Tried climbing with the scouts many years ago and got bad leg shake and ended up being lowered of. Now at the grand old age of 55 I made the decision to give it another go and attended a climbing course in the Peak District in July. Now to be perfectly honest the instructor knew of my previous experience and kept me on a tight top rope, and we only attempted various moderate to difficult climbs, but despite this I absolutely loved it and was on a high for days. Whilst originaly it was meant to be a one of thing, a tick of my bucket list, I now want some more. Any ideas on where to go from here?
In reply to BIG BAD JOHN:
Your experiences sound very similar to mine. I find myself now enjoying climbing immensely. I was fortunate that a couple of friends were into climbing and I was able to have a few days out "learning the ropes". One of them is an MIC and as a consequence I got some really good instruction on some classic routes.
The club route is a good way to meet people to climb with, alternatively you might find someone on this forum.
Where are you based?
I'm from Great Wyrley and although the climbing round this area isn't great there are some pretty acceptable indoor walls nearby. There is Wolf Mountain in Wolverhampton which is mainly top ropes but with some bouldering and Boulder Central in Wednesbury that has just opened, entirely bouldering but excellent.
If you're looking to go outside, the roaches is probably the closest bet. Its about an hour and a half away (towards Buxton). If you're willing to put in a little extra driving, Awesome Walls at Stockport is really good for beginners. The walls in Birmingham I've found to be a bit hit and miss, some are okay but some are truelly terrible... I can't remember which though, sorry!
In reply to BIG BAD JOHN:
I am quite happily plodding on with low grade routes whenever I can get out (work permitting). If you fancy a day on a crag in north Wales or the lakes, drop me an email via this site.
thanks for all the advice. Have thought about trying Boulder central in Sandwell or Redpoint in Birmingham as the latter are doing some courses at the moment. Only problem is fitting a 4 week course in with my partner who works mainly evenings and weekends, leaving me with child care duties. As for outdoors, thought about Nesclife in Shropshire. Are there any beginers routes or easy boulder problems here.
I'd recommend Redpoint as a climbing wall, its friendly and runs plenty of courses.
As to outside, be careful. I would strongly suggest you go out with an experienced outside climber rather than on your own, or do a "wall to rock" course at somewhere like Redpoint. The roaches has some easy routes, other places like Stanage, Burbage North, Bamford, etc have plenty, but again a warning about tacking on to an experienced climber or experienced group applies - it's possible to mess up even on easy ground and messing up 30ft above ground level can be unfortunate.
Hence my advice would be to:
a) find yourself a local course that will teach you the basics (or a friendly experienced climber).
b) head outside with a course or, again, find an experienced climber.
c) fill out your profile with details - people find it easier to trust people they know something about, and you are more likely to get offers of help from on here with a full profile.
d) However, the rider applies, trusting your life to someone from the internet has a degree of risk attached, and hence a commercial wall-run outside or inside course would be safer for you, especially given your history.
In reply to John_Hat: Having already done an outdoor 1 day taster course, guess the next step would be a weekend learn to climb course, but would need to start saving for that one. In mean time considering a course at Redpoint, or maybe give boulder central a try, both equal distance away from where I live, and with Redpoint being closer to work, and bouler central being close to in-laws. Don't really know which way to go. Bouldering is a good option, in terms of I could get across there at least once a week, with the in-laws child sitting, and probably fit the odd trip to the outdoors, with my son spoting for me at a push and maybe even join in. He does have minor special needs, but as the Para-olympics has highlighted, this is not necessarly a barrier to sporting achievement. On the negative side, I get the impression have to have the upper body strength I no longer possess at my age, which brings us back to Redpoint. Cannot decide which way to go. Any suggestions or a third way.