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MEMBER'S ADVENTURE MARK AND THE COBB FAMILY


I'm a teacher while my wife works for the NHS. We've had an indoor climbing wall in our garage for a few years now, but have really used it as a training tool alongside all the great climbing walls and bouldering areas we go to. However, in the last three weeks, it has really come into its own. I often climb on my own- an hour on my wall destroys my forearms- but we've now started to have family sessions, setting each other challenges, eliminates, sit starts, specific footholds etc. We have juggy, easy problems, slopey horrors, grit style smeary moves, tricky sit starts using compression and dynamic moves ( my son loves these), aswell as tiny crimps and nasty pockets. This week we reset all the routes, with our Allen keys, so that all the problems can be done left to right or right to left. They look amazing..can't wait to get on them. I'm also Climbing Ambassador for Brookes Climb in Oxford; missing it hugely!


And we must remember that the effects of the coronavirus pandemic were shared internationally. All have had to adapt their lives to the new situation.


WHAT NEXT? I think we are all incredibly thankful


that lockdown did not last the entire year. The outdoors reopened in England and Ireland and is now reopening in Wales and Scotland also – many have taken to the hills in celebration. It’s great to see so many people enjoying the beauty of our landscapes and testing their newfound strength on the many boulders and cliffs around.


We must remember not to take the countryside for granted and our rights to access it either. With huge numbers of people heading to honeypots and popular destinations there has been trouble with parking, litter and also damage and erosion to some of the crags and boulders. Our community can help by educating and leading by example.


The risk of another lockdown still looms, but if we use our heads to reduce the risks of transmission, follow government guidance and maintain social distancing and proper hygiene, we can do everything we can to avoid prolonging the coronavirus pandemic.


ALICIA POPE


Good morning and greetings from Canada summer of climbing this year! We had some trips planned and booked and were raring to go after a very long winter... and then COVID-19 happened.


The first week of being stuck in the house was a mental struggle, we were grieving all of the things we couldn’t do (and couldn’t foresee doing in the near future). Climbing being at the top of the list. That first weekend we looked at some fantastic online resources and drafted a plan to build two fully freestanding walls with a roof feature. This was pretty ambitious... I hadn’t built anything since middle-school shop class. We ordered the materials for curb-side pick- up, ordered holds online, and made room in the basement of our rental, and got to work. As soon as we started building, it felt like a weight lifted off of my shoulders, I felt more in control of my destiny.


I know that we are very lucky to have the space to do this type of thing, and that it’s not possible for everyone. But I encourage anyone who is feeling helpless due to the current situation, to do something for themselves... whether that be reading a few more books, learning a new skill, or (space permitting) building a home-wall.


Those Lost Summer days will never be regained, but while we have had many restrictions it seems we have also gained much during lockdown: the strengthening of a nationwide community spirit, new ways of working from home, quarantraining regimes that won’t be forgotten, people heading outdoors for their first climbs on rock, their first summits and trig points, and the discovering of secluded green spaces around homes. Thanks to everyone that shared their stories and sorry to those we didn’t have the space to include. Now that we’re allowed back outside again, we hope you continue to share more of your adventures and experiences with us; send them in by social media or by emailing the BMC office. Here’s to many sunny adventures with friends once the rain stops!


"THIS WAS PRETTY AMBITIOUS... I HADN’T BUILT ANYTHING SINCE MIDDLE-SCHOOL SHOP CLASS."


28 | CLIMB. WALK. JOIN.


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