UpaDowna Expo at CityROCK

November 22nd, 2010

Josh Beaudoin of Slackline Visions

Lots of people had fun at CityROCK at the UpaDowna Demo and Expo organized by UpaDowna. The event benefited the Friends of Cheyenne Cañon.

I saw quite a few people trying out the Evolv rock climbing shoes. The slackline was also very popular. Josh Beaudoin of Slackline Visions was impressive on it. I was far from impressive on it and never made it more than a few steps.

I had a good chat with the guys from Mile High Mountaineering. They’re coming out with some cool packs in the spring with some innovate features including a built in raincover and stuff sack. There’s a zipper that opens the pack like a duffel in addition to the top opening.

The Synergy Manual Physical Therapy table stayed busy the whole time I was there. I’ve heard good things about them so I chatted with Kelly and Kevin. In addition to traditional physical therapy, they do trigger point dry needling. I thought they did acupuncture but dry needling works differently and causes muscles to spasm and then relax.

Kelly did it on my calf, which I guess is about the most uncomfortable muscle to have it done on. It was quite painful for just a second as she triggered different spots. Afterward my calf got quite stiff and sore. Now it feels back to normal. I can’t say it feels much better but I have a 15 year old injury in that leg that causes me pain most of the time. I would expect it to take some work to improve it.

Below are some photos from the event.

Free Demo Day And Expo At City Rock Tomorrow

November 19th, 2010
City Rock Climbing Gym


The great guys over at UpaDowna are putting on a cool event at the downtown Colorado Springs CityROCK tomorrow from noon until 5. Evolv will be there demoing the rock climbing shoes. There will also be several other outdoor relating companies and organizations there including Friends of Cheyenne Cañon, Pikes Peak Sports, Synergy Manual Physical Therapy, Pikes Peak Leave No Trace, Climb-Axe, Mile High Mountaineering and Alstrin Films.

The Demo and expo are free and it sounds like they’ll be great specials if you want to spend a while climbing. Bristol Brewing is providing free beer although I’d suggest you don’t do too much drinking until you’re finished climbing.

Go on over to UpdaDowna for all the details. I hope to see you there tomorrow.

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Falcon Guides Rock Climbing Smith Rock State Park
Falcon Guides Rock Climbing Smith Rock State Park
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Evolv Geshido SC Climbing Shoe
Evolv Geshido SC Climbing Shoe
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Everest Climber to be At City Rock This Afternoon

November 1st, 2010

Eric Alexander

Everest climber, Eric Alexander, will be at City Rock today from 1 – 3. He will give a brief presentation of some of his adventures and the debut of his new book, The Summit. Immediately following the discussion, you will have the opportunity to experience an indoor climb with Eric and students from the Colorado School for the Deaf and Blind. You can find more about the event here.

Eric has interesting story with mountaineering. He survived a 150′ fall in the Himalayas on Mt. Amadablam in 2000 and then developed pulmonary edema and had to be air lifted out. The next 8 months he struggled with pneumonia and couldn’t train for Everest. Still on May 25th, 2001, Eric defied the odds and scaled Mt. Everest guiding his blind friend Erik Weihenmayer to its lofty 29,035′ summit.

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Strong and Sexy

August 10th, 2010


Is climbing sexy?  Local climber and author Stewart Green asks that question recently on his site, climbing.about.com 

Green points to a survey by Quirkology and fitness expert Sam Murphy, which found that 57 percent of women found climbers to be the most attractive, sexy sportsmen.  The same survey found that only 41 percent of men found women climbers sexy. 

Those men must not have watched “America’s Got Talent” recently.  I know it’s not the go-to TV show for outdoor sports fanatics, but this season includes something surprising…and sexy – a climbing act called AscenDance.

Californian Isabel Von Rittberg and her partner, Ryan Gaunt, met while climbing in the eastern Sierras.  They have created this strange, almost hypnotic show on a climbing wall, moving from hold to hold in slow motion to moody music.  Is it art?  Is it an act that could be glitzed up for the Vegas Strip (the grant prize for this competition)?  

 I’m not sure, but it is a stunning display of athleticism and strength. Check out an AscenDance performance at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0LD46_YMgf4

- Deb Acord

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Petzl Macchu Kids Rock Climbing Harness
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Goodbye, Pinnacle

June 11th, 2010

REI Rock Climbing Pinacle

Several years ago, it was unusual for my family to go shopping at REI without all of us coming home with something new.  But the small climbing wall at the REI store at 1376 E. Woodmen Road called the Pinnacle changed all that. 

Our daughter loved that wall, which was her introduction to rock climbing and she would choose to wait in line for a turn at the wall over any purchase. 

Since then, the Pinnacle has served as a safe, free intro to climbing to hundreds, perhaps thousands, of young (and not so young) climbers.  Now, it’s being torn down as REI remodels. 

Say goodbye to the Pinnacle with a final climb from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.  For more information, call REI at 719-260-1455.

- Deb Acord

Free Indoor Climbing This Weekend

March 11th, 2010
City Rock Climbing Gym

City Rock is having their Grand Opening this weekend and climbing will be free Saturday and Sunday from 10 AM to 6 PM. They will provide a harness and will have people available to belay if you aren’t with someone who knows how to belay. If you don’t know what belaying is, don’t worry but it involves keeping you safe. You can climb in your sneakers but if you want to try out the rock climbing shoes, rental is $5.

The main wall at City Rock has been open for a couple months already but until recently the bouldering wall wasn’t finished. I saw it when they first opened but haven’t seen it since everything has been finished.

In addition to free climbing, they have membership specials this weekend. The initiation fee for monthly memberships will be waived and there’s also special pricing on annual memberships. See their rate page for more details.

With free climbing, it could be busy so you may need to be patient especially if you don’t have someone to belay. City Rock is at 21 N. Nevada, which is right across from the downtown city bus station.

More Goodies

Mountain Chalet will be giving away coupons for 20% off any one item which must be used this weekend. They will have other giveaways and put anyone who joins their mailing list in a raffle for gift cards ($100, $75, and $50).

ClimbAxe will be present and will give T-shirts away to the first few folks that sign up for memberships that weekend.

Friends of Red Rock Canyon and Friends of Garden of the Gods will be registering climbers for free outdoor climbing permits.

For a minimum of a $5 donation, you can “Buy a Piece of the (City)Rock” and go behind our wall to sign your name by a t-nut. Donations will go to local climbing-related non-profits.

- UltraRob

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City Rock Climbing Gym Opening in Downtown Colorado Springs

December 24th, 2009
City Rock Climbing Gym

Update 3/12/10: Free climbing at City Rock this weekend (March 13th and 14th) for their Grand Opening.

I got into rock climbing when I was in college. I was one of the first couple dozen climbers to sign up before the Sport Climbing Center was officially opened. I quit climbing because it was taking away time from training on the bike. I also bulk up easily and the extra weight was hurting my mountain bike racing.

I may not be climbing any more but I’ve been following the progress of a new rock climbing gym in downtown Colorado Springs, City Rock. I got a sneak peak of it a couple weeks ago.

It will be opening this Saturday, December 26th, and will be open from 10 AM to 8 PM. The bouldering wall isn’t built and not all of the main wall is completed. Their goal is to have everything completed by the beginning of February.

They are having membership specials just on Saturday. See their website for the specials. The membership also includes their Monument location.

The City Rock membership costs more than the Sport Climbing Center. City Rock does have a much higher wall that is 45 feet high and they’ll also have a crack climb. I don’t know if Sport Climbing Center has added one.

In addition to the climbing, there is also a CrossFit center (SoCo CrossFit has moved to a different location) with coaching and group workouts. It is a separate membership but they’ll have a discount for those that want to do both. Group workouts are free through the end of the year. See their website for schedule. LifeQuest Transitions is also in the building.

Yesterday I chatted with the owners, Lara and Joe. They were very friendly and showed me around. Lara said they want to have a cafe area something like Kinfolks at the front where people can hang out and meet for outdoor adventures.

You can see more City Rock Climbing Gym photos on SmugMug.

- UltraRob

Rogue Rock Climbing Shoes
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La Sportiva TC Pro Rock Climbing Shoes
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Bee Careful

September 18th, 2009

I was just talking with a friend of mine last night about a terrifying mountain bike ride she did recently outside Steamboat Springs. She was riding a rough trail when she was attacked by angry bees. As she tried to brush them off and escape their rage, she hit a hard bump, was knocked head-first off her bike, and fell down a six-foot drop-off, landing in, of course, prickly weeds.

She’s OK, but she said she later heard that bees had attacked others on area trails, and that they are known to be especially angry this time of year. We wondered together if that happens in other places and on other trails.

Then I saw local climber/author Stewart Green’s blog on his climbing page at about.com and his post about bees attacking an Arizona climber last week on Camelback Mountain in Phoenix. According to Green, the climber disturbed a hive of Africanized honeybees. He tried to get away but was stranded on a cliff, and by the time he was rescued, he had been stung more than 120 times.

Green says this wasn’t the first time climbers and scramblers were attacked on that same mountain, including a 2004 attack when a climber tried to flee from the bees, fell, and was killed.

The Steamboat bees weren’t the deadly Africanized strain, but it’s still frightening to think about a bee attack on a trail. My friend and I wondered if there was anything she could have done to deter the bees.

The USDA posts some tips on its site. Most are common-sense stuff, and don’t offer any new advice for mountain bikers : “be careful when using machinery that produces sound vibrations or loud noises.”(?)

The only tips that could apply to mountain biking or hiking:

  • Wear light-colored clothing.
  • Avoid wearing scents. Don’t even chew gum (which is scented).

- Deb Acord

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