As much as we love bouldering, the art of rock climbing while staying relatively low to the ground, sometimes we need to get high. But without a partner and rope for a belay, climbing high on technically difficult terrain isn't a rational option, unless you're Alex Honnold. Or, that is, unless you have access to an auto-belayer. If so, while the rope is still mandatory, the partner isn't. Focus is the better of two gyms that we're aware of that employ auto-belayers. We like the vibe there from both the laid-back, though professional, employees, and the clientele of mostly young, ripped, personable bouldering aficionados. Opposite the top-notch bouldering walls, the climbing walls are served by six auto-belayers, which are box-like machines affixed near the ceiling. A climbing rope dangles from the center of the boxes to near the floor. Climbers clip into the end of that rope and begin scaling the wall. In a fall, the auto-belayer doesn't let the climber plunge to the ground. Instead, it pays out the rope slowly and places the climber on the floor gently. This system allows us to climb the wall's 30 feet again and again, racking up hundreds of vertical feet in minutes with no belayer, and no fear of crashing to the ground. It's even safer than bouldering higher than five or six feet, since a fall even on padded ground could result in a sprain or break, while the auto-belayer acts as a guardian angel, always depositing climbers on the ground at the same, slow speed. What it won't do is talk to you. While they won't help your social life, the auto-belayers at Focus will get you ready for the next big wall.