Students Participate In Rock Wall Competition

More than 50 students challenged themselves to climb the 40 feet tall rock-climbing wall during the Route Climbing Competition on April 8. 

Campus Recreation created 19 new routes with different colors to indicate top rope or lead climb for the competition. They host at least one competition each semester where people of all skill levels are encouraged to join. 

Each competitor could choose which number route to climb first. Staff members counted how many times the competitors fell and how many routes they finished. 

There were three categories: beginner, intermediate and advanced for both men and women. The top three climbers from each category won a prize. The event also offered competitors raffle tickets for a prize draw. 

Campus Recreation Rock Wall Coordinator Jon Anderson hopes the event will be a friendly competition where they can bring their whole community together and get people excited about climbing.

“It is more about coming together, climbing, meeting new people and having a good time with your friends,” said Anderson. “The main takeaway I want from students is excitement about climbing. Climbing offers a mentally and physically challenging experience as well as an incredibly friendly community, which are both put on display at our competitions.” 

Most competitors at the event joined for fun rather than for real competition, and they enjoyed community while eating free pizza. 

“(My favorite thing is) the community. Like you can literally ask anybody to help you climb, and they can cheer you on and help you do whatever you need to do here,” junior Jared Short said.

“(I like) just hanging out with people (and having) a great climbing community with great friends,” junior Cole Kroner said. “Also just being able to try out the new sites that they have and going to have fun with it.”

With specific categories for females at the event, several female students joined the competition. Some of them were new climbers, but they enjoyed the moment with their friends helping and cheering for each other. 

“I had some friends encourage me to (join) and I really like rock climbing … I thought that it would be a fun step as I’m … improving to try a competition,” sophomore Madi Barrieau said. “I would like to get see how high the climb I get. So, Iʼm interested in seeing how well I can do (while) pushing myself and having fun.” 

Another female competitor Amanda Kolandjian also joined the competition and had a good time with her friends. 

“My favorite thing is getting to climb with people I know and just have a good time,” Kolandjian said. “Some people I know here just because I come to the wall a lot. So, we kind of like build a community with just knowing people who come regularly, and I do come with some friends too.”

Anderson encouraged students to join the next competition, Bouldering Competition, in the fall. The participation fee is only $5 or $10 if students sign up the day of the competition. 

“I would highly encourage anyone to join us,” said Anderson. “You get to come party with a group of amazing people while enjoying climbing, pizza, snacks, great music, a chance to win a raffle prize and maybe even make some money by topping one of our podiums.”

The LaHaye Rock Wall is open to all members of LaHaye Recreation & Fitness Center, offering a variety of classes and competition throughout each semester. Participants can learn more at

Jang is a news reporter.

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