Robert Patterson takes a practice technical climb at The Boulders. The Central-Saanich based facility is hosting a regional youth competition over the long weekend.

Central Saanich climbing gym hosts youth regionals

This Easter long weekend will see the world-class facility hosts its first major competition — Youth Western Regionals.

The Boulders Climbing Gym society said if you build it, they will come.

The promise was fulfilled as the gym announced it will host World Youth Climbing Championships in August, 2013.

This Easter long weekend will see a warm-up as the world-class facility hosts its first major competition — Youth Western Regionals.

What Kimanda Jarzebiak calls the “biggest outdoor stage in Victoria” will be filled with climbers for the weekend.

B.C. climber Sean McColl, who finished the world cup season second overall, will be coming from France to compete.

“It’s great for our climbers to see these top athletes in our facility,” said Jarzebiak, chair of the Boulders Climbing Gym Society.

Spectators are welcome to gather in the field at Stelly’s secondary to watch as climbers compete in two disciplines: speed and technical climbing.

Speed tends to be popular with spectators, Jarzebiak said. Two climbers tackle a 15-metre route with a four-degree overhang. The route is the same around the world, meaning it can create a world record, which currently sits at 6.26 seconds. The Boulders record is 10.54 seconds held by Robert Stewart Patterson who comes with sister Alison from Kamloops to train at the Central Saanich gym.

Students from across Greater Victoria and as far off as South Africa also made the move to the school this year as Stelly’s started its climbing academy in September.

The first climbing gym at Stelly’s was built in the mid 1990s, and the facility grew to its current 4,500 square feet of space in the summer of 2005. With demand far outweighing the space, Boulders broke ground last spring on the expansion.When it opened late last year, the total build cost turned out to be $3 million.

“We are still $352,000 short,” Jarzebiak said. But there are a couple of naming rights remaining, including one wall and the yoga-dance studio.

The old gym will still be used for classes and is mid-renovations to create more teaching space.

“We’ve got amazing bouldering, teaching space, and then when they progress, this is here for them,” Jarzebiak said.

The facility includes 5,000 square feet more of climbing space at a 60-foot height and more difficult terrain in a new hangar at the back of the old gym.

The entire south wall opens to provide an outdoor experience, allow for fresh air and accommodate crowds of spectators during competition.

Regionals run April 6 to 8 at the climbing wall at the Boulders Climbing Gym, 1627 Stelly’s Crossroad Rd. in Central Saanich.

See the competition schedule online at


Just Posted

Major expansion coming to Royal Bay Secondary

Province will build space for 600 more students on same site

Colwood wins Victoria Flower Count for a five-peat

The 43rd annual Flower Count had over three billion blossoms counted in total

West Shore municipalities eye mass notification system

System would send out info via text, email or phone call in an emergency

Moving fire dispatch services will save taxpayers thousands, say mayors

Transition will save about $1.5 million over the next five years

One World Performance and Expo returns to the McPherson Playhouse

The annual event has been presented for nearly 40 years

Vancouver Island’s Best Videos of the Week

A look at some of the best video stories from the past week ending March 16, 2018

Salmon Arm community cheers on Natalie Wilkie as she wins first gold medal

Local skier tops the podium in 7.5km race at the PyeongChang Paralympics

Experts: Society has a role in trying to prevent domestic violence

Experts are speaking out following the murder of a woman and her son in Ontario

Women’s Expo seeks to empower women

Victoria Women’s Expo set for Saturday and Sunday at Pearkes Recreation Centre

Northern lights chasers in Canada discover new type named ‘Steve’

Phenomenon linked to a powerful current created by charged particles in Earth’s upper atmosphere

Progress on fixing Phoenix pay system backlog could be short-lived: Ottawa

Feds have said they won’t try to recover money overpaid until all outstanding issues are fixed

Washington state backs B.C. in pipeline dispute

Governor Jay Inslee says he is ‘allied’ with the province on Trans Mountain expansion projection

Dead rabbits found at Comox Valley Exhibition Grounds stoke concerns about Nanaimo virus

A B.C. wildlife veterinarian says a few of the dead bunnies will be sent for diagnosis next week.

SAY WHAT? Readers weigh in on high-speed rail to U.S.

B.C. to contribute $300,000 to a million-dollar business study on the proposed project

Most Read