FOREARMS GRIPPED, eyes on a cliff face above, you reach for a thin crack in the stone. Clean, free air yawns beneath your feet, trees like toothpicks far below.
With the advent of indoor climbing gyms as well as a proliferation of bouldering walls found everywhere from school gymnasiums to municipal playgrounds, climbing has struck a critical mass.
Add improvements to gear, which make the sport safer and more user-friendly, and you have a gravity-defying activity that almost anyone can try.
The spread of products below, a kit of equipment for intermediate or first-time climbers, will let you gear up to learn the ropes, literally, for a high-exposure experience.
Stephen Regenold is founder and editor of GearJunkie.com.
Click the images below to learn more about each piece of equipment.