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Official News for USA Climbing Routesetting

POSTPONED: Level 2 Clinic scheduled for April 9th – 11th (application period open now – please apply ASAP)

We have scheduled the next Level 2 clinic to be held April 9th – 11th at Vertical Adventures in Columbus, OH, and instructed by Luke Bertelsen and Mike Bockino, Level 5 Routesetters. 

The application period is from March 6th to 11th.  As this is a short timeline, with the clinic held in early April, we encourage all applicants to apply as soon as possible.  THE DEADLINE FOR APPLYING IS MARCH 11th.

Please download the Level 2 Application HERE and send to routesetting@usaclimbing.org

Do not send applications directly to the instructors but only to routesetting@usaclimbing.org.  All applications will be collected and reviewed promptly by the instructors and Chris Danielson, Administrator of the USAC Routesetting Clinic and Certification Program, and we plan to notify the 10 routesetters selected by March 18th.

POSTPONED: Level 1 Clinics scheduled for April – FL, NJ, CA

We are also pleased to announce three upcoming Level 1 Clinics. 

Note:  The announcement for these clinics is last minute as we already have numerous Routesetters from each of the gyms/regions already confirmed, so there will be approximately 5 - 10 spots available in each clinic to those registering as of March 6th.  If you are interested, please register ASAP, but also know that if you are not available or not able to get into one of these clinics, we also are working on at least 3 or 4 other Level 1 Clinics for May – August and more information should be updated here soon about dates.

LEVEL 1 Clinics:  A Level 1 Clinic is an excellent opportunity for anyone interested in improving their overall routesetting, learning fundamental skill sets for competition routesetting, and taking the first step towards advancing as a USAC competition routesetter.   To register for a clinic you must purchase a Routesetter Membership and then log into your membership and choose the clinic from the Events tab in the dashboard (more info on the CLINICS page). 

Clinic location and info:

April 4/5, 2020 – On The Edge Rock Climbing; Melbourne, FL – Chief Instructor John Oungst (POSTPONED)

April 6/7, 2020 – Gravity Vault Hoboken; Hoboken, NJ – Chief Instructor Nic Oklobzija (POSTPONED)

April 27/28, 2020 – Touchstone Climbing; San Francisco, CA – Chief Instructor Mike Bockino (POSTPONED)

Registration is first-come, first-served and you should have 6 months experience routesetting and be able to comfortably work 5.10/V3.  If you want to participate we encourage you to register as soon as possible as we continue to see growing interest in Level 1 Clinics. 

With any general questions about the program, please contact the Administrator of the Routesetting Clinic and Certification Program, Chris Danielson at routesetting@usaclimbing.org.   



Applications for National competitions

We are excited to announce the open application period for positions at the following competitions below this Spring and Summer.  Note that the application deadline is short (February 7th, 2020) as the next competitions are in March and April and we need to define the routesetting teams as soon as possible.  If you are Level 2 Certified you may apply to Intern positions; Level 3 Certified, Apprentice positions; and Level 4 or Level 5, Assistant positions.  Please read below for more info.

NOTE:  If you are Level 2 Certified and interested in Intern positions, please feel free to apply to these National events but know that there are only 2 positions and we will also announce applications for the 2020 Sport Youth Divisional Internships at a later date, so you will be able to apply again later for those events.

  • Adaptive National Championship:March 28-29, 2020; Mesa Rim Climbing; San Diego, CA
  • Collegiate National Championship:April 17-19, 2020; Earth Treks Englewood, CO
  • Vail Summer Cup at GoPro Games:June 5-6, 2020; GoPro Games; Vail, CO
  • Vail Citizens Competition at GoPro Games:June 6, 2020; GoPro Games; Vail, CO
  • IFSC Boulder World Cup:June 12-14, 2020; Salt Lake City, UT
  • Sport Youth National Championship:July 11-14, 2019; Reach Climbing; Bridgeport, PA 

Please send one application to routesetting@usaclimbing.org if you are interested to apply for one or more of the National events.  We ask that you simply outline in your application, what events you are available for and most interested in and also to denote if you are not available or interested in a particular event.  *If you are specifically interested in the Adaptive National Championship, please send your application AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, and note your interest in that event, as the selection for this competition will be done quickly in the interest of the competition being held in late March.

Note:  For those interested in applying for Internships at USAC Youth Sport Divisional Championship level events later this season, please look for an update on this site later this winter/spring, announcing the application period for Divisional Internships.  The Divisional Championship competition hosts and Chief Routesetters for those events are still being finalized.

DEADLINE TO APPLY for any and all positions: Friday, February 7th, 2020

NATIONAL COMPETITION POSITIONS (see above for relevant dates)

Adaptive National Championship:  Chief Routesetter:  Nohl Haeckel

  • 2 Assistant Positions

Collegiate National Championship:  Chief Routesetter:  Mark Mercer

  • 4 Assistant Positions
  • 3 Apprentice Positions
  • 1 Intern Position

Vail Summer Cup at GoPro Games:  Chief Routesetter:  TBD (US Chief Routesetter)

  • 4 Assistant Positions

    Vail Citizens Competition at GoPro Games:  Chief Routesetter:  TBD (US Chief Routesetter)

  • 2 Assistant Positions
  • 1 Apprentice Position

 IFSC Boulder World Cup:  Chief Routesetter:  TBD (IFSC Chief Routesetter)

  • 3 Assistant Positions

Sport Youth Nationals:  Chief Routesetter:  John Oungst

  • 6 Assistant Positions
  • 5 Apprentice Positions
  • 1 Intern Position

Level 1 Clinics; National Routesetters Announced for Winter Competitions

LEVEL 1 Clinics:  A Level 1 Clinic is an excellent opportunity for anyone interested in improving their overall routesetting, learning fundamental skill sets for competition routesetting, and taking the first step towards advancing as a USAC competition routesetter.  Registration is first-come, first-served and you should have 6 months experience routesetting and be able to comfortably work 5.10/V3.  If you want to participate we encourage you to register as soon as possible as we continue to see growing interest in Level 1 Clinics. 

Note:  As outlined on the Clinic Schedule page, if you are interested in registering but want to first ensure there are spots available before purchasing the Routesetter Membership and logging in to register for the clinic, please contact routesetting@usaclimbing.org and we can confirm availability.

Winter Competition National Routesetters Announced

It has been a busy start to the year already for USA Climbing and we look forward to events in 2020.  We have finalized the Chief Routesetters for all the National events.  Please refer to the Competitions page for more information. 

We are also happy to have confirmed four National Rouetsetters to assist with the Pan American Combined Championship coming up in late February in Los Angeles:  Ryan Sewell (Lead), Bret Johnston (Lead), Brad Weaver (Bouldering), Nic Oklobzija (Bouldering).

Positions Announced and Application Period Open for Winter Competitions

We are excited to announce the open application period for positions at the following competitions below this winter. 

We announce application periods twice annually – once for these winter competitions and then a second round (application period in early 2020) for competitions in Spring/Summer 2020.  Please apply now if interested in any of the events listed below but if interested in Paraclimbing, Collegiate and/or Sport Youth National Championships, then check back in early 2020 to apply for those positions.

NOTE:  If you are Level 2 Certified, you may apply to Internships; Level 3, Apprentice positions; and Level 4 or Level 5, Assistant positions.  Please read below the competition listings for more info. 

  • Bouldering Youth Divisionals (Interns Only):January 18-19, 2020; Multiple Locations (see below)
  • Combined Invitational (Assistants Only):January 10-12, 2020; Summit Climbing Plano, Plano, TX
  • Bouldering Open Nationals (Assistants Only):January 31 - February 1, 2020; Deschutes Expo Center; Redmond, OR 
  • Bouldering Youth Nationals (Assistants/Apprentices Only):February 7-10, 2020; Deschutes Expo Center; Redmond, OR
  • Sport Open Nationals (Assistants/Apprentices Only):March 13-14, 2020; TBD 

Routesetting Memberships now available; Updated Membership and Events Platform

All routesetters are now welcome to purchase a USA Climbing Routesetter Membership for the 2019-2020 climbing season.  A current Routesetter Membership ($70.00) is required to participate in a USAC Routesetting Clinic, to work as a Chief Routesetter for any Championship events, as well as to work at any National events and/or to be listed on the published list of USAC Certified Routesetters.  Note that beginning this season USA Climbing has a new platform for membership and events, Sport80.  There are many new classes of Membership for USA Climbing (for example, two levels of Coach memberships, Judges memberships, Volunteer and Staff memberships all new this year) and when purchasing a Routesetter Membership you must purchase one of three types:

  • Level 1 Membership (received Level 1 certification, or are planning to take Level 1 clinic)
  • Level 2 Membership (received Level 2 certification)
  • Level 3+ Membership (Received Level 3 or higher certification)

As established last season, in order to have one’s certification be active, a routesetter must also remain current with the requirements for SafeSport and Background checks.  More information can be found on the certification section or if you have specific questions about your SafeSport or Background check status or membership, please email both routesetting@usaclimbing.org and sharlee@usaclimbing.org.

National Chief Routesetters Announced

It has been a busy start to the year already for USA Climbing and we have our first National competition coming up next weekend at Stone Age National Cup Series.  We have finalized the Chief Routesetters for all the National events.  Please refer to the Competitions page for more information. 

Applications for Divisional Internships and National competitions; Update to Certification structure

For those interested in routesetting at USAC Championship level events this season, please look for an update on this site soon, announcing the application period for Divisional Internships, and for Assistant/Apprentice positions at National Championship events.  We are still hard at work finalizing the Divisional Championship competition hosts and Chief Routesetters for those events, and expect to open the application period later this month for Divisional Internships and the National competitions.

We also have an update regarding the certification structure:  Note that after significant review by the Routesetting Committee, beginning this season the certification structure has changed such that in order to receive Level 4 Certification, a Routesetter must complete TWO (2) National Apprenticeships. Routesetters can gain Level 2 Certification at a Level 2 Clinic, Level 3 Certification through an official Internship, and then must be an Apprentice at two National competitions, in order to gain Level 4 Certification. 

For those anticipating the application process, please also note in terms of assignments for events, that at National Cup Series events, USA Climbing assigns the Chief Routesetter only; all other Routesetters are determined by the host facility.  For all National Championship events in 2019-20 season, USA Climbing assigns the Chief Routesetter and all other positions (Assistant/Apprentice/Intern), and it is for those National Championship events that we will have the open application process, later this month.

Please do not apply until the formal application period is announced on this website.  Contact routesetting@usaclimbing.org with any questions.

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