Archive for November 21st, 2012

November 21, 2012


John Middendorf

A portaledge is a deployable hanging tent system designed for rock climbers who spend multiple days and nights on a big wall climb. An assembled portaledge is a fabric-covered platform surrounded by a metal frame that hangs from a single point and has adjustable suspension straps. A separate cover, called a ‘stormfly,’ covers the entire system in the event of bad weather.

The first portaledges used in Yosemite were non-collapsibleĀ cots purloined from Housekeeping Camp, a Yosemite Valley campground that featured primitive metal framed bunks for the campers. These heavy cots were used on multi-day climbs on granite monoliths like El Capitan, and then sometimes tossed off the summit for later retrieval.

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