This afternoon, we had a short, but fun trip to Stone Age Rock Gym. I was compelled to put together a quick blurb because it was a great experience. We were supposed to go to public skate at Bolton Ice Palace, but they had a group book the entire session.
The family was bumming, so we rallied and headed to the gym in neighboring Manchester. Debbie and I watched and spotted while the kids scrambled all over the place. Jennifer was on duty and she was fantastic. She outfit both kids with climbing shoes (tiny ones!) and chalk bags. They were outfitted like rockstar climbers.
We practically had the place to ourselves. There was one other couple there. It was an old running friend, Steve Henry, and his friend, Jill. They were roped up and enjoying themselves. It was also fun to watch one other “gym rat” attempt some more advanced moves.
Debbie and I aren’t big climbers. She is more advanced, having done an outdoor educator course with NOLS back in 2001. She spent a month in the Arizona wilderness with the trip split between backpacking and rock climbing. I did some in the Boy Scouts and also in R.O.T.C., but haven’t done much since.
The kids didn’t rope up. They just did “bouldering,” which itself was a blast. Stone Age has a strong connection with the Ragged Mountain Foundation. We have been long time Ragged members, mainly in support of their conservation efforts, particularly with Connecticut’s traprock ridges.
The staff really was great with the kids and we are sure to return, maybe for a birthday party or Cub Scout den meeting. I might even give it a go myself. I know Debbie wants to get back into climbing. Last month, she went with a friend to another local gym and she has been working on her pull-ups. I don’t think she is going to give up running, but if we have another winter like this, then Stone Age seems like the perfect place to pass some time.