Rock Climbing for Beginners at The Rock Oasis

Well, I was hoping to write about my kayaking trip to the Toronto Islands but unfortunately that got rained out. So, in a bit of a spur of the moment decision one of my best friends and I decided to hit up ‘The Rock Oasis’ rock climbing gym to take their beginner class and try climbing those walls! I have been rock climbing once before at ‘Of Rock and Chalk’ in Newmarket and earlier this year my partner and I went to Hamilton’s ‘Gravity Climbing Gym’ to do some bouldering. Both of my previous experiences have been really positive and I enjoyed all of my rock climbing time…until now.

Less than impressed.


The Good

  • A sizable gym with separate rooms for bouldering as well as more advanced climbing
  • Lockers were free and shoe rentals were included in our lesson
  • Offered beginner classes at a pretty decent rate of $40.00 (this includes an all-day pass, so you can climb as long as you want afterwards)
  • We were able to book pretty last minute (should have been a sign?)
  • I got to spend time with my best friend, yes!!!

The Bad

  • The staff were rude and inattentive
  • The beginner class was a lot of tying and untying yourself, with limited time on the wall itself. This wouldn’t be a problem if the classes specified that this is what they were…on the website, linked here, it implies that you will “climb lots to practice your new skills”…we were on the walls for maybe 15 minutes of the entire hour.

The Ugly

  • Our Instructor was absolutely terrible. He was beyond rude and did not explain things properly. I really don’t feel like I learned anything and every time my friend asked a question, the instructor would basically ignore the question and berate him for doing something wrong or go on a tangent about why holding your hands a certain way is dangerous. Okay, I understand that there is a lot of danger involved in rock climbing but when your students have questions you should answer them so that we can learn. At one point we considered walking out of the lesson and asking for our money back but we ended up sticking with it and listened as much as we could.
  • I seriously did NOT learn a thing and would not feel comfortable climbing by myself without completing another beginner lesson somewhere else. Suggestions?

I was really disappointed with this experience and I felt 100% responsible for both my experience and my friends, since it was my idea to do the lesson and I booked it with ‘The Rock Oasis’. This was my friends first time rock climbing and I wanted him to have a great time because I genuinely enjoyed my past experiences. On the bright side, we both decided that this was not going to be our last time hitting the walls; we will try another gym and not let this less than desirable experience ruin all of our fun!

You aren’t raining on our parade, Rock Oasis!!

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