It just doesn't sound like as enjoyable of an experience.

Our local climbing gym, Vertical Endeavors did reopen, I don't know, maybe two months ago. I don't honestly know, a month or two ago. And, I mean, it's funny I've talked to a lot of my climber friends who... Myself included, it would be nothing for us to be there four, five times a week. And all of us, again, myself included, have not been there once yet. 

black and white Photograph of a triangular rock formation against the sky with light reflections arcing around it
Photograph by Chris O'Brien

And I don't think it's necessarily the... We're worried about potentially getting COVID or anything like that. It's more what you have to go through to even be there to participate in it, and I don't blame them at all. They have to protect themselves but, I mean, climbing with a mask on and having to do... Sanitize your hands before and after, and you gotta make all these... I mean, it's just... Before, we were so used to, you just show up and you climb, and it was really easy. And now there's a lot more to it. I mean, maybe that speaks to us being lazy or not wanting to conform to these new standards, but it just doesn't sound like as enjoyable of an experience, I think.

And so luckily, we have the outdoor [activities] and I'm sure we'll all suck it up once winter kicks in and we'll deal with it. I mean, I even just recently ordered... I'm trying to think ahead, a local climbing company... Or not a local climbing company, a climbing company that makes chalk in your hands. They came out with one that has 80% alcohol in it. So that meets all o the guides, and whatnot. So that way when you're chalking up, you automatically are disinfecting constantly.  So the industry is already adapting, which is pretty cool.

Kraig Decker




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