HWOW27 – A Shared Backyard Homewall in Ontario

CBJ Homewall of the Week

Over the course of 3 months, Chris May and Samantha Young sourced cheap materials to create a homewall with 13 feet of vertical climbing and 20 feet of traversing opportunity. They love to invite friends to their covered backyard setup in London, Ontario!  Check out past HWOW here.

CBJ Homewall of the Week

When did you build your wall? Was it a COVID baby?

Started mid-March and finished in late April. The higher outside wall section was added 2 months later in June. Yes it was.

How long did it take you to build and what did that time look like?

3 months total.


Not including holds and padding, how much did it cost you to build? Any surprises there? Most/Least expensive part?

It cost about $600-700 Canadian. The wood really added up quickly. We did use a mixture of ¾” OSB and plywood though. We found some cheap used plywood planks online and got 50% off the OSB from home depot because of their errors. The T-nuts were super cheap from a local fastener business at only 13-cents a piece!

What are you doing for padding?

We’re using a mixture of mattresses for the base, then on top of those, some memory foam, and on top of that, area rugs or closed cell foam to disperse energy. We found free mattresses and foam online. The only big cost was the vinyl wrap and that was about $350 CDN but worth every penny!

CBJ Homewall of the Week

What was your primary incentive for the wall? Did anything in particular inspire your wall design?

We love climbing and our gym was closed up. Also, we wanted to save money in the summers by climbing at home instead of paying 70 a month. Plus, we like to share with friends.

What was the most difficult aspect of the design and build?

Just the grunt work. Tedious. Also not peeving off the neighbours for over a month with power tools 😉 Luckily, I had a friend who is a general contractor help me with most of it (only cost me a few cases of beer and a few shawarmas).

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What would you do differently?

We’d possibly just make it the height of the outside tall wall all the way around with no roof. So about 13 feet high with about 20 feet of left to right movement. (a few angles of course added on).

Did you make any mistakes along the way or choose to re-do any aspects? If so, what?

We used wrong paint colors (dark blue and grey). After a while decided to go all white. Much much better.

CBJ Homewall of the Week

What is your favorite aspect?

Multiple angles to climb on. Lots of aretes (can be a good thing or bad thing….? rest spots?). I also like the climbing out of the cave to the top of the high wall section. It can make for very long routes.

How often do you use the wall? Do you think you’ll still use it as much when all of the gyms open back up?

2 to 3 times a week which is what we climb in the gym.

Any words of wisdom to aspiring homewallers?

Vision it completed. Mock it up if you have to. Is this the design you love for sure??

Want us to consider your woodie for a future Homewall of the Week? Submit your homewall here to be considered. If yours is chosen you’ll win a prize like this (prizes vary each week):

CBJ Homewall of the Week

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