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Feb 3, 2011
First off, I'm going to put it out there that the climbing gym guys (and gals) at the CSU climbing tower have never been anything but friendly and helpful. I am happy to have a nice set-up to visit.

But, damn, those routes are TOUGH. By which I mean to say, -rated- tough. I'm a solid 5.10 climber outdoors, and can usually hack a 5.10c/d with a take or a fall or two. By no means am I a super-beast or anything, but I don't totally suck, either. The CSU routes crush me. They consistently feel WAY harder than they are rated. I couldn't make it past the opening 4 moves on a "5.10" there this evening (on TR no less!).

I guess being 18-22 years old helps with the burly-factor...Oh to be young again... Perhaps I'll just hang my head and lick my wounded ego...

J Marsella
From Berthoud, CO
Joined Jul 3, 2010
1,920 points
Feb 4, 2011
Hey John, I can't really say anything about the CSU ratings as I live in AZ and have not climbed there. I can say that I have had this same experience at almost every artificial rock wall. I've just come to accept that I climb better outside or on actual rock than I do inside or artificial rock. To be honest I'm really fine with this. Indoor climbing is mostly just training for the real thing anyways right? Chris Bastek
Joined Sep 23, 2008
36 points
Feb 4, 2011
Hey John I would have to disagree for me personally at least. I lead a 5.10a/b outdoors and can top rope a little higher than that, but I can run laps on every 10 and even get as high as 11+ in that gym. I started climbing outdoors and am only using the gym as a training aid, but I guess you are lucky because outside is what really matters. If you are leading at that level outdoors and cannot do the routes in that gym I you just have a natural ability to climb outdoors I suppose. Lucky you! Forsty Forsthoff
From Fort Collins, CO
Joined Jul 14, 2010
1 points
Feb 4, 2011
-10 for complaining about gym ratings outloud. Mike Anderson
From Colorado Springs, CO
Joined Nov 15, 2004
3,290 points
Feb 4, 2011
It's a proven fact that you will climb harder if you take your shirt off. Perhaps it's that gym's shirt policy that is holding you back. Tom R
From Denver, CO
Joined Sep 14, 2008
157 points
Feb 4, 2011
Mike Anderson wrote:
-10 for complaining about gym ratings outloud.

Will Butler
From Boulder, CO
Joined Sep 6, 2005
78 points
Feb 4, 2011
Tom R wrote:
It's a proven fact that you will climb harder if you take your shirt off. Perhaps it's that gym's shirt policy that is holding you back.

you can go up a full number grade if your shirtless with a beenie!!
R. Moran
From Moab , UT
Joined Mar 18, 2009
144 points
Feb 5, 2011
I know a few people who can sip beers after a casual day on the Naked Edge, and yet they still struggle up 9's and 10's in a gym. It's just different climbing. Ratings will always be different.

As for the policies, you have more of an influence on Rec Center policy change than the staff does. Persuasion of executive mgmt. at the Rec Center will only be possible by the student members.

If you go to their facebook page there's a discussion tab for feedback. The staff hold no egos about the routes they set, it would mean a lot to them if you left your 2 cents.

CSU-Climbing Wall
Nathan McBride
From Boulder
Joined Jan 10, 2007
17 points
Feb 5, 2011
Part of it is that the setters and graders know each hold very well, so the process of testing each hold to find the best spot is eliminated entirely. Additionally, they know at what angles to pull on each hold. Consider the grade to be the "redpoint" grade, and act accordingly. Petsfed
From Laramie, WY
Joined Mar 12, 2002
1,246 points
Feb 6, 2011
Rayna wrote:
As someone who's climbed indoors and outdoors for numerous years and at different gym's around the country I can tell you that the climbs at CSU Pueblo are sub par and are difficult because they have NO FEET and the routes do not flow well. Their holds are also polished to death. I'm sure that doesn't help. I'd recommend climbing at a different gym (cityrock in Colorado Springs has some good rope routes and if you're into bouldering the sport center is more bouldering centered)to get a feel of what a gym should feel like. The routes at CSU Pueblo require you to pull on your arms the entire way. Sure you can get to the top, but doing one arm pull ups while smearing your feet is not climbing. ( I guess at times it is, but it's not 5.9 climbing). In your case, it should feel easier to climb outside, most of the climbs in southern Colorado are less than/about vertical and you can get a lot of the weight off your arms and onto your feet. This isn't the case at the CSU-P gym. Unfortunately, I've found this to be the case at most college gym's as the setters tend to be good climbers but have little experience setting. No offense to the setters at CSU but being a great climber does not equal being a great route setter.

The OP was talking about CSU Fort Collins...
From Laramie, WY
Joined Mar 12, 2002
1,246 points
Feb 6, 2011

I can't believe that folks climb the edge and struggle on indoor 9's....just too much to swallow. I would have to see it to believe it!
Jim Gloeckler
From Denver, Colo.
Joined Jul 7, 2004
47 points
Feb 6, 2011
Climbing on plastic is almost a different sport. Most routes are vertical to overhanging, you pinch a lot more, feet are way bigger, holds in general are bigger, and everything is low-texture. Setters routinely concoct ridiculous sequences to make things "interesting" or "fun", or make cruxes dependent on hucking dynos. Setters rarely add many, if any, extraneous holds that can serve as intermediates, sucker holds, or alternate sequences. You're pretty restricted to using the feet they set, as the walls themselves rarely offer realistic smearing, or alternative options. I've done a dozen toe hooks in a single gym session and maybe 3 outdoors in 20 years. Heel to hand matches and bicycle moves, ditto.

This was reinforced to me last week when I climbed on plastic for the first time in over a year, after climbing outside 3-5 days a week during that year. When I trained on plastic every week, I didn't notice it as much and would routinely send a V-grade harder on plastic than it's the other-way round and I don't think it has anything to do with ratings, just what I'm tuned into.
Will S
From Joshua Tree
Joined Nov 15, 2006
1,377 points
Feb 7, 2011
Hey everybody. Before I get started, some full disclosure. I run the the CSU Climbing Wall Facebook page and work at the wall. With that out of the way, I'd like to say that on behalf of the staff at the wall, we are all stoked to see feedback from you about the gym and the routes/problems we set. Without you guys there would be no climbing wall. Indoor climbing is indeed inherently different than outdoor, occasionaly featuring moves you'd never see outside. The gym provides an opportunity to do some crazy stuff that just isn't possible with real rock, and we try to take advantage of that, with the overall goal being fun!

All of us appreciate constructive criticism or a pat on the back for routes you think suck, or the ones you love. I would encourage those on this forum who use facebook to check out our climbing wall page CSU Climbing Wall as Nathan mentioned above. It is our prime mode of communication to our climbers and features weekly updates on routes, problems and general happenings in the gym. We also have a discussion tab for route/problem requests and general comments/suggestions. If you're not a fan of facebook and want to continue the discussion on mountain project don't worry, we'll keep an eye on things here as well. End of shameless plug.

I'll end this with one more request. If you just hate technology all together, don't be afraid to talk to our wall staff during our shifts. We may smell funny, but we're really not that scary once you get to know us. Thank you all for the feedback and continued support.

- The CSU Climbing Wall Staff
Tyler Henderson
From Fort Collins, CO
Joined Feb 7, 2011
5 points
Feb 7, 2011
+1 Nate for folks telling the RecCenter how much they do or don't like the various rules (shoes, shirts, chalk, etc).

Tyler is right, we're all pretty approachable and grateful for constructive criticism so come and chat. Though I'd like to add that the aforementioned funny smell is here to stay and not up for debate.

Lastly, John if that cursed 5.10 you're talking about is yellow or orange and to the right of the arch I can only offer sympathy, she doesn't like me either...

Fea (one of the "climbing gym gals")
Joined Aug 15, 2010
0 points

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