Dartmouth Climbing Gym
The Jonathan Belden Daniels ’86 Memorial Climbing Gym
and the Charles W. (Chuck) Drake ’90 and Josh Hane ’89 Leadership and Training Center
“Keep your eyes open, take risks, and whenever possible, don’t do things the way everyone else does.”
— Jonathan Belden Daniels ’86
The Climbing Gym was opened to the public on October 10, 1994, the culmination of a decade-long effort by members of the Dartmouth Mountaineering Club and the Outdoor Programs Office to bring a world-class indoor climbing facility to Dartmouth. Many students, faculty and alumnae/i participated in the design and construction of the gym.
The gym is a twenty-three foot tall bouldering cave where climbers of every skill level can practice their skills. Monitors from the DMC assist climbers and ensure safe climbing techniques.
The Leadership and Training Center was opened in 2002. The Center adds lead climbing and belay stances for anchoring and rapelling to the gym’s offerings, as well as equipment for strength training and a library of periodicals and instructional videos.
The Climbing Gym and the Leadership and Training Center are located in the basement of the Maxwell residence hall. They are open to the public 5:00 to 11:00 pm, Saturday through Thursday, and 5:00 to 8:00 pm on Friday (and at other times by appointment). It is open to all students, faculty, and employees, as well as to members of the community who are over the age of eighteen.
To ensure the safety of every climber, monitors are always on hand to assist and help practicing climbers. Monitors are experienced, highly-trained climbers who are well-acquainted with proper safety techniques. They inspect holds, ropes and anchors. They check belayers’ credentials, supervise climbing activity and assure compliance to climbing rules. Monitors remain on-site during the climbing hours and secure the area when they leave.
There can be no climbing unless the monitors are on-site. Users of the climbing gym are expected to follow the rules and heed the instructions of the monitors. Violators of the posted climbing rules will be fined $50. Rules violations can also result in further action as set forth in the Dartmouth College Student Handbook.
Safety Rules and Regulations
- Climbing is limited to twelve climbers at any one time.
- The room capacity of the Climbing Gym is twenty-four people.
- Climbers must be belayed with an appropriate belay device.
- All belayers must pass a belay proficiency test. This test will be conducted by the Outdoor Programs Office.
- Climbs must be visually inspected by the climber before climbing.
- No solo climbing.
- Bouldering, with spotters, is permitted on the first ten feet of the climbing wall.
- Landing areas must remain clear of obstacles.
- Loose holds should be reported to the monitors on duty.
- Safety belay anchors will be inspected regularly.