Day 7; Climbing Progression and the Vertical Heaven Climbing Gym

Climbing Progression and Training for Climbing

Climbing is definitely not a sport for the weak of heart. Although it is a great sport for everyone, progression in this sport is challenging and takes a lot of patience and effort. Not that I am expecting to be climbing like the burly mutant Chris Sharma, but I have been spending as much of me free time as I can getting my climbing back at the level I was at 5 years ago. At that time, I peaked at a 5.11a and could climb a 5.10 consistently. Spending my morning at Vertical Heaven Climbing Gym in Ventura today, I was completely derailed by the tragic realization that I could only successfully send a V1 and barely scramble up a 5.9 while I was struggling to hold onto the holds on each ascent. With that said, I got to climb with couple of climbing partners who I connected with through a group and on the forums. Although they were both better climbers than me, and my ego was slightly bruised, it made for a good session.

Climbing at Vertical Heaven in Ventura

Vertical Heaven is the largest indoor rock climbing facility within 50 miles of Santa Barbara and is the best place to climb in the Tri-County area on a rainy day. Click here for a map to Vertical Heaven. Located in a warehouse in Ventura, CA, it is a decent sized climbing facility with routes ranging from 5.4 to a few 5.12’s in addition to bouldering problems including a mutant conquered V11 overhang. Not to mention two fairly burly cracks and enough sport climbing to go around. The staff at the indoor climbing gym does not bother you unless you are making a scene and I have seen many top rope without taking their belay test. While this is not really a problem for experienced climbers, it is not a great safety precaution and their could likely be an accident if someone who is not properly trained jumps on the wall. The cost to climb at the Gym is $15 but check out their Weeknight Climbing Specials page for deals. While it is a fun place for cranking some plastic; it still does not compare to the climbing when the weather permits some outdoor climbing.

Thankfully, with all of the effort I have put into breaking in my La Sportiva Venoms over the past few weeks, my ability to climb in them has progressed and I can start focusing on my climbing. So, as I chart my progress, I do not think it is going to take me too long to exceed my goals of climbing at 5.11b and leading at 5.10a but I am going to have to work at it based on my performance today.


  • Redpoint on a 5.9 and a 5.8 (Indoors).
  • Climbing with some cool guys.
  • La Sportiva Venoms are starting to feel much better.


  • Numerous failed attempts at some 5.8’s and a 5.9 .
  • Inability to send a V2.
  • Arm strength is still lacking.

Next week I will do some sport climbing either at The Playground if the weather cooperates or spend another day at Vertical Heaven.

Until then, try not to pop your pro!


4 Responses to “Day 7; Climbing Progression and the Vertical Heaven Climbing Gym”
Check out what others are saying...
  1. […] Vertical Heaven  is just a few minutes from our house, so we headed down on a Friday Night (family night) and brought our son along with us. After we filled out a waiver for him, we could take him out on the floor in his car seat. While we climbed, he was either a sleep or just looking around to get some beta on his projects. He really did not fuss, and we have been back three times since and my wife is climbing great and building her confidence. […]

  2. […] climbing!” I proceeded to call the boys and get them to rally around one idea, to climb at Vertical Heaven in Ventura, […]

  3. […] Another discouraging but fun day that first month […]

  4. […] avidly anti- plastic. Recently, I invited a few people to crank on some plastic with me at a local indoor climbing gym while the weather was bad. I was surprised at how many people responded by saying things like, […]

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