Climbing gym to open soon off 280

Published 3:24 pm Wednesday, October 12, 2016

NORTH SHELBY – Once open, High Point Climbing and Fitness off U.S. 280 will offer residents a new experience.

The climbing gym will be located in the former Next Total Fitness facility at 4766 U.S. 280, close to the intersection with Valleydale Road.

Ben Lowe, marketing and communications coordinator, said a soft opening will be held in November.

“We can’t wait to get the doors open,” Lowe said.

Lowe said High Point renovated the building and also added on to create a space that allows for high climbs.

“Most buildings are not built tall enough to accommodate interesting climbing wall systems,” Lowe said.

Lowe said the U.S. 280 location was attractive because of its convenience to a large customer base and dining and shopping options patrons might be interested in.

High Point Birmingham will feature several different climbing areas.

A lobby area with point-of-sale transactions and a shop for indoor and outdoor climbing gear is right inside the front door.

For those who don’t own their own gear, rentals will be available.

“We’ll get you set up and ready to climb,” Lowe said.

High Point Birmingham will offer memberships and day passes. With the purchase of a pass, customers can come and go as they please throughout the day, and will also have access to yoga classes and the facility’s cardio equipment and weight room.

Though rates for the Birmingham location have not been finalized, a day pass at High Point’s Chattanooga location costs $16 for an adult.

Memberships will be offered at monthly and yearly rates.

The facility features full locker rooms, restrooms and saunas for men and women.

High Point’s rope room, which will offer climbs that require the use of ropes, was created by filling in a pool and then raising 55-foot walls around the space.

The room will include a rappel station and a 30-meter speed wall that can be used for competitions, among other features.

The rappel station will be able to facilitate Scouts seeking merit badges, Lowe said.

There is also an alcove for training of expert climbers that will house a wall that can be adjusted to various angles.

An area for children has proven to be among the most popular amenities at High Point’s two Chattanooga locations, and Birmingham is sure to be no exception.

The Kids Zone will have a bouldering area with cushy mats and items shaped like dinosaurs, fire trucks and more for children to climb.

“It will be full of kids, but their parents will be climbing on this stuff too,” Lowe said.

Lowe said parents often ask what is an appropriate age for children to visit High Point.

“If they’re climbing on the furniture in the home, they’re going to enjoy High Point,” he said.

A bouldering room will allow for shorter climbs that don’t require ropes.

Lowe likened strength-based bouldering to a sprint in running parlance, while rope climbing is more like a marathon.

High Point will host the Vulcan Cup competition on Dec. 17, which is part of the USA Climbing National Cup Series. A $10,000 cash purse will be offered for the winner of the open category.

“That will attract climbers from all over the country,” Lowe said.

Adding to the growing interest in climbing is the fact that rock climbing will be part of the 2020 Olympic Games for the first time.

High Point will be the only rope climbing gym in Alabama, Lowe said.

The climbing walls will be reset every couple of months to keep things interesting for regular visitors.

“There’s something in here for everybody,” Lowe said and added that High Point will host adaptive climbing clinics for those with mental or physical disabilities. “We want everybody to get involved with climbing.”

High Point will also feature two rooms that will be available to rent for birthday parties, business team-building excursions and more.

In addition to the soft opening, Lowe said High Point Birmingham is planned to be open to the public the last two weekends of October—not for climbing but for those interested in seeing the facility and learning more about it.

All parts of the business are expected to be fully open by mid-December.

For more information, visit or follow the Birmingham location on social media (@HighPointBirmingham).