UKC

Undercover Rock/The Bristol Climbing Centre

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Address
St Werburgh's Church, Mina Road, Bristol, AVON BS2 9YT

Tel/Fax
0117 941 3489

Email
enquries@undercover-rock.com

Website
undercover-rock.com

Costs
£8.00 Adult (after 4pm weekdays, and all times at weekends), Adult before 4pm weekdays £6.00, Children under 16 £4.00, 16/17 year olds £5.50 at all times, £3 one-off joining fee. £390 1yr unlimited

Opening times
Mon-Fri 0930-2200, Sat, Sun 0930-1800

Notes
Undercover Rock was bought the The Climbing Academy in January 2016. We have a plan to invest in the centre over the coming years and we hope to bring UCR back up to a great standard.

UnderCover Rock is in a converted church. It's got them all - leading (overhanging, vertical and slab), traversing routes, bouldering, and a dedicated top rope area.

UCR has a cafe serving sandwiches, paninis, top quality coffee, flapjacks and other refreshments. For viewing and relaxing there is an interesting viewing gallery upstairs which looks over the entire main leading area.

The bouldering area has a full range of wall angles including a 45 degree wall and a slab. There is a dedicated circuit wall upstairs with a range of both easy, hard and children circuits. The route walls are 12m high in the lead area, 9m in the top-rope courtyard, but very good quality setting and design, and routes changed weekly if not daily.

UCR offers a full range of courses -

Taster Sessions

Beginner Lessons

Step-Up to Leading

Technique and Movement Lessons

Outdoor Groups

Birthday Parties

Private Tutoring and Groups

Climbers Club

Youth Clubs and Performance Squad

Lead walls up to 12m. Lead/toprope walls to 9m including a separate beginners' area, all own-built with Livingstone input initially - built 1992, further developed in 1993 and 1995 and 2013. 1200 sq metres of wall surface. Cafe, meeting room. Courses and equipment available.

Directions
Driving directions to Undercover Rock/The Bristol Climbing Centre with Google
The climbing centre is located just off the M32 as it comes into Bristol. If you are approaching from the North take the M32 into Bristol. Come off at junction 3, you will come up on to a raised roundabout. Take the fifth exit that leads back onto the M32 heading North. Keep to the left hand side of the slip road, as it heads back down onto the M32 take the left turn. This is Mina road. Follow Mina road and go straight across the mini roundabout. The climbing centre is situated in St Werburghâs church on the right hand side of the road just past the Miners Arms pub.

Nearby pubs
Miner's Arms, 30 seconds stagger from the front door. One of the best city pubs in Bristols.

Dedicated?
YES, a dedicated climbing centre

ABC wall?
YES, this wall is a member of the Association of British Climbing centres

Crags
Find Crags near to this indoor wall

Do you have more up to date information?
These details were last updated on 17/Apr/2018

User Comments

Climbed there today as weather looked shite for Brean. Very surprised at quality of routes due to loads of angle changes and volumes. Routes wandered and kept you interested. If you want steep/roof climbing then try it out. It's in an interesting part of Bristol aswell, reminds me of Amsterdam.
megamonkeyman - 21/Aug/15

I'm just looking for fellow climbers who want to make lanes in St. Wesburgh's, give me a shout or whatsup! my level is up to 6 c, but I have fun and just doing routes of any grade! 0776331196
Arturo - 11/Mar/14

Having recently attended a CWA Assessment at the centre, and being a regular user of the wall I am a huge fan. With regards to the assessment the day was run by Guy Jarvis and Ali Taylor, both of whom are highly respected within the region. The course was pretty intense, and you certainly got your moneys worth! Unlike some courses you are actually given a live group for a full session; most centres either don't give you a group at all, or give you one for part of the session. This makes the assessment more stressful than others, which in my opinion increases the difficulty of the assessment. The assessment not only covered elements mentioned in the syllabus but also ensures that you have a full range of knowledge of the sport, again making the assessment more difficult. I am very happy with the way that the assessment was run. With regards to the centre, Ben West (Centre Manager) is part of the UK Bouldering Squad, a highly accomplished climber and an all round good bloke. He, and his team set interesting and varied problems both in the bouldering wall and the roped climbing. Including some types of boulder problems that are, as far as I can work out, completely unique in principle. Having spoken to Guy on my assessment it is clear that the centre is starting a pretty major refurbishment at the minute. Rubber matting across the whole centre is one of the interesting additions that will be made. Some people have complained about the dirt around the centre, and I would say that this is pretty standard for any climbing centre of that size that is used as intensively as UCR is. Look at The Climbing Academy for example, on busy days you can barely see for all the loose chalk. Again, the centre is having a refurb, therefore it is reasonable to expect new panels to but put up. Finally, with regards to the holds being too grimy. That is one of the joys of using the space as intensively as it is used, and apart from changing routes even more regularly than they already do there isn't much you can do about it. Maybe free courses on how to place your feet without shedding an inch of rubber might help?!
KitRabbette - 19/Jun/13

Ten years ago (maybe more) this place rocked. Now it has been left behind by nearly every other indoor wall I have been too. It seems strange to say this about a wall that has been around for so long, but the potential is huge and it seems that a few small changes could make it great again. For starters, it is far too noisy, irritatingly so. Put some rubber flooring in for carpet some of it for god's sake! Secondly, i know it is a business, but there must be a limit for how many people can be there at any one time. It is stupidly busy a lot of the time, to the point that you can't move without bumping into someone. Thirdly, clean the place! It is disgusting! How can a wall with such a wide spread reputation be so dirty? I won't walk in the place these days.
Alex Parker - 13/Apr/13

nope I still disagree, I went back their last night. the reason the routes are so weird is that there are too many crammed in to too little space so the holds have to go where they can rather than where they really should be. And as for Jak! I'm sure he is an excellent climber and I don't want to pick on any individual but we leave his routes in particular well alone as the grades are so random. 6b+ easy ! oops just fell off a 5A!, all I'm learning is not to go back I'm afraid.
colinkeb - 11/Feb/12

I was down there tonight. Love the place. I have to say I don't agree with ColinKeb's comments about the route setting in the top roping section. I've just started using it again, when the lead room gets too busy. Some of the climbs are challenging, yes, and they mostly climb harder for their grade than the leads - but I think they're set that way to compensate for the fact that you don't need to clip in. But the route setting is mostly very very good and quite fascinating. Some of the best routes are set by Jak, who is an awesome climber (coaches my kids on Saturdays), and they are all a bit special and (in my experience anyway) graded pretty consistently ONCE YOU WORK THEM OUT - but quite often they need several tries to get what the route is asking of you - with Jak routes there's usually a movement he's trying to teach you, and they will feel reachy and off balance until you work out what it is - then, bingo! you learned something new. Agreed, the holds are dirty - wish they'd clean them. Also just found a 6a+ I can't climb without falling off (a Jak) but will hopefully suss it out next time.
MartynDBull - 10/Oct/11

i can see what people mean about the dirt but it didnt bother me, the lead area is cool but the top rope area is terrible! really greasy holds, no carpet or anything to deaden the sound of screaming kids and the routes! jesus! we climbed 6a's that were easier than the 5b's! really awful moves on some of them, just not natural, awkward lunges and off balance contortions that were set by someone who really cant grade at all. possibly someone too good who cant set easier routes or a complete prat. either way its pretty discouraging when you are trying to warm up and cant understand the grades. we ended up grading them by sight and found a 6B+ that was easier than a 5B! if the grades were sorted out and some decent easy routes this would be my place of choice, till then its the warehouse.
colinkeb - 08/Oct/11

It's good
Quarryboy - 22/May/10

Lots of top ropes available from 3 up to 6a. Plenty of lead climbing in a seperate open area. Very smelly and dirty place though, especailly the toilets!
JamieK - 18/Aug/09

Have just returned after a layoff of years and find the staff helpful food is basic but good and the climbing varied enough for everyone gets a bit to busy with children at weekends and you can feel as if the group instructors would rather you were not in the top rope area at times
Edric Hobbs - 10/Feb/08

Could be a great wall (no where near as good as the wall in Manchester) but as many have said itís filthy and I have never been to a wall with such rude and miserable staff before. Let down by easily avoidable things but the management don't seem capable of sorting it.
Adam - 08/Feb/08

Dont get me started about the shit music they blast out every time i go.
Mark Davies PK - 28/Dec/07

Yes -agree about the cleaning/aging comments. Have been going off and on for years and it is a good centre. However, the more recently opened wall near South Molton, while it does not have the range of routes makes up for it in cleanliness and friendliness.
rw - 22/Dec/07

A nice wall but needs a good clean, in fact any sort of clean.
SA - 05/Dec/07

This place is the mecca that all other wall aspire to be like ..........
RT.......... - 07/Oct/07

Really nice venue with some interesting routes in the main hall and a decent amount of bouldering. Gets a little busy at times and can be chaotic in the main hall (especially Thursday nights). However.. its starting to get a bit dilapidated and the atomosphere has become incredibly clique with staff that all seem to have been on a training course to be miserable to you if you're not a "regular" i.e one of their mates. I've been going every week for 2 years now and am constantly amazed that the management don't see this as a problem for their business, I suppose until another centre comes along and adds a bit of competition they won't. With a bit of money spent and some staff training it could be (and apparently has been) an excellent focal point for South West climbing, shame that these problems are holding it back.
Dan Smith - 26/Jun/07

Good routes and good bouldering. But there are often far too many people and routes for the size of the building, routes overlap and climbers fall behind belayers and onto where other people walk. In desprite need of a refurbishment.
Aled - 16/Nov/06

I love this place. Only complaint is its so far from Reading. Being in a converted church it has a really cool atmosphere. I'm a reasonable beginner and there are plenty of routes easy enough for me. There is a small bouldering area good for warming up, and then separate areas for beginners and for more experienced climbers. As a begiiner-ish they only asked me to confirmI could pu on a harness, tie on correctly, and belay. Membership for life is £1. £6.50 to climb. Lots of top-roped routes. They used to have an overhang that I mastered half off, always wanted to complete it but they have changed the layout a bit so that route is gone so I never got to master it. They rent gear, and the cafe coffee and cakes are yum. Love it.
JillD - 26/Aug/05

I may be biased but this place rocks (sorry!). It has a huge choice of routes with difficulties ranging from 4 to 8, leading and top-roping. The bouldering area is big and varied. The staff and other climbers are all safe as f***. New routes are being added all the time so there is always a new challenge. By the way, the pub to visit is 'the Duke of York'. Go straight across the roundabout from the centre and take the first right (past the park), follow it to the end, the pub is there. Beer garden, skittles, table football, Becks. Just remember to lock your car!!!
Jon Wyatt - 28/Sep/04

The centre has a changing area and lockers. There are climbing magazines so you can just go there, pay the money and then read the magazines and eat food in the cafe and chat up any female climbers and not actually climb. btw the seats are comfortable. The bouldering room climbs change very regularly and there are some great climbs across the roof... lots of challenges. PS Robin for president
Mark Walters - 05/Sep/04

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Listing Photo Gallery
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User Photo Gallery
Bristol Climbing Center from my house

Bristol Climbing Center from my house
© Oliver Buxton

Now just stand up!

Now just stand up!
© Phil Ewels

View from the rest area upstairs at Undercover Rock, Bristol

View from the rest area upstairs at Undercover Rock, Bristol
© John Wellbelove

Climbing Competition

Climbing Competition
© Alaister Nurse

final boulder problem at comp

final boulder problem at comp
© David Bradbrook

Tension

Tension
© Mckenzie

Part of the top roped section, Undercover Rock, Bristol

Part of the top roped section, Undercover Rock, Bristol
© John Wellbelove

View of the main walls, Undercover Rock, Bristol

View of the main walls, Undercover Rock, Bristol
© John Wellbelove

Joint Services Indoor Climbing Competition

Joint Services Indoor Climbing Competition
© Ministry of Defence

hmmm

hmmm
© gangreen