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How'd did you get in to rock climbing?
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Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
How did you get started in rock climbing? on 04/21/2013 23:58:25 MDT Print View

My experience with rock climbing is minimal. The few times I did was heavily supervised. I've always had above average leg strength but I've never been known to knock out 35 pull ups... or far fewer.

I have some rope experience with rappelling as I rappelled out of helicopters in the Army and was a certified "Rappel Master" where I could rig up a helicopter and kick people out of it. The bottom line, I can go down but going up is a problem for me from a knowledge/skill set point of view. I'm certainly in no position to instruct someone else on how to rock climb.

My son is nine years old and loves climbing. He climbed a 5.4 section of the Seattle REI tower today without breaking a sweat and is begging for more. He may not be ready for the 5.11 section yet but I'm confident that he has the determination to get there in time. In the short term, I'm going to take him to some of the local gyms which have climbing walls and I'd like to learn along with him.

My question in a nutshell, how did you become a rock climber? Was this something you did with friends, scouts or part of an alpine club? What would you suggest for a middle aged man and his 9 y/o son? I'm thinking about this from a short and long term perspective.

Thanks in advance.

v/r

Ian

Edit for typo

Edited by IDBLOOM on 04/22/2013 00:44:57 MDT.

Sharon J.
(squark) - F

Locale: SF Bay area
groupon on 04/22/2013 11:25:11 MDT Print View

Wouldn't call myself a climber, but am trying out climbing, thanks to a groupon offer. Got a month's membership plus intro class and rental equipment for $75. So definitely worth checking the various deals sites.

edit: re-read your post and realized that wasn't exactly what you were asking for. Anyways, I think in the short term it wouldn't be bad to just go to the gym and start trying things out. We're three weeks in and have done a couple of 5.10b routes. Gotten some helpful hints from other patrons. Haven't taken one yet, but they offer clinics periodically, and there's a bulletin board for people looking to climb together.

Hope that's a little more helpful.

Edited by squark on 04/22/2013 11:31:41 MDT.

Link .
(annapurna) - MLife
Re: How did you get started in rock climbing? on 04/22/2013 11:44:23 MDT Print View

Ian,Do you live in Seattle ? You might try one of the several climber gyms, like this one.They have both youth and adult instruction,also the Mountaineers club here has courses and a climbing wall at their program center,at the top of the main page look under learn and click on course and seminar overview.

Edited by annapurna on 04/22/2013 12:32:25 MDT.

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Thanks on 04/22/2013 12:13:53 MDT Print View

We live on the other side of the mountains but it isn't that big of a deal to drive to Seattle for the occasional outing or event. Thanks for the leads and the input.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: How did you get started in rock climbing? on 04/22/2013 18:02:57 MDT Print View

"What would you suggest for a middle aged man and his 9 y/o son? I'm thinking about this from a short and long term perspective."

If you're in the Seattle area, the Seattle Mountaineers offer an excellent introductory climbing course with a heavy emphasis on safety. There is an enormous reservoir of climbing experience in the membership/instructors that will serve you, and especially your son, well down thru the years. If you live in the Spokane area there is a branch there as well. Also in Tacoma.

http://www.spokanemountaineers.org/

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: How did you get started in rock climbing? on 04/22/2013 20:07:12 MDT Print View

Thanks Tom!

I'm in the Tri Cities so two hours to Spokane or three to Seattle. I'll check them out as well.

The Stone Gardens in Seattle looks really promising. I checked out their website earlier and we are looking at a couple of their camps for our son.