In the beginning of June, my neighbour Lars, who’s a climber, asked me if I wanted to join him and a couple of friends to go climbing in either Scania or Blekinge. Initially the plan was to drive down to the wall the evening before, and spend the night in a tent. Unfortunately we didn’t do that, but drove early in the morning instead.
The goal was Köpegårda in Blekinge, close to the ocean between Karlshamn and Ronneby.
I’ve only climbed a couple of times before, indoors when I was 17-18 years old. I’ve wanted to start climbing for a long time, but I haven’t got around to it, and I’ve also had a terrible fear of heights.
It was roughly a one hour drive to Köpegårda, and we arrived around 8 am. We were the first to get there. Lars friend Marcus, and Jamie from Ireland where driving from Lund.
Köpegårda is a small wall, but there are several routes, and anchors at the top. Lars and I looked up the routes on 27Crags and choose Rulrännan, a grade 5. We secured the top rope and Lars taught me the basics and went through the safety part. I borrowed both a harness and shoes from him, as he recently upgraded his gear and had spare gear.
More and more climbers came to the walls A young couple from Kalmar, a group of teens from Karlskrona climbing club and a guide with another young couple. Eventually Marcus and Jamie arrived too.
There were ropes on a lot of routes. This was a good thing, as we could easily try new routes. I also enjoyed having instructors there who could give me advice and help me with routes from the ground.
After a while people started dropping off, and eventually our group was the only one left. Marcus was setting up a team for a trip to Mount Ushba in Georgia later this year. He showed us techniques to rescue yourself and others if someone would fall down a crevasse. I started to remember some things I learned when I was a volunteer firefighter a few years back, and used a sling around my harness and the rope to be able to pull the person up while only using the legs.
Climbing was really fun, and it’s definitely a hobby I’ll pick up. I discovered that I’ve conquered most of my fear of heights. I trust the equipment, and as long as I’m focused on the wall I’m not afraid.
Now I’m gonna start packing. Tonight I’m going to take my youngest daughter on her first overnight trip.