5 Greatest San Francisco Climbing Gyms + Bay Space » Native Adventurer


On the lookout for the perfect San Francisco climbing gyms? Begin right here.

San Francisco is one among our favourite cities, nevertheless it wasn’t till lately that we began including climbing gyms as a part of our journey itinerary. Fortunately, a few of our native buddies pointed us towards the perfect climbing gyms in SF bay space. With so many choices, we put collectively this checklist that can assist you determine which fitness center to go as to whether you’re visiting or need to turn out to be a member.

We’ve been to over 25 gyms all around the US, and San Francisco has a few of our favourite gyms within the nation. Right here’s what we realized.

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Final Up to date: January 30, 2023

Issues to Preserve in Thoughts

  • The climbing scene will proceed to alter. Once we revisit, we’ll frequently replace this put up. Over the pandemic, we seen many gyms closing or getting purchased out by bigger gyms.
  • Company vs. Impartial Gyms – In the event that they rent a brand new setter, the setting can fluctuate and is normally extra drastic at smaller, unbiased gyms vs. company ones.
  • Fitness center climbing has advanced and has turn out to be its personal sport. Some gyms cater towards coaching for out of doors climbing, whereas others need to create a climbing expertise just for fitness center climbers. I’ve seen my out of doors buddies like gyms with a lot of ‘tensiony’ strikes that practice them for the outside, however a lot of our indoor-only climbing buddies are in search of one thing completely completely different (i.e., comp-style).
  • Setting – The setting consists of how enjoyable the climbs are and the number of holds. Though there are exceptions, usually, we’ve discovered that once they make investments extra in maintain selection, additionally they put money into setters.
  • Grading – We’re primarily taking a look at attention-grabbing and enjoyable motion over how they grade their issues. Some climbers favor a grade vary, whereas others favor them damaged up. Some gyms are stiffer than others, and a few grades are in every single place, which may be irritating, so we word it.
  • Neighborhood – That is all the time arduous to match on one-off visits. We acquired some perception from buddies, however as a substitute of ranking the group, we included notes on whether or not a fitness center was beginner-friendly. Some gyms can really feel extra intimidating than others in case you’re new.

The Greatest Rock Climbing Gyms in San Francisco Bay Space

1. Benchmark Climbing – Greatest Setting and Greatest Overallㅤ→

1414 Van Ness Ave, San Francisco, CA 94109, map

Setting: 5/5
Facility: 4.5/5
Charges: $30 Day Go | Memberships Beginning at $107.54/month
Setting Routine: 1-3 Days Per Set. Resets begin on Mondays.
Forms of Climbing: Bouldering
Busiest Instances: Weekdays after Work
Coaching Boards: Moon Board, Campus Board
Different Areas: North Berkeley

Strolling into Benchmark Climbing, we instantly seen all of the pure gentle and wooden tones. We appreciated their clear, fashionable aesthetics. However on the finish of the day, the setting determines how lengthy we need to climb or if we need to come again.

Our different climber buddies additionally talked about that this fitness center had the perfect setting. As soon as we began climbing, we noticed how thoughtfully they set every drawback. Even the decrease grades had been attention-grabbing and enjoyable, which is commonly an afterthought for setters, particularly at unbiased gyms that don’t have an enormous price range. Once we requested them how lengthy they spend on a set, they advised us 1-3 days per set. What a dream!

We had solely deliberate to remain a few hours however stayed for much longer. Since visiting, they opened a a lot bigger fitness center in North Berkeley that we’ll be trying out on our subsequent go to.

Room to Enhance: They don’t have an enormous exercise part, and the world matches possibly 1-2 folks comfortably.

Native Tip: Avenue parking is cheaper, however in case you can’t discover any, there are just a few parking decks close by. The setting generally is a little stiff in comparison with the opposite gyms within the space however will get you stronger. And there’s ample seating and wifi if you wish to work remotely – Paulina

See Associated – The Final SF Bucket Checklist

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benchmark climbing gymPin

2. Pacific Pipe (Touchstone) – Greatest Facilitiesㅤ→

2140 Mandela Parkway, Oakland, CA 94607, map

Setting: 4/5
Facility: 5/5
Charges: $30 Day Go | Memberships Beginning at $87.08/month
Setting Routine: 5 Week Flip Round
Forms of Climbing: High Rope, Lead, and Bouldering
Sq. Footage of the Amenities: 46,000 sq ft
Sq. Footage of Climbing Partitions: 33,000 sq ft (13,000 sq ft of bouldering)
Busiest Instances: Weekdays after Work, Weekends
Coaching Boards: Moon Board, Pressure Board, Kilter Board, Campus Board

Pacific Pipe, one of many latest Touchstone gyms, is the most important climbing fitness center within the US as of 2023. It’s a large facility with 55-foot-high lead partitions and an enormous bouldering space that spans two flooring. It has all the pieces you possibly can ask for in a climbing fitness center. I haven’t seen another fitness center with all three: Moon, Pressure, and Kilter boards.

We visited after that they had a residents comp, so there have been many extra comp issues. The fitness center felt extra inviting to new climbers in comparison with different gyms. However in case you don’t like busy gyms, chances are you’ll need to think about one other fitness center.

They’re placing in hangboards now, so we’ve up to date the ability rating from 4.5 to five.

Native Tip: There may be free parking across the constructing.

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3. Dogpatch Boulders (Touchstone) – The Largest Bouldering Gymㅤ→

2573 third St, San Francisco, CA 94107, map

Setting: 3.5/5
Facility: 3.5/5
Charges: $30 Day Go | Memberships Beginning at $107.54/month
Setting Routine: 1-2 Instances a Week
Forms of Climbing: Bouldering
Busiest Instances: Weekdays after Work
Coaching Boards: Kilter Board, Spray Wall, Campus Board

That is one other fitness center owned by Touchstone, so you possibly can entry it in case you are a Touchstone member. It’s SF’s first bouldering-only fitness center and is large (the most important in California). They’ve some tall partitions and top-outs. The Touchstone gyms additionally share setters, so that you’ll discover a related setting fashion right here.

We went proper once they opened, so there have been few folks there, however our buddies advised us throughout peak hours, it will get crowded.

Room to Enhance: The fitness center is older, so it feels grungy, and the holds are gross. Grades are all around the board, and so they preserve elevating membership costs with out enhancing the services – Paulina.

Native Tip: It’s simple to entry from CalTrain – Paulina

See Associated – 25 Free Issues to Do in San Francisco California

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4. Motion Sunnyvaleㅤ→

815 Stewart Dr, Sunnyvale, CA 94085, map

Setting: 4/5
Facility: 3/5
Charges: $30 Day Go | Memberships Beginning at $91/month
Forms of Climbing: Bouldering, High Rope, Lead
Sq. Footage of Climbing Partitions: 28,000 sq ft
Variety of Issues Up: 120+ Issues / 150+ Routes
Different Areas: Belmont + San Francisco

We went to the Sunnyvale Location in 2016 and had numerous enjoyable climbing again then, however had Paulina assist us with the way it has been since then. Though the services are older, they’ve been doing work to improve them. The workers is pleasant.

Room to Enhance: The wifi is unhealthy, which makes it arduous to work from – Paulina

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These had been the 4 gyms we visited prior to now, and we’ll let our buddies, Paulina and Austin, provide you with perception into the opposite gyms under.

5. Mission Cliffs (Touchstone)ㅤ→

2295 Harrison St, San Francisco, CA 94110, map

Setting: 3/5
Facility: 2/5
Charges: $30 Day Go | Memberships Beginning at $107.54/month
Forms of Climbing: High Rope, Lead, and Bouldering
Sq. Footage of the Amenities: 23,000 sq ft
Sq. Footage of Climbing Partitions: 23,000 sq ft (2,000 sq ft of bouldering)
Variety of Issues Up: 160+ Routes
Busiest Instances: Weekdays after Work
Coaching Boards: Campus Board

Mission Cliffs is San Francisco’s oldest climbing fitness center, and though they’ve gone by renovations and updates, the age reveals. The roped space is way larger, with 50-foot lead partitions, so it’s nice for rope climbers. The bouldering space is small, however they’ve bouldering top-outs. Our buddy Austin nonetheless goes right here to work out, primarily out of comfort.

Room to Enhance: Grades are in every single place, holds and partitions are gross, it’s crowded throughout peak hours, and so they have horrible customer support. Their workers take without end to acknowledge you exist. – Paulina

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OTHER Partitions and Rock Climbing Gyms in San Francisco Bay Space

  • Berkeley Ironworks (Touchstone) – 45-foot-high lead partitions and a giant bouldering space. The services are older, although.
  • Bladium’s Rock Wall and Bouldering Fitness center
  • ClubSport Pleasanton
  • Diablo Rock Fitness center (Touchstone)
  • Glen Park Recreation Middle – has a climbing wall.
  • Nice Western Energy Co (Touchstone) – 48-foot-high lead partitions and 1,500 sq toes of bouldering. It’s situated in Uptown Oakland and handy in case you reside within the space.
  • Motion San Francisco – this location is correct within the coronary heart of the Presidio by the Golden Gate Bridge. They’ve 40-foot climbing partitions, loads of house, and exquisite views.
  • Motion Belmont – This was the unique Planet Granite fitness center, now Motion Belmont. It’s small, and the wall angles aren’t nice. It’s not a vacation spot fitness center, and it’s solely good in case you’ve climbed in every single place else or it’s essentially the most handy location. It additionally will get crowded, particularly on bouldering league nights.
  • Session Climbing – There’s a lot hype round Kevin Jorgensen’s new fitness center in Santa Rosa. It was a lot smaller than I anticipated, however the services had been good, with seating and consuming areas (5/5). The setting was in every single place (3.5/5), and the bouldering space was sparse.
  • The Studio Climbing, South Bay (Touchstone) – keep away from in any respect prices. The services are a 1/5. Even Belmont is small, however this one feels even smaller. The setting is simply okay, the bouldering space is just not pleasing, and a few partitions are arrange in a bit of hallway. You’re feeling like you possibly can’t climb with out falling on another person.

In Conclusion

As guests, we are going to probably take a look at all of the gyms we haven’t been to earlier than returning to those above, however I do know we’ll be again at Benchmark. If it had been as much as us and we lived within the Bay space, we’d get a membership at Touchstone to take pleasure in the advantages throughout all of the gyms in norcal (Mission Cliffs, Berkeley Ironworks, Diablo Rock Fitness center, Pacific Pipe, Dogpatch Boulders, Nice Western Energy Co) and SoCal after which get a punch cross at Benchmark.

Map of Climbing Gyms in San Francisco Bay Space

What to Pack – Climber’s Packing Checklist

First Timer’s What to Deliver

You possibly can lease footwear, chalk, and a harness if it’s your first time. All you could carry is the next:

Established Climbers Packing Checklist

For many who already climb, don’t neglect these things too! Test this put up for our favourite of every.


Lastly, listed below are some miscellaneous gadgets you possibly can carry for warming up, coaching, and extra.

Be taught Extra About Paulina

Paulina Dao is an journey photographer and blogger who loves cats, climbing, snacks, and Taylor Swift, in that order. Yow will discover her on the boulders falling off essentially the most heinous crimp strains or laying and complaining on her Taylor Swift crash pad. She prefers bouldering (on granite) above all issues, however any climbing is climbing, and rocks are higher than no rocks.

Extra About Our CLimbing Journey

  • We’ve climbed since 2013 and climb within the intermediate V4-6 vary indoors and open air. Most climbers we’ve seen at gyms are both newbie or intermediate climbers. For those who’re climbing within the superior to the professional vary, we assume you don’t must google gyms and have already got a community of climbing buddies telling you the place to climb (however who is aware of… we could possibly be incorrect).
  • I used to route-set at our outdated fitness center in Vegas, so I’ve a primary understanding of what the setting must be and have met many climbers in search of several types of setting types.
  • We’ve climbed at over 25 gyms all around the US and have a good suggestion of what cities have respectable climbing gyms. Most of those have been in main cities (ABQ, Atlanta, Austin, Bishop, Chattanooga, NY, Portland, San Diego, SF, Seattle, and Vegas). Our buddies who van life and journey to climb open air year-round have advised us that typically, climbing gyms have been worse at higher out of doors climbing locations, however that may be as a result of many are present in smaller communities.
  • Additionally, since we’re not professional or double-digit climbers, folks don’t give us particular remedy. As an Asian man, Jacob can get an excellent learn on whether or not the fitness center group is pleasant.

The place to remain in San Francisco

Every other mountain climbing gyms in San Francisco that we missed?? For those who presently go to any of those gyms above, is there something you disagree with or wish to add?


SEE Extra Climbing Locations + Ideas


“Discovery consists not of looking for new lands however in seeing with new eyes” – M. Proust

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Esther + Jacob

Esther and Jacob are the founders of Native Adventurer, one of many prime 5 journey blogs within the US. They imagine that journey may be discovered close to and much and hope to encourage others to discover domestically. They discover a brand new metropolis in depth yearly and presently base themselves in Las Vegas.

Observe alongside on Instagram (E + J), YouTube, TikTok, and Pinterest.


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