Hendrix Club Scene: Climbing Coalition

WILLIAM HADEN-CHOMPHOSY '13, CO-PRESIDENT, CLIMBING COALITION:

The Hendrix Climbing Coalition. We’re just a group of people who enjoy climbing. Our big goals are getting new climbers to start at the gym just because that’s a really good environment to help people who have never climbed before. Then from there, there are a lot of good outdoor climbing up the Ozarks, in Northern Central Arkansas, which is only a couple of hours away from here. We want to get people started climbing here at the gym, where we have more control of the environment for which they can learn in it and taking trips up to the Ozark National Forest. There are a lot of different areas up there where we can have really good trips.

MICHAEL TARNE '14, CO-PRESIDENT, CLIMBING COALITION:

Went climbing outside, pretty much right away, did that for my orientation trip, and then got really interested. I started going out with my friends and then, you know, since we have a really good wall here, it made for an easy way to stay active.

ROBERT TUNG '13, CLUB MEMBER, CLIMBING COALITION:

I got into climbing in elementary school. My friend Dan started having birthday parties at a local climbing gym and so I started doing it then and kind of off and on throughout middle school and high school, but I really started to take climbing seriously at Hendrix probably within the last couple of years.

HADEN-CHOMPHOSY:

My interest in rock climbing was kind of born out of prior activities. I did gymnastics whenever I was growing up and they have a lot of relatable qualities just in the way that you climb versus the way that you do things in other activities. That’s kind of what got me into it and from that point it’s kind of like problem solving in a lot of ways. Just figuring out new ways of doing things is always a fun part of climbing.

TUNG:

I really have met a lot of different, interesting people at the climbing wall just at all different levels of climbing ability. I’ve been learning of a lot of new techniques and ways of climbing and types of climbing like bouldering, or league climbing, or top rope climbing.

HADEN-CHOMPHOSY:

Part of what the climbing coalition does is we have invested money into equipment so that people don’t have to have their own equipment, they can just check it out from us or go on trips with members of the climbing coalition. We cover that cost because we know that can be a barrier to entry for a lot of people that we know that would enjoy climbing.

TUNG:

I really like that Hendrix has a lot of climbing equipment. They’ve got crash pads and quick draws and ropes and harnesses that students can use for free, which is nice because it lets people who don’t have their own climbing gear get out and climb safely. It’s pretty expensive equipment that a lot of students don’t have access to or can’t afford. Hendrix has really allowed students to start climbing and we’ve been able to take a lot of nice trips to places like Horseshoe Canyon Ranch and Jasper or Fern, that’s near Ozark, Arkansas. We’ve been having a lot more opportunities to go out and climb on some real rocks as opposed to just climbing in the gym.

TARNE:

I really hope that the climbing coalition keeps growing. We already have between 20 and 30 active members and the potential for a lot more here at Hendrix.