Rope climbing is a gameplay feature in The Long Dark.

Rope way

Rope over cliff.

Overview Edit

Rope climbing allows players to navigate up or down steep cliffs at specific points. Mountaineering ropes are sometimes found in place but many points also start without a rope. Ropes are objects that can be found or moved to make all points usable.

Climbing Edit

Climbing sign

A climbing spot and sign in lower Milton Park near Milton.

Climbing a rope is the most strenuous activity in-game. Rest and stamina are drained as one climbs. When stamina reaches zero, the climbing rate slows significantly and there is an ever increasing chance to slip and fall. How fast one climbs is significantly impacted by current rest level. Having a full rest bar will make for an easy, quick climb. An empty rest bar will mean a slow climb; so slow that it may be impossible to complete before draining all stamina and then slipping and eventually falling off.


A rope must already have been attached above to be able to climb it. Select the bottom of the rope to begin climbing, then move forward to go up. Looking around is possible only when you stop, but stamina and fatigue will continue to drain. Continue forward to resume climbing. It is possible to reverse by moving backward; you are now descending.


Note: Stamina for climbing is not affected by clothing worn, but is derived from the same stamina used for sprinting. It is not wise to sprint towards a rope you expect to climb.

  • It is possible to stop and recover stamina on a ledge (described below); often a requirement for long climbs.
  • Coffee both restores rest and reduces all rest draining effects so is a great boon to rope climbing. Consume before starting for best effect.
  • Drinking an energy drink before starting will immediately restore half the player's rest and completely fill their stamina, along with reducing all rest draining effects. However, the headache and severe loss of rest after the drink wears off can cripple the player.
  • Using emergency stim's infinite rest and stamina one can climb through a single rope with ease, however the after effect of zero rest can be crippling.
  • Having a bedroll (or its counterpart) along will allow one to restore rest when it is needed to complete/begin a climb.

Ledges Edit

Some cliffs feature ledges along their rope course and are suggested when the white selection dot appears. To enter a ledge, stop climbing and look at the ledge until it highlights, then select it. There is always room for a fire and a sleeping bag if you want to take a nap though some ledges are definitely bigger than others.

  • It is not possible to exit or enter a rope in the middle except at designated ledges.

Slipping/Falls Edit

When the character runs out of stamina, there is a constant chance he/she will slip on the rope. The longer one continues to try an climb without stamina, the greater the chance of slipping. When one does slip, they will slide back down the rope until they randomly catch themselves. How far one slips may depend on how much fatigue one has.

  • When one starts slipping, it is not advisable to try to resume the climb. More slipping will only follow. Descend quickly or enter a ledge.
  • If one slips as far as the ground, it is equivalent to falling from the original height and bruising injuries, sprain afflictions, and condition loss will be awarded accordingly. It is possible to severely tear clothes. Death is possible.

Descending Edit

Descending a rope takes far less stamina and is less impacted by fatigue. Slipping may be impossible. Select the rope between where it is tied off but before it turns over the cliff. Move backward to go down. Stopping is possible to look around. If there is no rope available - it is possible to completely jump off the mountain and survive, if landing on the different ledges sticking out. You will get insanely injured, but survive.

Deploying ropes Edit

Rope tie-off

Rope tied off.

Mountaineering ropes can only be attached to or detached from a specific rock formation at the top of a sheer cliff (see image for example of formation; looks like a sharp tooth about 3 meters high). To deploy a rope from inventory, simply select the middle of the rock when close. To detach and take a rope, select the rope where it wraps around the rock. Rope will automatically be placed in inventory. Attaching/detaching a rope takes about 10 minutes.

Game history Edit

Rope climbing was introduced on 16 December 2015 in version 0.298 also known as the Timberwolf Mountain update.

References Edit

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