Going rock climbing or rappelling has been a goal of mine for a long time. It was probably one of the first items to find it way onto my list, so it’s not surprising that it’s one of the first that I actually made happen.
As I mentioned previously, Minnesota isn’t exactly a mountainous place, but one bluff makes its home right in the middle of the Twin Cities—the Pinnacle climbing wall at the R.E.I. store in Bloomington. True, it’s not a real rock face, but the wall at R.E.I. stands at 55 feet high and includes climbing paths in a variety of difficulty levels.
Last summer our church’s pastor taught a series titled “Accept the Challenge,” and as a staff we made a series of fun videos featuring ourselves accepting various physical challenges. Scaling the Pinnacle was one of the first ideas we came up with as a team, and it was one I made sure stayed on the list as other ideas came and went. Every time it was discussed, I made sure the rest of the team knew that that was MY challenge. A friend and fellow staff member joined me, as did my husband (behind the scenes), and the three of us set our sights on that 55-foot precipice.
The path we climbed was a 5.7, for any climbers out there who know what that means, and it was TOUGH. As my first real climb, it took me awhile to figure out the method and the strategy. I actually fell off after just a few steps and had to start over. There were multiple instances where I got stuck and needed some encouragement from my friends below to keep going. Eventually, though, I made it to the top—which just felt AWESOME! There’s something very gratifying about a tangible goal, where you can get to the end and say YES, I definitely did it.
As you might expect, once you get to the top of the wall, you have to rappel to get back down. So, I guess you could call this goal doubly met. The rappelling part would’ve been more fun had I not been totally exhausted from the climb. I think it would be fun to simply rappel sometime on a real rock face. All the view without all the work!
Aaron and I are actually members at R.E.I. now, which means we can go climbing there anytime we want, but we’ve only been one other time since I became pregnant pretty soon after that. Turns out it’s not really a great idea to climb when you’re pregnant, ha ha. I hope to find an opportunity to do it again soon, though. I wonder if they’ll let me climb with a baby strapped to my back… Ha, I kid.
471 days until I turn 30