Petzl Simba Review
Cons: Not comfortable, mainly just appropriate for toproping, expensive
Compare to Similar Products
Check Price at REI
|$60 List||$70 List|
$52.46 at Backcountry
Check Price at REI
$57.95 at Amazon
|Pros||Simple, quick to adjust||Dual adjust waist belt, large gear loops, kids can adjust easily, comfortable||Fully featured, comfortable, secure fit||Dual waist belt buckles, largest gear loops, high quality||Low price, secure, comfortable|
|Cons||Not comfortable, mainly just appropriate for toproping, expensive||Not the lightest||Narrower size range, not the best for larger kids||Heaviest||Old double back style buckles, dated design|
|Bottom Line||This full body harness is quick and easy to put on and performs well for a wide range of sizes||This is a comfortable sit harness capable of any type of climbing||This harness seems to have it all, comfort, security, and a plethora of features that can facilitate all types of climbing||A fantastic option for almost any kid looking for a comfortable and fully capable harness||A basic, comfortable first harness with a great price|
|Rating Categories||Petzl Simba||Mammut Ophir - Kid's||Petzl Ouistiti||Petzl Macchu||Trango Junior|
|Hanging Comfort (40%)|
|Standing Comfort and Mobility (20%)|
|Specs||Petzl Simba||Mammut Ophir - Kid's||Petzl Ouistiti||Petzl Macchu||Trango Junior|
|Designed for these disciplines||Top Rope||All Around / Sport||Top Rope||All Around / Sport||Top Rope|
|Weight (size medium)||15.1 oz||10.6 oz||15.4 oz||11.4 oz||13.8 oz|
|Waist Belt Construction||Full Body||Sit||Full body||Sit||Full body|
|Waist Size Ranges (inches)||N/A||20 - 26.7 in||23 - 28 in||21 - 25 in||13 - 23 in|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Simba doesn't have the most features or comfort, but there is no other harness that is this quick and easy to get on, adjust, and get climbing in.
The Simba is a basic webbing constructed full body harness with no padding whatsoever. The shoulder straps are 1 and ⅛" webbing and the leg loops are 1 and ¾" webbing to help distribute the weight a little better when hanging. Normally, one would think that a webbing harness would be uncomfortable, but the way the webbing wraps around the body keeps kids more than comfortable enough for the short period they spend hanging while being lowered. However, if the climbers spend much time hanging, things tend to get a bit uncomfortable.
Standing Comfort and Mobility
Since this harness is so simple, it would be easy for the kids to forget its on when just hanging around; however, because the tie in points don't stay together when they are not tied in, the shoulder straps tend to fall down. Otherwise, this is a comfortable harness to wear.
Adjustability and ease are this simple harnesses main features. There's no gear loops or padded leg loops. No belay loops or haul loops. You may ask, does this harness even have loops at all?! Joking aside, this harness is exactly what a beginner kids harness should be, simple and easy to get on, adjust, and share with others. This also makes it a great option for adaptive climbers or those kids with special needs. It's a secure harness that will work for a wide range of kids.
The Simba is an extremely versatile harness if you weigh versatility by how many different climbers can use it. This is good for small children who may not have developed hips that keep them in seat harnesses if they were to flip upside down, special needs kids, gym rentals, or camp harnesses where many different kids need to use it. The auto-locking buckles are a breeze to operate, and all but the youngest of climbers will be able to slip into it and get it adjusted quickly.
Value is in the eye of the beholder. This harness doesn't seem to have the best value unless you are looking for the most simple harness available for young kids. For the same price ($59.95) other options have more features, like the Petzl Ouistiti, with its gear loops and auxiliary tie in point, or the Black Diamond Momentum Full Body, and the amazing comfort that comes from its padded panels.
If you want a versatile harness to do basic tasks such as top roping at the gym or high ropes courses at camp, the Simba is a tested, tried and true harness that won't disappoint. This is one of the most popular children's harnesses and for a good reason. Petzl has a history producing some of the best climbing gear available; this is no exception.
— Adam Paashaus
Ad-free. Influence-free. Powered by Testing.
GearLab is founded on the principle of honest, objective, reviews. Our experts test thousands of products each year using thoughtful test plans that bring out key performance differences between competing products. And, to assure complete independence, we buy all the products we test ourselves. No cherry-picked units sent by manufacturers. No sponsored content. No ads. Just real, honest, side-by-side testing and comparison.Learn More