Vertical challenges for youth climbers

A young indoor climber goes into a stretch.
A young indoor climber goes into a stretch.
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Young climbers from across Scotland are limbering up for the first major competition of 2015.

Entries are now open for the Youth Climbing Series, which sees youngsters aged from eight to 17 competing at heats in climbing walls around the country, hoping to qualify for the British final in Edinburgh.

Young indoor climbing competitor

Young indoor climbing competitor

Indoor climbing is becoming increasingly popular among young people, providing a great outlet for energy – particularly through the dark months – feeding a thirst for adventure in a controlled environment and helping kids to form links with others in real life, away from the keyboard.

The Youth Climbing Series is run by the Mountaineering Council of Scotland (MCofS), governing body for sport climbing in Scotland, and is a series of fun and friendly competitions which, besides possibly leading to a place on the national team, are a great way for young climbers to meet others with the same interests in their area.

The top three climbers in each age and gender category make up the MCofS regional teams for Scotland North and Scotland South, and will compete with the other regional teams from England, Wales and Ireland at the British Final in April at EICA Ratho, near Edinburgh.

The two regional teams will also make up the Scottish Youth Squad for the year and will receive various benefits including coaching.

The Scottish heats are: round one, February 7 – The Ice Factor, Kinlochleven, and Glasgow Climbing Centre; round two, February 28 – Inverness Leisure, and Avertical World, Dundee; round three, March 21 – Transition Extreme, Aberdeen, and Alien Rock 1, Edinburgh.

The UK and Ireland Grand Final will be held at EICA: Ratho, near Edinburgh, on April 25.

Details of the competition and how to enter can be found at the MCofS website at http://www.mcofs.org.uk/youth-climbing-series.asp

The MCofS acts to represent, support and promote Scottish mountaineering and is the only recognised representative organisation for hill walkers, climbers and ski-tourers who live in Scotland or who enjoy Scotland’s mountains.

It is the national governing body for climbing competitions in Scotland and provides development support and coaching to kids’ clubs, schools and youth organisations with the aim of encouraging the participation of young people in sport climbing.

The MCofS organises and promotes a range of regional and national climbing competitions, with the aim of attracting and motivating young climbers to participate in the sport.

It manages the Scottish climbing and bouldering teams, and contributes to the management of the GB teams, with the ultimate aim of seeing a Scottish athlete achieve a podium position in the Olympic Games.

The MCofS provides training and information to mountain users to promote safety, self-reliance and the enjoyment of our mountain environment and is a membership organisation with over 12,000 members representing hill walkers, climbers and mountaineers, funded through a combination of membership subscriptions, non-governmental grants and investment from sportscotland, which supports public initiatives and services in mountain safety, mountain weather forecasting, mountain training and the development and promotion of mountaineering activities.

The MCofS is a not for profit company limited by guarantee and incorporated in Scotland.

It is based at The Old Granary, West Mill Street, Perth PH1 5QP