Climbing brings sexy back

Round triceps, curvaceous shoulders, plump biceps, and those lusty pecks aren’t so easy to acquire simply by lifting weights at the dull gym. Real, fit men and women only go to one place to get a challenging yet fun workout: the climbing gym. Three miles south of Ames, Wall-Nut Creek Climbing Gym offers a variety of climbing walls for climbers of any experience, as well as instructional classes. Covered with rock walls everywhere you look, Wall-Nut Creek may be a little chilly during this time of year, but that should not take away from one’s climbing experience. It is a sport that requires a combination of skill, concentration, and a lot of core strength. The only way to excel is to practice and learn through trial and error. After opening in 1994, the gym has since changed names and management. Current owner Ashley Burton has been leading the renovation process that’s been in process for the past two to three years. “I took over the gym from [friend] Matt Reber who originally opened the place,” Burton said. “Since then, we’ve added a basement and installed padding on the ground and are undergoing further improvements.” Before that, laid out mattresses were used as cushion for a fall. No need to worry too much, though. “There haven’t been any major injuries for the past six years or so,” Burton said. “You get the occasional ankle sprain, but nothing serious.” When climbing to tall heights, harness and ropes are used as support. Rock climbing equipment such as chalk, shoes, harness, and a delay device are available for rent. Wall-Nut Creek sells any kind of gear out of catalogs, complete with necessary advice from the staff. “Our busiest season is actually the wintertime, when climbers have nowhere else to go,” Burton said. He may recommend coming in during the weekend, as the weeknights are a more popular time. Besides the two rock climbing classes, Intro and Lead, he also instructs an outdoor survival workshop. Rates start at $5 for the first hour, plus an additional dollar for every consecutive hour. Monthly passes and punch cards are also available. Wall-Nut Creek Climbing Gym is located on 27385 530th Ave, and is open all days besides Sunday. So instead of playing a boring game of chess or something, hop on down for a climb!