrapes the hell out of the Petzl Adjama harness. Here's his full report.

Wild Country Elite Ziplock

82

2012

Wild Country Elite Ziplock

From Colorado to Utah to Joshua Tree, Chris Van Leuven puts the Wild Country Elite Ziplock to the test, with some very interesting results.

Misty Mountain Sonic

90

2012

Misty Mountain Sonic

Checking in from Joshua Tree, Chris Van Leuven and his team report: A comfortable and supportive, medium weight, all-purpose harness with a no-frills design.

Black Diamond Momentum SA

90

2012

Black Diamond Momentum SA

One of the best, most versitile harnesses Chris Van Leuven tested—but damn that tricky buckle.