melissa i strong

rock climber, writer, photographer, working on life daily



2nd Annual Hueco Rock Rodeo Youth Comp Round-Up



It was sunny Sunday morning when people started milling around the Hueco Rock Ranch, recently purchased by the American Alpine Club.  It was the Rodeo’s 2ndAnnual Youth Competition, which took place the day after the 20th Hueco Rock Rodeo so the people were moving a little slower but still psyched.  The grill masters from the night before showed up—thanks goodness—and did not grumble too much when they asked what they could do to help and I asked Tim and Lindsey to fire up the griddle and start the pancakes and sausage. The line for the Asana breakfast started to form at about 8:45 a.m.  This is the first time we have been able to have a Sunday breakfast for the Youth Comp and it was a great way to start a new tradition.

The Rodeo Youth Comp, only in its second, year picked up a lot of steam—last year we only had 3 competitors and this year we had 21!  Mirko Caballero a 5.10, Organic and Petzl athlete came from California with his Dad to win the advanced category!  Amy Gezel and her family drove down from Minnesota to cheer on her daughter Victoria who won the Intermediate category sending her first V4! We were very excited that the Juarez climbing team came to the event with their coaches Isaac Morales, Adolfo Cornoado and Alejandro Reys, they brought four excited eager kids and some family members.  Out of these four Oscar Dalzada took second place in the Intermediate category, Jorge Carreon took first place in the Beginner category and Edwin Quezada took second place Beginners!   We were also so happy the kids from Ciudad Nueva Community Outreach and their coordinator Hannah Drewes participated in the event.  We were able to raise money through the Rodeo raffle Saturday night to help make it possible for the kids to come take part in theYouth Competition.  New to climbing these youngsters had a great day and were accompanied by two local guides Antonio Amaya and Sid Roberts and Fred Nicole who were all able to help the kids learn about climbing and Hueco!  Manny Roque from the Ciudad Nueva took third place in the beginner category!

After a great day of fun, guides, kids, parents, Rodeo participants and volunteers joined together at the Ranch for the final Rodeo Round Up BBQ presented by Fat Tire and the AAC—another new tradition!  The winners of the Youth Comp walked away happily, well fed and with Adidas gift cards, Asana crash pads, 5.10 and Sportiva shoes and one lucky girl got a climbing trip to Colorado given to us by Kent Mountain Adventure Center.  Thanks to Asana, Fat Tire, the AAC, Adidas, KMAC, the Juarez Climbing team, the competitors and their families and many more for making the Rodeo Youth Comp possible.  Also thanks to of those sponsors that contributed to the raffle that enabled the Ciudad Nueva Community Youth Outreach folks to participate including This Rodeo was fueled by 5.10, AAC, Adidas, prAna, Marmot, Arc’teryx, Organic, Trango, Fat Tire, Osprey, Asana, La Sportiva, New Mexico State University, Metolius, KMAC, Crimp Chimps, Petzl, Climb Tec, Alpine Cowboy, Aims Adventure Outfitters, Joshua Tree, Clif Bar, Rock & Ice, Wagon Wheel Co-opt, Send Climbing, The Access Fund, AK Screen Printing and The Tobacco Tin!




Juarez youth team and coach psyched to spend some time with Fred Nicole!