Best Urban Rock Climbing - 2010
For most of us city slickers, the highest thing we might dare to climb is the stairs of a five-story walk-up . . . and even then, that's pushing it. But after a lesson with the expert instructors of Brooklyn Boulders, the largest rock-climbing gym in the city, you'll quickly be on your way to scaling the Brooklyn Bridge like Spider-Man (OK, OK, their 30-foot replica of a Brooklyn Bridge tower—but still, that's no easy feat). Founded last year by three college buddies, Jeremy Balboni, Lance Pinn, and Stephen Spaeth, the 18,000-square-foot space, located in the former Daily News garage in Gowanus, keeps it gritty with graffiti-style murals on the walls and a mix of rap and indie rock pumping from the speakers. For beginners, the best deal is the "Learn the Ropes" package for $60, which includes a belay lesson, a one-day gear kit, and an extra one-day pass to come back (or, an even better deal, for an extra $40 you can get a 30-day pass). Advanced climbers will love the 40-degree slants, the 16-foot hanging stalactite, and the gravity-defying routes that change about every two months, so you never get bored.