Peter Dixon’s Mad Rock Gift Guide

The top 5 pieces of gear that no one should live without.

Don’t fool yourself, the holidays are about acquiring the best gear for you and your friends. This year I’ve put together a list of my top five “can’t live without” items from the Mad Rock lineup. Start the New Year right with the best toys and tools to support your passion. Go ahead, let loose!

The R3 Pad


Singularly the most innovative crash pad on the market. The R3 gives you a soft catch when you’re flying off your project. This sweet monster of a pad allows you to wrap those inconveniently placed boulders at the base of your problem and warp em’ well. No more stacking awkwardly balanced stiff square pads on the top of rounded boulders. The R3 also excels at filling gaps between boulders allowing you to build up a proper landing. The rollout shoulder strap protector allows you to place this pad in those less than ideal environments without worrying about getting your jacket dirty on the hike out. The R3’s all around versatility in any landing situation makes it a must-have for any serious boulderer.

The Shark 2.0


If I had to choose one shoe for any climb it would be the Shark. It doesn’t matter whether I’m bouldering, sport climbing, or trad, I know I can rely on this shoe for comfort and performance. On slabs I find it gives just the right amount of flex or precision smears. On vert the edge locks and dials micro footholds. When I’m climbing steep lines the Shark bites into footholds providing a secure grip. You’ll find the entire toe box is covered in rubber for the most secure toe hooks while the unique heel design provides added strength and purchase to any heel hook. Packed with features, there’s nowhere I can’t go with my Shark 2.0.

The Topo Approach Shoe


What makes this approach shoe stand apart from others is the fact that it skirts bulk and weight and thrives on being fast and light. It’s more like a lightweight running shoe with sticky rubber on the bottom. Great for other sports, not just climbing and approach. Without these I would probably need 3 more shoes to make up the difference.

The Ultralight Quickdraw


The lighter the better right? Um, yeah. These feather light draws weigh in at a mere 72 grams, which means you’re not likely to feel them on your harness. Featuring some of the lightest and strongest carabiners on the market paired with Mad Rock’s ultra slim, ultra strong sling, this quickdraw will get the job done without weighing you down. Personally I like the handling on these draws for two reasons. One, the carabiner gates are easy to open and engage when my fingers get pumped. Two, the stiffness of the sling makes clipping hangers fast and efficient. Not your average run of the mill draw, these puppies will look great hanging from your harness this holiday.

The Solar Harness


Specifically designed to evenly distribute weight while hanging and prevent the leg loops from riding up, the Solar harness keeps comfort at a max without adding bulk. The auto-locking buckles and adjustable leg loops make this one of my favorite harnesses. Whether you’re headed out on a major climb or your daily trip to the gym, Mad Rock has streamlined this harness without sacrificing any important features necessary for real rock.