Skip the gym, include the family and get a great workout rock climbing right here in San Francisco. The sport of rock climbing isn’t just for the professionals anymore. Gyms all over the San Francisco area allow young novices learn the basics while seasoned climbers challenge their skills on routes in a safe, controlled and supervised environment.
Planet Granite San Francisco
924 Mason St.
San Francisco, CA 94129
Price: $19 adult day pass/$10 children 13 and younger
Hours: Mon to Fri – 6 a.m. to 11pm; Sat – 8a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sun – 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
First-time visitors to Planet Granite must sign a waiver of liability and show photo ID. Participants 18 and younger must have a child’s waiverfilled out by their parent along with a copy of the signing parent’s identification. Newbies must take a belay lesson (offered every day except on Wednesdays) or a beginning rock climbing course to learn rope management. Climbers with belay experience who are new to the facility must take the belay test first. Be sure to wear comfortable workout clothing.
Mission Cliffs Climbing & Fitness
2295 Harrison St.
San Francisco, CA 94110
Price: $20 day pass after 3 p.m. including holidays/$15 early bird pass before 3 p.m. weekdays only/$15 children 14 and younger
Hours: Mon, Wed and Fri – 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Tue and Thurs – 6:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Sat and Sun – 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Mission Cliffs offers one of the largest climbing environments available with more than 14,000 square feet. Experienced climbers may step right up and start climbing after they’ve signed a waiver of liability, been through the belay check and been issued a day pass. The official membership card can be used at other Touchstone Climbing & Fitness facilities.
Bakar Fitness and Recreation Center at Mission Bay
1675 Owens St.
San Francisco, CA 94158
Price: $150 to $200 enrollment fee/$85 a month for premier membership
Click here for UCSF student and faculty rates
Hours: Thurs – 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.; Sat – 12 p.m. to 2 p.m.; closes for winter
Bakar Fitness Center allows new members to stop by and check out the facility during opening climb hours before taking a class. Anyone interested in belaying must first take, and pass, a safety test. A variety of classes are available at the Baker Fitness Center including an Introduction to Climbing. Be sure to fill out a waiver of liability before climbing. Equipment usage is free.
4020 Technology Place
Fremont, CA 94538
Price: $17 day pass/$30 discover climbing class
Hours: Mon to Sat – 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sun – 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
City Beach specializes in first-time climbers. Let the staff demonstrate how to properly fit a harness and to use the auto belays. Wear comfortable clothing and close-toed shoes. Special rock climbing shoes are available for rent. Expert climbers may become belay certified by taking a class. All climbers must sign a liability waiver.
Bridges Rock Gym
5635 San Diego St.
El Cerrito, CA 94530
Price: $15 day pass after 3 p.m. and weekends/$12 day pass before 3 p.m.
Hours: Mon to Fri – 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sat to Sun – 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Bridges Rock Gym is kid-friendly and strives to offer the best climbing experience in the area. With a dedicated slacking area to provide experienced climbers a total body workout, it also offers teen, after school and private climbing lessons. Expert climbers and strength trainers may tackle the cave with its deep overhangs and challenging routes.
Susan Dusterhofts love for all things outdoors can be traced back to her childhood. She was born and raised in Southeastern Wisconsin and spent her holidays and summer vacations traveling across the eastern half of the country with her family. Looking for a change, Susan and her husband moved to Arizona, and used their free time to tour the western U.S. Finally settling in San Franciscos North Bay, Susan continues to travel throughout the Pacific region where she enjoys hiking, exploring and photographing the great outdoors. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.