Who We Are

We have approximately 700 sq. ft. of bouldering (unroped climbing on 14 foot high walls). The structures in this area are basically designed for younger or beginning climbers, yet will provide advance/expert routes using our choice selection of nicros holds and different shaped volumes. This space also has a comfortable observation area where members can watch friends and family climb and participate in virtual reality adventures. Please stop by and see us sometime. If you don’t have climbing shoes, we can rent them to you. If you have your own shoes, please bring them! Sweaty folks should bring their own towel as well, however, we do have some you can use and throw into our dirty towel bin. Please see our FAQ for more information. We are on the corner of Kalakaua and Keawe in downtown Hilo, 1 block up from the Tsunami Museum.

We host private parties! Sometimes there are buyouts. We encourage our guests and members to check our calendar on this website before coming in to make sure we are not closed for a buyout condition.

We are open every day of the week – Monday – Friday we open at noon and close at 8pm. On Saturdays and Sundays we open at 10 and close at 6pm. Every Second Saturday we sponsor Keiki Day; Kids get free shoe rental until 2pm. Please see our calendar for more information on all hours of operation – and any special events! Member events happen all the time, just check the calendar in the gym and online to see what’s goin on.

Private Instruction and Group Clinics

Clinics are typically priced at $25 for members and $40 for non-members. Private Classes begin at $75/hour for private instruction for up to 3 people. Please inquire at the front desk if you are interested in a private class. They are held as instructors are available.

Clinics Clinics are held with a minimum of 3 participants who have signed up and paid. We will have a maximum in a clinic of 6 participants. Most clinic prices are $25 for members, $40 for non-members – shoes and liquid chalk will be included. Some clinics are taught by our Route Setters or guest instructors. Introduction to Climbing
Designed to provide newer climbers with the tools they need to have a successful day on the wall. This class will go over climbing basics such as how to use your climbing shoes effectively, how to avoid over-gripping, establishing efficient movement, and basic body positioning techniques.

     What You’ll Learn

  • How to build your skills
  • Getting to the top of a climb
  • Basic climbing knowledge while bouldering
  • How to make tweaks and important corrections to improve your climbing technique

Bouldering Skills (basic)

After completing our Bouldering Skills class, you will have the skills needed to begin a regular bouldering routine. You will learn how to properly fall onto a padded floor, warm up for and structure a proper bouldering session, and identify and practice skills. You will also learn about bouldering terminology and proper etiquette. We will help you overcome the social barriers to climbing and understand how climbers work together while bouldering.

Bouldering relies on padded flooring rather than ropes and harnesses for protection. Climbers generally only climb between 10 and 15 feet high. For that reason, no additional equipment other than the padded floor is needed. This class is ideal for climbers who are new to the sport and want to establish a dependable foundation of skills.

Age Requirement: 14 Years of Age and Over
Duration: 1.5 – 2 Hours
Includes: Shoes, liquid chalk and day pass

Intermediate Skills (V2-V3)

Why take a Skills Class?

Self motivation and team encouragement

Increased desire to excel and developed willpower

Efforts yield tangible rewards like improbed balance, flexibility and strength

Climbing teaches us to know our limits and expand them

Clear communication skills with climbing partners

Engaging with nature through a unique activity

Develops values such as solidarity, cooperation, respect and inclusiveness

Improved mental abilities including visualization, memorization and coordination

Promotes character formation and integration into a community of fellow climbers

Keiki Class – for climbers 4 – 10 

This class is intended to introduce new climbers AND their parents to the fast growing sport climbing discipline of Bouldering
– What is sport climbing and bouldering
– Falling practice
– Safe spotting technique for parent
– Traverse practice
– Climbing games
Parents required on mats with keiki under 5


General Party Pricing:

Parties for up to 15 people:

Weekday Party  1.5-2 hours                                 Weekend Party (incl. Friday night)

$250 climbing only                                                      $350

We can pull together a quote for you depending on your needs. You are always welcome to bring your food and drink into the gym – just can’t have food/drink while on the mats and walls. We will even take your trash!

Please email info@bigislandclimbing.com for a specific quote. Include the day and time of your event as well as how many people will be climbing. All parties require at least a 48 hour reservation plus a 50% deposit. 



Our members are encouraged to collect Adventure Bucks. Every time a member climbs, they receive one Buck. One side of that Buck is put into a jar kept in the gym and once a month a prize is drawn. That prize number is posted on social media and posted in the gym. If that ticket is not claimed within 10 days of the drawing, it is added to the drawing for the following month. The other side of the ticket is kept by the member. After collecting 100 tickets, they are good for discounts on products sold in the gym or additional memberships. Adventure Bucks can be collected by several means: Attending an event, posting on social media, buying products, or just climbing in the gym. Please ask a staff member for more information.

Our rental shoes are MadRock Badgers for adults and Mad Badgers for kids. We are dealers for La Sportiva, MadRock, Friction Labs, Porta-Hang, evolv and Liberty Mountain. We carry liquid chalk from Meltolius, Evolv, Porta-Hang and Friction Labs. We have shoes of various sizes and styles from MadRock and Sportiva. Let us know if we can help you with any special orders.

Looking for a holiday or birthday gift card for that special climber in your life? Stop in the gym and get one in any amount or call us at 808.491.2582 and we’ll do it for you over the phone. Ask for Donna.

Who We Are


Bradley Leighton, Founding Owner, Climbing Evangelical


Bradley Leighton is our founding owner, idea guy and sport climbing evangelist. He has been climbing since he could walk – always trying to reach the highest point he could see. First, in the 100ft fir trees surrounding his boyhood home in the Pacific Northwest and later taking to rock climbing big walls at nearby Leavenworth, WA and Squamish, BC. Now, at age 60, Bradley is still climbing and hopes to visit Yosemite on a regular basis to tick off some classic trade routes starting with the Nose on el Capitan. The crusty trad climber is now a enthusiastic proponant of sport climbing (indoor and out) for all ages. Bradley built Big Island Climbing to introduce the local community to sport climbing’s high fun factor and numerous health benefits. He is now actively seeking partners to join him in constructing a full size climbing facility with lead and top-rope climbing, boulding and speed wall. We would like to have a venue capable of hosting world class competitions and events.

Pa’ani VR (virtual reality) is also Bradley’s baby. He coded his first game in 1976 in MS Basic on a Radio Shack TRS-80 computer and has been an avid gamer and arcade aficionado for over 40 years. While working in the IT industry through its formative years (80’s – 90’s) in jobs ranging from data entry clerk to programmer/systems analyst; he gained the knowledge and technical expertise to help him in creating a high quality gaming experience for all ages. Bradley is the PaaniVR gamemaster and excels in finding just the right virtual reality experience for you to enjoy.

Bradley Leighton is also a professional entertainer, teacher, private pilot and master flutist. By combining his love of gaming, climbing, entertaining and teaching – along with his extensive technical knowledge – he promises to provide a fun, safe, family friendly space for all ages to enjoy. You can learn more about him at www.fluteguy.com

Donna Nichols is our Executive Manager, gopher, lead front desk person and head of retail. Donna doesn’t climb or play too much VR but she certainly loves the people that do and helps us provide a safe and fun environment. She is also a Notary and provides our community with secretarial services. Her background is in legal secretarial science and hails from Ohio. This space is Donna’s “early retirement” and a real departure from her life in a face paced corporate environment in pharmaceuticals and biotech. She still runs Pacific Coast Jazz, a record label she and Bradley founded in 2003.