Bouldering / Buildering - Routes by Jan van der Meulen


Maasboulevard

The route starts where Kaspar is, and ends at the left-side of the picture.

Walk along the Maasboulevard untill you are opposite the "Adriaan Volker" house. Then walk to the quay behind the Shell gas-station. Then walk down to the quay untill your path is blocked by a water-tunnel.

Jan has marked this route by two tiny red arrows that he sprayed on the quay wall. I didn't see them, but my son discovered them. You climb on the joints between the stones of the quay-wall. First you climb 2m up the decayed seams between the bricks of the quay wall. Then you traverse 7m to the left, 5m above the water. My son is in the beginning of the route. The route continues up and then left.

I tried to climb up, and it was possible, but I wouldn't dare to cross the water without a belay. You could add some extra safety by tying a sling around the railing above your head. There are many other possible routes in this wall. You could even climb top-roped here. You can climb here without anyone noticing you.

Maasboulevard

There are several climbing routes on a transformer building near the "Havenziekenhuis". It is covered in blocks of a brown ceramic substance. They look like solidified lava. Jan said that it is a difficult climb (5+). I suppose that if you climb this route you will have to put on working gloves. The holes in the blocks have very sharp edges. But when I told this to Jan, his comment was: "Probably you can't climb it with your soft office-fingers."

Willemsbrug

Left side of the Willemsbrug

Right side of the Willemsbrug

Jan has discovered some nice crack climbing routes on both sides of the Willemsbrug. The first routes here were opened in 1984. The cracks are 4 cm wide, 4 cm deep, approximately 3,5 meters high. They are on the north side of the river (town-center side).

The east side of the bridge (side nearest the "Tropicana" swimming pool):

The west side of the bridge (side nearest the "Friday" restaurant).

The last two routes are still there, but during my visits (September-October 1998) they were buried behind a large heap of sand. A bum had made his home on top of this "dune". But in 2001 the heap of sand is gone and the routes are free again.

Boompjeskade A lot of good climbing can be done on the basalt quay-walls at the Boompjeskade. The first set of routes starts near the artwork "De Boeg" that commemorates the Dutch seamen who died in World War II.

First set of routes:

Youth Sentiment

Jeugdsentiment

The name "youth sentiment" was given because Jan used to play on this artwork in his youth. The lower stone part is shaped like a half-pipe ("U" shape). Both upper parts get narrower as they rise higher. The fun was to run back and forth in the "U" and to see who would dare to run higher.

These routes were opened on 14 May 1990. All these routes are still there (October 1998). As a historic detail I list all the names of the routes in this segment:

Jan van der Meulen gives the following instructions for climbing these routes:

Second set of routes:

Playground

Speelplaats

These routes were opened on 14 May 1990, together with Govert Couberg. I was not able to find the exact location of these routes yet. I could not discover the markings, but they still must be there.

Third set of routes:

Waterline

These routes were opened on 14 May 1990 by Jan and Ronald Motta. All these routes are still there and the red and blue markings are easy to see (October 1998).

Jan broke his arm and two vertebra when he near the artwork that is placed above the wall. He tried to make a spectacular jump towards the artwork in the last part of one of the routes. The routes themselves are not dangerous in any way. Just don't try to reach the artwork ... Jan van der Meulen writes the following about these routes:

Other buildering routes
Artworks:
  • Maasboulevard - De Boeg (on the stone: 3-, on the bronze: 5-)
  • Brick Artwork: Miro near the "Bouwcentrum" (3-4)
    Walter has climbed this brick artwork with his daughter, and he told me that it's quite difficult.
  • Steel plates above metro-station Gerdesiaweg (4+)
    Jan told me that you need the whole repertoire to climb this artwork: elbow-jams, fist-jams, finger-locks. For protection: big friends / camalots #2 and #4.
Walls and housefronts:
  • In Kralingen - Before the first climbing wall in Rotterdam was built Jan and his friend used to climb the housefronts of the old houses in Kralingen. "People would be watching television and we would come climbing in front of their window."
  • Wall: Of the church "De Steiger" (this is the back-wall, under the statue of Moses)
  • Wall: Grey slate - Van Ommeren Building (Parkkade), very difficult with small holds

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1998 Petr Kazil - 6 December 1998