|Place of residence:||Lander, WY|
|With EDELRID since:||2015/2016|
It's hard to say for sure as I believe that all your climbing "achievements" become obscured by the next big thing in your life. However, a very defining moment for me as a climber was the first 5.11 I climbed on gear. At the time it was something I did not believe I was capable of. Something I was terrified of. It happened a couple pitches off the ground, with a couple close friends and you couldn't ask for much more.
My favorite place to live is Lander, Wy. The climbing here is obviously amazing but the community is better.
One of my favorite places to climb is a sea cliff in Lubec, Maine. In Quoddy Head State Park. It's quiet, except for the sea crashing against the shore.
Yosemite Valley has to take the cake on the place that I am most excited about for a climbing trip.
I spent most of my childhood around clay and ceramics and wanted to become a potter as an adult, and almost did. There is still time.....
This is a challenging question. I would like to say that they all hold equal value in my book. But I do spend most of my time sport climbing.
When I was 10 or 12 years old, my uncle Jack took me out to XRock in Durango, CO and set up a top rope on a crack there. I don't remember much about the climbing itself, but I remember loving the experience of going to the gear shop, buying myself the gear I needed, going out to the cliff, and spending the whole day out there. I think the community aspect of climbing is what kept me interested. I grew up climbing with people who were 10-20 years older than I was. I learned so much from them and respected how they lived their lives. I wanted to be like them, so I didn't stop showing up. I was the annoying kid who likely ran his mouth too much.....maybe I still am.
I had a few childhood heros, especially in my teenage years. I went to a summer camp (as a camper and a counselor) and my counselors when I was 15/16 had a huge impact on my life. Caleb Balderston, Alex Comeau, Bill Reagan. They had a big impact on my life then.
To some degree I am a role model, considering that my full time job is a climbing coach for Climb Strong. To be honest though, it does not change how I would act in public or at home. I am still who I would be if I was not on the path I am on right now.
I think in life and in climbing, moving to Lander was a large milestone. I evolved rapidly as a rock climber here and also as a professional. Both of which I could not recognize at the time but with some introspection it makes a lot of sense. I would also say that climbing on El Cap for the first time was a large milestone in my climbing. This for sure was something I did not think about at the time, as I was overrun with the task at hand.
My biggest injury and setback are one in the same. In 2013 I injured my back during a bouldering competition and it has been an on and off battle ever since. It took me about 8 years to give my body the time and focus that it needed to fully recover and be injury free. It is definitely something that I have to manage everyday and think I always will. But, if you are diligent in your pursuit of health first and foremost, performance will come in when it is supposed to. I think I spent a lot of time working it the other way around. Avoiding overall health for the success of sending routes. This was a short term solution to a long term issue. I am happy about what I have learned even if it was the hard way.
Being a rock climber as a college student... I do not know how I kept it together.
Yes, I try to plan my year of climbing training around a few key objectives. Everything else are stepping stones for those goals and icing on the cake.
Consistency trumps anything else no matter what.
I think that gyms provide a great service to the climbing community and exposure to some folks who might not have had the chance otherwise. I think that for obvious reasons they are very different and those looking to go outside for the first time might consider going with others who have spent time climbing outside. I would say the same for someone trying to learn anything new. Hang with some veterans and you will learn some valuable lessons.
Yes and no.
(I'm not sure I understand this question) However, the success of a rock climber is attributed to their time in the sport and the skills they have acquired. This is a skill sport. Yes fitness plays a big role but you have to have the hours in the game before you can be your best self.
Almost anyone can achieve almost anything. They just have to be willing to compromise for it and put in the time. The best in the world were once the worst.
It is extremely important to set appropriate goals no matter the level of your sport. They give you purpose and direction.
My goal is to be a better coach/partner/climber every passing year. Specifically I am working towards freeing a big wall in the Wind River Range.
I get frustrated just like everyone else. But there is always a way and more time so going back again and again is always an option. It is rare that I never try something again.
I would like to see the government and greater population of the country take a bigger interest in the value of rock climbing.
I think that depending on how climbing shows up in the 2021 Olympics, I think it will explode and that will be for the better. I will continue to do what I do as a climbing coach and help people achieve their goals.