Beat the wall at Craggy Island indoor climbing centre
10:23am Thursday 19th April 2012 in Freetime
As a birthday treat, Hallam Parkes, aged 14 years and a day, was invited to experience the thrills on offer at Craggy Island indoor climbing centre. This is his report.
OUR first adventure was to find Craggy Island. Once you’ve been it is easy, but the first time you need to keep your eyes peeled.
As soon as we were inside the size of the walls hits you straight away – this is a serious climbing centre.
There were a few quick forms to fill in, but within a minute or two we were being introduced to our instructor, Kirstie Brewer. She could not have been friendlier, but was also firm when she needed to be.
It didn’t take long to get kitted out. We were given special climbing shoes, a white helmet and a harness. You have to wear this gear as it’s for your safety and you can’t go climbing otherwise.
We decided to get going straight away so she kindly took us to a starter wall which was only two and a half metres tall, but then it was seven metres long, so she kindly asked us to just go ahead and climb across it.
Kirstie was very kind, helpful and very patient. She would need to be, dealing with us.
We managed to do that first wall quite easily, but then again it was only a beginner’s wall! She then took us to a proper climbing wall about seven metres high – now this was real climbing. She took a couple of minutes to talk to us about the knots and what to do and what not to do. I started first and managed to get to the top.
I could feel it in my arms and it’s not easy, but you feel very proud to beat the wall.
My cousin Charlie was my climbing partner and he was good too, though he does have longer legs.
We both got to the top of four walls, but Charlie admitted to feeling a bit strange on the highest bits.
I would definitely recommend this experience for anyone who feels like a challenge. It is great fun and you will also keep fit, you have no choice!
The staff were all friendly and helpful and made sure you are doing things properly.
There were much bigger groups taking part when we were there and they all loved it too.
I visited the Guildford venue but there is another Craggy Island climbing centre at the Oaks Sports Centre in Woodmansterne Road, Carshalton.
Craggy Island indoor climbing centre
Unit 9 Cobbett Park,
Slyfield Industrial Estate,
Office opening hours: Monday-Friday 10am to 10pm, Weekends 10am to 8pm.
Telephone: 0844 880 8866