Hero photograph
Photo by SBHS

Out of School Achievements

Merryn Herlihy —


Lucas Dowell

Lucas is already a well known and respected rock climber around New Zealand. 

Over the two years Lucas has competed in the New Zealand Bouldering Series Circuit and other climbing competitions, usually placing in the top  two. 

* The following article was recently published in the Climber Magazine,  highlighting the up and coming boulderers/climbers in New Zealand.  

LUCAS DOWELL   (aka. "DO WELL DOWELL").   By Matt Corbishley.

Lucas Dowell,  just 15 years old, is one of the up-and-comers.

He has potential galore and some of the strongest fingers you’ll ever see. Lucas has dangled his way up a handful of hard problems, but the touch-and-go nature of his climbing constantly impresses me. His climbing style can be described as falling off more than actually climbing, but that doesn’t stop him.

If only he had skin, he’d be climbing as hard as his idol, pre-2006 Chris Sharma.

On one occasion we were having a session on Singularity, a stiff-for-the-grade, pre-2006 Sharma V9. Stiff for the grade is an understatement, actually. This thing is hard. We leave him by himself for just a minute and tell him to yell out if he needs us.  Whilst scouting some other climbs around the area, we hear this manic scream.  No way!  We rush back to the problem, only to find Lucas once again dangling from this pod halfway up the climb, with not a clue of what to do next. Luckily, we were able to talk him through the top so he could claim one of his proudest ascents. As well as Singularity, Lucas has ticked a handful of other V9s. Generally the ones with the dirtiest little crumpets on them. It’s only a matter of time before he gets the lucrative double digits.

As far as future ambitions go, Lucas’s perfectly represent him. He wants to follow in his idol’s footsteps and recreate the classic boulder flick Rampage and then finish Sharma’s undone Hampi project (featured in another classic film, Pilgrimage).

When he’s not shredding his tips climbing, Lucas is either in the art room at school, running marathons, or surfing the crumble of New Brighton. This kid is psyched and an important part of the Castle Hill Crew.

Top Blocs

  • Singularity (V9, Flock Hill).
  • Trifecta Left (V8, Flock Hill).
  • Porky (V8, Flock Hill).


  • Gioia (V16, Varazze).
  • Witness The Fitness (V15, Ozark Mountains).
  • Lucid Dreaming (V15, Bishop).

from  THE CLIMBER,   ISSUE 104, WINTER 2018 39.