Gym Hours

(Don’t) Get High at Wallnuts

Hutson Myles

Ok, the pun was low-hanging fruit but Zoe convinced me that it was too good to pass up.

As we head into our peak season for 2018/2019, we expect to see a lot of new and returning faces around the gym. It’s already started now that the weather has begun to trend towards cool and wet after a truly spectacular summer here on the Northeast Avalon, and the gym is once again looking pretty busy most evenings.

Another big event is fast approaching that has a lot of people, including some climbers, really excited: in just a few short weeks, recreational cannabis use becomes legal across Canada. While many climbers are known for their love of “getting high”, (there it is again) in ways both literal and in some cases figurative, we decided it was important to get the message out about just how this affects your visit to the climbing gym.

In short, please don’t get high before you come “get high” at Wallnuts (last time, I promise). We don’t aim to judge anyone’s choice of recreational activity when they’re at home, but the gym is not a good place to be when you’re impaired by drugs or alcohol.

We realize that we may have clouded the issue (that was a different pun) in the past by offering “Climb & Prime” group bookings after hours, as well as hosting some members’ events a few times a year where we provided kegs of beer or allowed members to bring their own adult beverages, but in those cases there are specific restrictions on what kinds of activities people are allowed to take part in once they start drinking, as well as extra staff supervision where it was needed.

Coming in for a climb during regular hours while impaired not only affects you and your personal safety, but may also put others at risk. Even if you decide that you aren’t going to belay, avoiding taking direct responsibility for someone else’s safety, there are still risks present which can be amplified by slowed reflexes or impaired judgement. If you’ve ever been in the gym on a busy night, you’ll know it’s difficult to manage space, especially around the bouldering terrain, in a way that avoids potential collisions. Everyone needs to be fully aware of the space around them and ensure they are not putting themselves or someone else at risk. We’re asking everyone to please put the pipe, vaporizer, brownie, beer, whiskey, or other consciousness-altering substance of choice on hold until after your climbing session.

Now that the word is out, please grant us the consideration of not showing up at our door after you’ve been enjoying any recreational substances. Anyone wishing to enter the gym while showing signs of impairment will be asked to come back another time.


-Hutson Myles is a co-owner of Wallnuts Climbing Centre, and serves as general staff manager and head safety instructor. If you have any questions or concerns about this or any other safety issues around the gym, please email him at

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About the Author: Leo van Ulden