Get ready to reach new heights later this month at Carbondale’s newest bouldering gym Monkey House Carbondale!
Conveniently located in the ET Plaza between Highway 133 and 12th Street, Monkey House Carbondale is a dynamic bouldering gym that was specifically designed to challenge climbers of all abilities. From kids who are just learning to climb to expert level climbers, Fabrizio Zangrilli believes that everyone should feel welcome.
Monkey House Carbondale is, “a very exciting place with plenty of beginner, easy climbing that won’t be 18 feet off the ground until you progress and learn to fall properly. [It also] functions really well as an expert training facility,” according to Zangrilli.
For Zangrilli — professional climber, mountain guide, family man, and owner of Monkey House Carbondale — the dream of opening a unique bouldering gym has been nearly two years in the making.
Once Zangrilli and his wife Alix received the official “climb on” from the Town, they immediately went to work searching for a facility that would be large enough to accommodate their dream.
“We found this space […] it had a full second story here […] and everything was converted into [about 22] office spaces […] I came in here with a contractor and we took down the second story, gutted the place, took all the electric out, took all the HVAC out, and started afresh. We’ve been about six days a week since November,” Zangrilli said.
The hardwork has paid off as Monkey House now boasts a state-of-the-art gym with over 2,500 square feet of bouldering. The entire bouldering area has 16 inches of high impact bouldering padding to assist with landing. The wall itself was designed, engineered, and installed by Walltopia, the world leader in climbing wall design and manufacturing. Ranging from 12 to 18 feet tall, the wall is presented in a three-dimensional design with plenty of overhang and route variety.
The climbing holds, designed by Boulder based company Kilter, are color coded according to the level of difficulty, starting with green and progressing to black. In bouldering, routes are rated using the Vermin Scale (v scale) with v0 being the easiest and v16 currently rated as the hardest. At Monkey House Carbondale routes range from v0 to v10+.
Zangrilli noted that bouldering routes will be reorganized every few weeks to give climbers variety and the opportunity to advance their skills with annual projects.
On the upper level of the building, a spacious and open area overlooks the lower level highlighting three incredible climbing boards. Installed by Zangrilli himself, the room, appropriately named the Boardroom, allows climbers to build strength while working on an endless number of projects. Zangrilli gushes over the Boardroom describing it as “one of the better training facilities in the country.”
As soon as climbers enter the Boardroom they are presented with a brand new Kilter Board. One of only two in the entire world, the Kilter Board at Monkey House Carbondale gives climbers a special opportunity to project on a 65 degree, LED, app controlled board.
To use the board, climbers simply download the Kilter App and choose the route they want to project. When a project is chosen, the Kilter holds associated with the chosen route light up starting with green and ending with pink. Climbers then carefully follow the blue and yellow holds for transgression and feet simultaneously.
The Kilter Board is really unique because “[The board allows for] quick transition between projects. [As a result] you can hang out and train with people of different abilities” Zangrilli explained.
In addition to the Kilter Board, the Boardroom is home to the Moon Board, an eight feet by 12 feet climbing surface set at a 45 degree angle. The Moon Board is one of about 1,000 of its kind globally. Similar to the Kilter Board, climbers can project predetermined routes from a downloadable app. The Moon Board sets itself apart by allowing climbers to connect with other climbers from all over the world. Each is set up the exact same way with holds that have one cardinal direction and one number. Climbers then choose their routes on either the app which then uses lights to highlight the holds, or simply use the printed spreadsheet that distinguishes which holds and which direction to go. When a project is complete, climbers can use the app to compare their progress with other climbers.
To square up the Boardroom, climbers are able to train on the Campus Board and the Pullforce Meter Board. The Campus Board, fit with Moon campus rungs and So III Iron Palm training boards, is a “systematic way to get super strong very quickly [because it is] repetitive [and requires] specific movements,” according to Zangrilli.
The Pullforce Meter Board is a great way for climbers to discover where their imbalances are and quantitatively measure their progress. Using a Monkey House-designed hold that features four standard climbing angles, climbers simply attach the hold to the meter and pull. Climbers can then record this information to build training plans with Monkey House Carbondale coaches.
Zangrilli clearly expressed that the Boardroom is accessible for all climbers. Despite the obvious challenges these boards present, climbers are encouraged to step beyond their perceived capabilities and have some fun bouldering on world renowned boards! Imagine how great it would feel to project on the Kilter Board, look over your shoulder, and cheer for your friend as she sends the final few holds of her 18 foot wall climb.
If you are new to bouldering or feel as if you are plateauing in your abilities, fear not! Among the incredible equipment offered at Monkey House Carbondale, climbers can also choose to work with a highly qualified in-house coach. Many of the coaches are valley natives and well versed in the intricacies of bouldering. Feel free to schedule a session now by calling the front desk at (970) 340-4988.
For more information regarding day passes, rentals, memberships, private events, and more go online to www.monkeyhousecarbondale.com. To keep up to date with the latest news, check out Monkey House Carbondale on Instagram @monkeyhousecarbondale.