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In order to cancel your class you must contact us at least 72 hours prior to the class date to receive a refund of your deposit. You must contact us 48 hours before your class to reschedule. There is NO REFUND if you register for a class within 72 hours of its date.
Will we be open or closed?
Our policy has changed! We will no longer follow the Federal Government policy. For the latest updates on our hours during inclement weather, please check our website or call the Alexandria or Sterling facility. Updates will also be posted on our Facebook and Twitter accounts.
Sportrock Belay and Lead Tests
At Sportrock Safety is our priority in all that we do. Sportrock is a member of the Climbing Wall Association and several of our Directors and Instructors are certified American Mountain Guide Association instructors with decades of combined climbing, instructing, and guiding experience amongst us. Several of our instructors are also WEMT, EMT, and WFR certified (http://www.wildmed.com). We are uncompromisingly committed to your safety and ours indoors and outdoors. Our safety standards and policeis are all based upon requirements from the CWA and AMGA and are in fact above AMGA standards for outdoor climbing and guiding.
Everyone who wants to top rope at Sportrock MUST take and pass our Belay Test before being allowed to belay or tie in to climb at Sportrock- no exceptions!
If you would like to lead climb at Sportrock you must take and pass our lead climbing and lead belaying test.
Please inform Sportrock staff if you would like to take a Belay Test or Lead Test.
Top-Rope Belay Test Requirements
- Climbers must be able to put on their harnesses correctly according to the specifications of the harness manufacturer.
- Climbers must demonstrate proficiency in tying into their harness correctly with a retraced figure eight knot and backed up with a double-overhand knot.
- Belayers must demonstrate the ability to properly load and set an ATC, demonstrate proficiency and ease of top-rope belaying with an ATC while keeping a constant brake hand in control, demonstrate the ability to safely and immediately catch at least 3 simulated top-rope falls, and lower safely while keeping both hands below the ATC.
- Belayers wanting to use a Gri-Gri, Cinch, or other non-ATC like belay device must first pass with an ATC and then test again with the other belay device.
- Failure to demonstrate proficiency in any part of the Belay Test will result in a fail. You will not be able to belay that day but you can still enjoy climbing with friends or our staff who are belay certified (and who then must tie you in). You CANNOT re-test the same day.
Lead Climbing Test Requirements
- You must first be Belay Certified to top-rope at Sportrock.
- Lead tests require at least 3 people: all lead testing is done with a top-rope back up and for your lead belay test you will need someone either testing with you or someone who is already lead certified at Sportrock. If you come alone and want a lead test you will need 2 available Sportrock employees to administer your lead test.
- Lead climbing tests will be done on a 5.9 of the tester's choosing.
- Climbers must demonstrate proficiency in climbing 5.9 with no falls, clipping, clear and audible lead communication, awareness of lead climbing safety concerns and the ability to correct them immediately which include back clipping, Z-clipping, and back stepping.
- Lead belayers must demonstrate proficiency, safety, and awareness while lead belaying which includes audibly and clearly calling out safety concerns to their lead climber.
- Failure to demonstrate any part of this will result in failing the lead test. Safety first and always!
Sportrock Policies and Rules while Top-Roping and Lead Climbing
- Bowline, double bowline and Yosemite finishs are not allowed in Sportrock.-The only knot you can tie in with at Sportrock is the retraced figure eight and the only backup you can tie is a double overhand. Both are required to climb at Sportrock- no other knots are allowed.
- Belaying off of any type of hitch is not allowed.
- Doing the Gri-Gri shuffle with any belay device is not allowed.
- Alpine harnesses that lack belay loops are not allowed.
- Tri-loading biners is not allowed- belaying MUST be done off of your belay loop. Biners loaded through bridge and cross strap are not allowed at Sportrock.
- Practicing knot tying, belaying, or mock leading in Sportrock before a Belay or Lead test is not allowed.
Scheduling Belay and Lead Tests
Just let our staff know if you would like to take a belay test and they will get it done for you as soon as they can. During busy times there may be a wait for belay tests.
If you are wanting to take a lead test you must inform the staff at the front desk. When a lead tester is available they will let you know- during busy times lead tests may not be possible as they are time consuming.
Our Summer Rock Climbing Camp helps kids find ways to: