The Rock climbing community in Dehradun is growing rapidly and we can't contain our excitement. It has been a year since our first workshop and now, we proudly can say we have a growing community with climbers coming back for advanced workshops, attending rock climbing fests and some who have even proceeded to buy their own gear!
We have faced lockdowns, rains, heat and lots of obstacles, but the dream of having a community climb within Dehrdaun has finally become a reality. With people coming from all corners of Dehradun and some even from Haridwar, we have to say it's been an exciting journey.
Here are some stories of the new climbers :
Nehika: A pahadi by birth, she was always into trekking and mountains from childhood, being surrounded by them. But she had no clue about rock climbing until a mutual friend told her about us and the climbing scene in Dehradun.
Since her Basic Mountaineering course was still a few months away, she decided to reach out and joined us in our top rope workshop a couple of months ago and there was no stopping here. From top rope to lead-climbing workshop, she did it all. She now knows rappelling and even assisted us during our workshop for kids.
Surprisingly, it was the reflection session after the workshop that did it for her, she said. She enjoyed the community, the talks and the fact that everyone did have each other's back for good. Climbing came naturally, and sensing the community aspect she kept coming back.
Soon she came back for the Lead Climbing workshop and she says, "Right when I told Yash I want to try lead climbing, his question was, are you ready for it?" She thought so and she did it. And now she is one of the climbers, who comes to Doon from Haridwar every other weekend to climb.
She joined us at Dhauj, for the Grit Fest there and even came to Manali to climb with us.
So, it is safe to say, from being clueless about it a few months back, she now is an independent climber, travelling to do the same!
Shubam: Shubam did his first trek in 2014 and ever since outdoor sports have been his thing. His true form of happiness. So, for the next six years, he did all treks just looking for that fulfilling feeling. But it was only in 2020 that he developed a thing to do a trek every month just to get out of all the societal barriers. "Then I started going on treks more frequently and that is when my friend Rajat introduced me to the basic mountaineering course," he says.
"That was a big thing for me because I never thought there can be a course that will teach you how to trek. At that time trekking was just hiking my way through the trails, there was no technical part to it. Then I started reading about these technical things and that is when I applied for this mountaineering course."
But since he had time before it so he and Rajat started training for the course. After training for a month, they realised they should also be focusing on the technical part, that is when they started searching online for people teaching these techniques near Dehradun. And then they came to know about Beyond the Wall.
"Our first climbing session with Beyond the Wall was in December and as it was my first climbing session, I was really excited about it. These three guys Yash, Himanshu and Ayush provided us with the best experience that anyone could think of. They were so excited and passionate to teach us and created an atmosphere where even we started feeling that excitement. I think if it wasn't for the way I was introduced to climbing I wouldn't have been so interested in it till now. These guys provided us with the best first-time experience. And then with session after session, my love for climbing started increasing and now it is my escape kind of thing, when I climb it is like a meditative state for me."
"I think the main pillar of this community in Doon three (Yash Himanshu and Ayush), are totally different yet so in sync kind of guys. They know what they are doing and they know where they want to take it and according to my experience, it is a very rare thing to find."
About this community, he says, "They helped each and every one of us to connect to each other through a very different kind of bond, a bond that we have never experienced so it was like a very new thing for us, everyone was trusting the stranger with the cost of their life and I was like how and why is this happening."
It was like a few mad people who have a common passion for a thing started pursuing that thing together and in that process developed a strong bond with each other and no one knew how. I never realized that we are building a community, I was just there to enjoy my weekend and I'm really happy the way it worked out!
Rachit: His story is a true example of how fear of heights is not a deterrent to rock climbing but could be the motivation to do it! After finishing his basic mountaineering course in September 2021, he felt uncomfortable on the rocks.
'Whether it was walking on moraine or actually climbing rock faces there was something that made me uneasy. Over the years somehow I've developed a fear of heights and I knew if I didn't tackle this problem it would hinder my future mountaineering endeavours. Hence I thought I should find a place or people to climb within Doon.'
As he started searching for an organisation/people to climb with he found Beyond The Wall's website and enrolled on a workshop.
And after his first workshop with us, there was no looking back. "I continue to climb with them because of the learning environment that they provide. I can always request for a particular skill to be taught or explained, for example on my request we once had a full day dedicated to rappelling and the various setups one can use to rappel based on the availability of devices. I also feel that both Himanshu and Yash are very patient and this helps amateur climbers like me take their time on a route, there's no hurry."
But one of the most important factors to consider in the outdoors was answered with this, "I feel safe with them, whenever we're trying something new or just climbing, there's no doubt in my mind that our safety is taken care of."
Anmol: He was one of our first participants, who joined us on our top rope workshop a year ago and ever since has kept coming back to help us as a volunteer whenever we needed help during our workshops. From handling the rope, belaying and helping us during bouldering, he has been a constant support since the beginning.
"So, I came in Oct 2020 for the first time. As lockdown had kept me in for a long time, I wanted to do something new so tried it. I joined coz of Himanshu da. I knew him from before and since he started this company Beyond The Wall, I went for it.
My first experience was really amazing. It sure wasn't all easy, there were some challenging ones as well but I loved it. I enjoyed the challenge much more. And the way both Yash Bhai and Himanshu da introduced me to the sport, made me want to stick to it and keep coming back."
He was one of the first participants we encouraged to come back and volunteer to belay other participants and help us around. He soon kept coming back to try different routes so I joined them more often.
Now he is looking forward to learning more and joining us in the Gritfest and other places in future.
He was a born climber, having climbed all five routes at the beginners' area with ease in his first workshop itself. He then came back to assist us in belaying for other beginner workshops and has been showing up ever since.
"I love being outdoor. Most of the time in my whole life was spent being outdoor on different treks and travel."
But he always wanted to upgrade his skills and activities. After quitting his IT job in Mumbai, he came to Dehradun. He was searching for an outdoor activities group or community in Dehradun. "While I was on a cycling trail I saw a poster of a rock climbing workshop by Beyond the Wall in a cafe. I searched for them on the internet, read about all their activities and details."
Soon he contacted us and checked about our upcoming workshop on rock climbing but unfortunately due to office work he couldn't join.
But somehow, after a few months, he met us on the cleanup Drive, where we spoke and checked about the rock climbing workshop and fixed the date. "This time I didn't want to miss this workshop and an opportunity to join this beautiful community. On the scheduled date I went for the workshop. After that workshop, I couldn't stop thinking about Rock climbing. The way the workshop was conducted, I immediately got connected with two beautiful energies Yash and Himanshu, they are very very professional in their work, they have amazing teaching techniques."
Having started climbing at a young age, she was in the first standard when she climbed first at a school summer camp. Of course, it didn't continue, life and career came in. But during the first lockdown, the submerged memory of climbing came back and she started looking for people to climb with. She met with two people who were doing rock climbing commercially and clung to them to climb frequently.
A year later, she came across Beyond The Wall, where she joined us for a bouldering session with a mutual friend and ever since has been a regular at Purkul. Every weekend she rides a scooty across town from one corner to the other to boulder
She has now slowly started buying her own equipment and is looking forward to climbing and exploring more places while climbing.
So, what are you waiting for? Join the ever-growing community where everyone has your back (literally and figuratively) and spend your weekends in the midst of nature. Climb hard!
For information contant us here.