Participants try to reach the top at annual challenge

For the event the rock climbing wall given new routes

By Mariah Trammel
On April 4, 2014

Outdoor Adventures (OA) brought back its annual Angelo Rock Climbing Competition (ARCC) for Saturday, April 5, in the CHP.

"People just come and sign up, and you get to select which ranking you want to be a part of, whether it's beginning, intermediate or advanced," senior Margaret Katie Denton said. "The ranking classifies the certain range of the routes that you will climb, the difficulty level and the point system that you will receive."

The format of the competition is a mixed format consisting of bouldering problems and top rope routes.  

Each participant must turn in a scorecard with five climbs that include two bouldering problems and two top rope routes. The last is the climber's choice.

Assistant Director of OA Ian Brown said bouldering problems are focused more on strength and short intensity moves, while top rope routes are more endurance-based.

 "Rock climbing is an amazing sport to try," Denton said. "It has endurance, strength and flexibility. It's also very team-oriented because you get to meet lots of people. It's just a fun competition for people to be around."

Whether you consider yourself a skilled climber or a newcomer to the sport, the competition is for people who want to have a good time, according to the ARCC webpage.

"It's a healthy alternative to many traditional sports," Brown said. "It helps participants challenge themselves mentally and physically."

Rock climbing is physically demanding because it is a full-body workout that uses the chest, arms, legs and back. The physical aspect is the most important because rock climbing relies on pure strength.

Alumnus Stephen Swaringen said rock climbing is also a mental challenge because the climber has to figure out the puzzle of where to situate his or her body to climb up the rocks.

Every spring, OA holds the competition, utilizing the 40-foot tall pinnacle and 12-foot tall bouldering wall in the CHP.

Traditionally, the competition was limited to only ASU students, but this year it is open to everyone.

 "I enjoyed the competition because the people who were competing were mostly encouraging to the others around them," Swaringen said. "It felt like we were all working together and cheering each other on."

The ARCC awards the winners in each ranking and gives out door prizes at the end of the competition.

These range from backpacks, T-shirts and water bottles to gift cards and free meals.

"You get to climb throughout the day, and there's music, food, and just lots of fun camaraderie," Denton said. "There's also a ton of prizes at the end, so it's worth your time."

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