The Sterling Evolution Velocity is a 9.8mm rope that weighs 62 grams per meter. This puts it on the cusp of our classification categories, making it a lighter workhorse rope, or a heavy all-around rope. As such, it fills a certain niche. While not the lightweight choice of alpinists aiming to go fast and light, this is a rope that has wide overall appeal to many climbers, and it can take a little more abuse than the average rope. We also really liked the Black Diamond 9.9mm, our Top Pick for Top Roping. What's the difference? The Evolution Velocity is a little lighter and slightly more durable, thanks to its dry coating option. If you're looking for a lighter and thinner all-around performer, check out our Editors' Choice winner, the Mammut Infinity.
The Sterling Evolution Velocity Bi-Color has a different pattern on each half of the rope, making finding the middle a whole lot easier. This specialized braiding technique will add $40 to the cost of the rope in a 60 m length, but if you climb a lot of multi-routes that require you to rappel down them afterward, it may just be worth the extra money. Most middle markers fade over time, or the rope gets so dirty that you can no longer see them, but the bi-color gives you the added safety of always knowing where your middle marker is.