Devil's Crag has been revived over the last four years by the Prince Rupert climbing community.

Devil's Crag has been revived over the last four years by the Prince Rupert climbing community.

Prince Rupert climbing wall back in business

The climbing wall season is in full swing now, after a period of uncertainty whether the wall would open at all this year.

The climbing wall season is in full swing now, after a period of uncertainty whether the wall would open at all this year.

“Prince Rupert Recreation Centre has shut down the Devil’s Crag Climbing Wall. It is unknown if this is temporary or permanent,” said a post on the Devil’s Crag Climbing Wall Facebook page on Sept. 12.

The Rupert climbing community previously had a revenue-sharing agreement with the civic centre. The group would get 50 cents on the dollar from what the wall brought in. That had been going for two years but the group was told the city was transitioning from that to hiring paid supervisors instead.

But when September rolled around, they were told the city hadn’t hired a new supervisor at all.

“We had just put in 250 volunteer hours to set up the entire wall and then we heard there was no supervisor,” said Christine Mueller, someone who has dedicated a lot of time over the past three and a half years to help revive the climbing wall.

The main group of volunteers was asked if any of them would like to run it and be an employee of the civic centre, which none of them wanted to do. They only wanted to climb.

“Then they came back and said this transition to a paid supervisor is being implemented and if we don’t have a supervisor, we can’t open,” said Mueller.

There was a bunch of scrambling after that to find people who could run the wall, and eventually Chris Ridler and April Link of Outer Coast Outfitters, were hired to supervise. The wall was re-opened on Sept. 29.

“They’re doing a great job. It’s definitely a learning curve for them but I think they’ll be great,” Mueller said.

Rupert Climbing met with the recreation commission after that and voiced their concerns, which included communication and education for city staff on the ground.

The response they got from the commission was more than positive.

“They were community-minded and we got a really good feeling from them in terms of support. They definitely pushed ahead with some of our concerns,” Mueller said.

Despite the September blip in the relationship between the city and the climbing community, Mueller has nothing bad to say about them. Instead, she feels like the city has been supportive and the two sides will continue a positive relationship going forward.

Now that the wall is re-opened and things have been resolved, there’s a new goal in mind: a new climbing wall in its own facility.

The push for a new wall is coming partly due to sharing a space with basketball, badminton and other games.

“There is lots of potential and the city is receptive to it. Now it’s just a matter of let’s formalize our relationship and see how we can make this work,” Muller said.

As it stands, the current wall has very limited potential for anything else because of space on the wall and sharing a facility with other sports. Muller said the climbing group gets booted out regularly.

The climbing community continues to grow in Prince Rupert. When Mueller first got the wall back into commission three-plus years ago, she was sometimes the only one climbing. Now, it’s not uncommon for approximately 20 people to show up on any given night.

Although the climbers’ relationship with the city hit a rough patch, things seem to be on the up and up now, what with rising attendance and talks of a new wall in its own facility.

“Hopefully a new wall is down the road. That’s really what the focus is, continuing a positive relationship and getting a new, dedicated facility. That’s the end game,” Mueller said.

Comments from the City of Prince Rupert were not provided in time for publication.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Wet’suwet’en supporters and Coastal GasLink opponents continue to protest outside the B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Thursday, February 27, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
‘We’re still in it’: Wet’suwet’en push forward on rights recognition

The 670-km Coastal GasLink pipeline was approved by B.C. and 20 elected First Nations councils on its path

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Employers might be able to require COVID-19 vaccination from employees: B.C. lawyer

‘An employer must make the case’ using expert science, explains lawyer David Mardiros

Local health authority maps are updated each week. The brown maps show the number of confirmed and active cases of COVID-19 for the week of Jan. 15 to 21, with the blue map showing cases over the past year. (Image supplied)
COVID-19 outbreak numbers increase at Acropolis and exposures are up in S.D. 52

Business COVID-19 safety plans are law, public needs to follow health protocols - Northern Health

Asher Hauknes shows his strength with Prince Rupert Gymnastics head coach Erin Hipkiss looking on Nov. 13. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
Gymnastics Association benefits from Community Gaming Grant

Prince Rupert sports club to receive just less than $90,000 to build new facility

The COVID-19 outbreak at the two Coastal GasLink workforce lodges has officially been declared over. (Lakes District News file photo)
COVID-19 outbreak at Coastal GasLink worksites declared over

In total, 56 cases were associated with the outbreak in the Burns Lake and Nechako LHAs

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders sits in on a COVID-19 briefing with Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, B.C. minister of health. (Birinder Narang/Twitter)
PHOTOS: Bernie Sanders visits B.C. landmarks through the magic of photo editing

Residents jump on viral trend of photoshopping U.S. senator into images

A woman injects herself with crack cocaine at a supervised consumption site Friday, Jan. 22, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Drug users at greater risk of dying as services scale back in second wave of COVID-19

It pins the blame largely on a lack of supports, a corrupted drug supply

Jennifer Cochrane, a Public Health Nurse with Prairie Mountain Health in Virden, administers the COVID-19 vaccine to Robert Farquhar with Westman Regional Laboratory, during the first day of immunizations at the Brandon COVID-19 vaccination supersite in Brandon, Man., on Monday, January 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Tim Smith - POOL
Top doctor urges Canadians to keep up with COVID measures, even as vaccines roll out

More than 776,606 vaccines have been administered so far

From the left: Midway RCMP Csts. Jonathan Stermscheg and Chris Hansen, Public Servant Leanne Mclaren and Cpl. Phil Peters. Pictured in the front are Mclaren’s dog, Lincoln and Peters’ dog, Angel. Photo courtesy of BC RCMP
B.C. Mounties commended for bringing firewood to elderly woman

Cpl. Phil Peters said he and detachment members acted after the woman’s husband went to hospital

Dr. Jerome Leis and Dr. Lynfa Stroud are pictured at Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto on Thursday, January 21, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
‘It wasn’t called COVID at the time:’ One year since Canada’s first COVID-19 case

The 56-year-old man was admitted to Toronto’s Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

An Uber driver’s vehicle is seen after the company launched service, in Vancouver, Friday, Jan. 24, 2020. Several taxi companies have lost a court bid to run Uber and Lyft off the road in British Columbia. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Taxi companies lose court bid to quash Uber, Lyft approvals in British Columbia

Uber said in a statement that the ruling of the justice is clear and speaks for itself

A 75-year-old aircraft has been languishing in a parking lot on the campus of the University of the Fraser Valley, but will soon be moved to the B.C. Aviation Museum. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Vintage military aircraft moving from Chilliwack to new home at B.C. Aviation Museum

The challenging move to Vancouver Island will be documented by Discovery Channel film crews

A video posted to social media by Chilliwack resident Rob Iezzi shows a teenager getting kicked in the face after being approached by three suspects on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (YouTube/Rob i)
VIDEO: Security cameras capture ‘just one more assault’ near B.C. high school

Third high-school related assault captured by Chilliwack resident’s cameras since beginning of 2021

FILE - In this Feb. 14, 2017, file photo, Oklahoma State Rep. Justin Humphrey prepares to speak at the State Capitol in Oklahoma City. A mythical, ape-like creature that has captured the imagination of adventurers for decades has now become the target of Rep. Justin Humphrey. Humphrey, a Republican House member has introduced a bill that would create a Bigfoot hunting season, He says issuing a state hunting license and tag could help boost tourism. (Steve Gooch/The Oklahoman via AP, File)
Oklahoma lawmaker proposes ‘Bigfoot’ hunting season

A Republican House member has introduced a bill that would create a Bigfoot hunting season

Most Read