As Michael Lehrer belays the rope for his son, muscle memory from his own youth kicks in.
Lehrer, 47, grew up in Lower Merion and spent his time climbing the same rock walls in the Wissahickon Valley Park. But like most childhood hobbies, rock climbing was something he thought he left in adolescence.
“I went off to college and didn’t see a wall again until recently,” Lehrer said.
Four years ago, his 17-year-old son, Ben, began climbing. Since then, the sport has become something of a family activity — both his 14-year-old daughter and wife have taken up rock climbing as well.
“Ben is climbing each of the routes I did in high school and college far better and far quicker,” Lehrer said.
Ben Lehrer started climbing in earnest at age 13, and the sport has become a large part of his life.
In this video, the teenager talks about his passion for the sport while out on a climb with his family and friend Jacob Lowry.