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Rock Exotica Totem descender


Designed to be the most versatile rigging and abseiling tool available, the Totem is not only a great descender, it can be used to rig releasable anchors, as a belay device, a rigging plate, a progress capture, and to ascend a rope.

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The Rock Exotica Totem was designed specifically for the needs of canyoners, providing a simple yet versatile abseiling, rigging, and rescue tool.

The novel design merges the benefits of a Figure 8 style device and a sticht plate, providing more than 10 different descent modes. These different modes allow it to be used on an extremely wide range of rope diametres.

Friction can be added or removed mid abseil and locking off is simple. It can be rigged in a quick attach / detach mode, as an auto-locking descender, or with the body of the descender acting as a handle to control friction.

The Totem can also be used for belaying, rigging releasable anchors, as a progress capture in hauling systems, as a rigging plate, and even to ascend a rope.

It can be used to rig various releasable contingency anchors with different levels of friction, allowing you to quickly respond to challenge such as a rope not reaching or someone’s hair getting caught in their device.

When belaying in plaquette mode, you can convert instantly to lower the climber by pulling up on the low end. This mode can also be quickly converted to a progress capture for a simple 3 to 1 haul.

The two holes on either end allow the Totem to be used in a pick-off rescue situation, as well as allowing you to attach it to the rope without detaching from your harness.

More information about using the Totem, along with excellent rigging and ropework information, can be found on Rich Carlson’s website Canyons & Crags, or his Art of Ropework Facebook group.

Key advantages:

  • versatile design offers more than 10 different descent modes
  • easy to vary friction while abseiling
  • can be used to rig a range of releasable contingency anchors
  • works as a belay device, progress capture, rigging plate, and to ascend a rope

Product information:

  • Weight: 128 grams
  • Material: anodised aluminium
  • Dimensions: 190mm long, 64mm wide
  • Rated strength: 30kN
  • Maximum rope diametre: 13mm single; 10.5mm double
  • Made in: United States
  • Technical notice | Rigging instructions