Despite the continuation of the pandemic and the effects it had on the ability to lead new trips, the climbing committee found a way to connect and get outdoors.
In January/February, our leadership group put together a number of ice climbing trips to Stony Clove Notch in the Catskills and Chapel Pond in the Adirondacks. Our co-Chair, RJ Lau, hosted committee leaders and AMC members from other chapters at his ski lodge in Colorado for much of the winter, allowing some of us to get together and enjoy the ski season out west.
As gyms reopened and restrictions began to lift across the Northeast, the chapter was able to resume its previous activities.
In May, Anthony Leong led the annual AMC Climbing Leaders Refresh workshop assisted by Yan Cheng and Sheryl Choo. Over the course of a weekend, current and prospective leaders in the NY/NoJ chapter camped out at the AAC campsite in New Paltz and refreshed their skills. Participants practiced leading trips, reviewing critical safety considerations when climbing outdoors, and teaching others technical skills.
In June and July, the climbing committee helped volunteer at the new Hanging Mountain climbing area in Sandisfield, MA. We cleared boulders, assembled stairways, and joined forces with other committees for a greater objective. The committee also ran a couple outdoor toprope events, including one during the AMC Harriman picnic in July.
In August, the climbing committee co-chairs, RJ Lau and Stephen Greer invited eager and adventurous climbers out west to take part in a climb of the Grand Tetons in Jackson Hole, WY. Over the course of the week, the AMC spent time exploring climbing locations, meeting some of the local climbing nonprofits, and forging new relationships for our chapter. The team summited the Grand Teton and even saw Jimmy Chin on the way down!
While the co-chairs were away, Sarabeth Brockley and Yan Cheng held down the fort in NYC, attending the Global Climbing Day at our home gym, The Cliffs in Long Island City. There they also met Jimmy Chin (busy guy!) and represented our chapter, inviting new members to climb.
September was a big month. It started with an AMC-hosted premier of The Alpinist at the AMC Theater Kips Bay in NYC. Then co-chair RJ Lau led two trips to Seneca Rocks and the New River Gorge in West Virginia on consecutive weekends. What an animal! Stephen Greer hosted two gym events at the cliffs for the first time since the start of the pandemic, inviting newer climbers to join and meet the group.
The climbing committee has accomplished a lot more in 2021 than we originally thought possible given the constraints we saw in January. We’re excited to build on this momentum and make 2022 one to truly remember.