Words for describing routes


Throughout our years, @Toasty and I have encountered some interesting words for describing our feelings about climbs, scrambles, etc.

In order of increasing scariness:

  • ‘Sketchy’ - a route with a little bit of risk
  • ‘Spicy’ - a route that puts you far outside your comfort zone
  • ‘Spooky’ - a route that really makes you shit yourself

There’s also ‘airy’, for those places with so much exposure that you feel like you’re about to die the entire time; and of course the crowd favourite ‘gnarly’, which I’m not sure has any particular meaning, but definitely sounds cool.

I’d be curious to hear what other words people use.