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5 Epic ATX Rock Climbing Destinations

Excellent ACR agent and climbing enthusiast Holly Hughes shares her top 5 desinations to conquer nature, indoors and out. 

Do you love the exhilaration of solving the physically demanding puzzle of a boulder? We do, too. Thankfully, star agent Holly Hughes is an expert in the field, and she's up to the task of commenting on her favorite spots in town, whether it's the newest bouldering gym or coolest outdoor destination. 

1. Crux Climbing Gym

Having just celebrated their one year anniversary, Crux is the new kid on the

climbing scene block. The huuuuge 22,000 square foot facility does not

disappoint – it has a dope bouldering cave, lots of rock walls including some

with auto-belays for solo climbers, plus a zen yoga space with classes by

some of ATX’s finest instructors. If you’re new to climbing, check out one of

their regular events to chill with members of the community and maybe meet

a new partner or two. Events run the gamut from bike night to silent disco to

climbing competitions, so you’re sure to find something that’s right up your

alley.

2. Gus Fruh

Perfect for those who adore outdoor climbing, Gus Fruh is a section of the

Barton Creek greenbelt frequented by cool Austinites looking to take a dip or

work on their tan. But, it’s especially beloved by rock climbers. Strap on your

Tevas to wade across the water to find the rock wall. You’re almost certain to

find members of Austin’s vibrant climbing community already here any day

of the week. Bring your dog and a hammock along if you want to try on the

sport as a spectator. Gus Fruh sports some challenging and impressive

routes, so it’s a great place to glean a little climbing inspiration. There are a

handful of good beginner routes as well, so go with a partner and find your

jam. Mountainproject.com is a great resource to find a route that matches

your skill level – and has info on outdoor climbing throughout the U.S.

3. Austin Bouldering Project

Austin Bouldering Project, or ABP as it’s affectionately known by those in the

know, is the Eastside’s finest climbing facility. As it’s name indicates, this gym

is bouldering only. That means you can keep it light on gear – ditch the

harness and rope because shoes and a chalk bag are all you’ll need to get

going. Plus, climbing shoes are free for first-timers, and just $4 to rent

otherwise. Problems range from easy to intense, offering a good workout for

climbers of all levels. Routes are changed regularly so there’s always

something new to work on. It’s a good place to challenge yourself and test

your limits– the entire floor is covered with padded mats just in case you

take a fall. Oh, and the locker rooms have saunas to relax those tired muscles

and zen out when you’re done.

4. Seismic Wall

Seismic Wall is another greenbelt climbing gem. This outdoor climbing is

especially good for new climbers - there are plenty of quality routes that are

accessible to newbies. The Austin scene in general is known for being

“polished” – meaning the plethora of climbers who came before you have

worn down and smoothed out the rock. Seismic definitely falls into this

category, and it can be difficult to “get a grip”! The scenery makes the

challenge well worth it – paddle cactus thrives at the top of the face. It will

make your climbing pictures feel truly instagram-worthy with an authentic

Texas flare.

5. Reimers Ranch Park

Come for the nature, stay for the climbing. Reimers is the perfect climbing

destination for those seeking a day trip out of Austin. Drive less than an hour

to feel like you’re in a new world in this tranquil forest preserve along the

Pedernales River, which is, by the way, a perfect place to take a swim after a

long day of climbing. You’ll find world-class sport climbing on the limestone

cliffs that ranges from beginner friendly 5.7’s all the way to 5.14’s for the

hardcore experienced climber. The park closes at dusk (no camping allowed),

so be sure to make your way out before the sun starts to set. Carpooling is

advised, as admission to the park is $10 per vehicle.

There you have it. Now go! Climb! 

about the author

Holly Hughes

REALTOR + Apartment Locator

512.420.7941

holly@austincraftrealty.com

Austin is an easy town to fall in love with, but soon you’ll find yourself wondering how to turn a fling into a long-term relationship. With a guide like Holly Hughes, a savvy REALTOR specializing in both apartment locating and first-time homebuyer representation, putting a (key)ring on it seems, well, natural. Holly is well-versed at illustrating your unique path from renting to owning a piece of Austin. In fact, she blazed the trail herself when she bought her first home at age 27 with her rescue pup, Olive. As an avid rock climber and newly certified yogi, Holly loves sharing all the best outdoorsy locales to get out and enjoy ATX.

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