Robert Haro aimed to create a space outside of the local gym and crag where he can train, climb fun roof problems, and introduce others to climbing. It’s now in phase 4 of his garage buildout in Reno, NV. Check out past HWOW here.
When did you build your wall? Was it a COVID baby?
I built the first section back in December 2019 so that I could have my own wall to learn how to routeset on. I also wanted a place for my friends to train during the winter.
How long did it take you to build and what did that time look like?
So far, the wall project has been going on for one year, but there have been many upgrades and extras added throughout 2020. In total, it took about 2 weeks of working on the wall between the initial build and all of the upgrades. Currently, I’m planning the Phase 4 upgrades which will connect both overhangs to create a full roof arch and crack system. That section will take a little more time, as it will be more intricate of a design.
Not including holds and padding, how much did it cost you to build? Any surprises there?
Between the wood, materials, T-Nuts, tools etc, I spent just under 2k total. After the California fires, wood panels were hard to come by, so for phase 3 upgrades, I had to buy Baltic birch panels to use, which were more costly. My friends all pitched in small donations here and there when they used the wall after the local climbing gym was shut down.
What are you doing for padding?
We use a 1inch rubber flooring base, with a few Metolius Tri Fold crash pads for added protection. Once the roof section is added in, we will need some bigger pads to cushion the falls. Climbing problems on an 11-foot roof will be a lot of fun for sure, but having proper padding is key to our safety.
What was your primary incentive for the wall? Did anything in particular inspire your wall design?
Mainly, I wanted my own wall to practice technical moves like heel-hooks and toe-hooks on. I felt that creating the wall and setting routes that force certain movements would be very beneficial.
What was the most difficult aspect of the design and build?
The most difficult aspects for me were starting from scratch, and doing the majority of the build by myself. I did a lot of research and learned a lot from the Home Climbing wall Forum on FB. I picked other home wall builders’ brains and truly learned a lot leading up to the phase one build. I also had bought the book “Building your own climbing wall,” which helped out tremendously.
What would you do differently?
I think I would have spent more time getting things perfectly placed. I look at minor mistakes and details and they make my eye twitch slightly.
Did you make any mistakes along the way or choose to re-do any aspects? If so, what?
I made tons of mistakes with the initial wall, including dealing with spinning t-nuts, uneven garage dimensions, and panel placements. There are tools I could have used that would have made the build much better, but working with a budget, I did the very best I could with the resources available at the time.
What is your favorite aspect?
My favorite aspect is just knowing that I can walk into the garage, get a good hangboard, campus or climbing sesh in, and never have to leave home. With the current pandemic situation, it works out perfectly. I also like that I can have my climbing partners over for some fun Add-On Competitions for prizes.
How often do you use the wall? Do you still use it as much with the gyms open again?
I switch between outdoor climbing, gym climbing, and climbing at home. The current wall has a small roof section, one that isn’t available at any local gym. So, I’m able to create routes on my home wall that aren’t available in the local area. Between my roommate and friends, the wall gets used at least a few times a week.
Any words of wisdom to aspiring homewallers?
Research is key to building a great wall. Don’t be afraid to try out new angles or make a completely unique wall. Building a very fun wall with limited space was hard, but well worth it.
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