International Society of Arboriculture Hosts North American Tree Climbing Competition

The International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) will host the 2019 North American Tree Climbing Championship (NATCC) October 11 — 13, 2019 at Balboa Park in San Diego, Calif.

NATCC provides an opportunity for the best professional climbing arborists, men and women, from across the continent to compete and showcase new tree climbing techniques and equipment. This is a unique opportunity to see a sporting event like no other.“It is the only competition in the world where you will find fellow competitors coaching and cheering on their competition,” said John Gauthier, the event head judge. As head judge, Gauthier is responsible for making final decisions on any rule discrepancies during the event.

The competition is free and open to the general public. Throughout the event, professional arborists will compete in a series of challenges showcasing skill, technique and athleticism while emphasizing the importance of safety and proper tree care. “It is important to our industry to highlight the latest techniques and safety in today’s arboriculture practices and tree care,” Gauthier said.

Additionally, there will be an Arbor Fair and a host of vendor booths for the public to enjoy. Arbor Fair is an educational and fun event for the public that focuses on environmental issues and promoting proper tree care. Attendees can stop by the “Ask an Arborist” booth for expert advice, find info about the latest equipment from participating sponsors, sample local food truck fare, watch the “What Trees Give Us”
show attend informational exhibits and more. Children can participate in the Kids’ Fun Climb with simulated limb walking exercises and tree climbing activities. The tree climbing championship is guaranteed to entertain everyone.

“This great event educates the public on what arborists do and how we do it — it’s a very dangerous profession, but the work can be done safely,” said Philip Ruiz, the NATCC chairperson.

For more information about NATCC or Arbor Fair, please visit


The International Society of Arboriculture (ISA), headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, is a nonprofit organization supporting tree care research and education around the world. To promote the importance of arboriculture, ISA manages the consumer education web site,, which fulfills the association’s mission to help educate the public about the importance and value of proper tree care.

Also, as part of ISA’s dedication to the care and preservation of shade and ornamental trees, it offers the only internationally-recognized certification program
in the industry.