In our Learning To Lead class, you will learn proper lead belay technique as well as best practices for clipping, rope management, and falling.

Upon successful completion of this class, you will be prepared with the knowledge and skills needed to earn your Lead Belay tag and gain access to open lead climbing at First Ascent.

Classes meet for two three-hour sessions on either weekdays or weekends. See the schedule below for the next available class options.


Must earn Top Rope Belay Tag prior to the start of the class. Must be at least 16 years old or a USA Climbing Member Competitor. Recommended that climbers have at least 6 months of climbing experience and are confident 5.10 climbers (i.e. consistently able to climb mid-5.10 on top rope with no falls or rests). If you’re not sure if you’re ready, please speak with a member of our staff or email us at


  • Non-members: $140 (includes rental gear)
  • Members: $110

Ready to lead? Let's do this.

In Chicago, Learning To Lead classes are only available at First Ascent AvondaleClick below to view the schedule of all Classes For Experienced Climbers at FA Avondale.

Please book 24 hours in advance to guarantee your spot – Learning To Lead classes fill up quickly, so book as soon as possible. Make sure to arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled class time to check in. Late arrival may result in the need to reschedule your class. Cancellations within 24 hours are not eligible for refund, only rescheduling.

Questions? Give us a call at 773-564-9815 or email us at


We look forward to climbing with you!