Rock climbing becoming a draw for Las Vegas

LAS VEGAS - It's not just entertainment on the Las Vegas Strip drawing people to southern Nevada anymore. Outdoor activities like rock climbing are bringing more people to the valley, according to an economic report just released.

"It's really fun because you tend to get into the zone sometimes and forget how high up you are and what you're doing," said Matt Christie, a climber.

He got into rock climbing about two years and likes to spend time training at Origin Climbing & Fitness in Henderson.

He hopes to reach new heights at Red Rock Canyon when the weather starts to cool down in about a month.

"The rock there, to me, is my favorite kind of rock," he said. "It's got this awesome kind of sandstone where it's really super smooth, but also really grippy which is a real hard thing to find."

He's not alone, according to an economic report. The Mountain Gear Red Rock Rendezvous three-day event helped bring in $1 million to the local economy this year.

"We're in the middle of a huge boom in the climbing industry," said John Wilder, Origin Climbing & Fitness.

That's just the jumping off point for businesses like Origin. They're seeing more people coming to town to climb at Red Rock Canyon.

"The red the white and the black and just the type of climbing here. It's very long routes up to 3,000 feet long and accessible and moderate so you don't have to be a super hero to come climb here," Wilder said.

The challenging training for many includes free climbing, bouldering as well as roped climbing.

"When you have those moments of clarity," Christie said. "It's this small and I'm standing 200 feet up the air." 

It's a feeling like no other that has rock climbers eyeing Las Vegas for their next adventure.
 

 


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