Inside Surrey’s new Hive climbing facility, in the Bridgeview area. (Photo: Ankedo Zake)

PHOTOS: ‘Bouldering’ climbers hit new Hive gym in Surrey, third in a chain

‘We’ve got a huge space here,” raved Andrew Coffey, Hive chain owner and ‘king worker bee’

A huge new Hive in Surrey has created a buzz among recreational climbers.

The Hive Climbing & Fitness has brought “bouldering” and other activities to the complex located next to the recently closed Sky Zone trampoline park.

The gym officially opened Monday afternoon (April 15) in 20,000 square feet of space, previously home to a Funtopia play park, at 11125 124th St.

“We’ve got a huge space here,” said Andrew Coffey, Hive chain owner and “king worker bee,” as noted on his business card. “We’re going to start slow, but we’re hoping to build something really special.”

The Surrey location is third in the Hive chain, with existing facilities in Vancouver and on the North Shore.

Brad Blackwell, general manager of the new Surrey site, said he got his start climbing seven years ago – “almost to the day of the Hive opening in Vancouver,” he noted.

“I got hooked almost immediately,” Blackwell recalled. “I was there so much I thought, I might as well start working here. That was four years ago and I’ve had at least some stint managing all three gyms now.”

He added: “I’ve been involved almost from the ground up here, in a way, kind of right from the get-go, when we were doing sketch-up drawings and doodling on napkins, cocktail napkins, right up to how you see it now. We were hammering benches late last night and cleaning windows today,” he said on Friday (April 12) during a “friends and family” pre-opening event. “It’s been a wild ride here.”

The “bouldering” type of climbing, done without ropes, is also done at Project in Cloverdale, in an 8,000-square-foot space located just north of the fairgrounds.

“It’s a sub-genre of climbing,” Blackwell said of bouldering. “Most people are probably more familiar with top-rope climbing, where you’re kind of roped in, or sport climbing – same thing, you’re roped in. But bouldering is a different style, a little more focused on power and more varied types of movements. The fun thing is you can come do it on your own, you don’t need a climbing partner, the walls are always here. All you really need is a pair of shoes and a chalk bag, some motivation and you’re good to go.”

As for the workout involved, Blackwell said, “you’d be surprised. It’s pretty approachable,” he explained. “The learning curve is real, but for myself, I wasn’t all that fit when I started, but you learn and grow pretty fast, and almost every time you come, you get a little bit higher on something you maybe tried the week before.”

Coffey said the gym’s special events will include a “Tuesday-night throwdown, a friendly competition” on Tuesdays in June, July and August, with one of the nights hosted at Project.

“We’ll hold some bigger competitions,” he said, along with clinics, workshops, film screenings and camps.

• RELATED STORIES:

VIDEO: A new Hive climbing/fitness facility coming to Surrey in 20,000-sq.-ft. space.

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Hive gym chain owner Andrew Coffey (left) and Surrey facility general manager Brad Blackwell. (Photo: Tom Zillich)

Inside Surrey’s new Hive climbing facility, in the Bridgeview area. (Photo: Tom Zillich)

Another view of Surrey’s new Hive climbing facility. (Photo: Ankedo Zake)

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