ASPIRE Tackles Outdoor Rock Climbing

"Why do climbers from all over the world climb at the Mohonk Preserve?"  Seven athletes from Junior Team A Step found out why, when they tackled the world famous vertical cliffs and overhangs of the Shawangunk Mountains in upstate New York.  The "Gunk's” a world class location, offers some of the best rock climbing in the eastern United States. 
The team was accompanied by ASPIRE Programs Director Amy Palmiero-Winters, as well as Craig Pratka, Anthony Desano, Hemsly Hughes and George Kehler, and guided by the experienced rock climbing instructors Jim Schimburg and Gary Duval from a New Hampshire based rock climbing company, Rhino Guides. The junior team scaled the distinctive, stark, white cliffs of the Gunk's in the hot humid August sun and they are as tough as they look – with sharp angles testing the junior team’s skill. The quartz pebbles and deep fissures provided multiple holds for these athletes. Not only did they learn new skills and make new friends, they also learned that despite the loss of a limb or limbs they can meet new challenges and succeed at a very difficult skill.  Edriss Crawley-Tate (AK), Cate Hughes (BK), Will Kehler (Van Ness Turnoplasty), James Lozano (BBK), Davonni Baboolal (BK), Anthony Desano (AK) and Victoria Cutrone-Foley (AK) all had a great experience climbing, swimming and something as simple as hanging out with friends.