Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: Basic Rockcraft
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on June 1, 2000
When I started rockclimbing 15 years ago, this was the first book I bought. Royal Robbins, et al, were the original hardmen of Yosemite Valley. Robbins' book was well written, and very instructive. Every climber that has aspired to more than the experience offered by comfortable climbing gyms, will want to peruse this book. If anyone has ever aspired to bat-hooking an A5 traverse 1,500' off the deck, you'll definitely want the knowledge that this book offers. My first copy was worn out years ago. Thanks Royal, for sharing your love of the greatest sport on earth!
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on October 12, 2014
This is an old book, but it's a good book. Although technology has changed, many of the basic climbing techniques, and especially the mental aspect, have not changed from "back in the day." This book, and Advanced Rockcraft by Royal Robbins, should be in every trad climber's library. It's a good one to have around camp, too.
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on October 18, 2007
I bought Basic Rockcraft and Advanced Rockcraft back in the 70's when I was learning to climb, and in those days they were just as essential as my rope, slings, EB boots, and gear. They went everywhere with me. Yet today's aspiring climber will certainly find both books useful for the basic and timeless techniques that Robbins and climber/illustrator Tom Frost describe here.

Robbins writes with the elemental precision and grace of the professional engineer that he once was, and he covers all of the basics that carry over to this day, or that at least should be in every climber's repertoire, such as how to do a rope-only body rappel. There's a lot that will be of use mainly to old-school big wall aid climbers - such as sky hooks and RURPs - yet this is at the very least interesting for contemporary climbers to know about.

It's a bit of a shame that both books have gone out of print, yet the availability of new and used copies here on Amazon is heartening. I'd recommend both to accompany that other great classic, Freedom Of The Hills.
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on October 11, 2009
I bought this book for a daughter who is starting to take a regular interest in rock climbing with a boy friend, mostly indoors gyms at this point.

When I did some small amount of simple rock climbing in the early 1970s, Basic Rockcraft, Advanced Rockcraft, both by Royal Robbins, Ropes Knots and Slings for Climbers (Walt Wheelock), and Mountaineering - Freedom of the
Hills (The Mountaineers) were the texts I used to learn about the subject and some of the basic techniques. All are superb books for getting started. I'm glad that all of these are still available, new or used from Amazon or eBay, inexpensive when used, the shipping cost can be higher than the cost some of the books.

Basic Rockcraft is a bit dated in a few sections like the use of body belays and improvised seat and chest harnesses made with webbing. These days I suspect everyone uses commercially purchased harnesses and mechanical belay devices that are probably safer, as they are more forgiving of use techniques. However, I think the rock climbing philosophy, belay procedures/protocols, and climbing techniques that Royal Robbins preached are timeless. Highly recommended.
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on November 9, 2015
I like the way this book is written and I enjoy the illustrations/photos. Unfortunately, the information is pretty dated (as you expect from such an old book). If you are looking for practical information to reference as you develop your skills you might want to look for something newer.
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on April 30, 2015
I had this book when I started climbing in the '70s. With all the moves since then, I had lost my copy, so just bought it again. What a classic! Worthwhile to get another copy.
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on February 18, 2015
Pretty awesome read.
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