CALIFORNIA CLIMBING SCHOOL OFFERS A COMPLETE CURRICULUM If you are looking for a climbing guide at Joshua Tree, we suggest hiring one of our certified guides. California Climbing School offers a full range of services to climbers of all ability levels.
We offer classes in Joshua Tree in basic rock climbing, anchor building, lead climbing, crack climbing, self-rescue, rappelling, and more. Or hire a climbing guide in Joshua Tree for a private lesson, and we will tailor the session to your specific needs. Click here to see a full description of our classes and private guiding options.
What sets California Climbing School apart from other schools located in Joshua Tree is our level of training, our wealth of experience, our ability to teach well, and our knowledge of California natural history. Owners Erik Kramer-Webb and Theresa Walsh have been trained by some of the most respected guides and outdoor educators in the industry. Erik is an AMGA Certified Rock Instructor. Theresa is an AMGA Certified Single Pitch Instructor.
We operate in 3 main areas: Joshua Tree, Tahquitz, and the High Sierra.
We run year round rock climbing outings at Joshua Tree National Park. In our opinion Joshua Tree is the best place on earth to learn rock climbing. The moves have much more variety than most other climbing destinations, which is great for learning new techniques.
Joshua Tree boasts year-round rock climbing, easy access, and climbs of all difficulty levels. It is considered a must-go for climbers worldwide.
And yet despite the popularity of Joshua Tree, we can almost always find a quiet area to climb if we hike just a short distance. Due to the easy approach hikes, world class routes, and stunning scenery, Joshua Tree will capture your heart and keep you coming back for more.
Even though Joshua Tree weather is ideal in the fall and spring, winter is a very popular time to climb as well. Winter brings highs in the 50’s and 60’s and typically sunny weather. Joshua Tree summers are hot (highs in the 90’s and low 100’s), but it cools off quite a bit at night. Our half days starting at 7 am are wonderful all summer long since we will stick to the shade. Even afternoons after 3 pm are pleasant for shade climbing most of the summer.
Simply put, Tahquitz Rock is home to the finest rock climbing in Southern California. It offers superb granite multi-pitch climbing up to 900 feet in height. These climbs rival Yosemite in quality and feel. Many pioneers of Yosemite honed their skills at Tahquitz before attempting the big walls of the Valley. In fact, the “Yosemite Decimal System” was invented at Tahquitz in the early 50’s. The approach hike gains 1000′ to reach the base of the rock so this is a great place to get a cardio and leg workout as well.
The High Sierra is home to some of the most magnificent rock climbs in the world. Schedule a guided climb of a classic High Sierra peak like Mt Whitney or Mt Russell, and have an adventure you will never forget. On the first day hike in to an alpine lake and enjoy a spectacular campsite. Then go for the summit the next morning and hike back out. Other routes can be done car to car with your climbing guide in one long day. We typically access the climbs from the eastern Sierra towns of Bishop, Lone Pine, or Mammoth Lakes. Our season in the High Sierra is July through September.
Better known by her nick name, Ting-ting, we are proud to have this talented climber and alpinist on our team. Ting-ting was raised in Taiwan and is fluent in both English and Mandarin. She is an AMGA Assistant Rock Guide and is quite close to achieving her full Rock Guide Certification, which requires passing an extremely rigorous exam.
Ting-Ting has recently returned from doing first ascents of long rock climbs in Patagonia. She recently splashed onto the cover of the NOLS Leader magazine due to her record-breaking traverse of the Wind River Range in Wyoming. She climbed 33 peaks while only being in the mountains for 20 days! Ting-ting also owns her own guide service, called LittlePo Adventures.
Matthew “Mateo” Navarro
Matthew Navarro (aka, Mateo) was born in Palm Springs California, just 20 minutes outside Joshua Tree National Park. This is where Matthew found his passion in climbing and has dedicated the last 3 years to becoming an educator in the climbing world. Matthew’s background is in traditional climbing but loves to sport climb and boulder as well. He doesn’t just see climbing as a recreational sport, he views it as an art. A way one expresses themselves through the poetry of motion. He believe’s through the movement and experiences climbing provides, one finds many benefits to the Body, Spirit, and Mind. He is also is a big fan of Leave No Trace ethics and is keen on knowing his environment. Some of Matthew’s favorite climbing spots are as far as the beautiful forest of France known as Fontainebleau, El Potrero Chico in Mexico, and even local San Diego crags like Eagle Peak and of course his home town Joshua Tree National Park. Matthew has a current certification as a Single Pitch Instructor with the AMGA and holds a Wilderness First Responder. Matthew is currently looking at furthering his guiding career by enrolling in the AMGA Rock Guide Course in the coming year.