Head Route Setter

Are you an experienced route setter and coach, able to critique routes to create awesome results, and enjoy being friends with your co-workers? Join us at Island Rock Gym, located on Bainbridge Island in the beautiful Puget Sound, just a half hour ferry ride from Seattle. With the Olympic mountains in our backyard and surrounded by the waters of the Salish Sea, we’re a group of nature-loving outdoor enthusiasts who have a lot of fun with our work, with our customers, and with each other. You can regularly find us paddling the Sound, climbing in Leavenworth, Index, Smith and Squamish, hiking the Olympics, summiting Cascade peaks, or having a beer at the brewery next door to the gym.

The Head Route Setter at Island Rock Gym is responsible for all facets of route management in the gym, including setting routes, managing a team of setters, adjusting route inventory to match customer need, forerunning routes, and fostering the development of setters through feedback and training. The Head Setter will work with IRG management to ensure the route setting program meets the goals and objectives of the gym; our expectation is to deliver fun, high quality routes to customers across all grades. This position requires leadership skills, passion for climbing (especially indoors), and the desire to enthusiastically support climbers of all levels and abilities. Our strong preference is for the Head Route Setter to also act as an Assistant Coach for our youth climbing teams, which may include opportunities to travel to Divisional and National Championships.

Island Rock Gym opened in September of 2013 and serves the communities of west Puget Sound. We are focused on growth and passionately welcome everyone to the sport of climbing.


  • Setting
    • Oversee and participate in setting fun and interesting routes and boulder problems each week
    • Maintain consistent grades and high quality bar for all routes in the gym by forerunning, providing feedback to route setters, and making any necessary adjustments to routes
    • Establish and maintain schedule to ensure timely turnover of routes
    • Maintain inventory of all routes in gym; collaborate with gym management to determine when route curve adjustments are required based on customer need
    • Ensure setting team knows and uses best industry practices for working at height; update safety practices as necessary
  • Facility
    • Manage annual setting budget/purchasing of climbing holds and setting equipmentRegularly inspect climbing hardware to ensure it meets safety standards
    • Organize hold storage room and setting gear to maximize efficiency
  • Staff Growth and Development
    • Manage route setting team including hiring, training, providing feedback to, and disciplining
    • Continuously seek opportunities to develop personal setting/leadership skills
    • Provide consistent, regular, proactive training to grow setting team’s skills and abilities
    • Provide feedback on routes and make necessary adjustments to maintain consistent quality product
  • Coaching
    • Coach youth climbing teams ages 8-18 to advance athletes’ skills and climbing abilities
    • Working knowledge of current fitness/training methods for advanced climbers
    • Provide positive motivation with patience



  • 3+ years route setting experience, 5+ years climbing experience
  • Experience in an established setting program with extensive knowledge of forerunning and route setter training methods
  • Strong communication skills to professionally interact with IRG management/head coach/setters/customers
  • Experience developing other setters by critiquing routes and providing collaborative feedback
  • Able to work 20+ hours/week in a physical capacity climbing/setting/forerunning
  • Able to climb 5.12+/v8
  • Willing to work outside normal business hours including early mornings/evenings/weekends
  • Prior leadership/management experience preferred
  • USAC Setting Level II cert preferred
  • USAC Local/Regional competition setting experience
  • Experience working with kids in an instructor capacity
  • Experience coaching at the Regional, Divisional and National championship level preferred



  • Compensation depends on experience
  • 30 hours/week (setting + coaching); additional hours may be available
  • Medical Insurance
  • Paid time off with option of additional unpaid time off
  • Paid training, professional development and internal growth opportunities
  • Industry discounts
  • Family membership benefits

 To apply, send a resume and cover letter to 

Part-Time Front Desk Staff (with opportunity to instruct)

Are you an experienced climber? Do you enjoy working with people and encouraging them to try new things in a supportive, positive way? Then Island Rock Gym, Bainbridge Island’s indoor rock climbing gym, is looking for you!

We are currently hiring for part-time front-desk work. The right fit will be a responsible, reliable and fun individual with climbing experience who is self-motivated to monitor both customer safety and general gym maintenance.

IRG is a sustainability-minded business, with a goal of fostering safe, responsible climbers in our community. Our other values include respect, tolerance and appreciation of a diverse climbing community. We are building a team of long-term employees who share and support these values and will help build a fun, friendly, welcoming and safe atmosphere for anyone who wants to enjoy indoor climbing.


  • Overseeing gym safety and monitoring rule enforcement.
  • Handling sales transactions including day use, memberships, retail and gear rental.
  • Monitoring visitor check-in.
  • Ensuring every climber who walks into IRG feels welcome, regardless of skill or experience, and has a positive, respectful experience.
  • Performing gym opening and/or closing procedures.
  • Must be physically able to belay other people at length and climb at a moderate level.


  • 18 years of age or older.
  • MUST be an experienced climber – able to pass belay/lead climbing/lead belay tests; climbing instruction preferred (introduction to climbing, belaying, lead climbing, etc.)
  • Must be friendly, professional, open and respectful.
  • Fun-loving person who likes to engage in conversation with people.
  • Desire to teach others.
  • Able to maintain a keen focus on safety first while still creating a fun environment.

To apply, send us an email describing yourself along with a resume to . No phone calls please.