How To: Rappelling Without Any Gear!




This is a instructable on how to rappel without any special gear besides rope and yourself.

Step 1: Step 1

How to rappel without equipment;

Materials Needed:
- Rope
- Yourself
- Gloves (optional)
First Step:
Grab your rope and position it like in the picture below.

Step 2: Step 2

Attach one end of the rope to a sturdy object like a pole, tree trunk, tree branch, etc.

Step 3: Step 3

use the method in the first step to rappel. You can slow your descend by holding onto the rope tighter with your right hand
This is a rappel without any equipment, this technique should be only used on gentle slopes and rappels that are short and do not require a harness.

Happy Rappelling



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    45 Discussions


    3 years ago

    BTW, proper harness is essential for self-rescue. Otherwise, round the waist rope pulls to your lower ribs, exerts pressure there and it is extremely uncomfortable. Proper harness can be improvised with ropes around the shoulder and upper thighs but the one with tapes is much more comfortable. Harness only around the waist and upper thighs is not safe because the climber can fall out of it if he turns over.


    3 years ago

    If the climber looses the grip, falls down and that is it! We used to this. With gloves. We would tie a separate roper around the waist with a bowline knot and tie that rope to the main rope with a prussik knot. Proper order is first to tie a prusik, then round the waist. This is for safety. One cannot fall out because the prussik is going to stop him. To slow the rate of descent one has to close the hand in front of the chest.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    I've only repelled a couple times when I was in JROTC at my High School.
    But we used Swiss Seat Harnesses that I think would be more comfortable and they can be made out of just rope, so I don't think they go against your "no gear" thing. (Although you do need a caribiner)
    Here's a link on how to tie one:
    Swiss Seat Guide

    5 replies

    Tell that to the Army. We always use a Swiss Seat for repelling. At least, we do on the practice towers. I can't speak to anything past that.


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    A lot of the other guys had problems, but they shouldn't be uncomfortable if done properly. I don't have "women parts" so I can't talk to the comfort on a female.


    5 years ago

    the people in the photos have gear - folks please do not try this - at best you will some serious rope burn and at worst you will die (unless you are seeking a Darwin Award then have at it )


    7 years ago on Step 3

    Those police in their group photo DON'T appear to be "rappelling" ~ but are in fact tied-in to the end of the ropes and are being winched down that (building, or dam?) wall...

    Those two nutters in the first picture just appeared to be hanging out for the photo' session..


    8 years ago on Introduction

    In the illustration the rapeller is not wrapping the rope around his arm. This is essential to reduce the force require by your hand to hold the control rope.

    In the photo of the 2 guys outside the window it's comedy of errors and an accident waiting to happen. I am guessing the rope is looped around an anchor as there are 2 strands. This is normal as it allows you to retrieve the rope easily. Problem is the lower guy has both strands looped through his fig 8 but the guy above only has it through one. I know why he did that. The weight of the lower guy pulls the rope into the locked off position so the upper dude cant move on the rope. The lower guy is effectively applying a "fireman's break" to the upper guy so he can't rappel. His solution was to only clip into one rope halving the friction. So what?

    When the first guy gets to the bottom I hope the upper guy isn't too high. the lower guy stands up and lets go of his ropes. As the upper guy is only attached to one strand, the rope will pull around and off the anchor (through the first guys fig8, resulting in a fall.

    If 2 people need to rap on one rope at the same time it's always going to have an element of danger, however there are times when it's less dangerous than making slow rapels one at a time. Say you're on a multi-pitch climb and an electrical storm is rolling in.

    This is the procedure. Loop the rope in the normal way around your anchor, tree or rock etc. Each rappeller takes one strand and both of you clip into one strand and rapell at the same time. This creates a counterbalanced system. Yes you need to be similar weights, the friction at the anchor means there can be actually quite a large difference. It's the kind of this you and a climbing buddy should practice before you need to do it in a real life situation.

    As for the instructable, it really hurts your thigh and can mess up gore-tex type outdoor wear but is a potential life saving skill so everyone should know it and practice it!


    8 years ago on Introduction

    I'm so sketched out by this instructable.
    But it does describe a great technique and is a solid instructable.


    9 years ago on Step 2

    Does anyone else notice that the person isn't even touching the rope? 


    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    in a little whil i will have a video that you can watch on the instructable called "rappelling"