We got together with Link of Rock Climb Montana early on Thursday morning to head up to Eureka for our climb. We climbed at Eureka last summer and the view of Lake Koocanusa is just breathtaking. (The photos are so pretty that it’s actually the shot I used for my header on this site!)
Last summer we climbed a fissure overlooking the reservoir, but this summer we changed sides of the road and climbed an outcropping with a more gentle slope. I thought it might be a bit easier since the kiddo was going with me and he’s only climbed in the gym.
Ha! I quickly learned that only the bottom half of Lizard Ledge was easy and the top half was hard as crap to climb! I was so surprised (and proud) when I made it to the top!
Here we are all geared up and ready to climb. Our instructor, Link, provided all the gear necessary including shoes, helmets, and harnesses.
(He also doubles as a photog on occasion.)
Look at this cute kid who got drafted into rock climbing with me. His dad has a fear of heights, and although he’s climbed with me several times, he actually really, really hates it.
The kid seemed to like it much better.
At least on the way up.
Repelling down, well that was another story.
Safety is priority one.
Here are the guys doing their checks before starting a climb.
The kiddo was a spider monkey. He zoomed up that mountain.
Luckily he stopped about half way up and decided to practice repelling. This turned out to be a VERY smart move because he was so scared that he refused to repel down on his own.
Link had to climb up there, attach him to himself, and I had to belay them both.
In order to offset the weight, I had to get tied to a tree to prevent being lifted off of the ground.
That was a slightly hairy situation.
Last action shot of the day…
What I love about rock climbing is that it’s one of those practices, like meditation or yoga, that keeps you focused on the present moment and nothing else.
Your breath, the rock, your next tiny move. There is no rushing. There is no thinking about your to-do list or even what’s going around you.
All you can focus on is the next step, your breath, and the sunshine on your back.
- Have you ever rock climbed before and where?
- What do you love about it?
*If you are interested in knowing more about Link and Rock Climb Montana, visit his website:
Want to see more of our trip? Check out:
Whitefish Farmer’s Market
Foys Lake, Kalispell, Montana