Challenge: A tour of London’s climbing walls by bike. 52 bouldering climbs, 7 climbing centres, 52km cycling, 1 day
Details: One of the toughest challenges, starting at 08.45am at the Westway in Fulham, we only finished the final climb just in time for the closing time at the Reach in Greenwich. The wall crawl is a feat in time management and map reading so make sure someone in your group is responsible for time, and perhaps another for map reading. We bouldered rather than climbed at each wall.
See the full itinerary below. The cycles do take a while in a group due to traffic lights etc so you may have to flex coffee breaks/ lunch/ climbs to keep the speed up. It’s definitely possible though as we managed it. Good luck!
Where? Around London. I’d recommend a phone mount/ garmin – you can type in the postcodes as per the map here and leave the rest to google maps. Cycle safe.
Transport? On yer bike
When? You’ll need a whole day for it. Recommend a Sunday as the roads are clearer for cycling on but any day works. Just check your timings match with opening times of the climbing centres.
Bring? Bike mount for phone so you can navigate, climbing shoes (though these can be rented in each wall), bike, helmet, bike lock, cash (for coffee and cake!), bike lights.
Food & drink? Have some snacks and water with you. You’ll be able
Cost? The climbing centre tour can be quite expensive if you have to pay entry fee at each, particularly as you will only spend 30 mins in any one centre. I recommend getting in contact with the centres in advance. They were very kind to us, and we received discounts/ fee waivers at most centres – not sure how repeatable this is though. Will leave you to suss out when you do it.
The itinerary we managed when the 52in52 challenge took place on 9th August 2015:
I. Westway (W10 6RP)
08.45: Meet and greet
9.15: Climb — 10.00: On bikes — Cycle 6.5km (25mins)
II. The Climbing Hangar (SW6 4HH)
10.30: Meet. Climb
11.15: Coffee at St. Clements, 201 New Kings Road, SW6 4SR — 11.45: On bikes — Cycle 7km (25 mins)
III. Vauxwall (SW8 1SR)
12.15: Meet. Climb — 13.00: On bikes — Cycle 11.5km (45 mins)
IV The Castle (N4 2HA)
1.45: Meet up in the Castle Café for lunch — 2.15: Climb — 3.00: On bikes — Cycle 7km (25 mins)
V. Mile End (E3 5BE)
3.30: Meet. Climb — 4.15: On bikes — Cycle 6.5km (25 mins)
VI. The Arch– Building One (SE16 4DG)
4.45: Meet. Coffee on indoor grassy steps in Building One — 5.00: Climb — 5.45: On bikes — Cycle 9.5km (45 mins)
VII. The Reach (SE18 5NU)
6.30: Meet. Climb — Cycle 1.7km (6 mins)
7.00: Pub – Anchor & Hope, 2 Riverside, Charlton (SE7 7SS)
Any questions about the WallCrawl, fire them my way. If questions are about a specific climbing centre, best to contact them directly.
eXerK 52in52 video: