Students to fund scuba trip with climbing wall

Terrace residents will get a chance to try out the climbing wall at the Caledonia Gym on April 20 and 21

Terrace residents will get a chance to try out the climbing wall at the Caledonia Gym on April 20 and 21.

The Cal Crag wall, years in the making, was completed at the end of last year thanks to the support of community groups and the tenacity of Cal gym teacher Benjamin Mattheis.

Now, he and his students are opening the wall to the public by donation for two days in order to raise money for a scuba diving trip in mid-May.

“We have a big trip planned for May 17 in Prince Rupert,” Mattheis said. “We are going to go scuba diving and kayaking for the day. The students have loved the scuba program this year and are very excited to go.”

The ocean dive is part of the first half of the scuba course, which some students plan to follow all the way to the end.

“The students learn how to use the equipment, prepare for emergency situations,” he said, noting they also learn how to control their buoyancy and take care of a buddy who is out of air.

The class is hoping the weekend of climbing will raise $1,500 for the scuba trip. The wall will be open April 20 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and April 21 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. It’s the same weekend as the trades show at the Sportsplex, but Mattheis hopes that means families in town will use this as a fun weekend activity.

The class has accumulated hours of experience on the wall, earning their belay cards and will be on hand to assist the public. The climbing harnesses are for 40 lbs and up, and children need to be accompanied by an adult.

Shoes are also necessary, with a limited selection of shoes sizes 7-12 available at the gym, but kids should bring their own pair of clean shoes. Helmets will be provided, but are not required.