About two years after I moved to Colorado, I took a whole year off from school and worked for half a year and saved up money and just drove around the States. I went to all the bouldering areas I could, for a total of two or three months. I spent a lot of time in Hueco. We also hit Squamish, Joe’s Valley, and the Southeast. We went from one end of the country to the other in this crazy fashion. When I look at it now it was just a crazy amount of driving. I put so many miles on my truck on that trip. It was worth it, though.
A big milestone will be when women start establishing really difficult boulder problems. It will be a big deal when a woman climbs V14, but it will be an even bigger deal when women are putting up V12s and V13s in new areas.
It’s really exciting to think about. It would be bittersweet—more sweet than bitter, but I would have loved to see it happen when I was younger. Just because I really do enjoy competing, and that would have been a big goal for me.
But it would be very exciting just to be involved in any way, so I hope it would be a really good thing. I think it has a lot to do with what discipline makes it in, too. That would really have an effect on how the world perceives climbing.
I think my advice for the younger generation would be to really remember what you love about climbing and not get too distracted by everything else. There’s just so much going on in the sport, and that’s great, that’s awesome, and I’m all for the growth of it, but I think it’s really important to the future generation that they don’t get burned out too young. That’s the biggest fear I have now when I see young climbers.
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