Scaling great heights can be very dangerous, and even if you are only a couple of feet above ground, falling while climbing can still lead to injuries. This is why a climbing harness is an essential part of your gear.
Being able to select the best trad climbing harnesses for your own personal use will add safety to the climbing sport that you love.
Last update on 2020-07-22 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Top Climbing Harnesses Comparison
Momentum Harness by Black Diamond is a well-built, comfortable and affordable climbing harness that is ideal for pros, novices and anyone who is in between. It is an excellent all-round harness with a thoughtful and innovative design making it very easy to put on and adjust.
The harness is a comfortable choice whether you are tackling a multi-pitch climb or you just want to do short climbs at your local crag. The solid harness is practical and is made from high-quality material, which means that you can use it to climb for many years without having to worry about premature wear and tear.
This climbing harness can be used not only for climbing, but for other activities as well. Such activities include fire rescue, rappelling, caving, or any other activity that is done on a high level.
This harness from world-renowned Petzl is great for a number of different reasons. It is not only comfortable to wear on any climb, but also great for the added versatility in adjusting it to fit the waist and centering it.
The price of this harness is very affordable, which helps those who are new to climbing or are just trying it out to experience the sport without spending too much.
The Trango Kids’ Junior Climbing Harness flatly sits on the child’s body. The suspenders are sturdy and sit snugly. The harness is proportionate, and straps sit correctly. The elastic front and back risers prevent the harness from riding up. Parents love the safe and snug fit it offers to their child.
Reviews of the Best Trad Climbing Harnesses
1. Black Diamond Momentum Harness
The Momentum Dual Speed Harness from Black Diamond takes pride in a design that is meant to keep you comfortable whether you are an expert at a moderate pitch or a beginner at the gym.
Perhaps, one of the features that made users fall in love with the product is the dual-core construction. It features two bands of webbing that split well around the waist, distributing weight evenly and facilitating maximum breathability without any pressure points.
The manufacturer also went ahead to include OpenAir Eva foam padding as well as an abrasion-resistant mesh panel between the nylon shell to maximize durability and comfort.
The harness comes with a pre-threaded waist belt buckle that assures you do not make any errors when tying in.
The molded gear loops are a joy as they make accessing gear very easy, and eliminate moments of fumbling and mistakes when in less ideal situations.
- Good fit
- Easy to put on and take off
- Light in weight
- Speed adjustable buckle
- Leg loops can be a little bit difficult to tighten
2. Oumers Safe Seat Belt
The Oumers Safe Seat Belt is a good climbing harness that can catch you if you fall. It has reinforced stitching to make sure that it is durable and can carry your weight.
It is meant to be used for emergency falls, but not for prolonged hanging. It may be used for rappelling occasionally but it isn’t as well built as those that are made for the climbing sport.
This is a good choice if you are a beginner in climbing, since it is very affordable and you won’t have to spend much just to try this sport.
- The harness can fit a man, woman or a child and it has a weight capacity of up to 230 kg
- There is a breathable mesh lining in the belt and leg area to help make the wearer comfortable even if it is warm
- The waist belt can be easily adjusted through the use of double-back buckles. One movement is all it takes to do that and this means a faster set up for your climb
- Comes with its own bag for easy transport or storage
- It has a loop attached to the belt where you can also attach your gear or your chalk bag
- When you sit on the harness, as when descending, it can be uncomfortable. Not a problem though if you add extra padding
3. Petzl Corax Harness
If you are into climbing, you know there are a number of different things that you should take care of before starting out. One of the most important is buying the best harness possible for both your comfort and safety.
The Petzl Coax Harness offers everything you need in a climbing harness, and here is some information to help you when you are comparing products to buy:
- This product is lightweight, compact, and is made of durable materials for both comfort and versatility
- Comes with a UNIVERSO belay system
- Compatible with all ropes
- This is harness is very comfortable because it has been made for maximum adjustability
- Gives the user the capability to buckle the harness on both the left and right of the waist. Therefore, you can take the length in or let it out in the waist to keep everything centered
- It’s light as well as well-made so it provides the ultimate support when needed
- Hooks have been installed so you can hook additional items for your climb
- Many people love this harness because it is not only comfortable, but user friendly
- This harness does the job, but it can also be quite complicated to sort out when taking it out of the bag
4. Fusion Climb Centaur Half Body Harness
This Cantaur climbing harness produced by Fusion sports is a very minimalist style because there are no padding nor loops for your gear.
It is best used as a safety harness to catch you in case you fall while doing various activities high above the ground.
It is a great mountaineering harness that is meant to be used and worn for a short period of time as needed.
If you are looking for a mountaineering type of harness, made in the USA, this one is a great option.
- The waist belt and leg straps are adjustable in size through the buckles
- Belay loop is reinforced for better durability. It is also stitched in such a way that tearing and fraying are prevented
- There is additional stitching on the waist belt and leg straps for added durability of the harness
- It is available in different sizes
- It is a little uncomfortable because there is no padding on some areas such as the waist belt and leg straps. Additional padding can help in this regard
5. Trango Junior Climbing Harness for Kids
The Trango Kids' Junior Harness is a full body harness for kids weighing between 25 to 80 lb. Designed for kids who are top-heavy with narrower hips, it prevents them from falling out of a sit harness.
The harness is adjustable and will fit the child’s body snugly without discomfort. It is made of flexible nylon that does not hinder free movement while keeping the child hoisted vertically with legs swinging freely below.
The leg loops are padded and do not cut into the body, offering a pain-free experience. The nylon and padding make the harness ultra-comfortable with superior support.
The harness has two gear loops for additional equipment that may be needed. It also has a strong belay and haul loops.
The Trango Kids’ Junior Harness packs in the safety of an adult waist harness for a child who has higher tendencies to flip due to their heavier tops.
- Superior full-body support for a preschooler’s body. It offers the same support as an adult waist harness
- Offers size adjustability for the perfect fit due to its flexible nylon construction and padded leg loops with adjustable straps
- Size adjustability and strong construction material make it a durable buy
- The only kids’ harness today that offers padded leg loops for extra comfort
- Well-built and long-lasting, just the way you need
- Not ideal for children over 80 pounds
Purchasing a Harness for Different Climbing Types
Manufacturers of climbing harnesses produce different models of harnesses so that they can be of greatest help to a specific type of climbing. Although climbing harnesses can be quite similar to each other, there are small special features in harnesses that can be very useful only to a specific type of climb and not to the other. By being able to identify the kind of climbing you want to focus on, you can better select a climbing harness that is right for you.
Harnesses For Indoor Climbing
Those who do most of their climbing indoors can go for the ultra-padded harnesses that are very comfortable and durable, even if they appear to be more bulky and heavy.
Harnesses For Sport Climbing
On the other hand, those who are into sport climbing are better off with a lightweight harness that is comfortable to wear, even if you are simply standing. They don’t have to have lots of gear loops, because you only need a few items to take with you during your sport climb.
Harnesses For Trad Climbing
Climbers who focus on trad climbing should make sure that their harnesses can handle the bumps, scratches and other abrasions that they can get due to your movements. It should be able to handle your weight while hanging, and you should also be comfortable in it while hanging.
Harnesses For Big Wall Climbing
An even more over-the-top kind of harness is needed for those who do big wall climbing. Those who go for the big wall will benefit from double belay loops in their harness. These may also be the most expensive harnesses on the market.
Harnesses For Alpine Climbing
For Alpine climbers, the best harnesses would be those that are lightweight and very fast or easy to set up.
Harnesses For Canyoneering
And finally, those who go for canyoneering would benefit well from harnesses that are easy to put on and remove. Some also opt for the harnesses that can be detached from the leg loops so as to enable bathroom breaks when needed.
Note: you can read here my article on the best canyoneering shoes.
Parts of a Climbing Harness
When choosing a climbing harness, you should first be aware of its different parts. Knowing what the parts are and what they are used for can help you select the right kind of harness for your needs. Here are the most common parts of the climbing harnesses available today.
Waist belt or swami belt
This part of the harness is what wraps around your waist. Some come fully padded, others are padded only at the back, and there are also some that don’t have any padding at all. There can be 1 to 2 buckles that will be used to adjust the size of the waist belt.
These are usually made of metal that can be either be a double back or an automatic double back. This is usually located on one side so that it doesn’t interfere with the rope or line. Usually, the buckles are found in the waist belt and there are also some that have buckles in the leg loop for adjustments.
These are two straps that may or may not be padded and they are also adjustable in size. They are adjustable so that they can be used on your bare legs or on your legs with several layers of clothing.
These are attached to the waist belt and they allow you to carry your gear and other equipment in a more organized manner. Some have 2 gear loops, most have 4, and there are some that have even more.
Of all the different parts of the harness, the belay loop should be the strongest part of all, and it is. This undergoes tests to make sure that it is capable of carrying so much weight. A carabiner is attached to the belay loop as point of connection.
The haul loop is usually found at the back part of the harness and it is where a second line would be attached. It is not meant to be used as a load-bearing loop.
These are connected to the belay loop. Unlike the belay loop, these are not tested, but they are still made to be strong. When connecting ropes to the harness, the ropes should be attached to both the loops to even out the tension.
Fitting and Testing a Harness
Once you have selected the type of harness to purchase, you can test it out and fit it to make sure that it is really comfortable for you. Here is how you do it:
- The first thing you should do is loosen the leg loops as well as the waist belt
- Then, step into the waist belt and into the leg loops, making sure that the leg loops are in their proper position and are not interchanged or twisted. Make sure that the belay loop is also in front of you
- Position the waist belt at the waist and tighten it for a secure fit
- Adjust the leg loops one at a time if it can be adjusted. Some are only made of elastic loops so they automatically adjust
- Make sure that the waist belt is properly positioned at the waist, near the level of the belly button and that the leg loops are positioned in the legs where you can still move without pain
- Make sure that all buckles are doubled back for a secure fit
After fitting the harness, you can now test it if it is comfortable or not. Some who sell harnesses have a specific area where you can test it. This will let you know exactly how it feels to hang from that harness. You may fit and test various harnesses to really find the most comfortable one for you.
My Choice for the Best Trad Climbing Harness
Of the 5 harnesses here, I think that the Black Diamond Momentum is the best trad climbing harness for those who want a comfortable and reliable harness that isn’t too expensive.
It is great for beginners and more advanced climbers alike. With its durability, it can even grow with you as you improve your skills in climbing.
It is a good all-round harness that you can use, not only with climbing, but with other outdoor activities too such as canyoneering or rappelling.
Your safety is very important and having reliable gear such as this kind of harness is the responsible thing to do as a climber.
Top Rated Climbing Harnesses
Last update on 2020-08-13 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API