DoNorth

All-Year Climbing at the Crux

 The scent of sweaty gym socks hits me, and I scrunch my nose in disgust. Looking around, I see no one else is affected by the smell; instead, they look at peace with smiles on their faces. I quickly feel my face redden and hope no one saw my expression a few seconds ago. It’s only my second time climbing, and I don’t want to offend anyone. Putting a smile on my face, I move closer to one of the Crux staff members and focus on what they are saying. Brian, the director of the Crux, was explaining how young…

 The scent of sweaty gym socks hits me, and I scrunch my nose in disgust. Looking around, I see no one else is affected by the smell; instead, they look at peace with smiles on their faces. I quickly feel my face redden and hope no one saw my expression a few seconds ago. It’s only my second time climbing, and I don’t want to offend anyone.

Putting a smile on my face, I move closer to one of the Crux staff members and focus on what they are saying. Brian, the director of the Crux, was explaining how young people could be to actually climb the wall. The youngest age a person could be is 3 years old. I was shocked and after hearing that, I realized I shouldn’t have been scared of climbing a wall; but I was.

The rocks were tiny and my fear of heights was creeping in. But I couldn’t let that stop me; I was not going to be upstaged by a child. I only made it up three feet on a wall before having to come down and letting my heart rest. Not giving up, I went to a different spot on the wall, where I was told it would be easier.

I could feel the incline of the wall getting slower, making it easier for me to climb. It was still challenging, but I liked that factor. On my second try, I made it all the way to the top with the support of my belayer, Julia, and another belayer cheering me on. A belayer is someone at The Crux or someone who comes climbing with you.

He or she holds the rope attached to their harness and catches the slack from the rope as you climb up the rock wall. As I scaled down the wall, the smell of the sweaty gym socks came back to me. Instead of disgust, I found myself liking the smell. The smell was motivation for me to want to get back on the wall and try more challenging spots – it encouraged, not discouraged.

Learn more about the Crux in this article!

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