Weekend Review: Back to Aiguille

Posted: January 16, 2012 in Weekend Review

I went back to Aiguille Rock Climbing Center in Longwood for some upper body work. In 2011 we went here on January 7th and I quickly found out that getting 388 pounds in the air was not an easy task. I only managed to make it about fifteen to seventeen feet off the ground and never got to the top of the wall. This pic is from January 2011 at my highest climbing point then.

This weekend I went back with members of our Warrior Dash group to get some practice getting vertical. In just five days we’ll be crawling through mud and over walls, under barbed wire, over cargo nets and leaping over flame. It made sense to go back to Aiguille and work out again. This year was different.

It started out feeling just as difficult as the year before. I tried climbing in my Vibrams and my toes and fingertips gave out quickly. Even 100 pounds lighter and I was still only getting to about 17 feet or so. James offered a bit of advice. He said to point my toes out and step onto each hold with the inside ball of my foot. I put my fear of heights aside and tried to focus on the wall in front of me only. I didn’t look down any further than my feet. I just needed to be able to see what was beneath and around me to step to for each next step. Once I got comfortable with that and trusting the person on the ground belaying me, this happened:

That felt awesome! 30 feet to the top and I made it. I took a short break and went up a different path. Another break and tried a third path. I managed three different paths to the top. This wall has a slight slant and allows a little space between your body and the wall so you can lean back a little to see where to grab onto next. There are some walls that go straight up with no angle. I tried one of those and only got a third of the way up. It’s much more challenging. So now I’ve still got reason to go back and see if I can outdo myself next time.

Here are some pictures of our group climbing and belaying each other during our time at Aiguille.

Starting my climb.

Two thirds of the way up…

Close to the top…


Made it to the top! The only thing left to grab from here was the bar that held the rope.

Jenny ties her figure eight and safety knots and takes a glance upward. It’s a little intimidating.

Lisa and Jenn making their way up.

James, Jenny and Lisa take a moment to discuss a plan of attack.

James helps plan out a good route for Jenny to climb.

Lisa attempts the chimney area where you’re surrounded by three walls and they’ve all got points to grab on to. It’s pretty dark back there.

Aiguille Rock Climbing Center Details


  • What: Aiguille Rock Climbing Center
  • Where: 999 Charles Street; Longwood, FL 32750
  • Hours: They open each day at 10 a.m. and stay open Mon-Thurs until 10 p.m., Fri-Sat until 11p.m., Sun until 9 p.m.
  • Pricing: General admission for the day is $15.00 but there will be equipment rentals to add on to the cost. Check the website for complete pricing.
  • Website: ClimbOrlando.com

St. Jude Support Update

There are only five days left to give. I’m very close to the minimum goal in raising support for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. They asked if we’d raise a minimum of $250 and, while they say $500 for the max goal, I believe they won’t refuse more. As of this moment, I’m $15 away from the minimum goal. I’d love it if you could help me make that possible. I’ll be talking more about charities I’m planning to support each quarter of 2012 and how you can help. For now, let’s help St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Please help if you can by clicking on this image link below:

Coming Up

I hope everyone had a great weekend! Come by throughout the week for a great pulled pork recipe this week, updates on my road BACK to Warrior Dash and links to great content around the web. Only five days remain until I return to the place where it all started! Stay with me!


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