Minneapolis Bouldering Project (Our Visit)

Kids lounging in the lobby of the Minneapolis Bouldering Project before rock climbing

We were headed to Minneapolis Bouldering Project and we were super excited.

No, wait.  Scratch that.

I was excited. The kids had no idea where we going because I wanted it to be a surprise.

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Arriving at Minneapolis Bouldering Project for our Rock Climbing Experience

We arrived in the middle of an industrial region in North Minneapolis on the bank of the Mississippi River.  I didn’t know how easy it would be to find a parking space, so when I saw the sign for the facility, I pulled over and parked.

We got out of the car and headed toward the sign. That’s when my 13 year old shrieked a little bit.

“We came! You brought us to Minneapolis Bouldering Project! Oh, thanks, Mom!  Thanks, Mom!!!”

Sure, we had made it to the sign, but where did we find the building and entrance? I saw a door for a city office and deck for the pub, but I had no idea where we were supposed to go.

So we just started walking around the potential building. We hiked around the entire building and finally found the entrance.

The first thing I noticed when we got to the front doors was that there is a free parking lot for Minneapolis Bouldering Project, and it would have had plenty of room for us.

Introduction to Rock Climbing & Bouldering at MBP

We walked into the facility and met our friend, Clayton. He was as pumped to have us there as we were to be there. His excitement to meet us was super contagious, and he kept giving us hi-fives!

Children trying on climbing shoes at the Minneapolis Bouldering Project to find the perfect fit before wall climbing
Trying on appropriate climbing footwear in the main area.

Appropriate Clothing & Shoes

The first thing we did was get shoes. The kids tried on various sizes and finally found the perfect fit for them.  Since it was our first time, there was no rental fee for shoes. The kids were dressed move. Helmets are a good idea.

An instructor at Minneapolis Bouldering Project explains rules and procedures to a group of children prior to climbing.
Clayton gives a quick lesson regarding proper skills, following rules and safety concerns

Climbing Rules

After everyone had their shoes on, Clayton sat the kids down and went over the rules of MBP.  The most important ones that he went over with the kids included

  1. No running.
  2. Always climb down. No jumping off the walls onto the landing surface.
  3. Always look up when you are climbing.

And Rules for the Caretaker

  1. Only three kids* on the wall at a time in the youth section.
  2. Only two kids on the wall at a time in the adult section and they must be within arms reach.

They were simple rules and easy enough for me to manage. Before he gave us our tour, Clayton had the kids practice falling. That way if they fell from the wall, they would have the appropriate skills and know how to tuck and roll and not try to catch themselves.

Tour of the MBP Facility

With shoes on our feet and brains in our heads, Clayton gave us a tour.  (Did I mention that Clayton was wearing boardshorts with pink umbrellas on them?  I’m telling you that alone made him a superstar).

Right away, Clayton handed me a legend card.  The legend explained the difficulty of the different climbs.  Different colors throughout the facility meant different degrees of difficulty.  Then, he showed us around the whole facility.  It didn’t take long because so much of it is the bouldering gallery, but I was impressed with the bathrooms, strength training and cardio space and the mezzanine.

Girl climbing wall at the Minneapolis Bouldering Project
Climber on the climbing walls

Bouldering Adventures at MBP

Everyone has a different experience!  It’s truly made for the whole family.  While we were there, a dad and his two sons–probably 6ish and 9ish–were having a completely different experience than we were having.  It was super fun to watch.

Youth room

The youth room is not as intense as the adult space. The colors are more for aesthetic appeal and do not coordinate with the legend. They have a slide and high climbs and low climbs and climbs under and climbs over. The nice part of this space is that the parent or legal guardian just need to be in the area.

Adult space

The adult space is huge. Most of the 20,108 square feet of climbing terrain is for the adults. I say adults, but really it is for people of all ages. However, caregivers MUST be more diligent and maintain direct supervision with these boulders.  And, as their spotter, you will get a great core workout anticipating your children’s climbs.

Three kids climbing a colorful wall at the Minneapolis Bouldering Project
Participants contemplate the complex climbing area

Benefits at Minneapolis Bouldering Project

MBP has thought of everything for your individual trip. They have day passes and different levels of memberships. Not only have they thought of everything, but also they are open to feedback from guests.

Here are some benefits that I love about Minneapolis Bouldering Project.

  • Only 3 kids on wall in youth room at a time and 2 kids on wall in adult space,  Solution: Request a facilitator 2 weeks prior to your visit.
  • Tiring experience, Solution: Day passes good for open hours during the entire day. Includes the use of the entire facility and access to all classes. Take a break in the social gathering areas to have a snack and a sip from your water bottles.
  • Some climbs you can accomplish easier than others, Solution: Routesetters are always moving the grips and volumes so you won’t have the same experience when you return.  And a colored legend for the degree of difficulty throughout the entire facility.

Minneapolis Bouldering Project

Try Rock Climbing at Minneapolis Bouldering Project

Minneapolis Bouldering Project offers membership cards–annual and monthly–but to check it out, I would suggest a day pass or a punch card. If your family is interested in using bouldering as a regular fitness program, then the membership may come be useful.

Day Passes

Adult Day Pass (Age 21+): $20

Student Day Pass (Age 14-20): $18

Youth Day Pass (Age 13 & under): $13

Punch Cards

Adult 10-Punch : $170

Student 10-Punch : $150

Youth 10-Punch : $100

You can get more information about price range rates here.

I highly recommend you check this place out. My kids can wait to go back!

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