Almost two years after the launch of the Pongoose brand and the innovative Pongoose Climber 700 clipstick, we were finally in a position to launch the new longer length, multidirectional and 3in1 clipstick. The opportunity to offer two lengths of clipstick was just too good to miss so we focused all our energy into working doggedly hard to get this in place as a priority. For those interested in the process, this is the story of how the Pongoose Climber 1000+ came to life.
After the overwhelming, international success of the Pongoose Climber 700, the demand for a longer length option was something that couldn’t be ignored. Customers from all around the world were emailing us asking us when we would be getting a longer length and we were overwhelmed by the support we were receiving from the global climbing community as a brand still in its infancy.
Whilst the original length stick is perfect for travelling with and will reach most first, second, and even some third bolts, depending where you are, there’s no doubt that sometimes those bolts are placed just a little too high or you simply want to clip more bolts from the ground. The longer length just had to happen to enable us to grow as a brand.
Testing of different length and style telescopic poles began in early 2018. We tested various different lengths and options, finally narrowing it down to two; the 1200mm and 1000mm sizes (collapsed pole length). After final testing of both, although we know some climbers like to have the most reach possible, even to clip the chains at the top of a route, the 1200mm length was simply too bendy and the additional reach was not worth the sacrifice in stability and control. The final Pongoose Climber 1000+ combines the perfect balance of reach and controllability with very little bend, especially if the dangling rope is held securely against the pole.
Along the way, we involved Pro-climber and friend, Robbie Phillips, who loves a good Pongoose. He offered to help test the longer stick whilst bolting a new big wall route in Madagascar and really put the new length through its paces. It was a success and the stick even played the part of extra in the climbing film, Blood Moon. Photo credit: right image by Robbie Phillips.
With extra length came the need for an even stronger, more durable telescopic pole due to the forces exerted on the connecting sections. In order to avoid sacrificing stability for length, the individual pole sections have been made slightly wider in diameter than the original Pongoose Climber 700 size pole. With this change also came upgraded twist-lock mechanisms to cope with the additional length and weight when extended. Hence, the ‘+’ was born.
This is the most exciting bit of the project and Pongoose Climber collection. Mr Pongoose is one for thinking ahead so the Pongoose Climber was originally designed with the idea to swap head complexes between different size poles. This means customers only have to buy one complete clipstick and a separate telescopic pole, rather than two complete clipsticks.
The identical camera thread on the top of the poles means the entire head complex can be unscrewed and swapped to a different length pole, so climbers have the choice of which length they need for their choice of crag or climbing destination. All the interchangeable functions to transform the clipstick into a brushing stick or an action camera boom are still applicable.
See products page for individual clipstick and telescopic pole prices and full details.
Pongoose were very lucky to have collaborated with the Arts University Bournemouth (AUB) which enabled the expansion of the business and the fruition of the Pongoose Climber 1000+ project. Massive thanks to them and the European Regional Development Funding for research and innovation that has made it possible for us to grow our business.
Main cover image credit: with thanks to Sam and Emmie, After the Send.
Comments will be approved before showing up.