When You Can’t Find the Wilderness Go Buildering

alain robert buildering

Buildering - Alain Robert

So you find yourself stuck in town, there’s not a rock in sight –what is a rock climber to do?

When you find yourself in an urban setting, become one with your urban setting and find the nearest bridge or skyscraper because it’s time for some buildering (urban climbing).

Just about any urban structure can be a prime candidate.

In most cases, those climbers who enjoy urban climbing will find themselves climbing bridges and other buildings.

Keep in mind this is not always legal and you may find a not so welcoming welcome party when you finish your climb. Many experienced urban climbers have gone solo at night and many have climbed skyscrapers, bridges and other structures only to be greeted by the police when they descended from the climb.

There are those locations that tend to turn the other way and allow people to enjoy themselves. Most notably, the University of Colorado at Boulder and Tufts University tend to turn the other way.

This form of climbing actually has quite a long history and dates back to the early 1900s when Harry H. “The Human Fly” Gardiner climbed over seven hundred buildings in Europe and North America. He was the first recorded urban climber and never used any sort of climbing gear. In fact, he climbed in his street clothes and tennis shoes.

There were several notable urban climbers after Gardiner’s time including Alain Robert. Considered the “Real-life Spiderman,” Robert climbed the Golden Gate Bridge, The Empire State Building, the Sears Tower and the Petronas Towers in Malaysia.

Check out this Alain Robert buildering video

Those climbers looking for an adrenaline rush will enjoy free-solo urban climbing. This can be quite dangerous, yet very exciting.

Builders often draw a crowd and possible media attention. They can also get very creative. Those urban climbers looking for something to climb have been known to climb billboards, storage containers, bridges, cranes, even chimneys and smokestacks.

Just about everything is climbable and they’re constantly looking for new challenges.

Urban climbing can be lots of fun, but remember it is illegal and to do it with caution.

Climb safe climb strong,

Rock Climbing For Life

Related posts:

  1. The Art of Buildering
  2. Bridges Rock Gym
  3. Benefits of Rock Climbing

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This entry was posted on Saturday, August 21st, 2010 at and is filed under Buildering, Rock Climbing Articles. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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