Rock Climbing on Cayman Brac

Cayman Brac Beach

Equal parts sun, adventure, and climbing, Cayman Brac is the place to be if you are looking for a secluded winter climbing destination.  John Byrnes has a great website, http://www.climbcaymanbrac.com/  that serves as a guide to the island. This post is more to offer helpful suggestions accompanied with my amateur photography.

Getting there: Getting to Cayman Brac can involve a decent amount of travelling.  Unless you live in Miami, you will be looking at three connecting flights, culminating in a fun jaunt from Grand Cayman to Cayman Brac in a little prop plane.

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I took a five day trip to Cayman Brac, but in reality two of those days were eaten by travel time.  Try and set aside a solid week+ of vacation time to make it worth your while.  If you are looking for a quick weekend getaway, Cayman Brac might not be the best option.

The Bluff View Cayman Brac

The Bluff View

Where to stay:  John Byrnes not only offers the climbing guide, but you can rent a floor of his house, the Bluff View.  It has one bedroom, a futon, and I believe an air mattress (we only had three people and didn’t need it).  I’ve got to say the futon is likely the most comfortable futon I’ve ever seen.  There’s a kitchen with standard appliances and basic supplies, even a window AC unit for those looking to chill out.  John also keeps a painters pole (for a stick clip) and rappel ropes in his shed for you to borrow.

The Tipsy Turtle at the Brac Reef Beach Resort.  Notice old people in the background.

The Tipsy Turtle at the Brac Reef Beach Resort. Notice old people in the background.

If you are travelling with people who need to stay at a hotel, the Brac Reef Beach Resort seemed nice (only ate there) but it is filled with elderly scuba divers.

Silver Fox atop the bluff

Silver Fox atop the bluff

Transportation: You need a car.  It’s a small island, but a car is necessary to be able to get to the climbing areas.  Mylene at 4D’s gave us this stallion for $30/day cash.  She drove us to the grocery, liquor store, and then the Bluff View.  Exceptionally nice lady

Climbing:  From climbing over raging seas to running into territorial owls guarding rest jugs, there was never a dull moment climbing on the Brac.  John goes into everything in depth in his guide, but I would like to make a few notes.

What's the Point 5.9

What’s the Point 5.9

1.  Climbing at the point is a unique climbing experience in a once in a lifetime sort of way.  You get to rap in and then fight your way out as the blue sea rages below.  We even saw a turtle or two swim by.  The one thing John doesn’t mention that I think would be very useful  are walkie talkies.

Climbing at the point cayman brac

This was taken at bolt 3 out of 13 and I could already barely hear my belayer.

Often you won’t be able to see or hear your belayer which can be tricky even if you have signals. Walkie talkies would be a game changer in my opinion.

2.  Wear lots of sun tan lotion and a hat.  Seriously, it is incredibly easy to get burned even when it’s cloudy.

Dixon's wall

Just above the tufa band on Dixon’s Wall

3.  Dixon’s wall is seriously world class.  It reminds me of Ten Sleep Canyon but with a crazy overhanging band of tufas  that wouldn’t be out of place in Bayamon, Puerto Rico.  There was also plenty of shade covering the whole wall, and Berg is the nicest guy out there.

Other Adventure Activities on the Brac:

Cayman Brac CaveCaves: There are plenty of caves right on the side of the road with convenient signs pointing them out.

Half way cave cayman brac

Orange Cave

Orange Cave

If you plan to take a hike to investigate the caves along the south east beach (orange cave etc.), wear hiking boots and bring climbing shoes.

cayman brac cave climbing

 In order to reach many of the caves you will have to do a short free-solo up the cliff face.

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Hiking boots will make the sharp, loose rock terrain much more manageable.

Cayman Brac coralSnorkeling:  You can rent snorkeling gear from the Brac Reef Beach Resort for $10 a day (they also rent kayaks but we didn’t try them).  We didn’t have enough time to do much snorkeling, but the public beach on the south road had some interesting underwater activity.

DSC_0050Exploring:  I thought one of the best parts of Cayman Brac was just driving around the island, walking around, and exploring the environment.  You can’t really go wrong, but I especially enjoyed the end of the north road.

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I hope my thoughts inspire and help you to plan your next trip to the Brac.  If you have any questions, ask away in the comments below.

Beach in Front of Bluff View

Beach in Front of Bluff View

Sneaking in a few pre-sunrise climbs before our departure.

 -Biersons

Extra Pictures

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5 thoughts on “Rock Climbing on Cayman Brac

  1. Pingback: Cayman Brac Trip Photos | Bierson's Beta

  2. So glad I found this post. This definitely helps the information that John has already so generously provided!

    Question for you however – we’re plan on heading down in July for a family vacation and trying to take 3-4 days before meeting up with family on Grand Cayman to climb. Would you suggest that? One day at a new wall – or even two walls in a day if we can?

    Thanks man! Keep up the great posts!

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