It’s spring time and the winter mountaineering activities already gave place to other kind of outdoor adventures such as Long Distance Hiking and Rock Climbing. In this post, I will review a protection product that is used both for Winter Mountaineering activities and for Climbing.
The Wild Country rock with its curved sides is a Wild Country original and revolutionised how we protect routes.
Still the backbone of any good rack, the current incarnation is considerably more advanced than its predecessor and significantly lighter as well. Keeping the original groundbreaking curve, rocks now come with thinner, lighter sidewalls, a lateral side taper, anodised heads for quick selection and an extended range – with fourteen sizes in all.
Revolutionary when launched and still turning heads, the fully featured rocks range is the benchmark for the modern climber.
Wild Country Rocks on a Wire are similar in design to many other nuts on the market. What sets this climbing nut apart is a little more taper front to back (the most typical placement orientation) than Stoppers, Wedgies or Huevos, a useful quality in many situations. I also like Rocks on a Wire in larger sizes better than Stoppers, Huevos or Wedgies because Rocks have less tendency to slide up and down the cable while being placed or adjusted in the rock.
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Their large size range makes them a good choice as the bread and butter of a rack. Rocks are one of the taller nuts. Rocks, like some other nuts, have rounded edges that make for easier cleaning. They cleaned about the same as the Black Diamond Stopper and Omega Pacific Wedgies. Identification is made easier with their colored anodized heads, a scheme shared with all styles of DMM and Wild Country nuts.
All this, combined with the fact that they are a simple design, makes them a great choice for beginners. They fit parallel cracks well. They work in less constricting cracks about the same as the Black Diamond Stoppers and a baby step below the Metolius Curve Nuts. The Rock is among the most durable climbing nut on the market their wire rarely kinks and the rock itself never seems to get to banged up.
Proper Use and Placement Instructions
As Wild Country states, the Wild Country ROCKS may not function in wet, muddy, gritty or icy cracks. Also, is not recommended for use on its own, since it will not withstand the highest conceivable force. It may be used as one component of a belay system where the force of a fall is shared between the components.
The Wild Country Rocks, if used correctly, are sufficiently strong to withstand typical forces generated in a fall, provided a dynamic belay is in use and effective. It cannot be relied upon to withstand the highest forces that could be generated in a fall.
Even when used correctly, the protection this product provides depends on the holding force of the chock, and where it is used. The holding force depends on the rock type and its surface condition, and on the direction of the shock load in the event of a fall. The holding force may also be affected by the presence of humidity, ice, mud or sand on the rock.The behaviour of a chock in rock, when loaded dynamically, is not fully predictable. At least two independent anchor points should always be used, each capable of providing adequate protection.
Their relativity simple shape makes it easy for beginners to assess the quality of their placements. As one of the lighter nuts on the market, they are a good option for alpine climbers or any climber looking to save a little weight.
-  13 x 7 mm,
-  13.8 x 8.2 mm,
-  14.5 x 9.6 mm,
-  15.3 x 11.3 mm,
-  16.8 x 13.3 mm,
-  19 x 15.6 mm,
-  21.2 x 18.4 mm,
-  24 x 21.6 mm,
-  27.7 x 24.4 mm,
-  31 x 30 mm,
-  35 x 34 mm,
-  38 x 38 mm,
-  41 x 44 mm,
-  45 x 50 mm
-  7 kN,
- [2-14] 12 kN