Thunder Bay rock climbing scene 'world class,' says guide
New guide book, popularity of rock climbing film fest reflect strong climbing community in Thunder Bay
The author of a recently published guide book on rock climbing routes in Thunder Bay, Ont., says the city is bursting with potential to become a climbing hotspot.
"It's getting out there more and more that Thunder Bay is actually a world class destination," said Aric Fishman, the author of Thunder Bay Climbing and founder of the guiding service Outdoor Skills and Thrills.
"It's got everything ... that every top destination has in the world, and it's right here."
Fishman spent three years researching and writing the guide book, which includes more than 750 climbs that can be accessed within an hour and a half drive of the city.
He hopes the book will fill a gap in information for the local climbing community, which he says is growing.
Rock Climbing film tour returns to Thunder Bay
The guidebook is also key to selling Thunder Bay as a tourism destination for climbers, said Ray Bretzloff, who works at Wilderness Supply, an outdoors store in Thunder Bay.
"Thunder Bay has a ton of rock climbing potential ... but access, information, knowledge ... were missing," he said. "With Aric's book, it basically opens the door to opportunity."
The store hopes to further bolster the climbing community with an upcoming film event.
Bretzloff is one of the local organizers of the upcoming Reel Rock film festival, which is taking place in Thunder Bay on Wednesday November 9, at the Maple Tops Activity Centre.
The film tour, which showcases climbing and adventure films, has been popular with Thunder Bay audiences in the past, he said. This year, they expect the event to sell out.