Climbing at Interstate
Taylors Falls Travel Blog› entry 3 of 3 › view all entries
Climbers flock to Interstate Park to climb the basalt walls along the river. I have always wanted to climb here, but don't have climbing friends that set top ropes. Fortunately Vertical Endeavors, a local climbing gym, was offering a community education program for beginners. Even though I've climbed before, its been a couple of years and I was greatly out of climbing shape. I signed up for the June class, but was the only one so the class was cancelled. Instead I was booked into the August class, so I've been looking forward to this all summer. Of course, that wasn't enough to encourage me to get in better shape.
I invited a friend to go along to watch and hang out when I wasn't climbing. In groups like this, you often are sitting.
I let everyone have a go, then I tried the first route again. This time I made it up. It took awhile, but I made all 80 feet of it. Even the small overhang. I was proud! Just think what I could do if I was in better shape! We then tackled the second route - I don't remember the name. Again, Lindsey made it look easy. I got partway up, slipped, got my finger caught in a hold and pinched my finger on one hand plus ripped out a blister on the other hand.
Climbers do need to fill out a free climbing permit, and only climbers are supposed to be along the wall, but you can pop over for a quick peek if you are ever here. Some of those guys are amazing! One family was visiting from Colorado and all three kids were climbing - I'm pretty sure they were all under 10, too.
Today happened to be geology in the park day and it was swarming with people! There were lots of little booths set up for (families, mostly) to learn about geology and the park. There was even a little scavenger hunt on the pothole trail. The best part was that they offered free rock climbing to the generagl public! They were set up on the shorter, 40 foot walls. People were allowed one free climb but the waiting line was pretty long. I think they only had one guy belaying (also Vertical Endeavors). Maybe our guide joined up to help when we were done. It was a very popular day at the park. So much so, that they even had a parking lot attendant! I'm glad we got there early.