Sorry to go back several pages but I felt that this post was never replied to very well.
i would LOVE to get into rock climbing. i went once, indoors, for my bro's birthday party and i LOVED IT. not to mention rock climbers get lovely muscles. the gear is so expensive though =( i'd never seen a $300 rope til i started checking it all out.
I climb at an indoor place in the university gym. It only costs $1US for admission since it's covered by university insurance and whatnot. Public gyms charge upwards of $10 for a single admission! Ridiculous! Check out your university if you want to get into it. Most (if not all) universities have some sort of outdoors club, or some student group that likes to climb, sometimes at a discount.
No, it's not all that expensive. To start out, all you really need is a pair of rock climbing shoes. My pair cost about $60 (US) but you can get them cheaper if you find a sale. Also, I have seen people rock climb in tennis shoes/sneakers/running shoes so if you're just starting out or not sure you'll enjoy it or aren't very serious about climbing, you can do that. Other stuff like a harness, chalk bags, carabiners, ropes, etc. are nice but you don't actually need them. If you're climbing at a gym, the gym will usually have top ropes set up for you to use and usually have harnesses they loan out. Chalk bags are really nice to have but you don't actually need them. My boyfriend gave me one for my birthday but before that, I had rarely used chalk: I had only used it when he loaned me his bag for a bit or when I'd borrowed chalk from my cousin when I climbed with her.
Also, if you're bouldering (climbing without a rope close to the ground), you don't need a rope or harness at all. Bouldering is a great way to get a workout and in a gym, you can practice certain routes that are set up. Or you can simply say to yourself "I can go from here to here easily so now, I'm going to try to get from here to here without using any blue holds" then once you conquer that, eliminate more holds so it's more difficult. That works especially well if the gym is full and most of the wall is taken already.
On the subject of holding doors (also back a few pages), I'm a girl and I appreciate it when guys hold doors for me and I always say thanks. I am not a feminist but at the same time, I am an independent woman who can and does do stuff herself and doesn't need anyone else to take care of her or do stuff for her. However, if I'm more than four or five steps behind you, feel free to let it shut. If I'm that far behind, I feel like I have to rush so you're not just standing their waiting and I really don't want to rush. So please, just go on in if I'm more than six feet behind you.