Squamish Uprising, an event aimed at creating solidarity and promoting slacklining, acroyoga and boulering, brought these three communities together last weekend.

By Drew Copeland

Slacklining, acroyoga and bouldering are still relatively young, finding their way as forms of expression and sports into their own. On the grassy field below The Chief, among the Grandwall Boulders, and across the North Gullies of the peaks above, acro yogis, boulderers and slackliners came together in shared enjoyment of human movement.

Vancouver local, Hung Le, took the initiative to unite these groups for the day. “There’s so many similarities between the three communities and they’re all on the fringes still,” said Hung, who is an established climber that slacklines and practices acroyoga.

Squamish Uprising acroyoga.  Photo Andi McLeish Photography
Squamish Uprising acroyoga. Photo Andi McLeish Photography

“I felt that I should put something together that they could all participate in.”

The Climb and Conquer Society and Slacklife BC have run Rampage and the Assault on the Chief independently for one and two summers, respectively. This was the first year that an acroyoga group has hosted an event like this in Squamish.

Siovhan Williamson from Flow Acro said, “It’s really cool—all these people coming together, all the movement culture communities.”

While acroyoga, bouldering and slacklining have very different forms, they require require a certain commitment and tend to draw similar sorts of people.

Joe Wong, who heads up the Climb and Conquer Society commented, “This event is really uniting the community worldwide from different disciplines with the same passion for nature, outdoor and awesomeness.”

When people weren’t engaged climbing, slacklining, or in yoga, there was lots of gear to check out from sponsors including: Evolve, La Sportiva, Mad Rock and Five Ten. As well, Ground Up Climbing Centre held a hold push competition where teams of two tried to move a climbing hold as far as they could with only three points touching the ground between them.

All in all, over 300 participants and many more spectators came out to the base and summit of the Stawamus Chief. Some of the proceeds from the event went to the Squamish Access Society.

Hung Le, who plans to grow the festival in coming years said, “It comes back to that feeling we have to see what’s possible and always push boundaries and push ourselves to attain more. I hope a lot of people tried things that they’ve never tried before, had a good time and felt better leaving than when they did walking in.”

Squamish Uprising bouldering.  Photo Andi McLeish Photography
Squamish Uprising bouldering. Photo Andi McLeish Photography

– Drew Copeland is a writer and climber based in Squamish, and a regular contributor to Gripped.

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