Climbers hit the wall for friendly competition

MARQUETTE — Climbers from around the U.P. gathered this weekend in Marquette for some friendly competition.

The Outdoor Recreation Center held it’s annual climbing competition which gave climbers of all ages and skill level the chance to tighten up their harnesses and hit the wall. This event has been going on for over eight years and the climbing community never ceases to put on a good time. Climbers had the opportunity to try routes to the top that they may never have done before, which just adds to the challenging spirit of the event.

“All the staff here helped set the routes and we also had a couple volunteers. You get three chances to do each route. Each time, if you fall the first time and you get it the second time, you get a little less so each route has a point value,” said Eric Creel, student manager of the ORC.

The event is not exclusive to the Marquette area, everyone is welcome to strap on some shoes and scale the wall.

“It’s a fun gathering for people who don’t see each other all the time. There’s a lot of people from Escanaba, Lake Superior State University, Michigan Tech so it’s just a fun gathering, it’s not really an intense competition but more like a hang out time,” added Colten Moore, ORC employee.

Winners of each division went home with prize packs that have gear and other climbing essentials that were donated by local businesses. But winning is not the main goal with these climbers, most of them just enjoy being around other climbers and push each other to do better. Whether you are a novice or a master climber, this event will introduce you to a community of people and challenge yourself to try something new.

“Because climbing is awesome! I don’t know, it’s pretty fun, it’s rewarding. It is a competition, but it’s a competition with yourself which is beneficial; not many times do you get to compete with your inner self. It’s fun, it’s a cool challenge,” added Moore.

You can look for next year’s competition to take place sometime in early spring.