It’s my experience that for some climbers, gym climbing lacks a sort of purity that every experienced rock-rat has an opinion on. The most common reason I hear is, “It’s not real climbing,” or “Gym climbing should only be a tool for training.” I understand the sentiment, and it isn’t without that sentiment that climbers can discuss what real or pure climbing is. Or, discuss what is or is not ethical, or best for the progression of the sport in the outdoors or at your local gym.
As the year comes to a close, we're left to reflect on our accomplishments of the past 365 days — miles driven, friends' birthdays Facebook had to remind you of, tinder dates never texted again — and for us climbers, routes climbed. For every route or problem you've climbed this year, there was a routesetter behind it — setting every hold, move, and tweaking every angle. It's actually a pretty insane amount of work - in 2017 alone, Summit routesetters set over 4,600 different routes and boulder problems.
Hey you heard? Not only that bird is the word, but that we are having a redpoint rope competition next Friday, at Summit Grapevine!
It's our first-ever rope competition, and we're very excited about it! If you're already sold, you can sign up or look at important stuff like the rules here — or, read on and we'll tell you why this comp is gonna be the bomb.com!
1. The climbing gym is your oyster, but damn sometimes you get tired of seafood
Working in a climbing gym seems super awesome because you get to work at a place you LOVE, but sometimes it takes some of the magic out of climbing. We're always looking forward to getting a climbing sesh in after our shift — but sometimes after eight hours of orientations and birthday parties, even the thought of staying another five minutes sends us into fits of PTSD. Luckily after a closing shift, we can have the whole gym to ourselves!
We are very excited to announce that Bryan Prater is now the General Manager of our Carrollton gym! Bryan has been a long-time member and employee, and if you don't already know him and love him, then prepare for him to be your new favorite. Because he is one of the funniest, nicest guys. Next time you see him in the gym, definitely ask him about some of his epic stories — not all of which I could fit in this post, and the ones that I do mention, some of the magic is lost in my retelling.
Scarpa recently revamped a classic, and gave a *little* more sex appeal to the Helix, their all-day comfort shoe. I dunno about any of y'all, but I won't miss the former Helix's distinctive stripes. The new Helix, with its monochromatic styling, is a little bit easier on the eyes — if you're a dude who's into yellow laces or a lady who will absolutely rock orange on her feet.
Climbing holds are a many and varied thing. You got your standard slopers, crimps, jugs, gastons and even your thumb-derclings. Remember that climbing is always fun and every hold is special in its own way, but some holds just make you cringe. They're the most brutal holds to grace our gym's walls, and every time you see them set on your new proj, you gotta dig deep and muster the courage to face these merciless creations. But avoiding them will not make you a better climber, so it's better to just face these (and your fears!) head on LIKE A BOSS.
f you ever need advice on handstands ... then Adam Hughes is your man. Former assistant manager at Summit Dallas, this handstand master has recently taken over duties as the General Manager of Summit Denton, after its official opening this past Monday. If you don't understand what I mean by the handstands ... just spend some time at our new gym and you'll see Adam serenely bust out a few in his down time, when he isn't busy running Summit's first-ever built-from-scratch gym.
t was a very full house last Friday night during our second Summit Bouldering Series competition of the season, at Summit Dallas! We nearly floated five kegs (totally nuts, you guys) and had an exciting finale round on Big Tex, with Dallas climber Tanner Merkle and Arizona climber Mary Fox both flashing their final problems for the win in men's and women's! We've got final placements posted and hella photos, so take a look and see how ya did, and how ya looked doing it! Hint: you looked good.
We are getting ready to clip the chains on our new Denton location! Walltopia has done a more than amazing job getting the walls up, and they are looking sweet! They're super tall and super steep, with crazy angles galore for y'all to pump yourselves out on.
This weeks blog post can't be brought to you by our normal writer, cause ... well it's awkward to interview yourself and write about yourself. "Meet Caillin: by Caillin. As dictated by Caillin, About Caillin. #imawesome" So I'm (Retail Manager Trevor) stepping in for the week so you can meet the lady behind the scenes. Chances are you have seen her pecking away on her laptop at the different gyms, but maybe never knew what she did or if she even actually worked there, (I mean, does she?) She does and her are some things you should know!
Kyle Clinkscales, owner of Summit gyms, head coach of Team Texas and basically the mastermind behind a lot of the climbing gym expansion in the Dallas area, is not the diabolical dude you'd think he'd be. He's not cocky, he's not cunning — he's just a guy doing what he loves, and trying to make it as awesome as possible. It was six simple words, "Why don't you sell it to me?" that basically took him from owning no gyms, to owning three gyms and now building a fourth. Kyle has been an enormous part of the Dallas community basically since its inception, and he continues to write the history of Dallas climbing, and strive every day to make it bigger, and better.
As many of you that have visited our newly remodeled Carrollton location have probably noticed, we have changed up the way we rate problems there. And no, we didn't do it to confuse you guys or be annoying. We've switched over from the classic V-scale widely used in most American gyms, to the circuit system many gyms in Europe utilize. We swear the switch-over was not arbitrary — the circuit system is a more efficient training method, and gives you a more accurate idea of where your skill level is at. Here's the history of this particular system, and why we decided to integrate it into our gym.
She's been a GM of two gyms now, but she is also the GM that has been with the company for the least amount of time. She is also the source of GIRL POWER within the company (excluding myself, but I barely count because I am fairly "unfeminine," we'll say). She came to us fresh from working the climbing wall at TCU, and you probably know her as the bubbly chatterbox that is always at the gym — either working, climbing, or getting in her fitness at Climb Fit. Here's the basics of this neat little lady, so yo can have yet another topic of conversation to have with her. Like you could ever run out of things to talk about with her, anyways.
We're very excited about the brand new GM at Summit Carrollton! He's been an employee of Summit Grapevine, but we shipped him off to Summit Carrollton, so we could steal Mackenzie and relocate her to GM of Grapevine, and ship Franny off to pursue his dream of being a bearded lady at the circus. (Or he's been promoted to Regional Manager. He's still a bearded lady, though.) David's a pretty quiet guy, known for his tattoos and swoopy blonde hair — which did you know, used to be crazy super long? But I sat him down and managed to get him to talk about himself long enough to get this blog post done. So here's a little Q&A so you can better know our newest GM and resident super-nice-guy, David.
There are a lot of things we focus on while we climb: what shoes we're wearing, how comfortable our harness is, or how ripped our tank top may, or may not, make us look. (Spoiler alert: RIPPED.) But what about your chalk? Are you thinking about the performance of your chalk every time you clap it on your hands? I know I haven't in the past ... I have typically gone with whatever chalk is closest to free ... but all chalks are NOT created equal, and the newest chalk line we have added to our gear shops at Summit stands out miles above the rest. I'd say it's more than just chalk — but it's not. It's different because it IS just chalk; with none of the other nonsense fillers you see in other chalk blends. Basically, it's the gluten-free blend of the chalk world, and once you start, you ain't never going back. Probably because you can't digest gluten anymore, but whatever. I am no dietician.
He's a bad-a$$ rock climber, an awesome slack-liner, and now a new dad — he's Chris Curry, the GM of Summit Dallas. He and his wife Raili both work with us here at Summit, and they just welcomed their baby girl Koa in January, so it's safe to say that Chris is a pretty busy guy. But he took the time to sit down with me, so the rest of you can better know the ultra-nice, curly-headed guy throwing you beta at Summit Dallas.
Your body is a machine. A finely-tuned burl-monster that crushes crimps into dust, alters the forces of gravity with every dyno, and mantels so hard the wall topples over. Or something like that, right? Like any machine, your body needs a proper warm-up before performing its mind-bending feats of strength. I mean, you can jam your foot on the accelerator straight after starting up your car, but your rig would go a lot faster a lot sooner if you let the engine warm-up a bit. It's science.