By Stan Bush

DENVER (CBS4) – Dominick Martinez, 15, loves the outdoors, but knows for his family getting to the mountains feels almost impossible.

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Dominick Martinez (credit: CBS)

“To go up to the mountains is such a long drive and costs a lot of money, and it’s a struggle living in the city,” said Martinez.

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(credit: CBS)

For him, his brother Elijah, and countless other kids in the same situation, the outdoors has come to them in the form of a bouldering wall and open space in the heart of Denver’s Montbello neighborhood.

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CBS4’s Stan Bush interviews Elijah Martinez. (credit: CBS)

The wall, paid for by The North Face and a handful of local partners, gives city-dwelling kids something they can’t normally find and even a chance to overcome some obstacles.

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(credit: CBS)

“I felt like my fear of heights kind of fell away,” said 13 year-old Elijah Martinez. “I’ve never climbed anything like that.”

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The park is intended to give kids a chance to connect to nature, particularly for Denver residents who have rarely been west of Interstate 25. The gigantic rock monolith could also give them new perspective on their own neighborhood.

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(credit: CBS)

“It’s a freeing feeling that they can explore these things other kids can do,” said Ambur Martinez, the boys’ mother. “As a single mother on disability, I can’t easily get them to the mountains.”

Stan Bush is a general assignment reporter at CBS4. His stories can be seen on CBS4 News at 10. Read his bio and follow him on Twitter @StanBushTV.

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