Top Rope & Lead Belaying at Pacific Edge


What is belaying?

Technically, belaying is the process of rope management through friction. It is how a person standing on the ground is able to keep a climber safe on a rope. The belayer has the climber's life in his or her hands, literally, by taking in or giving out rope as needed and always being prepared to catch a fall by "braking" the rope. Because we regard belaying as a life saving skill, we devote a minimum of two hours to teaching this and the other basics of climbing.

Do you supply belayers?

While we do not have on-call belayers available, we do offer a few children's classes that include belayers. Kid's Climb and Rock Stars are prime examples. Outside of class times, your best option is to bring a belayer with you or to take our Basic Safety class and learn how to belay!

Is there a price to take the belay test? Do I need to make an appointment to take the test?

No, there is no cost to take our belay test and no appointment is necessary. The test usually takes between 5 and 10 minutes, sometimes longer if the desk is particularly busy, and can be taken anytime during business hours.

Do I need to take the belay test if I have a belay card from another gym?

Yes. We are not an affiliate of any of the regional gyms, being one of a kind. While a belay card from one of those gyms is good at other gyms in their franchise, it is not valid at gyms outside of the franchise. Because of our commitment to safety, we require each belayer to test with us personally before getting on the ropes.

How do I become certified to lead in the gym?

In order to climb in the lead cave, you will need to take our lead test. You need to bring in your own UIAA certified rope, have a partner to test with, and be able to lead a 5.10a route. Additionally, you must have a minimum of 10 days experience leading and have led at least one 5.10 climb outside of Pacific Edge. If you have completed our 2-day, 6-hour Lead Climbing class, you may take the test without completing the minimum experience requirements. Once you have passed your test, we require leaders to wear their lead cards on their harnesses. Please Note: The minimum age for lead climbers is 15yrs

Is there a separate test to become a lead belayer?

Yes. You need to bring in a UIAA certified rope, have a leader to test with, and have lead belayed outside of Pacific Edge before taking the test. A minimum of 10 days regular belay experience is also required. If you have completed our Free Lead Belay clinic, you may take the test without having previously belayed someone outside of the gym.