5 Low Effort Climbing Halloween Costume Ideas

It’s time. The temps are dropping, the desert is crawling with dirtbags, and the pumpkin spice lattes are getting more and more creative with every passing day (nutmeg? black sesame seed?): It’s Halloween season. The most stressful part of Halloween, for me, is trying to figure out a good Halloween costume. And for the dirtbags out there, this is even more challenging as you have no money and therefore nothing to buy a costume with. 

Fear not! Below I’ve listed five of the easiest Halloween costume ideas that won’t break the bank and will make the nearest dirtbag go, “Ha. Cool.” at least once. 

You’re welcome. 

Tommy Caldwell

Are you a white guy with a slight beard who lives in his van and climbs primarily in the same clothes he sleeps in? Of course you are! 

I have good news for you! You can continue to do the bare minimum and be hailed as the cultural backbone of our sport by being Tommy Caldwell for Halloween! All you have to do is wear exactly what you normally wear, but write “Missing” on your index finger. Now you’re Tommy Caldwell. Because in reality, you could be. Climber bro’s all look the same anyway. 

Add some pizzazz to this outfit by holding a coiled rope in your arms all night and cradling it like it’s your child.

The two climbers who climbed The Nose naked in a day

Photo Credit: The Climbing Zine

I didn’t forget about you, couples! This couples costume will make everyone around you extremely uncomfortable, which is about on par with every other couples costume in the world. 

Step 1: Take off all of your clothes.

Step 2: Put on your harness, approach shoes, a rack of cams, and don’t forget your fifi hook and ladders!

Step 3: Put on your helmet (safety first) 

Step 4: Attend the Halloween party of your choice! 

Most people will say, “Oh god, why are you naked? It’s 37 degrees out right now.” But a few will laugh heartily and hand you another beer, which will help with the fact that it’s probably near freezing in most places in late October. 

If you want to make this a bit more modest, you can keep your undies on, or put a cardboard sign around your neck saying “Naked NIAD!” Which, obviously, stands for ‘Naked Nose In A Day.’ 

People will either get this costume, laugh, and your Halloween will be a huge success. Or you’ll show up naked to your friend’s house and they will gently remind you that this isn’t “that kind of party” and ask you to put some clothes on. Either way, you are sure to make an impression with this Halloween costume! 

The guy who was wearing a Unicorn Onesie during Alex Honnolds Free Solo of El Cap

This is maybe my favorite obscure climbing reference of all time. During Alex Honnold’s free solo of El Cap (which still makes me nauseous to think about) he came across a party who was attempting to climb El Cap in a few days, with gear, like sane people. 

Unlike sane people, however, one of the members of this little crew was wearing a purple Unicorn Onesie! I love it. It’s great. Go you Unicorn Onesie man. I hope you’re still climbing out there, making big objectives a little more magical.

Anyway, Alex Honnold passes the guy in a Unicorn Onesie and Tom Evans snapped a few photos of the encounter. The internet went insane for a few short minutes about this random aside in the saga of Alex Honnold free soloing El Cap. There’s even an interview with the guy if you’re interested! 

Dressing up as the Guy in a Unicorn Onesie also has a few upsides. 

  1. You’ll definitely be warm. Unlike the naked couple who climbed El Cap, the Unicorn Onesie guy will likely be comfortable on a chilly October evening. 
  2. The Unicorn Onesies aren’t that expensive. Only about $30 plus shipping. 
  3. You can definitely reuse this outfit for other climbing adventures. Who knows, maybe one day we will have an entire fleet of Unicorn Onesie people out there. 

The girl from Vertical Limit


Do you have an orange Metolius cam? You do? Great! Just find a nice pink blouse, a necklace with a cross on it, some calf length pink and black leggings, put your hair in a high ponytail, fluff up your bangs and you’re set! 

Wear your normal climbing gear, but make wild and over dramatic statements about unlikely climbing scenarios all night long. Don’t forget to shout “don’t cut the rope!” as often as possible, and make dynamic cam placements on every gap and crack you find. (Chairs, refrigerators, cracks indoors, etc) 

This movie has sort of gone out of favor in the cultural headspace of the new climbing generation, so you might have to explain yourself a bit. That being said, it’s just an opportunity to show the opening scene of Vertical Limit, which is well worth a re-watch if you haven’t seen it in a while. 

So go! Educate the masses about this wonderfully terrible film, and enjoy putting almost zero effort into your Halloween Costume.

Really, any of the iconic climbers from the Stone Masters age


Are you a short woman with brown hair? Write, “It goes boys” on a t-shirt and boom: You’re Lynn Hill. Do you have a great face for a mustache? Slap on a vest and a psychedelic bandana around your head and viola, you’re Jim Bridwell. You can put on a plain white t-shirt and the shortest shorts you’ve ever seen and all of a sudden you’re John Bachar. 

If you’re at a loss of who to be, give some of the old climbing movies a watch and pick out your favorite character. I, personally, am a big fan of Royal Robbins. All you need is a pair of massive black-rimmed glasses, high socks with a matching sweater, and a white flat cap. Easy, now you’re a climbing legend! 

Anything else?

Do you have any other awesome low-effort climbing-related costume suggestions? Let us know down in the comments what you’re going to be for Halloween this year! 

Photo credit cover photo: Kaya Lindsay

About the Gear Tester

Outdoor Prolink Pro

Kaya Lindsay is the social media coordinator for Yosemite Facelift. She is also a writer and photographer with a passion for rock climbing and the outdoors. In 2016 she converted a Sprinter Van into a tiny home and has been traveling around the US & Canada to pursue her passion for rock climbing ever since. You will most likely find her in a parking lot or coffee shop, camera in hand, planning her next adventure. Connect with her on Instagram @OneChickTravels

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