Powdered chalk and hot dogs, sweat-smeared plastic, the smell of grippy rubber. Hundreds of voices yelling “send it!” and “dyno!” and “I’m sooo pumped.”
Walking through the White Mountain Climbing Gym this past Saturday was quite the sensory experience. The constant hum of climbing jargon and the aroma of barbeque food only solidified the fact that all was not normal in our largest facility. Although our gym is usually a central spot for social activity on campus, last Saturday went above and beyond this well-accepted fact about our school’s beloved rock wall.
Every year, The White Mountain School hosts an official USA Climbing Bouldering competition as part of a local New England circuit. Competitors who register for this event can move on to compete in the Regional Competition if they participate in two local competitions, ours among them. This year’s event saw a record turnout: 115 athletes registered to compete in two sessions during the day.
White Mountain Climbing Coach and Director of Outdoor Education Ted Teegarden spoke about the competition and what it means to have it in our school’s community:
“Every year we host a USA Climbing Bouldering competition and each year I hear from families who attend the competition that the energy is so positive at White Mountain. I felt that energy in significant amounts on Saturday and that felt great! The whole community comes together to make this competition happen and it was an astounding success! I have seen familiar faces at this competition for the past 5 years, with outside White Mountain competitors showing up because they love our event and it was cool to see them all again on Saturday.”
The popularity of this competition was not just limited to outsiders: 27 White Mountain students also competed in the bouldering event. With almost a quarter of our student body bouldering on Saturday, it’s safe to bet that over half of the White Mountain Community was watching and cheering on their friends.
If you want to see how a truly engaged community cheers on its members, CLICK HERE. (Thanks Ted for the pics!)
White Mountain will also be hosting a USA Climbing competition in April. Unlike last Saturday’s Bouldering event, the competition next year will feature roped sport climbing. For a complete schedule of USA Climbing events, including those at White Mountain, CLICK HERE.
By Eliot Taft, Assistant Director of Admission and Communication