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Thinking of moving abroad - English speaking countries with good climbing?


Original Post
Sam Cannon · · Salt Lake City, UT · Joined May 2012 · Points: 887

Hey all -

Getting pretty antsy to have an extended international experience. I'm an experienced bartender (cocktail/wine/beer etc) and have held numerous serving positions. I know that doesn't open a whole lot of financial possibilities for me, but was wondering if there was a country y'all would recommend I'd check out. Bonus points for specific cities.

I could learn Spanish as I have somewhat of a base.

I speak Polish, but don't really want to live there.

David Gibbs · · Ottawa, ON · Joined Aug 2010 · Points: 6

Canada.

Squamish, BC or environs. (Maybe Whistler?)

Banff, Alberta.

May not feel as "international" as you'd like, though.

Australia. -- dunno city, but great climbing in the Grampians, the Arapiles, and probably others.

patto · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2012 · Points: 25

Australia has the world's highest minimum wage.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_…

And decent climbing. Melbourne is a great city with Grampians and Arapiles good for weekend trips year round. Sydney has the Blue Mountains within a quick drive/train.

Climb Germany · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Mar 2015 · Points: 2,525

Major English speaking countires: US, Canada, Belize, UK, Ireland, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand.

Minor/smaller: Malta, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands (US/UK), much of Caribbean,

Plus if you're willing to go with "sorta English" you can hit up commonwealth former colonies like India, Kenya, etc where most people speak some English and the government is officially in English. Or where the official language is NOT English but everyone will speak it better than you: Scandinavia!

I think you gotta provide some more criteria before you can start w/t he climbing options as they all have them to different degrees.

baldclimber · · Ottawa, Ontario, Canada · Joined Jul 2015 · Points: 0
David Gibbs wrote:Canada. Squamish, BC or environs. (Maybe Whistler?) Banff, Alberta. May not feel as "international" as you'd like, though. Australia. -- dunno city, but great climbing in the Grampians, the Arapiles, and probably others.
Whistler, Banff, and Australia should feel similarly international as they all have lots of Australians. Though it's arguable whether Aussies speak English.
JCM · · Seattle, WA · Joined Jun 2008 · Points: 95

I suspect the bigger challenge will be getting a visa if you want to work (legally) at your destination. This is definitely worth looking in to, and may determine where you end up going. How long of a stay are you thinking?

Or, if you can save up a bit before the trip, it may be reasonable to get by for a year in SE Asia without working, if you keep your expenses down. Not an english (as a first langauge at least) speaking area, but that is less important if you are just traveling and not working.

Another option is teaching English. I have friends who have done this in Mallorca and in Yangshuo, and both have climbed an insane amount during thier stay. Depending on the program, local language knowledge may not be required, if all of your teaching takes place in English.

llanSan · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2014 · Points: 130
Fogal wrote:BUMP for AUSTRALIA. Best choice.
Living in Australia is very Expensive.

I would recommend a country from South Amercia (Peru, Colombia, Argentina).

English will give opportunities Here. and life is cheap in towns or small cities.
Tony B · · Around Boulder, CO · Joined Jan 2001 · Points: 23,265
SwabianAmi wrote:Major English speaking countires: US, Canada, Belize, UK, Ireland, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand. Minor/smaller: Malta, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands (US/UK), much of Caribbean, Plus if you're willing to go with "sorta English" you can hit up commonwealth former colonies like India, Kenya, etc where most people speak some English and the government is officially in English. Or where the official language is NOT English but everyone will speak it better than you: Scandinavia! I think you gotta provide some more criteria before you can start w/t he climbing options as they all have them to different degrees.
Well, whatever you do, don't move to the UK for the climbing unless maybe Scotland, but that is still pretty grim unless you like heavy weather cragging.
David Coley · · UK · Joined Oct 2013 · Points: 70
Tony B wrote: Well, whatever you do, don't move to the UK for the climbing unless maybe Scotland, but that is still pretty grim unless you like heavy weather cragging.
I'm going to have to disagree with that one.
1. London has loads of jobs that need people and a great number of climbers
2. Although the climbs are short, the massive variety of locations and rock times is an eye opener
3. The weather is not great, but if you live in the country it is very different than visiting because you simply chose to climb when the weather is good. If you have a flexible job, even better.
4. Flights to Europe are cheap (as in $60) and quick (as in 1-2 hours) so it is always possible to pop off for a week of sun and bolts.

However, if you don't like trad, forget it.
Alex Rogers · · Sydney, Australia · Joined Sep 2010 · Points: 40

David, I'll take your advice on how to improve my trad climbing skills any day - but disagree with your proposition that England is a good destination for climbers. The reason you guys breed such good / bold climbers is that the only good rock is ridiculously difficult to climb, and generally only 6m high on average. Not to mention girdle traverses of sea cliffs... :P

Sam - Australia is probably the English first-language destination of choice for rock climbers and NZ for mountaineers. But our quota of Americans is now full, thanks for asking. We are building a big wall and will make you pay for it.

:P

MClay · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Mar 2015 · Points: 710

Cape Town, specifically. Southern Africa, generally. Wages are lower, but so is cost of living. Great variety of climbing already developed, with tons of unexplored rock yet to be climbed.

Sam Cannon · · Salt Lake City, UT · Joined May 2012 · Points: 887

Alex - If I volunteer on building the wall to help keep us wanker yankers out can I at least climb in the morning or on off days?

David Coley · · UK · Joined Oct 2013 · Points: 70
Alex Rogers wrote:David, I'll take your advice on how to improve my trad climbing skills any day - but disagree with your proposition that England is a good destination for climbers.
Hi, I won't give up that easily! :)

Just had a great weekend on the Grit in the sun.

Here goes.
The USA is I believe the best country for trad in the world. So there is little point leaving unless you want to experience something different. The assumption that I'm making is that that thing is a climbing thing, rather than cultural, so the climbing has to be different. The USA has lots of long routes, lots of desert etc. so I can't see the big climbing attraction of going to Australia if you already live in the USA. With the UK, a USA climber will experience something they have never had before - climbing on islands in Scotland, or Lundy, sea cliffs, the Grit, 4 rock types in a few miles...... Another important factor is that unemployment is low and jobs easy to get, also clubs and other mechanisms mean that is really easy to pick up partners, and hence if you live in a city, you won't need to buy a car.

Another attraction is that the UK is a good base for hopping into Europe. So the weekend before last, I hopped on a plane, did a 25 pitch bolted granite route in the Pyrenees and was back at work on Monday.

I won't recommend the UK to an American for a holiday, the weather is too unreliable, but for a long visit this changes as the weather is good enough in summer to allow for plenty of trips especially if you can get a flexible job.

Another good option would be for the OP to learn French and the unemployment rate is lower than in Spain.
Alex Rogers · · Sydney, Australia · Joined Sep 2010 · Points: 40

Sam - as long as you are not a Trump supporter (we have enough rednecks here already) you are welcome, mate :-)

Don't listen to David Coley about the UK, you have to be born there to really appreciate the sheer unadulterated misery that is English rock climbing. If you go north to Scotland you can expect a suicidal level of self-loathing to all the climbers you'll meet, which is why they climb so hard. But he has a point about the proximity to Europe - I'd seriously consider moving to Chamonix and getting a French girlfriend instead. (Or any number of Spanish destinations as you already have a start on the language). There is nothing like living in a truly foreign country and gradually getting to know them along with their own language, culture, customs etc for broadening your mind.

(Coming to Australia may broaden your vowels, not necessarily your mind)

BigRed11 · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2013 · Points: 713

Come to Kenya! Great weather all year, tons of rock, much of it unclimbed, and almost exclusively full-value adventure climbing!

Phil Lauffen · · The Bubble · Joined Jun 2008 · Points: 2,215

Spain. Teach Engrish.

Best climbing in the world near Barcelona.

David Coley · · UK · Joined Oct 2013 · Points: 70
Phil Lauffen wrote:Spain. Teach Engrish. Best climbing in the world near Barcelona.
Really?
stephen arsenault · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2011 · Points: 50

Your number 1 priority is to check work/visa regulations on any possible destinations.
My daughter's boyfriend, (from Australia), had to leave the US every 3 months.
I'm sure every country has different requirements, but this needs to be looked into before deciding.

Sam Cannon · · Salt Lake City, UT · Joined May 2012 · Points: 887

Thanks everyone for your input! Lots to think about.

Phil Lauffen · · The Bubble · Joined Jun 2008 · Points: 2,215
David Coley wrote: Really?
Rodellar

Margalef

Siurana

Riglos

Yes.
Sam Cannon · · Salt Lake City, UT · Joined May 2012 · Points: 887

Damn, that last photo. But what if I'm not into sport? I know very little about the Barcelona scene; is there any trad?

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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