I originally bought the 9.2mm sterling aero 70m rope as something lighter for multi-pitch routes and something longer for any routes/rappels above the 30m mark. It definitely served its purpose, but it also quickly became my rope of choice for any red point attempts on my projects. The key reason being how little you notice the weight of it beneath your harness (those extra grams are extra grades, cough cough). But in all seriousness it’s really nice feeling like you’re only carrying your own body weight up the route, and when clipping it just seems to float towards the draw. The other thing I quite enjoyed was its pliability, while not feeling too dissimilar from a standard 9.8 rope. This being due Sterling providing the aero with the thickest sheath they make. This gave me some peace of mind in terms of its durability and also means that handling the rope with knots and through belay devices, GriGri or ATC, is natural and doesn’t take too much getting used to.
The only thing I wouldn’t recommend doing is dogging on a rope this size, not to say it wouldn’t perform, but the core isn’t built to take the constant abuse of hanging and falling or being weighted and run over stone for any extended period. That being said, in the case that you start to notice any considerable rope wear, the 70m length gives you the option of cutting it back over time prolonging the life of the rope.
On a final note, Sterling have made these ropes with quite a bright almost fluorescent colour pallet, which is two braided tones but looks like a solid colour from a distance. This is ideal for visibility of the rope in bad conditions or simply for those who want their rope to jump of the wall at the crag. It also means that as the rope gets dirtier it won’t start blending in with the crag dust or the wall.
Being a big J. R. R. Tolkien fan I find everything more tangible to understand if I relate things back to the Lord Of The Rings, so I will summarise accordingly: In summary this is Sterling’s version of the Elvish rope gifted to Frodo and Sam by lady Galadriel. Light weight, strong, supple, and just a little bit magic. Perfect for hard sport red point attempts, alpine, multi-pitch or that death defying attempt to climb your way into Mount Doom (not recommended). A great addition for climbers wanting to specialise their equipment that little bit extra.
Angus "the Gus man" Taylor enjoys a good coffee or three, a good boulder, sport climb, trad crack or a big bongo drum music jamboree.