RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Rock climbers of all ability levels are heading to Manchester Wall in Richmond this weekend to take part in Climb Right RVA.
The two-day rock climbing festival is being held as a way to teach people how to be safe while climbing outside of the gym.
Pete Guyre with Peak Expeditions came up with the idea and is putting on the event with the help from a slew of local sponsors.
“I want to start getting people outdoors,” Guyre said in a recent interview from the climbing area in Manchester. “I want to be able to get people outside and learn to climb.”
Guyre has been guiding climbing trips for the past ten years and been climbing for over twenty years. He recently started a climbing guide service affiliated with local climbing gym Peak Experiences. This is how Peak Expeditions began.
“I want to grow a community of outdoor climbers and enthusiasts. Hopefully, we’ll set up trips and start running trips throughout North America,” Guyre said.
Guyre said that part of the inspiration for the business is a recent growth in the sport of climbing which has inevitably led to an increase in climbing accidents. He said that he wants to teach be how to climb, but also how to climb safely and ethically.
“Now we have this huge base and a smaller mentor pool than we had in the past, so we’re seeing more problems and more accidents than we had in the past,” Guyre said.
With Climb Right RVA, Guyre wants to bring new people into the fold while bringing together climbers who have been doing it for years.
“I hope to get a lot of people together and build a sense of community and educate people as much as we can and get people interested in it too,” he said.
While climbing has grown a lot in recent years, Guyre said there’s still room for the sport to continue growing, but in order for it to do so, people need to learn to climb the correct way.
“It’s not going to slow down, so the best thing is to embrace it and try to educate people as much as possible to minimize the risk,” he said.
To those who are on the fence about coming to this weekend’s event, Guyre offered this:
“It’s a life-changing activity,” Guyre said. “It changed me completely. It gave me a lot of confidence, it made me feel good about myself, it quiets the mind. It’s really a beautiful activity that takes you to amazing places.”
Otherwise, if you’re interested in learning more about Peak Expeditions or would like to learn to climb outside but can’t attend this weekend, you can register for classes here.
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