Wednesday, September 18

Sooooo, Who's this Dillon Guy?????

Dillon bouldering in Cody
I'd like to take the chance to introduce you all to our new head coach, Dillon Key. I'm excited to have him, I'm excited by his enthusiasm, and I think his skills will take Steepteam to new levels. I recently had the chance to sit down with him and figure out what's underneath that mane of hair you often see putting up routes at the gym.

Where are you from? and why did you move to Billings?
I grew up in Houston, TX, and moved to Billings last August to attend MSU-B.
What are you studying at MSU-B? Majoring in Outdoor Adventure Leadership with a minor in Business.
What is your competitive climbing experience? I climbed on Team Natural in Houston when I was in high school.
What is your coaching experience? In Texas I was an assistant coach on Team Natural in Houston, and with Team Austin Rock Gym in Austin. This past year I ran Steep School at Steepworld, attended Nationals for both youth sport climbing and bouldering, and attended USA Climbing's national coaching symposium.
What is your route setting experience? How does that tie into coaching climbing? I have been setting for two years now, I currently have my USA Climbing Level 1 Certification. Being a good setter requires a well rounded knowledge of climbing technique and movement which will be very beneficial to coaching.
What's unique about Billings climbing? Billings climbing is unique in that we have several bouldering spots and many sport/trad climbs all within a 10 minute drive.
What are your favorite routes in Billings? fav easy boulder problem, moderate boulder problem, gnarly boulder problem? I have not done much route climbing in Billings, but out of what I have gotten on, I would say "The Last Best Route in Billings" is my favorite rope climb. My favorite easy boulder problem is Phipps Arete, moderate problem; Rocky Top Orange Soda, and gnarly problem; Heath Bar Crunch.
What is unique to coaching climbing from all the other sports? Coaching climbing is unique, because each athlete is competing against themselves, trying to push past mental barriers and climb at their best, whereas in other sports there is more of a focus on competing against an opponent.
You seem like a scrawny dude, what are your strengths in climbing? Being scrawny can have its perks, for instance, I have a less weight to throw around, which is why I enjoy overhangs. But I would say my style leans more towards moves requiring a lot of body tension and subtle adjustments.
Have you ever been to / do you want to go to Dillon Montana? I have never been to Dillon, MT, and I probably couldn’t even point it out on a map, but if I ever do go there, I’ll make sure and take a picture by a road sign with my name on it.
Anything else you'd like to share with us? I’m very excited to take over as head coach and can’t wait to see what this season has in store.
Dillon sport climbing in Ten Sleep Wyoming

Dillon putting up one of his first first ascents in Billings.  The sit start to the Sharks Fin V6 at Phipps.

Monday, September 9

Winter 2013-2014 Competitive Season Finalized

This evening the Steepteam board met and finalized the Winter 2013-2014 Competitive Season.  Full details and expectations are below.

We will host an in-person sign up session 6-7pm Tuesday October 1st at Steepworld Climbing gym.  Waivers can be signed, team fees can be collected (the team cannot accept credit cards at this time), gym memberships can be paid (credit cards accepted), and kids can meet and climb with new coach Dillon Key.  If you cannot make the sign-up session please call Joel Anderson (406-860-7616) prior to secure your spot on the team.

The Steepteam Fall Winter Season is open to all youth climbers ages 8-18 and focuses on indoor competition climbing. The team will participate in a tour of bouldering competitions against other Montana youth teams in Missoula and Bozeman. All competitions are bouldering competitions, meaning climbs are 10-15 feet tall with a padded floor and climbers do not use ropes.

We have decided to renew our focus in developing life long climbers.  We feel that local competitions provide great benchmarking and goal setting opportunities in a friendly environment while helping foster the greater Montana climbing community.  Thus, we are not requiring team members to participate in USA Climbing sanctioned events.  Climbers wishing to compete at a USAC level will still have continued support by the team and coaches.

All team members are required to have their own gear, this includes shoes, chalk bag, and appropriate climbing attire. Rental shoes greatly hinder the development of good footwork and are not acceptable.

Starting Tuesday October 8th practices will be twice a week, Tuesdays and Thursdays with breaks for the holidays at Steepworld Climbing Gym.

Junior Team: (born in 2005 - 2001) 6pm - 7:30pm
Senior Team: (born in 2000 - 1995) 7:30pm - 9pm

October 26 - Saturday - Missoula Competition
November 9 - Saturday - Bozeman Competition
November 23 - Saturday - Billings Competition
December 14 - Saturday - (OPTIONAL) USAC Regional Championship - location TBD
January 18th - Saturday - (OPTIONAL) USAC Divisional Championship - location TBD
February 1st - Saturday - Montana Bouldering Championships - Billings

Full Competition info will be provided at a later date.

$315 + competition fees and travel costs for the 4 month Winter session. The total cost is broken down below.

$135 for a 4 month gym membership. Steepteam practices at Steepworld Climbing Gym in Billings Montana. Team members are expected to maintain a membership at the gym while team is in session. Annual and family memberships are also available that may reduce costs. Gym fees are separate from team fees.

$180. Fees cover coaches time and travel for 28 practices, 4 competitions, team shirt, team hoody, insurance, administration, and other necessities needed to run the Steepteam non-profit program.

To be determined. Climbing competitions have entry fees around $25-$45 per competition and the team attends at minimum 3 competitions per season. These prices are set by the host gym and cover the costs for routesetters to set and prepare for the comp as well as t-shirts, awards, gym time, etc.

Steepteam offers need based scholarships on a case by case basis. Talk to Steepteam Director Joel Anderson (406) 860-7616

Steepteam is a 501c3 non-profit dedicated to providing climbing mentorship and training to Billings area youth interested in improving their climbing skills through practice and competition.
Competitive Head Coach: Dillon Key (281) 450-2422
Non-Profit Board Members: Joel Anderson (406) 860-7616, Thad McGrail, Jim Barron