Climbing: Most Popular Articles
Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world, stretches along the border of Nepal and Tibet/China in southern Asia. Find out lots of interesting facts about Mount Everest, including its first ascent, the usual climbing routes, and strange feats on the roof of the world.
Learn interesting facts about Mount Fuji, the highest mountain in Japan and one of the world's most beautiful and famous mountains, and how to climb Fuji-san.
Learn cool facts and lots of information about Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa, one of the Seven Summits, and one of the most popular high mountains in the world for climbers.
Learn interesting facts about K2, the second highest mountain in the world, including how it got its unique name, when it was first climbed, and why it is one of the most dangerous high peaks in the world.
Know these 6 important knots to go rock climbing safely--Figure-8 Follow-Through Knot, Clove Hitch, Figure-8-on-a-Bight, Double Fisherman's Knot, Prusik Knot, and Munter Hitch.
Mount Rainier, the highest mountain in Washington, is the fourth highest mountain in the United States. Learn lots of interesting facts about Mount Rainier and how to climb it.
Check out lots of interesting facts and statistics about Mount Whitney, the highest mountain in California and the highest in the lower 48 states.
Learn all about about the Matterhorn and climbing the Matterhorn, Switzerland's most famous mountain and a symbol of the European Alps.
How you use handholds on a cliff is essential to your climbing success. We use our hands to grab various rock features, which allow us to pull ourselves upward with our arms and to stay in balance on vertical terrain. Learn here about the nine different types of handholds that you will encounter on cliffs and how to use each type of handhold with specific hand movements and techniques.
Rappelling is a skill-based climbing activity for descending down cliffs and mountains. Learn what are the six essential climbing skills that you need to know to rappel safely and efficiently when you are rock climbing.
Learn all about Mount Elbrus, the highest mountain in Europe, one of the Seven Summits, and one of the most popular but deadliest high mountains in the world for climbers.
Learn how to tie a figure-8 follow-through knot, the best knot for tying into a climbing rope. The figure-8 follow-through knot, also called a figure-8 trace knot, is the best knot for rock climbing since it's easy to check and won't come untied.
Learn interesting climbing and geographic facts about Aconcagua, the highest mountain in South America and one of the Seven Summits.
Mount Shasta towers majestically above northern California. This massive stratovolcano, one of California's Fourteeners, has a long colorful history and is a popular mountain for climbers. Find out lots of interesting facts and Mount Shasta's geology, volcanism, history, ascents, and how to climb it.
Here is a list of all the essential equipment that you need to rappel off your newest route, including climbing ropes, rappel device, anchor material like cams and nuts, slings and webbing, climbing harness, belay and rappel gloves, and a personal anchor tether.
Learn all about Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in western Europe and the Alps, and a popular mountain for climbers.
Which rock climbing shoes should you buy? There are a lot of rock shoe choices so it can be hard to decide how to buy shoes. Follow these 10 rock shoe buying tips to find the best fit, where to buy shoes, and how to save money.
Climbers use chalk to dry sweaty hands and to enhance their grip on handholds. Find out here about the four types of climbing chalk that you can buy and use on the rock.
Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world, is also one of the most dangerous peaks to climb. One in ten climbers who successfully summit Mount Everest end up dying on the mountain. How do they die? There are several ways climbers die on Everest. Read here about traumatic and non-traumatic deaths on the roof of the world.
Learn about mountaineering or the sport of climbing mountains, one of the finest opportunities for the lover of high places. Mountain climbing is about challenge and perseverance, about putting hands and feet onto rock and ice and snow and finally reaching a summit.
Belaying is one of the most important climbing skills. Here you learn the basics about belaying and using belay devices at your local indoor climbing gym.
Reinhold Messner, one of the greatest Mount Everest climbers made the first ascent without supplemental oxygen with Peter Habeler in 1978 and then did the first ascent of a new route on the North Face alone. Page 2.
If you're going caving, it's important to have the right equipment. Here are all the essential caving equipment that you'll need, including helmet, headlamp, and oversuit.
Bouldering is a simple climbing sport. It's just you and the rock. Follow these 6 essential bouldering tips and tricks and get up more problems and have more fun. Learn why you should clean your rock shoes and handholds; the ethics of cheater stones; why it's important to check out the top out and the descent; and how to previsualize a boulder problem.
If you're out climbing and need to rappel off the cliff, here are the four best knots to tie your climbing ropes together.
Climbing is dangerous. Learn the basic rules of climbing safety to stay safe on the rocks and avoid accidents. Follow these ten tips for climbing safety for a safe climbing adventure.
The Seven Summits, a well-known mountaineering objective, are the highest peaks on each of the seven continents. Learn here about these seven mountains and climbing them.
Fast facts about Mount Kosciuszko, the highest mountain in Australia and one of the Seven Summits.
Falling is a big part of sport climbing. If you climb much, you're going to take some falls. Learn about climbing falls, how to protect yourself when falling, and about climbing fall safety.
Here's all the basic equipment you need to go sport climbing, including a rope, quickdraws, locking carabiners, and personal gear.
How much will it cost you to climb Kilimanjaro? Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa and one of the Seven Summits, is expensive to climb. Learn about the essential costs, including airfare, outfitter fees, tips, and extra costs, and make a budget to have the adventure of a lifetime by climbing Kili.
The most dangerous part of top-rope climbing is setting up anchors at the top of a cliff. Every year a few climbers fall off cliff-tops because they aren't tied into their rope before they set anchors on the edge. Learn important safety tips for setting top-rope anchors and what you should not do.
Fossils deposited in a deep sea 400 million years ago are now found on top of Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world. How did marine fossils find their way to 29,000 feet? The answer is found in Mount Everest's unique geology. Learn all about the geology of Mount Everest and the Himalayan mountains and why they are still rising.
Learn how to tie a Prusik knot, an important knot used in climbing for ascending ropes and in emergency situations.
Devils Tower, a spectacular natural landmark in Wyoming, is one of the premier climbing destinations in the United States. Find out here all about Devils Tower.
Top-rope climbing is the best way for beginners to get out on the rocks. Check here for the skills you need to know and what equipment you need to buy.
Facts and figures about Mount Elbert, the highest mountain in Colorado.
Mount Katahdin, the centerpiece of Baxter State Park, is Maine's highest mountain and the objective of many climbers.
You need to learn to effectively use your hands and fingers to become a successful rock climber. Learn about using handholds effectively and the six basic finger grips for rock climbing.
Learn how to tie and use an autoblock knot, an essential safety knot used in climbing and rappelling.
The 1970s was a momentous time for rock climbing with new gear innovations, a clean climbing ethic, a dirt-bag climbing lifestyle, and classic climbing clothes. Learn more about climbing in the 1970s and how the seventies climbing fashion and lifestyle came from surfing and punk music.
What do you need to buy to build a basic rack of equipment for traditional climbing? Here are my suggestions for starting to build your trad rack, including cams, nuts, slings, and carabiners.
Colorado, the roof of the Rockies, offers 55 Fourteeners or peaks above 14,000 feet for climbers. Here is a complete listing of all the Fourteeners, their elevations, and their mountain ranges.
Use these six climbing movement tips to improve your performance on the rocks. Learn about properly using your feet, legs, and hands; how to make basic climbing strategies; and how to be one with the rock. Read them, practice them, and get climbing.
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Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world, is also one of its most storied with many tales of adventure, bravery, strength, daring, and death. Here are four strange yet odd stories about Mount Everest, including an unknown Soviet attempt, a profile of Sandy Irvine, a bizarre solo attempt by a cross-dresser, and the answer to the question: Who was first on Everest's summit?
Read interesting facts and statistics about Guadalupe Peak, the highest mountain in Texas.
The world’s 14 highest mountains are an exclusive club of peaks whose summits tower more than 8,000 meters (26,247 feet) above sea level.The Eight Thousanders all lie in the Himalayan and Karakoram ranges in central Asia.
Every climber needs to know these 4 friction knots--Prusik knot, Klemheist knot, Bachmann knot, and Autoblock knot--to climb a rope in an emergency or to escape a belay during a self-rescue.
How much does it cost to climb The Seven Summits, the seven highest mountains on the seven continents? You know it will cost a lot of money, find out here how much it costs to climb all seven mountains.
The full crimp grip is one of 6 hand and finger positions used in rock climbing. Learn all about the full crimp, how to do it, and how to avoid crimping injuries.
Climbing voice commands are basic verbal commands that rock climbers use to communicate with each other when they're climbing. Learn here why climbers use voice commands and what the basic voice commands are.
Traveling across snowy landscapes in winter can be hazardous to climbers, hikers, skiers, and snowmobilers. Learn to recognize the three types of avalanche terrain and how to evaluate slopes to determine if you can safely cross them without causing an avalanche.
The easiest way to start climbing is to learn how to scramble, which is simply climbing easy rock that doesn't require the use of a rope or technical climbing equipment. Learn here about all the basic climbing and mountaineering skills required to become a safe and proficient scrambler as well as safety suggestions and when to use a rope.
Definition of Double Figure-8 Fisherman’s Knot, climbing words for the best knot to tie 2 ropes together.
“On belay” is the first climbing voice command used by a climbing team at the base of a route as well as at both the beginning and end of a pitch higher up the cliff.
Mount Vinson in the Ellsworth Mountains is the highest mountain in Antarctica and one of the Seven Summits, the highest points on the Seven Continents.
Learn lots of interesting facts and data about Mount Washington, the highest mountain in New Hampshire and New England.
Learn all about Mount Kenya, the second highest mountain in Africa and the highest mountain in Kenya. Mount Kenya is popular with rock climbers and mountaineers since it offers a greater challenge than Kilimanjaro.
Definiton of the Münter hitch, a climbing knot used for rappelling and belaying, especially in emergency situations.
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Definition of Prusik Knot, climbing words for a friction knot used to ascend a fixed rope.
Here's eveything that you need to get out top-rope climbing on your local cliff, including a climbing rope, carabiners, slings, and personal gear.
Definition of Figure-8-on-a-Bight Knot, climbing words for the a secure knot used to tie a climber to an anchor.
Shiprock, a towering rock mountain in northwestern New Mexico, is sacred to the Navajo Indians. Shiprock figures prominently in many Navajo legends and myths. Find out about Shiprock's geology, climbing history, and Navajo mythology.
The 3 basic skills you need to know to build a safe anchor system for top-rope rock climbing.
Belaying, the process of one climber managing and holding the rope for another person climbing, is an essential rock climbing skill that every climber needs to know. Learn here what belaying is and the 3 factors needed for a safe belay.
The Petzl GriGri belay device, a mechanical assist device used for belaying, is an important rock climbing tool. The GriGri, however, is not a hands-free auto-locking device. GriGri accidents happen because climbers load the device wrong or are careless belayers. Learn how to properly load and use a GriGri when you're climbing.
Kangchenjunga is the highest mountain in India and second highest in Nepal and is the easternmost 8,000-meter peak.
The Climbing blog at About.com is going away on June 2.
You want to buy a new harness? Here are seven tips on how to fit and buy a climbing harness. If you've never owned a harness before, it's best to shop at a store rather than buying one on-line so that you can try on different harnesses and find the best fit for your body type.
Definition of Clove Hitch, climbing words for a knot to tie a rope to a carabiner, anchor, or tree.
Harnesses are specifically made for different types of climbing, including sport, gym, and competition climbing, general all-around climbing, big wall climbing, alpine and ice climbing, caving, and kids climbing. Specific harnesses are made for women and children.
Belay and rappel devices are one of the most important pieces of climbing equipment that you will need to purchase and learn to use so you can safely belay and rappel at the cliff.
Climbers become intimate with different types of rock, discovering that the characteristics of different rocks creates different climbing experiences. Three of the main rocks for climbing--granite, sandstone, and limestone--are some of the best and most common rock mediums for climbers to practice their vertical sport. Find out more about these 3 rock types, how they were formed; the characteristics that allow climbers to ascend them; and their main exposures at American climbing areas.
Rappel anchors are an important element for safe rappelling. Bad anchors can fail and lead to dire consequences. Learn how to use existing rappel anchors and how to create new rappel anchors if you have to retreat from a route. Also follow my rappel anchor tips for safety and what you need to carry in a rap anchor kit.
Bouldering, the discipline of rock climbing on small cliffs and boulders, celebrates the joy of movement over stone. Bouldering is all about movement, of climbing with purity and simplicity and without a rope and protective gear. Bouldering is simply you and the rock. Learn all about bouldering here.
Learn step-by-step how to safely lower from the anchors on a sport climbing pitch. Lowering is the easiest way to descend from a short climb but it is also dangerous. Follow 9 important steps and learn to clip into anchors, thread the rope, communicate with your belayer, and safely return to the ground.
Spring-loaded camming devices or SLCDs are an important part of your rack of climbing gear. While cams are easy to place, they are only safe and secure if placed correctly. Learn how to place camming units; which cracks are best for cams; why you use quickdraws on cams; why cams aren't great for top-rope anchors; and how to remove stuck cams.
Rappelling, the act of sliding down a climbing rope to descend a cliff, requires lots of climbing skills to be safe. You need to learn to properly pull your ropes to avoid dangerous hang-ups and situations that might require you to reascend the cliff to free your ropes. Learn how to retrieve your ropes after rappelling with these essential safety tips.
The autoblock knot is an important climbing knot used as a safety back-up on a rappel rope.
K2, the world's second highest mountain, is one of its most difficult and dangerous to climb. Here is a list of all the firsts on K2, including the first attempt, the first ascent, first Americans to climb it, first woman ascent, first ski descent, and first death.
The Maroon Bells, the 24th and 51st highest mountains in Colorado, are beautiful mountains but difficult and dangerous to climb. Find out here about North Maroon Peak and Maroon Peak.
Climbers use chalk or magnesium carbonate as a drying agent on their hands and fingers to decrease moisture, reduce slippage, and increase performance. What is climbing chalk and how does it work? Does it actually help you climb harder? Find out about climbing chalk and the answers to these questions.
Climbing is a physical sport so you can injure your fingers, elbows, and shoulders if you're not careful when you climb and train. Most climbing injuries are due to overuse and to accident. Learn how to avoid climbing injuries from overuse and what to do if are injured rock climbing by following my smart climbing tips.
Which rock shoes should I wear? is a common question, especially from novice rock climbings. Rock cilmbing shoes are the one piece of climbing equipment that help immediately help you climb better. Learn here about how to buy new rock shoes, which kinds of shoes are right for your climbing adventures, and how the shoes should fit your feet.
Rappelling is a climbing technique that allows you to do a controlled descent down a rope from a cliff or mountain. Learn here all about rappelling and the essential climbing skills you need to learn to safely rappel.
Your climbing harness, which connects your body to your rope, is a complicated piece of equipment. A harness has lots of parts—straps, buckles, and loops. Read this breakdown of all the parts of a climbing harness so you know what you’re looking at before you buy a new harness.
How you move and place your feet and rock shoes while you're climbing is important to your success. Efficient foot placement, including watching your foot, placing your foot quietly, and taking small steps is paramount to climbing well. Learn 6 tips about climbing footwork and you'll be climbing harder and higher.
How safe is climbing? A recent study of data from emergency rooms across the United States says climbing is pretty safe. Read here about the surprising findings.
Climbing slings, simply lengths of webbing that are tied or sewn into closed loops, are an essential piece of rock climbing equipment. Learn all about slings, how climbers use slings, the different materials used to make slings, and the differences between sewn and tied slings.
Facts About Annapurna, the Tenth Highest Mountain in the World, and one of the world's 14 8,000-meter peaks, including its location and first ascent information.
Read interesting facts and statistics about Humphreys Peak, the highest mountain in Arizona.
Definition of Bomber, a climbing slang word that means fail-safe and solid.
Backcountry.com offers Detour, a site to find an adventure guide for climbing, hiking, fishing, and other adventures.
Advice on how to rock climb if you're afraid of heights.
Chalk bags are simply small fabric sacks that are filled with climbing chalk and carried on a belt around a climber's waist. Learn more about chalk bags, their different sizes and shapes, how to buy a chalk bag, and how to carry a chalk bag.
When you're ice climbing or climbing high mountains, your hands are going to get cold. What's the best glove system to use to keep your hands and fingers toasty warm and free from the risk of frostbite? Learn from mountaineer Susan Paul how to create a glove system for winter climbing.
Harney Peak, the highest mountain in South Dakota, is a popular and easy hike up a good trail. Read about Harney Peak and a complete route description, then make plans to climb this US state high point.
The half crimp grip is one of 6 hand and finger positions used in rock climbing. Learn all about the half crimp, how to do it, and how to avoid crimping injuries.
How do you rappel if you drop your rappel device on a rock climb? The best way to get down is by using the carabiner brake method. Learn all about the carabiner brake including its advantages and disadvantages so you'll know how to manage in an emergency situation.
Successful rock climbing ascents require a variety of climbing techniques and different moves, including the one-arm lock-off move, the cross-through move, and the Gaston move. Find out about these three important climbing moves and positions and learn how to execute them on the rock.
The first ascent of Mount Everest was on May 29, 1953 by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay.
Learn how to climb an indoor wall in a climbing gym and how to use your hands and feet.
President Obama designates new Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument in New Mexico.
How to stay safe from lightning strikes while you're climbing and hiking in the mountains.
A lot can go wrong when you're rappelling off a cliff since you're totally dependent on your equipment. Learn here why rappelling is dangerous and how you can be safer rappelling.
Climbing is a dangerous activity. The good news, however, is that most climbing accidents and deaths are preventable since they are caused by human errors. Learn about the 5 ways that most climbers die--lead climbing falls, loose rock and rockfall, solo climbing without a rope, rappelling, and in bad weather and lightning--and how to prevent becoming a climbing statistic by following basic safety tips and using good judgment.
If you climb mountains then you have to learn basic rock climbing moves when you're scrambling over exposed rocky sections without a rope. Use six basic climbing skills to improve your scrambling and to stay safe in the mountains.
Learn all about Pico de Orizaba, the highest mountain in Mexico and the highest volcano in North America. Orizaba is a popular destination for mountain climbers.
Your climbing rope won't last forever. Follow these tips to increase its life--don't step on your rope, use a rope bag, run your rope freely, switch ends after falling on your rope, and regularly wash it.
Facts About Nanga Parbat, the Ninth Highest Mountain in the World. Nanga Parbat is one of the most dangerous high mountains in the world. Find out more about its colorful climbing history and geography.
Want to know what climbing is all about? This article describes climbing as a recreational sport that uses hands and feet to ascend steep obstacles like mountains, cliffs, and artificial walls.
Learn about Carstensz Pyramid, the highest mountain in New Guinea, Indonesia, and Oceania, and one of the Seven Summits.
Facts about Lhotse, the fourth highest mountain in the world.
Colorado has 55 Fourteeners or 14,000-foot mountains in its many mountain ranges. Learn all about Colorado's Fourteeners and how to climb them.
Learn interesting facts about Longs Peak, the highest mountain in Rocky Mountain National Park and the 15th highest Fourteener in Colorado.
The Bachmann Knot is a friction knot with a carabiner handle that is used in climbing to ascend fixed ropes.
Sport climbing, the pursuit of bolt-protected gymnastic climbing, offers the rewards of rock climbing without a lot of the risks. Learn here what sport climbing is and what skills you need to get out on the rocks.
It's easy to lose your footwork when climbing at indoor gyms. All the holds are usually big or positive so you can get by with sloppy feet. Follow these 8 tips to improve your climbing footwork by practicing in your local indoor gym so you can keep your best foot forward out on the rocks.
Energy bars, gels, and drinks offer quick and easy nutrition for climbers, hikers, runners, bikers, and mountaineers.
If you want to climb better, then you need to use your feet better. Learn here why good footwork is important if you want to get up hard climbs.
You've been climbing all summer and your rock shoes need new soles. What do you need done to the shoes and who's going to do the job? Read this guide to rock shoe resoles, repairs, and cobblers to make the right choices.
El Capitan, a 3,000-foot-high granite monolith, is the climbing icon of Yosemite National Park. Some of the most famous climbing routes in the world ascend El Capitan, including The Nose and Salathe Wall. Learn lots of interesting facts about El Capitan, including Captain Kirk's ascent in 2287, El Cap geology, and the 1958 first ascent.
When you're climbing in the mountains, it's important to know how to predict climbing weather to avoid rain, snow, and wind. Learn nine common signs that indicate your climbing weather is changing, including cumulus clouds, cirrus clouds, a halo around the moon, rising and falling barometric pressure, and low clouds.
Climbing slings, lengths of cord or webbing that are sewn or tied into closed loops, come in five basic types. Read about each type and what they are used for when you go rock climbing.
K2, the second highest mountain in the world, is usually climbed by the Abruzzi Spur route up the Southeast Ridge. Read a description of the route and make your own plans to climb to the summit of K2. Page 2.
Pitons, metal spikes hammered into a crack, were used for protection and anchors on rock climbs before the widespread use of nuts and cams in the late 1970s. Modern aid climbers and alpine climbers still use pitons to ascend big walls and ice faces. Learn what are the different types of pitons, including knifeblades, Bugaboos, Lost Arrows, angles, and bong bongs, and how they are used.
Learn how to rig a carabiner brake so you can safely rappel off a climb if you accidently drop, lose, or forget your rappel device.
Fixed pitons are found on many climbing routes, especially at older climbing areas. Learn how to evaluate and assess fixed pitons, what kind of fixed piton placements you should trust, and why you need to always back up fixed pitons with your own gear.
Rotator cuff injuries are the most common shoulder injury that occurs in climbers, especially sport climbers who crank steep overhanging routes. Learn all about the rotator cuff, how it is injured, how to self-assess a cuff injury, how to treat a rotator cuff strain, how a doctor treats a rotator cuff tear, and how to rehab an injured rotator cuff.
Dynamic movements—dynos and deadpoints—are essential to modern climbing and getting up hard routes and boulder problems. Learn what a dyno is; how to perform dyno and deadpoint moves; how to practice dynos; and why dynamic moves are important.
Climbing FAQ: Am I too old to start rock climbing? The answer is No! Climbing keeps you young and improves your health. Get on the rock and find new life.
Definition of Klemheist Knot, climbing words for a friction knot used to ascend and descend a fixed rope.
It's a lot of work to climb off-width cracks. Here are some tips to climb off-widths more efficiently by wearing the right harness, racking your gear on a sling, and sliding a big cam up as you climb.
Once you climb to the top of a mountain or cliff, you need to get back down safely and efficiently. Climbers descend off cliffs and mountains in four different ways--hiking down, downclimbing, rappelling, and lowering. Learn more about the four types of descents and how to evaluate terrain for the proper descent.
A study of rock climbing accidents, injuries, rescues, and fatalities over a 14-year period from 1998 to 2011 details the causes of climbing incidents in the Boulder, Colorado area, including Eldorado Canyon, one of the most popular climbing areas in the United States.
Learn all about Gangkhar Puensum in Bhutan, the world's highest unclimbed mountain.
Use quickdraws on the bolt anchors on sport climbing routes to rig top-ropes for your buddies. Using your own gear lessens the wear on permanent hardware and keeps you safer.
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Facts About Dhaulagiri, the Seventh Highest Mountain in the World
The Keyhole Route climbs Longs Peak, one of Colorado's most beautiful and difficult Fourteeners. Plan your climb up Longs Peak with this detailed route description up the Keyhole Route, the single most popular mountain route in Colorado.
Learn all about knots for climbing, including the best knots for climbing; knots to tie rappel ropes together; friction knots; knot strength; and how to tie and untie knots.
How to tie into a climbing rope and why the Figure-8 Follow-Through is the best knot for tying in.
Facts About Cho Oyu, the Fifth Highest Mountain in the World
The beauty of bouldering is not just doing hard moves but also its minimalism. You don’t need to spend lots of money on equipment to have fun on the boulders. Here are the 3 essential pieces of climbing equipment that you need to go bouldering.
It's important to eat well when you go rock climbing for the day. The best start is a balanced breakfast with both carbohydrates and protein. While you're climbing, eat energy bars, gels, and chews to keep your blood sugar level and to have plenty of carbos to climb at your very best. Learn more here about eating for climbing performance.
A climbing harness is a key piece of your personal climbing equipment. Your harness, with a waist belt and leg loops constructed of sewn webbing, connects you to your climbing rope with a knot. Learn here about the evolution and types of harnesses.
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Learn all about Snowdon, the most climbed mountain in Great Britain as well as its most famous peak. Find out lots of interesting facts about Snowdon and how to climb its ridges and cliffs.