2014 Crux Bouldering Competition

The Outing Club and Climbing Team hosted their first official bouldering showdown at the barn


Local high school student Ryan Frasier outclimbed the collegiate competition at this weekend’s bouldering competition. Photo by Outing Club staff.

Clare Wilkinson

On Nov. 14, Washington and Lee University’s Crux Climbing team hosted their first official bouldering competition at the Outing Club barn.

A healthy crowd turned out for the competition where there was a mixture of climbing team members, OC key staff, people who had only climbed once or twice before, and even a high school student, who ended up winning his division.

The relaxed format of the competition and the welcoming nature of all participants made a stress-free environment for all present. James Dick, Director of Student Activities and Outdoor Education, wanted to ensure that everyone could go at their own pace and just have fun.

“[If you’re climbing], awesome! Let’s get you on the wall! [If you’re not], great! Do you want some hot chocolate instead?” he said.

“The coolest thing about the [competition] is that it brings together people from all sides of campus, and the community too,” said David Heinen ’16, echoing Dick’s encouraging sentiment.  “Climbing is great because everybody is so chill and relaxed.  Everybody cheers for everybody, everybody supports everybody.”

Climbs, technically ‘routes’ or boulder ‘problems’ in the climbing lingo, with names such as “Chase’s (Flint)stones,” “Stretchy Pants,” “Cheshire Cat” and “Mardi Grab” were set by Crux captains Chase Flint ’15, Josh White ’16 and Diana Banks ’17, with some additional routes set by Oliver Miltenberger ’14 and James Dick. Each route was worth a different point amount based on difficulty. Point values ranged from 50 points to over 2000 points, providing a wide range of difficulties for all skill levels.

Each competitor was given a score card upon arrival.  For every climb attempted, the climber had to have two people observe and then sign their score card upon completion of the climb.  The climber also had to record the number of attempts they took at each route.  With prizes such as climbing shoes, harnesses, ENO hammocks and more, not to mention trophies for 1st and 2nd places, everyone was pushing themselves to climb the most difficult routes they could.

But at the same time, everyone was supporting each other to do their best.

“You’re not up against each other,” said Heinen ’16. “You’re up against the wall.”

Total points were tallied at the end to determine the winners, and prizes were awarded to the top six finishers in the men’s and women’s divisions, and the top three teams in the co-ed pairs division.

Ryan Frasier, a high school student, took first place in the men’s division and Liz Scovil ’15 took first place for the women’s division.  Miltenberger and Scovil took first for the pairs.  Second place for men was Heinen, Banks for women, and Fraiser and Clare Wilkinson ’17 for pairs.  Third place winners were Cory Guen ’17, Wilkinson, and Heinen and Matt Bryson ’18.  Fourth place winners were Daniel Rhoades ’16 and Sara Prysi ’18.  Fifth was Davis Bateman ’16 and Alex Minor ’15, and six place was Parrish Preston ’17 and Sierra Noland ’17.

The Crux Climbing team plans on hosting another bouldering competition later this school year, offering an opportunity for everyone to come try out the bouldering wall.