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Cornell University

COVID-19 Climbing Regulations

The Lindseth Climbing Center, in accordance with New York State and Cornell University guidelines, is adopting the following measures in order to reduce potential transmission of COVID-19. The actions of our staff and patrons have a direct impact on keeping the climbing wall free of the virus, and your compliance will be what keeps the facility accessible. Thank you in advance for your cooperation, we look forward to climbing with you!


Staff and students must complete Cornell's Daily Check before arriving on campus. Climbing while contagious is a bad idea. If you are experiencing symptoms related to the disease, or have been exposed to those who are, do not come to climb. Everyone is encouraged to take their temperature before their visit, and monitor themselves for changes. We'll be here when you are feeling better! Please be prepared to show your Daily Check confirmation at the time of check-in at the wall.


Staff and students will be expected to thoroughly wash their hands before entering the facility, and will be encouraged to wash or sanitize during their session. Frequent hand washing is a good idea in general, even more so now. Climbing holds and walls cannot be cleaned between ascents, or daily, in a manner that eliminates transmission risk. The impracticability of sanitizing holds between each ascent can be mitigated by climbers rigorously adhering to proper personal hygiene practices. Proper climber hygiene should include frequent hand washing, proper respiratory etiquette, and refraining from touching the face, particularly during and immediately following climbing.

Hand sanitizer will be available at the front desk as usual, and you are welcome to bring your own. We also encourage a thorough hand washing at the end of your session. The use of liquid climbing chalk is welcomed, to reduce airborne chalk particles, but is not necessarily a substitute for hand washing or sanitizing.

Additionally, staff will disinfect the front desk and front door often, as well as rental belay kits and harnesses. Chalk bags will not be available for rental at this time. Climbers are encouraged to use their own gear whenever possible.


Staff and students will be expected to maintain six feet of distance between each other, or at least one empty rope route between parties. Keeping appropriate physical distance from other climbers will help prevent the spread of the virus. In order to make this possible, the classes will limit the number of climbers in the facility, and in each of the distinct climbing areas: the bouldering wall, the training area, the lead cave, and the top rope routes. Please be aware of posted limits and choose your climbs accordingly. Staff will monitor the floor to ensure proper distancing is being exercised.

PE 1639 Climbing sessions will be limited to distinct, two-hour time slots. Separate registrations will be available for bouldering and for roped climbing, to ensure space for everyone.

Face Masks

Staff and students will be required to wear a mask at all times. Aside from choosing not to climb, wearing a mask is perhaps the most important thing each of us will do to reduce the spread of the virus at the gym. When you wear a mask, you significantly limit the distance that virus particles from your breath can travel, and you reduce the likelihood of breathing in particles from others' breath. When you wear a mask, you show respect and compassion for those around you who are also wearing a mask. Everyone will be expected to provide their own mask, though LCC may have some emergency masks if yours breaks during your session. All masks must consist of at least two layers of fabric. Vented masks must have a filter in the vent.

Masks may be removed to drink from your water bottle. If you need a breather during your climbing session, please step outside before removing your mask.

Additional Considerations

Because of these new rules, there are some additional impacts to consider.


Wearing a mask may make climbing communication more difficult. Review communication methods with your climbing partner, and consider hand signals in place of shouted commands.

Food and Drink

Food and drinks, other than water, are typically not allowed on the climbing floor, and that continues to be true. Please consume any snacks outside of the facility, and wash your hands after eating before returning. Water fountains are blocked, except for the bottle filling station near the men's room, so plan on bringing your own bottle.

Additional Coronavirus Links

COVID-19 and Reactivation Planning

CDC Mask Guidelines

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