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Logo. Feature : Climbing
One example for Feature : Climbing
Climbing and related features.

climbing=* , climbing:*=*, sport=climbing

A set of tags to describe climbing facilities, routes and crags.

Climbing sites

The general location of natural or man made climbing sites can be marked with sport=climbing. This can be applied to node nodes for artificial climbing walls or to way ways in conjunction with natural=cliff or area areas for climbing halls with building=yes. It can be also applied to boulders attached to bedrock natural=rock and free standing boulders natural=stone.

Basic tags

The most important, basic tags to describe a climbing site:

Tag = Value Description
sport=climbing Climbing is possible here.
name=* Name of the crag/climbing hall/boulder, if applicable.
Artificial climbing wall outdoors (Teufelsberg, Berlin)
Artificial climbing wall.
In combination with building=yes or similar it is indoors, otherwise outdoors, for example on a playground.

For tower-like structures, man_made=tower and tower:type=climbing can be added.

Climbing Routes

Climbing routes can be mapped with a single node marking the bottom of the route, tagged as climbing=route_bottom, or two nodes tagged with climbing=route_bottom and climbing=route_top connected by a way tagged as climbing=route.

Since climbing routes are generally quite vertical, the start and end nodes may be almost on top of each other. The rationale behind allowing two nodes and a connecting way, even though they may be extremely close on the map, is to allow a path connecting to the bottom of the route to be differentiated from a path connecting to the top. As such, if there is no top-access to the route, only a single node, marking the start, is probably preferable - see discussion.

If the climbing route is more or less horizontal or doesn't have a clear top/bottom it may be mapped only with a way or node climbing=route

Key Value Element Comment Example Icon
name * nodeway Name of the route  
climbing route_bottom node This is the bottom of a climbing route.  
climbing route_top node This is the top of a climbing route.  
climbing route way This is the route itself (but see the note above).  
  • yes
  • mixed (some bolts but not enough)
  • no (default)
  • <average bolt distance in meters>
nodeway Is the route bolted?  
climbing:length * nodeway The length of the route (in metres)  
climbing:pitches * nodeway How many pitches make up the route? (Defaults to 1)  


All of the routes within a crag can be grouped into a relation and must be tagged with climbing=crag.

To indicate what different climbing styles are part of the crag use the Climbing styles tag.

Key Value Element Comment Example Icon
climbing crag nodeway This is a crag.  
name * relation Name of the crag  

Climbing styles

Tags for multiple climbing styles can be combined and more tags can be invented as needed, the list of wikipedia:Climbing serves as first indication. If any of those tags is not stated explicitly, it defaults to 'no'.

Can be applied to single routes, boulders, crags or general climbing sites.

Tag Value Description
climbing:boulder=* yes / no / <Number of routes> Bouldering is possible.
climbing:sport=* yes / no / <Number of routes> Sport_climbing (relies on permanent, fixed anchors) is possible.
climbing:toprope=* yes / no / <Number of routes> Top rope climbing (approach at the route top and letting the rope down) is possible. Fixed or natural anchors may be placed at the top, but routes may not have protection for leading.
climbing:trad=* yes / no / <Number of routes> Traditional climbing (no fixed anchors, gear has to be placed by yourself) is possible. Cannot be expressed by climbing:bolted=no if a climbing site also offers sport climbing.
climbing:multipitch=* yes / no / <Number of routes> There are multi-pitch routes.
climbing:ice=* yes / no / <Number of routes> Icefalls or the like enable Ice climbing. In contrast to mixed climbing, no rock climbing is involved here.
climbing:mixed=* yes / no / <Number of routes> mixed climbing on partially iced rocks is possible.
climbing:deepwater=* yes / no / <Number of routes> Steep cliffs with deep enough water below permit Deep-Water-Soloing.


Can be applied to single routes, boulders, crags or general climbing sites.

When used for crags or regions, we have to specify a difficulty, aid or danger range from easiest to most difficult route. The main character of a climbing area is tagged using mean.

Numerous grading systems exist. Map the usual one(s) for the climbing spot, i.e. commonly used ones - grades in other systems can be derived by conversion. In this tagging scheme, you can use any system by deriving the key from the system's name or acronym similar to the following examples.

climbing:grade:UIAA=* grade according to the UIAA grading system, e.g. 1-, 1, 1+, 2-, 2 etc.
minimum/maximum/average grade according to the UIAA grading system, e.g. 1-, 1, 1+, 2-, 2 etc.
climbing:grade:french=* grade according to the french grading system, e.g. 4, 5a, 5b etc. Here, we do not distinguish between bouldering (FB) and climbing.
minimum/maximum/average grade according to the french grading system, e.g. 4, 5a, 5b etc. Here, we do not distinguish between bouldering (FB) and climbing.
climbing:grade:saxon=* grade according to the saxon grading system, e.g. VI, VIIa, VIIb etc, predominantly used in the Saxon Switzerland, Germany
minimum/maximum/average grade according to the saxon grading system, e.g. VI, VIIa, VIIb etc, predominantly used in the Saxon Switzerland, Germany
...aid... A0 to A5 for aid routes (DE: Technisches Klettern)
...hueco... V-scale used with bouldering in the United States.
...yds_class... Yosemite Decimal System class
... ...

Additional information

Most of this can be applied to single routes, boulders, crags or general climbing sites, for some details climbing routes have more options - see the section about climbing routes.

Tag Value Description
climbing:bolted=* yes / no / <average bolt distance in meters> Are there fixed anchors? If so, what is their average distance (by default in meter, other units overview)? Provides a first indication how well the routes are secured.



Average, minimum and maximum length of routes in meters (for other units refer to units overview).

May significantly differ from wall height for roofs or slanted walls. This values is important for deciding, which rope to take.

  • N
  • NE
  • E


Orientation of the rock/wall face. Helps to asses at what hour of the day it might be sunny and how long it takes a wall to get dry after rain. If the cliffs are also tagged, too, this information may be derived but tagging still gives a quicker overview and limits to the climbable parts fo cliffs.
  • fragile
  • medium
  • solid


Quality of the rock/ice.
  • limestone
  • sandstone
  • granite
  • basalt


For rock climbing this tag describes the kind of rock available. This information is irrelevant for e.g. ice climbing.
climbing:routes=* Positive integer number Amount of routes on this crag (if not tagged in the climbing styles).
climbing:summit_log=* yes The climbing feature has a route / summit log (summit register, de:Gipfelbuch). This tag is clearer in describing the purpose than summit:register=yes.
ele=* When used with the general climbing site average elevation (height above sea level) at the bottom of the routes in meters. This is not the length of a route or the elevation of the route's top end. When used on other nodes specific to the marked point.


yes / no Artificial climbing structures can have routes indoor, outdoor or both. Natural climbs may be placed inside caves. In the absence of this tag, outdoor should be assumed as default.
website=* URL Official website, e.g. operator
url=* URL Unofficial website with useful information like topos
  • Mo-Su 08:00-18:00
  • Sep-May


Artificial walls often have fixed opening hours. For rocks there might be restrictions due to breeding beards, etc.
fee=* yes / no / interval Artificial walls or climbing halls may charge an entrance fee, natural climbing sites may require a membership in a club (may be day based).


Tag approach paths using access=destination within nature reservoirs etc. where leaving of hiking paths is forbidden (result of a voting in the Tagging List [1]).

Pictogram Examples

Photo Examples

Renderer and applications

Like other specialised sports, these tags are not rendered in the standard OpenCarto style. Therefore, these engines visualise them:

The following renderer displays these tags

Related tags

Map Features

In use but not proposed


Proposed Features where we could share ideas and maybe re-use common tags:


The tags are in active use - see

pangoSE estimate that, as of September 2018, at least 14000 real world climbing sites exist (estimated from sport=climbing and leisure=climbing) and out of these 10-20% are mapped more detailed with the more detailed keys. climbing=*: