Hi, my name is Andrew, and I'm the supervisor of the Ketchikan Afterschool Program, part of Residential Youth Care, Inc. Ketchikan is a small town in Alaska's southeast region situated amongst some of the most amazing wilderness. It's my passion to teach the skills one needs to be safe in the midst of true adventure. I've been a climber and backpacker most of my life, and I've worked as a guide and instructor. This project is close to my heart because of what climbing has done for me, and how it can be part of the effort to lift our community out of historically pronounced trends in suicide, domestic violence, and alcoholism. I've designed and built this wall with help of the kids what are looking forward to learning how to climb. I have purchased some of the materials myself and volunteered some of my time to build and paint the wall. I believe our kids deserve this kind of dedication, and I wouldn't be asking you to do something that I myself am not willing to do. "WE" are the difference. I've got it this far, and now I'm asking for help to finish it.
What We've Accomplished
The wall is a 40'x 10' free-standing modular bouldering wall- It can grow with our climbing program! Both front and back surfaces are climbable (80 linear feet of climbing surface). It has an 8' section of 20 degree overhanging climbing (slab; backside), and the rest of the wall is vertical. There are four dihedrals and three aretes as well. We purchased over 40 10' 2x6, 14 sheets of 3/4 plywood. Primer and paint, 1,500 T-nuts and bolts, and 80 hours of labor ( including volunteer time). We've also been awarded a small grant to purchase climbing shoes which we hope arrive in the next few weeks. All of this was outside of our budget and that is why we're asking for help. 100% of every cent donated goes directly to the climbing program- materials and equipment! Your donating directly to the youth and community bod Ketchikan.
We serve middle school-aged youth as well as offer programs like this to high school youth. Part of our goal is to help grow a more active community and build a more substantial climbing wall in the future. Our bouldering wall will be open to the greater Ketchikan community as well- you will have regular access to this wall. Ultimately I would like to see our program leading outdoor climbing and backpacking trips.
What We Need
The wall is built and awaiting these items! We need climbing holds and crash pads. We have been given a quote for 500 quality holds of various sizes for $5,440.76 (includes shipping). This amount of holds will allow for adequate coverage for training and quality bouldering routes, and though it may seem like a lot but with 800 sq. feet of climbing surface this order is just a start. I've worked for a few years in a climbing gym, and cheap holds do not last very long, so we need to invest in quality holds.
We will make our own crash pads (sewing is one of our after-school workshops), which consist of two types of foam (6" open cell foam and 1" gym rubber) and heavy-weight nylon fabric. We will build 3 80"x 54" pads. The foam will cost $1,100, and the nylon and thread $450. And all of this will have Alaska shipping costs.
This wall will be the only indoor climbing opportunity for our community that is free for youth. We will offer day passes and memberships on a donation basis to the general community. We will also provide full instruction to ensure our climbers stay healthy and safe. For those who live in Ketchikan or will visit, your donation will count as a membership.
A climbing practice builds strength and confidence, things our Alaskan youth can't have too much of. Alaska is a challenging place to live. I envision this program providing more excitement and motivation to go outside and experience the amazing Alaskan landscape. Personally, I need climbing partners and I would be interested in partnering with local climbers in this project.....
Thanks for considering our program.