Free Grades

Adventure

 

General

In order for free climbers to gauge their performance and the difficulty of a climb, a system of climbing grades is used. Unfortunately several different systems have been developed around the world, which complicates the situation. 

The system used in New Zealand is adopted from the Australian "Ewbank" numerical grading system. With this numerical system the grade increases with a corresponding increase in climbing difficulty. 

Grades

The table below provides an approximate comparison between the Australian and other grading systems.

Australian

US YDS

UK

France

UIAA

1

1

I

2

2

I

3

3

1a

II

4

4

1b

III-

5

5.0

1c

III

6

5.0

2a

III+

7

5.1

2b

IV-

8

5.1

2c

IV

9

5.2

3a

IV+

10

5.2

3a

IV+

11

5.3

3b

V-

12

5.4/5

3b

V-

13

5.6

4a

V

14

5.7

4a

V

15

5.8

4b

V+

16

5.8

4b

V+

17

5.9

4c

6a

VI-

18

5.9

5a

6a+

VI-

19

5.10a

5a

6b

VI

20

5.10b

5b

6b+

VI

21

5.10c/d

5b

6c

VI

22

5.11a

5c

6c+

VII

23

5.11b

6a

7a

VII

24

5.11c

6a

7a+

VIII-

25

5.11d

6b

7b

VIII

26

5.12b

6b

7b+

VIII+

27

5.12d

6c

7c

IX-

28

5.13a

7a

7c+

IX

29

5.13b

7b

8a

IX+

30

5.13c

8a+ X-

31

5.13d

8b X-

32

5.14a

8b+ X
33 5.14b 8c X+
34 5.14c 8c+

 

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Copyright Steven Riddell 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002 & 2003.