Column: A Dyno-Mite bouldering competition ahead

Avenue Flashes

John Akal
Posted 1/31/23

As I was looking through some of the local upcoming events to write about, one caught my eye. It’s called Dyno-Mite.

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Column: A Dyno-Mite bouldering competition ahead

Avenue Flashes


As I was looking through some of the local upcoming events to write about, one caught my eye. It’s called Dyno-Mite. Now, that could be something about any number of things. A dyno is a thing you use to test car and motorcycle engine, there’s a BMX bicycle named a Dyno, it could be something to do with dinosaurs or even a Jimmy Walker impersonation contest. Remember the T.V. show Good Times? I had no idea what this was all about, so I checked it out.

Now, there are a lot of things I am pretty good at doing and a lot of activities I’ve participated in over the years, but one thing I know for sure that I have never done, and never been capable of doing, is climbing up a cliff wall using just my hands and feet. Yes, I’ve done my share of mountaineering, but technical climbing was never on my agenda. But that doesn’t mean I haven’t admired and marveled at the people who are able to do that. There are loads of videos out there of people capable of hanging 1,000 feet off the ground by their fingertips and then swinging themselves up and over some kind of rock outcropping just to do it a dozen more times to get to the top of a mountain. It’s scarry and crazy and totally captivating all at the same time. People who can do that are totally amazing to me. I get nervous just walking around on my roof, OK?

When I was growing up, part of the mystery surrounding the whole thing was how someone can possibly learn to do that. I mean, learning to climb with ropes and gear is one thing, but how do you go from that to having the confidence to dangle from those heights and do the kind of maneuvers these people pull off ? As I got older, I learned that they started out on smaller rock formations and worked their way up to the big stuff. They also devote a great deal of time to strength exercises and fitness workouts. Oh, and they tend to watch what they eat too. Weighing in at 250 lbs. is the kind of thing that drastically tips the scales in gravity’s favor, if you know what I mean.

50 years ago there weren’t that many people around who did that kind of thing, but the sport of rock climbing has gained a tremendous amount of popularity over the last 20 years. Part of that is due to the accessibility of training and the development of indoor climbing walls and gyms. Now, instead of a few fearless people attempting to figure it out by trial and error (it’s the error part that always stopped me dead in my tracks), it’s become an Olympic sport.

So, what does all that have to do with Dyno-Mite? I have to confess, it took me a bit of research to figure that one out because here’s the description of the event:  

“Warm up those legs and get ready to jump. Dyno-Mite features some of our most creative dynos of the year. Think paddle dynos, double dynos, pogos, the ol’ hippity skippity, and more. If you don’t know what any of that means, just come jump! This will be a modified redpoint competition featuring routes for all ages and abilities. Come try our showcase dyno problems to test your jumping, swinging, and coordination skills.”

Yeah, that didn’t help me figure it out either. As it turns out, Dyno is short for Dynamic Movement, and that’s what they call all those skills it takes to get up various routes on a climbing wall or rock face. Dyno-Mite is a competition happening at one of Golden’s premier indoor climbing facilities called The Spot. Ah, now this is all starting to make sense, huh?

This all going to be happening Feb. 4 starting at 11:30 a.m. for the Youth Competition, followed by the Adult Competition beginning at 4 p.m. You can register as a competitor or just get a spectator’s admission ticket to hang out and watch the action. Tickets include access to the Climbing Competition, with a shot at $1,500 in prizes, one free meal from Wahoo’s, free beverages from Guayakí, Avery Brewing and Snowmelt, plus the first 100 competitors get a free Cotopaxi Mariveles duffel bag and Members get three free raffle tickets for a chance at $3,000 in additional prizes.

This gives you a great opportunity to check out the facility, see what they have to offer for classes and training while seeing the results in person. The Spot is located at 1391 Brickyard Road in Golden.

For more information and to get tickets in advance, go to Then go out and give it a try. Beats sitting around watching the snow melt.

John Akal is a well-known jazz artist/drummer and leader of the 20-piece Ultraphonic Jazz Orchestra. He also is president of John Akal Imaging, professional commercial photography and multimedia production. He can be reached at

Dyno-mite, bouldering, Golden, Avenue Flashes, Akal


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