How I climbed a mountain without making it entirely about myself

A little over a year ago, I headed to Mexico with a group of women who are, in one way or another, associated with Big City Mountaineers. I’ve written a fair amount about BCM before, since I’ve worked as an instructor and as a volunteer, but basically: BCM is a nonprofit that teaches critical life skills to under-resourced kids during the course of weeklong wilderness backpacking and canoe trips. One of their primary fundraising tools is a program called Summit For Someone, in which participants do cool stuff like climb mountains or embark on their own wilderness trips while fundraising for BCM. Continue reading “How I climbed a mountain without making it entirely about myself”

Advertisements

When 10-year-olds have the answers

A chorus of little voices greets me enthusiastically as I shove my backpack into a cubby at the crowded climbing gym on a windy Friday afternoon.

“Emma!” one kid bounds up to me, “High-five!” At the last second, she pulls her hand away with a grin, exposing the same giant braces I had at her age. “Too slow,” she smirks. It’s fine. I’ll get her back later. Continue reading “When 10-year-olds have the answers”

Back to basics

No one is ever going to ask me to describe my climbing style in a single word, but if they did, it would be “serviceable.” As with most activities I take on, I am a profoundly mediocre rock climber.

This also goes for skiing, which I’ve been doing for something like a quarter-century. Despite skiing many hundreds of days, I am still a “Well, I can get down just about anything, but it might not be pretty” skier. After nearly a decade, I am an extremely intermediate mountain biker. I’ve been distance running since I was a freshman in high school, yet here I remain, the slowest marathoner you know.  Continue reading “Back to basics”

Midwest is best

I embody a lot of Colorado stereotypes: I drive a Subaru with a roof rack. I’m rarely caught outside the house without a puffy jacket or Chaco sandals. There are four bikes and five pairs of skis in my living room right now. I work from home, which is a nice way of saying I don’t have a real job. Continue reading “Midwest is best”

I’m so vain (this post is definitely about me)

I should wear a helmet every time I go climbing. This is objective; a fact. I read enough tragic headlines and accident reports to know it. It’s a no-brainer (ack, sorry, I really just couldn’t help myself, sorry). Continue reading “I’m so vain (this post is definitely about me)”