Climbing is Popular in Boston! Duh

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Francesca Metcalf, 22, of Newton climbs on a bouldering wall at Central Rock Gym in Watertown on Monday, July 27, 2015. (Wicked Local Staff Photo/Brett Crawford)
Francesca Metcalf, 22, of Newton climbs on a bouldering wall at Central Rock Gym in Watertown on Monday, July 27, 2015. (Wicked Local Staff Photo/Brett Crawford)

“If there isn’t an indoor climbing wall in your town, take a deep breath. By the time you exhale there is a good chance a new gym will be opening up right around the corner.” That’s what Wicked Local – Maynard had to say in a recent article highlighting the growth of climbing gyms in the Boston metro area.

“Climbing has grown exponentially,” said Pat Enright, owner of MetroRock Climbing Center. “I have been climbing for 25 years and when I first started there was probably only about 40-50 gyms in the entire country, and a lot of them were kind of small. When we first opened in 2004 that number had doubled.” Since then, Enright has opened two more gyms and plan on opening a third. Nationwide, there are more than 400 rock gyms. Enright, who opened the first MetroRock gym in Everett in 2004, has played a key role in the sport’s popularity locally.

The Maynard article is just one of many write ups, not only on the popularity of the sport, but also on the feasibility of selling climbing to the masses.

Another chain of gyms, Central Rock Gym, is expanding at an even faster rate. Their first gym opened in Worcester in 2010, and has since added locations in Hadley, Cambridge, Watertown, Randolph and Glastonbury, Connecticut.
“We are adding about one gym a year, climbing is certainly one of the fastest growing sports in America,” said Kevin Pickren, general manager of Central Rock’s Watertown location.