Breakfast and Bouldering

No lights, no customers, no one at the desk…heaven

One of the great things about being in my position is that you are constantly in the right spot to make quality connections in the outdoor industry.  I am constantly meeting active outdoor athletes through my work.  Let’s face it – working for Eastern Mountain Sports immediately puts you into the pipeline for climbing partners, ski buddies, etc.

In addition to EMS friends, you are often introduced to friends of EMS friends.  These friends normally share many of the attributes of your EMS friends, but are not part of the retail company.  Many of them, however, work in other facets of the outdoor industry giving you access to views and perks you might not otherwise see.  For example, I have gotten to know my fair share of ski instructors, lifties, climbing guides, and rock gym employees.  Between these semi diverse groups there are several different benefits.     
The atmosphere is best described as casual
The friends of EMS friends are where you can really reap the rewards of fraternizing in the outdoor industry.  The problem with EMS friends is that they share all the same perks as you and bring little else to the table other than availability and good company (not bad things).  Other friends, however, have things like ski privileges, different discounts, and, in this case and most importantly, keys to a rock gym.  
My friend Paul works at Central Rock Gym a few mornings a week, and proposed a breakfast and bouldering session earlier this fall: he opens the gym a few hours early for a few select people to climb, and the only stipulation is that you have to bring coffee or breakfast food.  It is a great chance to climb early in the day without the gym being full.  It is also a chance for a small group of friends to enjoy some quiet, climbing, and coffee.  
No crowds in the cave, life is sweet
Breakfast and bouldering had disappeared over the last two months due to conflicting schedules, good outdoor conditions, and a general laziness (waking up early is hard), but a late night call on Wednesday said that we were bringing it back for a pre-holiday session.  It ended up being the perfect way to start the day: great friends and a great time and I am glad to have gotten out of bed early enough to attend.  It was a good way to blow off some holiday steam and catch up with some buddies before Christmas.  I am hopeful we can continue with breakfast bouldering going into the new year.