Bouldering is the sport of ascending difficult problems on boulders up to 25 feet or so high. Bouldering is the pure essence of climbing and the pursuit of extremely difficult climbing sequences that are called boulder problems. Most boulder problems are done without a rope, although the use of a top-rope on high ball boulder problems keeps the climber safe if he falls.
Boulderers, those who climb on boulders, usually climb without the protective use of a rope and use a crash pad, a thick foam pad, to cushion their falls. Bouldering is a fun discipline of climbing that can be done wherever boulders are found. Bouldering is minimalistic, requiring only rock shoes, chalk, and a chalk bag.
Bouldering Crash Pads
Many boulderers use crash pads to cushion their repeated falls, although the use of crash pads is controversial at many bouldering areas because it hardens the ground beneath boulder problems and leads to loss of vegetation and erosion.