Anchors School

Special Notice - Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and in compliance with public health guidelines, the Spring 2020 Anchors School was cancelled.   At this time, the Fall 2020 Anchors School is still scheduled for November and accepting enrollment.  However, due to the uncertainty of the future public health situation, it is possible that this school will also need to be cancelled/rescheduled.  If you plan to participate in the Fall School as scheduled, given that it goes on as scheduled, please follow instructions below to enroll.  In view of the uncertainty of the schedule and to avoid the hassle of refunds in case a class is cancelled, we are NOT accepting pre-payment of the class fee.  Follow instructions to enroll in the school; when it is determined that the class will proceed as scheduled, you will be requested to pay the applicable fee and provided with the payment options to secure your spot.

Anchors – The Next Step in Your Climbing Journey

This course is the next step for AMC Outdoor Rock Climbing grads. We will teach you how to safely and efficiently build anchors for all aspects of rock climbing.  Combined with the skills learned in the Outdoor Rock Climbing School, you will have the complete skill set required for safe top-rope climbing.

LEARN: Anchor types, components, required knots and hitches, use of natural and artificial protection (stoppers, tricams, hexes, SLCDs), and critical elements of safe anchor construction.  Understand and apply SERENE and ERNEST principles in hands-on practice with individual instruction.

For complete class information see Anchors School Flyer Fall 2020

For instructional materials see Anchors Manual and Instructional Updates


Date Time Location
Tue  Nov 10 5:30pm – 9:30pm Phoenix – North Mountain Visitor Center
Thu Nov 12 6:00pm – 9:30pm Phoenix – North Mountain Visitor Center
Sat  Nov 14 8:00am – 4:00pm Sullivan's Canyon (Chino Valley)

Experience required:

AMC Outdoor Rock Climbing School graduate or equivalent, which must include:

  • Outdoor top-roping experience, including use of standard climbing calls and partner checks.
  • Knowledge and experience in current belay (PBUS) and rappel techniques, including use of autoblock backup.
  • Competency with basic climbing knots  (figure eight tie-in, figure eight on a bight, grapevine/double fisherman, girth hitch).
  • Self rescue techniques including use of prusiks to ascend a rope.


  • 2 non-locking “D” or Oval carabiners (bring more if you have them)
  • 3 locking carabiners (at least 3, one of which should be a parabiner)
  • 1 tube style rappel/belay device (Trango Jaws, Black Diamond ATC, Trango Pyramid, Figure-8, etc.)
  • 1 climbing harness
  • 1 ea – 4′, 6′, 10′ 6mm prusiks (untied length)
  • 1 ea – 10′, 20′ slings (1″ tubular webbing, untied length)
  • 1 personal anchor slings (commercial PAS or 4′ sewn nylon or Spectra runners or equivalent)
  • 1 20′ cordelette (20-foot length of 7mm accessory cord)
  • 1 double length (48”) sewn nylon sling (typically 11/16” wide)
  • 1 helmet (req’d for Sat, provided by AMC if you don’t have your own)

*NOTE – The 20' webbing, 20' 7mm cordelette, personal anchor and harness are the only additional equipment needed over the AMC Basic Outdoor Climbing School requirements.

Helmets: Students will be required to wear a helmet during the Saturday session. Helmets are available if you do not have one. This class is designed to teach you how to set top-rope anchors. In order to become independent and set your own anchors, you should start acquiring anchor gear. These purchases will be limited by how much money you want/have to spend and how much interest you have in climbing independently. The following gear is not required for the anchors class, but if you have some, you will be able to practice setting it in a controlled, learning environment during the class. All of the gear recommended below can be used for the Lead School, and none of it will be wasted if you intend to set your own anchors. All gear should be marked prior to bringing it to class to prevent confusion between it and other people’s gear. If you don’t know how to mark gear, check with an instructor before doing so to avoid weakening equipment due to improper marking techniques.

OTHER GEAR that you may want to bring to anchors class:

  • Pro you might already own or borrow from a friend (hexes, nuts, camming devices, Tri-cams, etc)
  • Extra biners (regular D’s, ovals, lockers – avoid specialty biners at this time)
  • Extra slings (perhaps additional 20′ slings, untied length, 24′ sewn runners)

NOTE: don't rush out and buy Pro.  Generous Instructors will loan you all the cams, nuts, or tricams you might need.

Cost:  $125.

  • Note: You must be a current AMC club member to register for this school.


  • Contact Scott Kuchman at to reserve your spot
  • Payment may be made by credit card or personal check.  For the Fall 2020 School, do NOT pay at this time.  If and when it is determined that the school can proceed as scheduled, Scott will provide you with guidance to pay the fee to confirm your spot in the school
  • If you are a current AMC club member (i.e. your dues are paid for this year), great!!  If not, please go to the membership page at and complete the membership process.
  • Refund policy: The cost of the class is fully refundable if you decide to cancel.  The Membership Fee is non-refundable.

Anchors School Instructional Update

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