How to Dulfersitz
climbing
Many climbers are taught how to do “the Dulfersitz”—a harness-less body rappel—but in fact, anyone hiking in unknown mountainous terrain should really know how to get down a sketchy descent with nothing more than a 100-foot length of rope—and, okay, a high pain threshold.

1. Find an anchor (a big rock that doesn’t budge or a solid tree wider than your leg) and pull half the rope around it.

2. Tie the ends of the rope together and throw the rope off the cliff. Make sure it hits the ground.

3. Face the anchor and straddle the doubled rope.

4. Bring the rope forward, around your hip, across your chest and lay it onto your opposite shoulder.

5. Put some padding between your legs—as if you’re a guy enhancing—to prevent rope burn.

6. Grab the rope behind you with your brake hand and in front of you with your other hand, the guide hand.

7. Look behind you and start walking slowly backwards, feeding rope through your brake hand and keeping your upper body parallel to the cliff face. Your guide hand keeps you balanced and centred and your body provides the friction to descend in control.

8. At the bottom, ignore the pain, puff up your chest and, in a German accent, mutter, “Harnesses are for wussies. I Dulfersitz.”
Plan your next great adventure with explore!
Off the beaten path locations, tips and tricks, interviews with intrepid explorers and more.