Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Belay On!

I can't say that I've ever had a desire to rock climb before. None at all. Although I do enjoy being outdoors, I would not consider myself the outdoorsy type, and strapping on a bunch of gear to go crawl up some rocks has never sounded the least bit exciting.

But when a few girl friends suggested we give it a try last weekend, I found myself answering "Yeah, why not!" Our instructor was a boy who'd played on the alumni softball team, and he offered to teach us for absolutely free. I would try almost anything for free!


I'll admit that I may or may not have complained a bit when he made us tie knots for what felt like an hour. I was ready to climb already!

Instead I offered to belay first and make sure my friend had enough rope . . but not too much . . and ensure that she wouldn't fall to the ground if she lost her grip.


She made it look pretty easy, so I didn't hesitate in taking my first several steps when my turn came around. And then I looked down. Scary! And my arms were getting tired more quickly than I had anticipated. This rock climbing business wasn't for wimps!


The scariest part was trusting that I'd be caught once it was time to come down. "Take!" I yelled and waited for the rope to feel secure. It took a few moments of coaxing before I finally sat back and began to be lowered.


I was sweating a bit and relieved to be on the ground again, but I quickly regained my courage and couldn't wait to try the higher wall. This wall had a curve though, and at one point, I was hanging from the wall a bit, rather than parallel. {I freaked a bit when I realized that my instructor was taking a photo from above while my life lie in the hands of my novice friends below!}

the hard part

But I made it to the top and rang the bell! I was quite proud of myself and agreed that we should go again sometime. I might even be willing to pay for it.

Radley rock climbing

Have any of you ever tried it? Or have any desire if you haven't?


s said...

i loveeee this post. i was a climbing instructor in college, our college gym at a wall. i think it's so much fun and have been dying to go lately.

boodut said...

I've always thought it looked kinda fun. but i tend to be a bit of a chicken...

Katie said...

That looks like so much fun! My boyfriend is a big climber and is always trying to get me to go with him. I'll have to try it soon!

Anonymous said...

i've gone a few times and really liked it! we have a rock gym at school that i am hopping to take advantage of more this year. good for you for trying it out!

my life is brilliant said...

How fun! There was a rock climbing facility not even a mile from my apartment in Dallas. I had planned on going sometime, and I wanted to wait until K was back. We never made it before I moved.

It's definitely on my to-do list someday, though. It looks & sounds like so much fun! (Yes, it also looks & sounds a little scary. I'd have definitely freaked out too if I saw my instructor taking pictures from above rather than being on the ground to help if anything went wrong!)