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Why They Climb

FitRec rock climbing instructors take on Whitehorse Ledge


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Click on the video above to watch Peter Stetson (CAS’08) and climbing partner Matthew Smith (CFA’08) take viewers up the Children’s Crusade rock face.

Two months after breaking his foot on El Capitan, a formidable 3,000-foot rock face at Yosemite National Park, Peter Stetson (CAS’08) ventured back out with climbing partner Matthew Smith (CFA’08). Stetson, climbing instructor at Boston University’s Fitness and Recreation Center (FitRec), and Smith, FitRec coordinator of rock climbing, took on the Children’s Crusade wall at Whitehorse Ledge in North Conway, N.H.

“I consider climbing a meditative activity,” Smith says. “You have to focus intently on what you’re doing, so you can eliminate all of your other thoughts." Stetson adds, "When you’re standing on top of what you thought there was no way you could do, when the risks were high, it’s one of the most satisfying things in the world."

Although like most climbers Stetson and Smith prefer to climb outdoors, they say that climbing at FitRec’s Barreca Climbing Wall is a convenient and weatherproof alternative. It’s also a great way for beginning climbers to learn the ropes, so to speak.

“I enjoy teaching,” says Stetson, who leads the instruction in the Rock Climbing Endurance Training and Intro to Rock Climbing classes at FitRec. “It allows me to share the excitement that I get when I climb and share that same sense of, wow, I just did something I didn’t think I could do.”

Some climbing classes began last week, but Smith says that students can contact him directly to inquire about available spots. Two new classes start this week: Rock Climbing Refresher on November 4 and Rock Climbing Endurance Training today, November 5. To register for classes, visit the FitRec Web site.

Robin Berghaus can be reached at berghaus@bu.edu.


One Comment on Why They Climb

  • Den on 02.04.2009 at 11:55 am

    Alpinism is my dream

    When a child I dreamt a lot of being an alpinist in the future. But my dreams were desseminated. I will try to write a research paper on this. Thanks for the article.

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