The climbing wall is located in the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center. The wall boasts over 50 feet of amazing climbable features, including bulges, arêtes, roofs, cracks, and a separate bouldering wall. This state-of-the-art climbing wall boasts 10 top rope stations while every square inch is also open to lead climbing! Built by Entre-prises and designed to look and climb like real rock, this new wall will inspire seasoned climbers and beginners alike.

Climbing options

Try climbs are designed for people wishing to “try” climbing. The climbing wall staff will manage the safety systems while you experience the climbing wall first hand. Try Climbs are a great way to get a feel for the sport without committing to a lesson and learning all of the technical safety skills. Try Climbs are held during regular climbing wall hours.

Cost: $6 (does not include CRWC walk-in fee).

Bouldering is rock climbing without the ropes and gear. Participants stay lower to the ground, often traversing the wall searching for the hardest movements. The focus is on body movement and honing their climbing skills without the restriction of technical climbing equipment. Bouldering is quite social as climbers take turns working together to unlock the sequence of movement required to complete a bouldering route. Please enjoy the separate bouldering wall as well as the “splash landing” wall overhanging the Rec Pool! 

The bouldering wall is open anytime the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center is open.  Please help us and scan your ID card prior to entering the space so we can track how popular bouldering is on campus!

Cost: FREE

Top rope climbing is a style in climbing where the climbing is securely attached to a rope at the top of the wall. The climber then climbs up and down the wall while being supported by a belayer. 

A climbing lesson is required in order to participate in this type of climbing.

  • Sign up in advance on our registration page.
  • A climbing lesson will teach you the basics to become oriented with the wall and the safety procedures for climbing safely. Topics include climbing knots, harnesses, belay skills, and climbing commands.
  • Following the completion of the lesson, you will be asked to come back at a later date to complete the safety check, which is included in the lesson fee. 
  • Top Rope Climbing Lessons max out at four participants per class.


  • Fall/Spring Semesters:
    • Mondays and Wednesdays | 6:30 p.m. & 8:30 p.m. 
  • Summer Semester:
    • Wednesdays | 6:00 p.m.

Cost: $25

After you've gained experience in top-rope climbing, the next step would be learning how to lead climb. To become lead climbing certified, you need to participate in one of our Lead Climbing Courses

Days/Times: Thursday and Friday | 5 p.m. - 9 p.m.


  • August 24 and 25, 2023
  • November 2 and 3, 2023


  • Participants should be top-rope certified .
  • Participants should understand that instruction will include practicing taking falls to align with our lead climbing test-out requirements. 
  • Participants should be able to comfortably climb a handful of routes at our facility on top-rope in a stable and controlled manner without weighting their harness.  
  • Participants should understand that lead climbing has additional physical and mental challenges that make the climbing feel more difficult in comparison to top-rope climbing.  
  • Participants must understand that to taking the lead climbing test, it is not guaranteed you can take it without arriving with a current lead climbing certified partner. 
  • Participants should understand that taking this course does not certify, or guarantee they will be prepared to certify for lead-climbing at our facility or other facilities.
  • If you have any questions or concerns, please email 

Cost: $60 for members | $80 for non-members


Improve your technique, strengthen your core, and advance your skills to the next level by taking a personal training session. Personal training is designed with your specific goals in mind and maybe the link to taking your climbing to the next level. 

1 Climber $40.00
2 Climbers $60.00
3 Climbers $75.00
4 Climbers $85.00

*If a climber is not a member, they must also purchase a day pass.

Due to high demand, we are no longer accepting private lesson requests at this time.

Safety checks are required to obtain your approval card, which you need to climb at the wall. Safety checks can occur anytime the wall is open, and staff is available to check you. You will be required to demonstrate that you have retained the skills from the lesson. Upon passing the safety check, you will receive your approval card. Cards are valid for the current academic year. Safety check recertification is designed for people who have previously passed a safety check at our wall and are looking to update their approval cards. You must present your expired approval card to participate in the recertification process.

Recertification Cost: $10


Climbing wall retail

Want to use the wall but don't have the gear? No worries, we've got you covered.  Stop by the member service desk to pay for the gear you need.  

Gear Cost
Climbing shoes day rental FREE
Climbing harness day rental $5.00
ATC belay device & carabiner day rental $5.00
Friction Labs Loose chalk purchase $25.00
Friction Labs Liquid chalk purchase $19.00


Programs and events

Rock Hawks Climbing Team

The Rock Hawks consist of a group of individuals who are looking to progress their climbing along with other motivated youth and a dedicated coaching staff. Participants are chosen based off their maturity level, commitment and motivation levels, mindset, and climbing ability level.  If you want to learn more about Rock Hawks or have an interested child, please contact Raud Kashef at 

Who: Ages 10-18

Summer Session: 

  • Dates: June 7th - August 21st (Monday, Wednesday, and Fridays)
  • Times: 2:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. 

Fall Session: TBD

Spring Session: TBD

Group climbing rentals

The climbing wall is available to rent for unique social events, including birthday parties, social gatherings, or team development. For questions, please contact Raud Kashef


Climbing Wall Rates
Number of Climbers  Rate
1 – 10 climbers $150/Hour*
11 – 15 climbers $200/Hour*
16 – 20 climbers $250/Hour*

*Groups larger then 20 should consider dividing the group up over two hours of climbing. 
*Team development event pricing will vary based on the needs of the group.


  • 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  • 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.


  • 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  • 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
  • 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Climbing wall policies:

  • Cancellations made prior to the end of the registration period will be honored.
  • After the registration period ends no refunds will be given.
  • There are no makeup lessons if a participant must miss a class due to their own scheduling conflicts.
  • If a cancellation is needed due to extenuating circumstances, the participant will need to speak with the Adventure Recreation Coordinator immediately in order for a refund to be considered.

Personal climbing equipment is allowed at the climbing wall. All personal climbing equipment must be recorded during the orientation process and again at each daily sign-in. All climbers must complete the rules of conduct form and be responsible for the proper use and care of their equipment. No auto-locking belay devices are allowed at the CRWC climbing wall.

How to register online:

  • If you are a community member, you can set up an account here. You can also set up an account by calling 335-9293 or by visiting the CRWC member services desk to create an account. Once that's done, you'll be good to go! 
  • If you already have a Hawk ID or have a community account, click here to go to our online registration portal. 
  • Head over to our Online Registration FAQ page to learn more about the process.


  • Payment must be made at the time of registration online or at the membership desk. 
  • Forms of payment accepted: Check (made out to The University of Iowa), Credit Card, U-bill (U-bill is in-person only).
  • If you have questions concerning the program or level placement, please contact the Adventure Recreation Coordinator at 319-335-9290.

Contact us

Dave Patton headshot

David Patton

Associate Director of Adventure Recreation

Raud Kashef

Adventure Recreation Coordinator