Ever heard of a tree climbing competition?

April 14, 2022 · 2 minute read
Ever heard of a tree climbing competition?

Ever heard of a tree climbing competition? Interested in making a field trip to cheer on some of our Truetimber Climbers? This is not a logging competition with chainsaws but more about the day-to-day skills an Arborist must use or know to safely work in trees.

The Mid-Atlantic Society of Arboriculture (MAC-ISA) is having its annual Tree Climbing Championship event on Saturday, April 23rd, 2022, and Sunday the 24th in Williamsburg, VA. Parking is available at the Tavern Parking Lot off of E. Francis St.  The main event will be on Saturday. On Sunday there will be a final event called the Master’s Challenge which will take the top scoring climbers and test all their skills in a single tree to determine the overall winner. The link above will give you more information on the event.

Why should you go?

  • It’s a free event
  • Get to see some of the best climbers in the Mid-Atlantic Region
  • Get to see International Climbing Competitors
  • Get to see both Male and Female climbers
  • Recreational tree climb hosted by Riverside Outfitters from 10 AM – 2 PM on Saturday
  • Get to see a bunch of Truetimber employees 🙂

The Truetimber competitors this year will be, Sebastien Carpentier, Chloe Eakle, Andy Ellis, Justin Grabosky, Jeff Inman, Christopher Martin, and Jared Swainston. And representing Truetimber as volunteers/judges will be Mike Mather and Drew Dunavant. I will be there as a spectator this year, so if you make it down find me to say hello.

This competition will test the climbers at five different stations:

  • Work Climb:  This event tests the competitor’s ability to move about the tree using a climbing line and harness at 5 stations and being scored on completion of a station but also getting subjective points based on safety, control, style, poise, creativity at the discretion of the judges 
  • Belayed Speed Climb: This event tests the climbers on their strength and endurance to climb about 60-feet to the top of the tree as fast as they can and ring a bell. Some trees utilize limbs to assist climbers like a ladder, but other times it is a straight pull on the rope to get into the tree. 
  • Aerial Rescue: This is a timed event that tests the competitor’s ability to climb to and safely lower a climber (150lb Training Dummy/Manikin) who is unable to descend without assistance.
  • Ascent: This event used to be called the Secured Footlock Event, but over the years arborists have moved away from this technique and started utilizing other gear and equipment to ascend into the tree. Competitors are timed on setting up their equipment, timed to ring a bell about 70-feet in the tree, then timed to set up a system to descend.
  • Throwline: The Throwline Event is a timed event that tests the competitor’s ability to accurately place a throwline and/or climbing line in a tree.  There are usually 3 levels of targets like 70-feet, 50-feet, and 30-feet.  The higher the target the more points and they also get extra points for installing their ropes in the tree.

In addition to watching Truetimber employees and other climbers from Virginia, Maryland and West Virginia compete, I have been told that Riverside Outfitters will have Jocelyn, Natalie, and Noah competing too.  

See you there! -Peter