Gauteng Climbing was born in 2009 out of a need to grow the sport of climbing in our province.
Initially only primary schools had competitions, Crawford Lonehill Prep, St John’s Prep, Heron Bridge and St Peters Prep. They organised these competitions between themselves but little did they know that a new breed of climber was about to emerge from their competitions.
In 2006 only 30 young climbers took part in the round robin tournaments organised mainly by Brett Nicolson and Jeanette Fuchs. Their dedication and love of climbing was imprinted on many a young mind. 2008 saw an increase of 100%, things started to look good…
That year Neil Margetts organised to take Gauteng’s finest youngsters to Durban, Kwa Zulu Natal to compete against their best climbers and our climbers did themselves proud with first, second and third placing.
The Team from left to right: Back row – Kyle, Mischa, Gabe, Sam, Matt, Aiden. Front Row – Emile, Danni, Eran, Lloyd, Michael.
Our amazing young female climbers.
2009 saw a dedicated group push the sport forward and the Gauteng Schools League was born.
More schools and commercial venues were contacted, and dates for competitions set for 2009. Initially the high school competitions were run the same way as the primary schools and Johannesburg and Pretoria ran separate leagues.
May 2009 saw 63 Johannesburg and 35 Pretoria High school climbers become part of Gauteng Climbing’s history. Our sport had grown by 120 percent!
All other provinces were contacted about the possibility of holding a National Competition, something that had not been held in over a decade. The provinces were highly receptive and Gauteng were to organise this. With our youth team chosen and training days organised, we were excited for our climbers to compete with the rest of the country.
First Gauteng Team – Seniors – From Left to Right, Back to Front;
Wesley, Sarel, Ebert, Alex, Dylan, Renard, Chris, Lorna, Yolande
Monica, Des, Gert, Sheldon, Darren, Robert, Elizabeth, Lloyd
Kaleigh, Gillian, Tiffany, Sam, Eran, Gabe, Mischa, Matt.
(Missing – Jess, Catherine, Thomas)
Nationals was set for 2nd and 3rd October at Wonderwall and The Climbing Barn and the team were ready to take on the challenge. No one was sure what the outcome would be, but all were excited about competing. We had 83 competitors from around South Africa about to descend on our province.
Gauteng won in 2009 and have gone from strength to strength in the National Competitions.
In 2010 the National Boulder League was expanded to include an U 18 section. Pretoria and Johannesburg combined had a total of 69 climbers competing in the Gauteng section of the league.
19 climbers qualified for the National Final held at St Peters Prep in April 2010. Gauteng won 6 out of 12 medals at the competition.
Gauteng Team 2010 Competing in Kwa Zulu Natal.
2011 saw an even bigger pool of climbers compete in the NBL and the format was changed to include U 19, U 17 and U 15.
Gauteng Climbers won 13 out of the 24 medals that were on offer at Rhodes University.
Gauteng Team 2011
In 2011 we took our biggest step thus far and had eleven of our Youth chosen to represent South Africa in the Youth World cup in Imst, Austria.
The team was as follows:
U/15 male: Tristan Swart, Byron Crofford. U/15 female: Eran Waldeck. U/17 male: Devin Murray. U/17 female: Sam Stainton, Gillian Bester. U/19 male: Calrin Curtis, Gregory Oudhof, Dylan Vogt. U/19 female: Tiffany Wells.
We now have expanded our leagues to include Opens, Novice, Masters and Veterans and have a total of 42 competitions set for 2012.
We wish everyone the best of luck for the coming year.