Will Gauley, 12, was climbing at the bouldering club on Thursday, Dec. 2. With the help of Ekai Jorgenson, the Williams Lake Climbing Association president, the young climber was setting a new route. (Ruth Lloyd Photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

Will Gauley, 12, was climbing at the bouldering club on Thursday, Dec. 2. With the help of Ekai Jorgenson, the Williams Lake Climbing Association president, the young climber was setting a new route. (Ruth Lloyd Photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

CLIMB ON: Williams Lake Climbing Association members get back on the wall

Climbing nights are back Tuesdays and Thursdays in LCSS

COVID had knocked them down, but the climbers are back on the wall at Lake City Secondary School Williams Lake Campus.

The Williams Lake Climbing Association (WLCA) indoor bouldering program is back up and running Tuesday and Thursday nights during the school year.

WLCA volunteers open up the space and supervise climbing on Tuesday and Thursday nights from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m.

The program was suspended during the pandemic, but with indoor recreation restrictions opening up, the school district has allowed the WLCA to open the doors once again to bouldering nights. The bouldering wall in the basement of the high school provides a small cave-like area with three sides and a small roof area for climbers of all levels to work on their skills and fitness.

The space also has a range of climbing shoe sizes for users to borrow, including kids’ sizes.

Climbing with his dad one evening recently, one young climber, 11-year-old Ryder McLennan, said he started out climbing trees when he was three. Then he tried some bouldering at Gavin Lake Forestry Camp in a climbing cabin they built.

As the evening wore on, it was hard for Ryder’s dad to tear him away from the wall.

Climbers of any ability can sign up through links on the https://wlclimbing.wordpress.com website or through the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex.

Bouldering club members will then be required to show their proof of payment and vaccine passports and fill out some forms on their first visit. Adults must accompany anyone under 18 for their first visit and any climber under 12 must have a parent or guardian present while climbing.

The group also held a movie night fundraiser on Nov. 18 in partnership with the Williams Lake Cycling Club in the Gibraltar Room.

The event featured two films, one on climbing called Black Ice, which told the story of a group of Black climbers from Memphis who go on an ice climbing adventure. The group of climbers had been introduced to the sport of climbing through the climbing gym Memphis Rox.

The trip took the group of urban climbers into the backcountry of the mountains of Montana to have their first-ever ice climbing experience.

The film highlighted the power of climbing to create community, build friendships and expose people to the benefits of outdoor adventures.

Read More: Climbing association’s bouldering program ready to reach new heights

Read More: Camp introduces bouldering to youth



ruth.lloyd@wltribune.com

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