Date of Birth:
June 13, 1990
Estes Park, Colorado
What is your primary means of adventure, AKA what gets you most psyched?
Hard sport lines in interesting places. But recently I’ve been breaking into trad and multipitch climbing as well.
Invent your dream adventure by combining five places, disciplines, pitches, peaks, environments, etc. and stacking them together into a combination. Why did you pick each part?
Australia. Groove Train (5.14b) on the Taipan Wall. Trad climbing in the Blue Mountains. Punks in the Gym (5.14a) at Mt. Arapiles. Kite surfing on Lord Howe Island.
I’ve always wanted to visit Australia’s Taipan Wall, particularly to climb the famous sport line Groove Train – gorgeous sandstone, long runouts, and dynamic movement. Now that I’m branching out into traditional climbing, I’d want to make a stop to trad climb in the historic Blue Mountains, and maybe even develop some new routes. I’d probably need to make a stop to try the world’s first 5.14, the iconic Punks in the Gym. And to top it all off, a trip over to Lord Howe Island to enjoy the coral lagoons and smooth kite surfing waters.
Describe 5 climbs, trips, or moments that have defined you as a mountain athlete:
- The Lead Now Tour was by far the most challenging thing I’ve ever done, not so much physically, but mentally and emotionally. Being away from home for 10 months, and constantly moving locations – all of which were very unfamiliar – was a trying experience. That taught me to be comfortable with what I had, to adapt to unfamiliar environments, to eat what was available, and to rely on myself for support. The ten month itinerary was: South Africa > Russia > Italy > Japan > China > India > Turkey > Ecuador > Chile > home!
- Days spent in the mountains with my family when I was a kid. I hated hiking, but somehow whatever my parents did worked out, and now I love the outdoors. I think they bribed my brother and I with root beer floats and slurpies so we wouldn’t complain on hikes. But I have many fond memories of those times – of picnic lunches at beautiful lakes and learning to pee in the woods and waiting out lightning storms.
- Bouldering expedition in the Peruvian Andes – 30 days at a 15,000ft base camp and my first time away from technology, outside communication, showers, and a bed for any extended period of time. This trip taught me that I was capable of adapting to unfamiliar situations and environments. A valuable learning experience!
- Grand Ole Opry (5.14b) – The first sport climb that truly required everything I had. While working Grand Ole Opry, I remember making a squeaking sound while doing one of the hardest moves. I realized this was the first time I’d really ever given 100% effort into a single move. This route taught me how to try hard.
- Every time I talk to my Grandpa on the phone. He’ll say, “you slept outside? On the ground? No showers!?” and I think how extreme I am. Then I realize I’m a sport climber who car camps on occasion, not an alpine climber who suffers on long expeditions in the cold. But, I just define my adventure in other ways – in pushing my body to it’s absolute limit on a different type of terrain.
What has scared or intimidated you as a mountain athlete?
Doubt and fear of failure are always the most difficult parts of being a full time athlete. Most objectives are in obscure locations and involve time pressure. When your goals are public, there’s an added pressure to succeed. But I’ve learned that the greatest pressure comes from myself. I can allow myself to be intimidated, or I can choose to give it my all without holding back. The moments when that works are the greatest of all.
What would your adventure partners be most surprised to learn about you from before the time when they met you?
As a kid, I was very shy, easily intimidated, and lacked self esteem. In fourth grade, I won a bicycle through a school raffle, and when my name was announced over the intercom, I ran to the office crying out of embarrassment that my name had been announced to the entire school. Climbing has built me up and brought me a long way from the scrawny fourth grade wallflower.
What are your top 5 alltime favorite pieces of CAMP equipment?
- Photon Express Quickdraws – full size, light, and the smoothest clipping you could ask for.
- Supernova Harness – streamlined with minimal padding, yet comfortable for all day use.
- No twist belay loop – deserves it’s own category.
- Pro nuts – my intro into the world of trad climbing.
- A new ultra light women’s prototype harness in the works!
Why are you a CAMP athlete?
When I approached CAMP 6 years ago, I wanted to work with a brand that placed focused value on each individual athlete – I didn’t just want to be listed on a team, I wanted to be directly involved with a highly innovative brand. While CAMP is one of the oldest brands in the industry, they’re also one of the most inventive. That’s because the people who make up CAMP – from the design team to the CEO – are athletes themselves. CAMP is constantly searching for new designs, new product applications, and new ways to reinvent the outdoor experience. One of the first questions I asked when I joined the team was “can I design a women’s specific harness?” Without hesitation, the answer was yes. Building the Supernova allowed me to work closely with CAMP’s Research and Development team in Italy. It showed me the brand’s devotion to working with athletes to make the best gear. CAMP makes the best gear and they treat their team like a family.
It meant a lot to me when I climbed:
- Just Do It (5.14c, sport), Smith Rock, Oregon
- Grand Ole Opry (5.14b, sport), The Monastery, Colorado
- Art Attack (5.14b slab, sport), Val Masino, Italy
- Triple Jeopardy (5.13c, trad), Table Mountain, South Africa
- Ganesh (5.14a, sport), Badami, India
The adventure, route or race I had to train the hardest for was:
In hindsight, I spent a year preparing for Just Do It, although I didn’t realize it at the time. Traveling around the world and working on a new 5.14 every month for 10 months on the Lead Now Tour taught me how to work routes at or near my limit in a time crunch. I learned to work beta efficiently, to save skin, and to make every attempt count. That ended up serving as crucial preparation for Just Do It. I was able to make fast progress on the route, and put it down quickly, rather than building up mental barriers, as often happens.
The adventure, route or race that wrecked me the most was:
There’s a big wall in South Africa that requires a 3 hour hike up, primarily bushwhacking through the jungle, and a 4 hour hike down from the top of the wall. Most people spend the weekend there, but my boyfriend and I decided to do it in a day. After 10 pitches of 5.12 and 7 hours of pretty taxing hiking, I was destroyed. And I think the only thing we took to eat that day was an entire rum cake. Obviously we’re unfamiliar with “long days in the mountains”, so I don’t have my systems down quite yet.
I most want an all-expenses paid trip to:
JapanAustraliaNewZealand. That’s all one trip, right?
My short list of climbing or adventure goals this year:
- Redpoint 5.13 trad – I did that in January of this year, climbing Triple Jeopardy (5.13c) on Table Mountain in South Africa.
- Redpoint 5.14d
- Boulder V12