Monday, February 16, 2009

Climbing for a Cause

Whether you enjoy hitting the rocks in warmer weather or have always been intrigued by the art and sport of rock climbing but have yet to give it a try, Hidden Peak gym might be just the spot to get your climb on. A hidden treasure located at 937 W. Chestnut just west of downtown, it's the only bouldering-specific gym in the area and when it was built in 1990, the only climbing gym downtown (since then climbing walls have been built at the Old Town Fitness Formula Club and Lakeshore Athletic Club Illinois Center).

Not only can you test your skills on the rocks and boulders without straying far from home, but come Feb. 28, the gym is hosting a bouldering competition that benefits cancer research, the Climb for Cancer Research. REI's events calendar tipped me off to this one and it sounds like a pretty cool event. Climbers compete in three categories of difficulty where each route across the bouldering wall is worth a specific amount of points. The points for all the routes completed are tallied to determined the winners of each category. But a pretty special part is that you're not just practicing your skills, you're helping a worthy cause. Climbing for Cancer Reseach is an organization who's "mission is to directly incorporate climbers into the discovery process of finding better treatments for cancer." The organization uses climbers skills to collect strains of cyanobacteria which can be used in cancer studies. All this for a $15 pre-registration fee, $20 day of. And it sounds like fun. Posted by Kate

Photo grabbed from terretta at flickr.

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