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Oberlin College Climbing Wall

The vision of several Outing Club members in the early 1990s has come to fruition with the completion of the Climbing Wall in Spring 2003 and its dedication in September 2003. The Wall has been a most welcome and well-received addition to the Philips PE Center. Oberlin College students, employees and dependant children of employees and OC Recreation Center members now have the opportunity to try indoor rock climbing and hone their skills on the Climbing Wall and Bouldering Cave in the North Lobby of Philips PE Center.

Designed for this specific site and built by NICROS, the Wall is a 25-foot tall four-sided pillar with seven anchors for top-roping. On the steepest wall, there are quick-draws for two or more lead climbing routes as well.

The bouldering cave where one can climb to a maximum height of ten feet without a belay rope provides an additional square feet for problem solving.

With over 1000 holds of all shapes and sizes, routes are set often to challenge both rookies and experienced climbers alike. The colored tape designates particular routes.

When academic classes are in session, the Climbing Wall is typically open weekdays, 4:30-9:30pm and Saturdays, 11:00am-5:30 and Sundays 1:00-5:30. Some time blocks are designated “Women Only”, “Rookies and Families” and “Advanced Climbers”. Check the hours posted on the bulletin board at the Wall.

I'm excited to see moms and dads learning to climb and belay. It's a great opportunity for some quality family time”, says Director Betsy Bruce. “We've had a good turnout of adolescent offspring of college employees who are thriving on the challenges of climbing while also developing some wonderful rapport with college students as the same time.”

College students designated and hired as Climbing Wall Supervisors teach bouldering, climbing, belaying, lead climbing and lead belaying. An EXCO (experimental college) class taught by the senior leaders provides hands-on teaching experience for preparation to become a Climbing Wall supervisor.

While currently enrolled Oberlin College students are not accessed a fee to climb, all others are charged a one time fee of $10.00 each academic year. This fee goes towards purchasing replacement ropes, climbing shoes, harnesses, holds and additional gear.

Users are encouraged to purchase a $20.00 climbing shoe rental punch card that enables the holders to rent shoes for 25 sessions.

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