Rock climbing inside a Midwestern silo

May 5, 2004
Outside Magazine
Week of December 11-17, 1997
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Rock climbing inside a Midwestern silo
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Rock climbing inside a Midwestern silo
Question: Where is the Midwestern silo that's been converted to a climbing wall? I've seen it in an issue of Outside, but I can't seem to find it.

Neil Statz
Wisconsin Rapids, WI

Indoor climbers learn the ropes at the world's tallest climbing gym in Illinois

Adventure Adviser: You must be thinking of the "Little Half Dome on the Prairie," a short Dispatch that ran in the April 1996 issue of Outside.

The abandoned grain silos in Bloomington, Illinois, were formerly owned by Funk Brothers Seed Company until they were bought for $10,000 by Chris Schmick and his wife Pam.

At last count, the 13 concrete containers featured 40 routes ranging in height from 30 to 145 feet. The additional garage area has another 25 routes at about 35 feet high, and there's even an outside route climbable only in summer that winds 160 feet up the outside of a silo.

Or, in winter, the Schmicks freeze a special ice-climbing wall. The weekend rate is $11 per day, or $9.50 on weekdays. The monthly rate is $40 for adults and $30 for students. Call Upper Limits at 309-829-8255 for more details.

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