THE POLICIES BELOW ARE APPLICABLE FOR YOUTH 17 AND UNDER
All guests under 18 years old must have a waiver completed and signed by their PARENT OR LEGAL GUARDIAN. There are absolutely no substitutions allowed for the parent or legal guardian.
All crag guests under the age of 13 years old must be either DIRECTLY supervised by an individual that is 15 years or older and has completed a facility orientation and has a signed waiver, meet our Unaccompanied Children Policy (below), OR be enrolled and participating in a staff supervised activity. Parents who wish to bring children under 13 to the crag without providing supervision will need to enroll them in one of our numerous youth programs including Crag Akademie, climbing teams, clubs, camps, after school programs, and Friday Night Kids Climb (“Parents Night Out”). Parents may also talk to our staff about private instruction options for their kids if our group programs do not meet your family’s needs. Kids 13 years old and older may take our learn to climb classes to learn proper use of climbing equipment used at the crag as well as how to belay and climb on top rope.
Children enrolled in programs at Übergrippen (including but not limited to Akademie, clubs, teams, camps, after school programs) will be climbing with other children. Children will often be climbing partners for each other. This means YOUR CHILD WILL BE BELAYED BY ANOTHER CHILD ENROLLED IN THE PROGRAM AND YOUR CHILD WILL BELAY OTHER CHILDREN. If you are not comfortable with this, please do not enroll your child in our group programs. We offer private guided climbing (fees apply) and can also instruct parents on these same belay skills (enroll in our adult Crag Experience class) so that you can supervise your child’s climbing experience directly.
- Climbing is dangerous and children that are not closely following our policies create a hazard to themselves and others in the facility. For this reason we require all children 12 and under must be supervised by someone that is at least 15 years of age at all times or meet our belay certification requirements below. Supervision requires being within direct visual and verbal contact at all times. Parents are asked to come prepared to participate in the climbing experience together with their children!
- Children that are 11 & 12 years old that have completed both Top Rope and Auto-Belay Certifications (see below) and can show an understanding of our rules and policies may come in without an adult present. Children can learn these skills by completing our Crag Akademie program.
- Children 10 & under may NEVER visit the crag without being directly supervised by someone 15 & over.
- All children (accompanied and unaccompanied) are required to adhere to the policies and rules of the crag. Unaccompanied youth visits to the crag are a privilege that may be revoked at any time at ÜG’s discretion.
TOP ROPE BELAYING
- All youth 17 & under MUST use an assisted braking belay device at ÜG. Acceptable assisted belay devices include but are not limited to the Petzl GriGri, Edelrid Jul, Black Diamond Pilot, Mammut Smart, Click-Up, and Trango Cinch. Additional devices that a manufacturer states provides assisted braking are allowed. Youth are prohibited from using traditional tube style belay devices (e.g. ATC’s).
- Children 13 & over are subject to our standard top rope belay policy and belay test.
- Children 12 & under wishing to become belay certified must pass 3 consecutive belay tests. They must complete their tests on three separate days. Until the third test is passed, the belayer will only receive a provisional belay pass for the day and must still be backed up by a belay certified person (parent, teammate, coach). If one test is failed or revoked the climber must start the test process over.
- Children that are 11 & 12 years old do not require a back-up belay after passing the final (third) belay certification test.
- Children 10 and under that are belaying a climber must have a back-up belayer at all times unless actively participating in a program (team, club, Akademie, camp) and is supervised by a UG coach, instructor, or other staff member. A backup belayers may be another belay certified child or teammate, a coach, or a parent. Non-belay certified adults (15 and over) may be given a specific back-up belay orientation to be approved as a back-up belayer.
- Any child that is seen using improper belaying practices may have their belay privileges revoked until they can successfully complete the belay certification process again.
LEAD CLIMBING & LEAD BELAYING
- Children must typically be 13 or older to be lead belay certified.
- Children 12 & under require management approval before becoming lead climb or lead belay certified.
- Children must be top rope-certified prior to being lead climb or lead belay certified.
- All lead belayers must adhere to our top rope belay standards for assisted braking devices and backup belayers.
- Lead climbing & belaying is a privilege, not a right. ÜG staff has discretion to grant and revoke lead climbing privileges as they see fit at anytime.
- We always recommend ALL USERS of auto-belays request a “buddy check” before climbing on an auto-belay. Buddy checks are an important in all types of roped climbing and are there to provide additional assurance to the climber that they are clipped in or tied in properly. Before starting EVERY climb, the user should always double check they are properly clipped into the auto-belay at the correct point. Users of auto-belays accept all responsibility for clipping in to the system.
- All youth 14 & under MUST have a “buddy” to perform safety checks of harnesses, proper clip-in, and use belay commands (“on belay”, “belay on, climb on” or similiar clear communication they chose) prior to every climb. This “buddy” must also be auto-belay certified; they are there to double-check that the climber is clipped in correctly, and may assist in holding the auto-belay tether if necessary.
- Climbers 10 & under using the Auto-Belays must be supervised at all times by someone 15 and over that is Auto-Belay certified.
- Climbers that are 11 & 12 that have passed BOTH Top Rope and Auto-Belay Certification tests may use the Auto-Belays with another Auto-Belay certified child that is 11 years old or older. This “buddy” can then perform the buddy safety checks of the climber prior to each climb.