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The Skiff Orientation Edition: Welcome, Class of 28!
The Skiff Orientation Edition: Welcome, Class of '28!
By Georgie London, Staff Writer
Published May 13, 2024
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TCU’s first on-campus rock climbing competition to take place this weekend

Photo courtesy of Sam Tippetts.
Photo courtesy of Sam Tippetts.
Photo courtesy of Sam Tippetts.

TCU’s rock climbing team is hosting its first climbing competition Sunday, Dec. 4.

Participants will climb multiple new routes. Each route has points associated with it and more points are given for more difficult routes. Competitors will take their five best scores and add them up for a chance to win.

Participants will be competing for a prize that has yet to be revealed, and all competitors will receive a t-shirt and pizza.

“One of our goals was to have a climbing competition because that’s something that we like to do, is go to other schools and compete,” said one of the vice presidents of the rock climbing team, Joel Watts.

Watts said he has been climbing for approximately two and a half years. He works at the TCU Recreation Center as an adventure trip leader as a staff member for the rock wall. He is also in charge of creating the new climbing routes for the competition.

“I just want people to like the routes and I want the routes to be, you know, appropriate grading and stuff like that because that’s kinda the main focus of a climbing competition is how the routes are,” Watts said. “But honestly, I just want it to be fun and I just want people to have a good time.”

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One of the participants in this weekend’s competition is junior film and strategic communication double major Sam who has a passion for climbing.

Tippetts first started climbing after coming to TCU and joining the rock climbing team.  Tippetts became an adventure trip leader, which allows him to lead excursions that offer a variety of outdoor experiences such as backpacking, kayaking, canoeing and rock climbing.

Tippets said he enjoys climbing outside more since climbing inside is more for training purposes.

“There’s definitely like an adrenaline factor to it, but I don’t think that’s the main reason I climb but kind of pushing yourself to your mental limits and your physical limits is pretty fun,” said Tippetts.

For Tippetts, he said climbing isn’t just about that adrenaline rush. He said one of the main reasons he climbs, besides his love for it, is the community he has found through the sport. He said he’s unsure how much time he actually spends by the rock wall because a lot of the times he is hanging out with his friends there.

“The thing is, is like there’s such a community here — I know everyone so even if I’m done climbing, I’ll just kind of hang out or I’ll hang out in between climbs and stuff,” he said.

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