REACH NEW HEIGHTS AT THE GAGETOWN CLIMBING WALL Nicholas Kaempffer, CFB Gagetown
Have you ever noticed the magnificent wonder of military engineering looming in the corner of the Base Gagetown Field House, where brave and intrepid women and men scale heights that defy imagination (33‒35 feet), and wondered “can I?” Well, you certainly can “climb on” at the Base Gagetown Climbing Wall, which is a year-round, dual purpose, military and recreational facility that is open to all.
For children looking to discover a new sport, the Gagetown Climbing Wall offers its ever-popular kids climbing program, which is about to graduate its newest cadre of climbers. The program director, Kevin LaFleur, has produced a fun, progressive class designed to welcome children to the sport.
“One of the great things with climbing is that progress is easily measureable,” said Kevin. “At the start of the program, we often have kids that are afraid of heights – but within weeks, they are climbing to the top with confidence – and that’s a big thing to conquer! We have a comprehensive program where kids learn about many aspects of climbing during the course, which include safety, knot tying, equipment inspection, words of command, boulders, and dynamic movement.” One young climber that has made amazing progress is Callyn Smith, who was inspired to climb after she watched it on television. While initially afraid of heights, Callyn was determined to scale the wall, and she now climbs to the top with ease, and just graduated from the kids climbing course – a class she has enjoyed so much, that she’s been on it twice!
“Climbing is really fun,” said Callyn, “I love the challenge, and learning new techniques – my family likes it too, as both my parents belay and encourage me to push my limits.”
For additional details on the Gagetown Climbing Wall, you can either look up “Gagetown Climbing” on Facebook, or CAFconnection.ca
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