When 5.8 is Scarier than 5.12

The backs of my hands are bruised and there’s still tape residue on them. My right forearm is slightly swollen. My legs are covered in bruises. I’m not sure when or how my enjoyment of crack climbing became a fully fledged love, but shoving my hands into the cracks of the Vedauwoo boulders elevated my…

Turning 25

I like to think that my quarter life crisis happened last summer, driving to work at 5:30 in the morning, and listening to “Escape” by Rupert Holmes (aka “The Pina Colada Song”). I was freaking out. I was about to turn 24 and still in undergrad with no real forward momentum in my life, or…

If You Need A Pep Talk

I spent last weekend at the New River Gorge in West Virginia. It was an unplanned trip, the week before Kathy Karlo texted me asking if I would meet her there to do some filming for Arêt Baseware. I was determined to go. The week before I left was awful, I fought with my boyfriend,…

Girl, You Got Guns!

A few weeks ago I took my car to get my oil changed. I was supposed to go to a barre class with a girl friend of mine and was wearing the expected yoga pant and tank top attire when I walked up to the register. At some point, between rummaging through my purse and paying…

A Goodbye to Expectations

My mom called me as my boyfriend and I were just leaving the New River Gorge vicinity, heading back to Atlanta after a week that was somewhere between delightful and fun, and stressful and disgusting. My mom called me because a friend I had run into on my trip, who I hadn’t seen in almost…

Being Authentically Feminine

Last week, multiple articles were released regarding women in outdoor social media, the topic usually involving how we appear. Sometimes we’re beautiful with nice hair and a full face of make up. Sometimes we’re beautiful with wild hair, no make up and a little bit of blood and dirt. Sometimes we’re just straight up covered…

I Am an Independent Traveler, I Don’t Need No Boyfriend

When I initially reached out to my friend Brandon to go spend spring break with me it was a spur of the moment, what-human-will-drop-what-they’re-doing-and-go-adventuring-with-me, and I-desperately-need-a-vacation sort of thing. We’d talked, worked out, run into each other at crags, and side hugged at parties and at the gym, primarily bonding after the Nov 8 election…

Dear Climber Guys

Dear climber guys, On this day, the day women celebrate each other internationally, when we are supposed to skip work to support the Women’s March, and only a few days after Flash Foxy’s Women’s Climbing Festival, I thought I’d take a moment or two to remind you that we haven’t forgotten about you. Sure, we…

Dodgeball

When I first moved to Atlanta the idea of stepping foot in Maryland ever again was blasphemous. I had spent the majority of my exceptionally awkward years in that state and the idea of returning to it usually sends me down a memory lane full of offensive teenage dialogue, local punk shows, and spending time…

It’s All Slopers From Here

Why do you climb? Why are you in school? What’s driving you to keep going?   The first question, “Why do you climb?” was asked by my boyfriend while I sat underneath a boulder problem, trying desperately not to cry or say terrible things about myself. I didn’t have an answer for him. I felt…