photo showing gear donation box

Climbing, like many outdoor sports, has a high cost of entry: the gear. It ain’t cheap. To boulder in the gym, in addition to a membership (>$60/month), one needs to purchase a chalk bag (cheap) as well as climbing shoes regularly (often >$100 a few times a year!). If you’re roping up you’ll tack on a harness ($50-$150), and a belay device ($100 for a GRIGRI, the most common assisted braking belay device in use). Wowza! That’s upwards of $1,000 for your first year of gear in climbing. If, of course, you’re venturing outside – which is our hope, as your local climbing org – you’re spending hundreds more on crash pads, tents, helmets, warm puffy jackets and hiking-worthy shoes…the list goes on and on.

If you’re into climbing or want to get into climbing, you already know this. When we talk about making climbing more accessible, we have to be realistic. Climbing isn’t free, even if sometimes accessing outdoor boulders can be. To do it safely, well, and to have fun, there is a high cost of entry – especially if you’re not someone with buddies who are lending you gear to make it possible!

SWPACC recognizes this huge barrier to entry in climbing, and in order to begin to try to level the playing field, we are holding our first USED GEAR DRIVE! If you’ve been in the game for a while, you probably have extra gear lying around. Whether it’s extra shoes (like new or resoleable), a spare jacket (that could still keep someone warm), or even hardware like an ATC or GRIGRI, someone can use it if you’re not. Below are some guidelines for donations.

Donation boxes can be found at the entry to both Iron City Boulders and Ascend Pittsburgh. Please ask the front desk if you can’t find it! THANK YOU in advance for your generosity.

photo illustrating items accepted for donation


Clean, usable condition:

  • climbing shoes
  • belay gloves
  • belay devices + carabiners
  • technical outdoor gear
  • Gear that needs minor repairs (small rips, re-hemming, resoling) is okay!


photo of gear not accepted for donation


Do not donate:

  • Stinky, soiled, moldy, or otherwise gross gear
  • Anything shredded, cracked, or presents safety hazards
  • T-shirts, jeans, other street clothes not fit for outdoor use
  • Helmets, harnesses, or other soft gear (for new-in-box donations of safety equipment, please contact us ahead of time!)

Feel free to contact us at for any clarifications!