Beijing has no shortage of rock climbing gyms where one can climb, boulder, or just plain dangle around, but it was the opening of Rock Hour gym last month that showed us just how a professional rock climbing gym should look and feel.
While it helps that Rock Hour is clean and brand spanking new, it will hopefully remain this way because there is a no shoe policy inside so outside muck won’t dirty up the climbing wall with whatever icky stuff your shoes may have encountered on the way there.
There’s lots of wall space here featuring climbing routes (this is the path of the various climbing holds) with varying degrees of difficulty. These were created by a Japanese man with years of experience , who they brought in to design this portion of the gym. At the intermediate section of the gym’s climbing wall, there is also an automatic belaying contraption that allows everyone there to climb without the need of a professional at the bottom holding the rope. It sounds scary, but it looked pretty safe as people of all ages conquered the wall an were gracefully let down by this contraption.
Other than that, they communicated to us that they are planning on doing some group and individual climbing classes for kids. We will make sure to update you on any developments regarding this in the future. But, so far they have done a great job at building a classy gym that equally caters to the needs of both serious climbers and beginners.
Admission is RMB 100 for the day, RMB 80 for children between the ages of 6-14, and free for kids under 6. There is an extra fee for equipment rentals for things like climbing harnesses, shoes, or anything extra you may need. One of the downsides to Rock Hour is that it can be a little hard to find as it is hidden by a bit of construction currently going on. We recommend giving them a call or asking folks in the area for directions if you get lost. The staff are all friendly and speak English, which should help if you need some directions finding the place.
Daily 10am-10pm. RMB 80-100 (plus additional equipment rental fees). Building 74, No.27 yard, Xidawanglu, Chaoyang. 西大望路27号院74栋岩时攀岩馆 (185 1916 6168)
Photos: Kipp Whittaker