Earth Treks Provides Unique, Fun Exercise Opportunity

Math+teacher+Carmen+Tong+practiced+her+climbing+skills+at+Earth+Treks+last+Wednesday+after+teaching+AP+Calculus+and+Algebra+all+day.++Earth+Treks+is+located+on+Rockville+Pike.+--Adam+Bensimhon

Math teacher Carmen Tong practiced her climbing skills at Earth Treks last Wednesday after teaching AP Calculus and Algebra all day. Earth Treks is located on Rockville Pike. --Adam Bensimhon

Math teacher Carmen Tong practiced her climbing skills at Earth Treks last Wednesday after teaching AP Calculus and Algebra all day.  Earth Treks is located on Rockville Pike. --Adam Bensimhon
Math teacher Carmen Tong practiced her climbing skills at Earth Treks last Wednesday after teaching AP Calculus and Algebra all day. Earth Treks is located on Rockville Pike. –Adam Bensimhon

Climbers do not have to travel far to reach 45 feet above the ground; with Earth Treks rock climbing, it can be done in the comfort of Rockville.

Earth Treks, located on Rockville Pike, is a popular hangout amongst RHS staff and students. Math teacher Carmen Tong ventures to the indoor rock climbing arena as often as she can. Tong can no longer play competitive Ultimate Frisbee after getting injured, but has developed a new passion. “I got started rock climbing after a torn ACL injury. I could not do anything with lateral movement. The walls challenge my stamina and endurance,” Tong said.

Spending a day at Earth Treks is $33 including rentals of shoes, a harness, a belay device (which helps control the rope while climbing) and a chalk bag. Earth Treks is open until 10 or 11 p.m. on weeknights, and is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekends. This gives students and teachers a chance to work around their schedules to go in for a climb.

Senior Jack Berrigan is a regular attendee at Earth Treks. After Berrigan’s brother got a membership, he decided to try it. Berrigan said, “Earth Treks is full of nice people and the community is great. It’s different from anything else I have done before.” With a busy football schedule, Berrigan still finds time to climb.

First established in the Washington D.C. area in 1990, three Earth Treks facilities are open in Maryland: one in Columbia, one in Timonium and one in Rockville. The Rockville facility has more than 38,500 square feet of climbing and is approximately 20 percent bigger than the country’s largest gym.

With walls of all different levels of difficulty, Earth Treks is a popular hangout for people of all ages. Earth Treks employee Alex Rivas said, “We have programs for little kids throughout the year, mostly five to 12 year olds. From there we have the daily use people, anywhere from middle school up.”

Rivas recommends that beginners start at a five intro, an easier wall, and work their way up. Filled with vibrant colors, adventurous obstacles and friendly faces; Earth Treks is the place to head for a challenge.