14/07/2010 16:34:48

Words by tcsh

Our Top 5 climbing helmets


There’s a bewildering array of climbing helmets available these days and choosing the right one can be a bit of a minefield.  Here’s a brief run down of the ‘lids’ we have on offer with a short explanation of what each one is best suited for.

Petzl-Elios-Helmet-Orange Petzl Elios   Our price £48.50

This is a very light and well ventilated helmet that’s suitable for all sorts of mountaineering and climbing.  The vents make this a popular choice for summer cragging and Via ferrata.  Its available in a wide range of colours too.

Edelrid-Targa-Helmet Edelrid Targa  Our Price £44

Another lightweight lid that uses expanded foam with an ABS shell to keep the weight down without compromising safety. A very popular choice for alpinists and mountaineers.

Petzl-Vertex-Vent Petzl Vertex Vent  Our Price £65

This is a real tough customer, designed for serious use.  More durable than the lighter helmets here so a good choice for rescue teams and outdoor professionals.  Also excellent for winter climbing due to its hardwearing design.

WC-360-helmet-lilac Wild Country Women’s 360  Our Price £46

This is the new women’s version of the popular 360 helmet from Wild Country.  Simply one of the safest helmets on the market and a great all rounder.

WC-Rocklite-Helmet Wild Country Rocklite  Our Price £60

Super light and very well vented.  A good choice for sports climbers looking for protection with minimal weight.  Its not as durable as the other ‘half shell’ helmets here, but it can be beefed up with the Wild Country Alpine Shell.


Helmets are an important safety consideration when climbing and will protect your head from falling rocks, ice or other debris.  Also in the unfortunate event of a fall, you are far less likely to suffer head injuries if wearing a helmet.  Helmets are essential in high mountain areas due to the frequency of rock falls, but even on low lying crags in the UK falling rocks are an ever present danger.

Modern lightweight helmets made with an expanded foam inner and a very thin outer shell (such as the Wild Country Rocklite) are by far the lightest climbing helmets on the market.  They are ideal for single pitch cragging and sports routes.

However they don’t offer the same durability and long term protection that a traditional ‘Hard shell’ helmet will. These use a much thicker ABS plastic shell with a fabric cradle for your head and are excellent for resisting sustained use and abuse (the Vertex Vent is a good example).

Most general purpose helmets now use a hybrid construction, that uses the expanded foam inner, from the super lightweight helmets, combined with an ABS plastic shell that’s thinner and lighter than a old school hard shell.  These type of helmets are often referred to as ‘half shell’ or ‘hybrid’ helmets and are the most versatile type of helmet and suit a wide range of users.

My Zimbio