Beat the Heat X

The tenth annual Beat the Heat bouldering competition took place on Saturday, August 8th, at Sport Rock Climbing Centers in Alexandria. I competed in this competition last year, taking fifth in Intermediate. I was super-psyched to compete this year, and registered soon after registration opened for the Advanced division. I had a pretty good chance of medaling this year, so I was really, really bummed when I got injured. Unfortunately, I was not able to compete, as I have a pulled muscle in my rib cage. I did attend, though, and took tons of pictures! I'm choosing not to be too upset about missing the competition itself, because it was still fun to go and support Team Earth Treks and our kids.

The event is always a fun one to attend. It is very, very chaotic, and very crowded, but it is a fun event that Sport Rock does a good job putting on. My only critique of the comp is that I do wish the staff of Sport Rock would have a cut-off quota, because it does tend to get so crowded that it becomes unenjoyable for those attending. I personally know a couple of climbers that chose not to attend this year because the level of crowding is just too stressful for them to handle.

It is a peer-judged competition, meaning that climbers keep their own score cards, mark down sends and have two other competitors initial that they witnessed them sending that problem.  The entrance fee is inexpensive for a bouldering competition ($15 instead of the more common $40+), it is free to Sport Rock members, and there is a huge raffle done at the end of the night, all of which tend to draw much larger crowds than other local bouldering competitions.

Our kids did really, really well overall, and I am super proud of them for hanging in there through all the chaos (especially those that didn't compete last year and didn't know what to expect)! Lydia took fifth in Women's Advanced (which for a 15-year-old is freaking fantastic), Caroline M. took second in Female Junior, Caroline B. took first in Female Junior, Elan took first in Male Junior, and both Claire and Bella competed in Open Finals, the highest adult division available in bouldering competitions. Overall I had a great time, and was glad I was at least able to be present, help the kids where they needed it and take photos.

Lydia checking out some possible problems during orientation
Lydia on an overhanging V6
Caroline B. on a V6
Caroline M. on a V6
Yardena on a V6
Elan on a V6
Eric on a V8
Eric on a V8
Rusty on a V7
I also managed to walk away with a $50 gift card to the North Face, and a swag bag from them as well. I still had a great time despite not being able to compete, and I'm looking forward to healing and getting back into the game soon. :)

10 comments:

  1. I hope you recover soon! I've never tried bouldering, but it's always looked like so much fun! :]

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    1. It's the best ever! And thank you! This has been the most frustrating injury I've ever had so I can't wait for it to heal.

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  2. This looks so awesome and like so much fun! My husband and I went on our first date to a rock climbing gym. We've always been thrill seekers (that's sort of what you get when you marry a solider ;) So much fun! I'd love to become more practiced at climbing. Any tips for a beginner?

    Awesome photos by the way!

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    1. Join a gym! Climb a few times every week and watch videos of the pros climbing. Learn technique and take any free clinics your gym offers. Climb a lot! I'm happy to chat with you any time if you decide youre interested. It is a blast.

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  3. This looks like a great challenge and so much fun!! I would love to read some beginner climbing tips, too.

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    1. For sure! Maybe I should make a post about that!

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  4. Darn. I hope you recover soon. This looks like a lot of fun. Not sure if I could compete, but I'd love to go watch sometime. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. The comps are super fun to go to! Even if you don't technically understand what you're watching, the athleticism is amazing and the energy is so much fun!

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  5. This looks like SO much fun! I wish we had something like this were I lived- I'd totally do it!

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    1. Hey Annmarie, where are you located? Rock climbing is becoming a bigger and bigger sport, lead climbing may even make it into the Olympics soon! There may be something available relatively accessible to you, you never know!

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