1412 Tangier Dr White Marsh, MD

happyly approved

An indoor climbing "gym" especially made with little people in mind!

You may think anything that ends in “zone” is just another place where you’ll find your eardrums bursting while your kids run around screaming at a birthday party, but I’m here to tell you Climb Zone is different.  While it’s perfect for birthdays (check their website for reservation info including pizza party catering!) it’s also a great place to take the kids (not to mention the grown ups) to tackle some truly fun climbing challenges in a way that makes it easy for any level climber to take advantage of.  

Upon arrival you’ll be met with a warehouse space full of themed climbing walls.  Colors pop, Mt. Rushmore stares at you with all 8 presidential eyes, a 30’ library shelf begs you to see what titles hide in its top shelf.  It’s pretty impressive on first glance. For someone like me who’s maybe just a little bit scared of heights it wasn’t a sure thing that I’d be putting on a harness and joining the kids, but once I got half way up the first wall I was hooked.  

Unlike traditional climbing gyms that cater to the more serious climbing crowd, this spot uses an auto-belay system attached to the top of each wall so that you don’t have to wait on spotters to help you repel after reaching your peak.  Just let go (easier said than done the first time, I assure you) and you’ll slowly descend thanks to this state of the art hydraulic system. The descent was as much fun as the climb.  

Friendly and helpful Climb Zone staff are on hand making their rounds to make sure everyone is safe and to provide some tips on how to traverse some of the walls.  Also posted are lists of each wall, identified by theme, and their difficulty level of easy, medium or hard. Lockers and cubbies are available for storing your things and bathrooms were convenient and clean.  A dining area with tables and benches for snacks lets you take a break when your arms and legs start to feel the burn. If you’ve forgotten to pack food from home, Climb Zone does offer a limited selection of packaged snacks. 

Climbers must be 2+ and pricing levels include two tiers: tickets for kids ages 2 - 5 and kids ages 6+, under 2 is free.  The little ones can enjoy a small play area and some inflatables for bouncing and sliding. There’s even a small arcade area and a netted dodge ball octagon in case you’re itching to do something other than climb.

Memberships are available offering discounted pricing, as do birthday groups.  According to the staff they are generally busiest during weekdays when school is out thanks to lots of visits from summer camps and on evenings and weekends when school is in session.  The website indicates that reservations are highly recommended for weekends and school holidays.

We weren’t there for Black Light Nights or Family Game Nights but I can only imagine these add another level of fun to what was already one of the best times I’ve had recently.

Matthew Raspa
Baltimore, MD
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