A climber and an ACMG/IFMGA mountain guide, my background is varied with a teaching degree, cooking in a backcountry ski lodge, an being an air traffic controller.
I have taken great pleasure participating in climbing expeditions and attending climbing festivals. In 2007, I went to Pakistan with Lilla Molnar and put up a new route in the Nangmah Valley. I also participated in five first ascents of waterfall ice climbs in the remote Icefall Brooke region of the Canadian Rockies.
Favorite Climbing Goals:
Long granite alpine rock routes, mixed lines in the Canadian Rockies and being with friends on an intense adventure.
What do you do to relax?
Relax? Forced relaxation works best for me! (ie. waiting for a late plane or being weathered out in a remote location). Secretly I love: drinking dark beer or red wine , watching movies and lying in bed reading.
Where did you grow up? Calgary, Alberta
How long have you been active in the mountains doing what you do? since early 1990’s
Who introduced you to the mountains? My parents took me skiing and camping; the University of Calgary ODPU Program (Outdoor Pursuits) friends and professors, finally the ACMG (Association of Canadian Mountain Guidos) and guiding community.
What does your family think of what you do? A bit scary, and they prefer not to think about it, but they seem to accept and respect my passion.
What do you see yourself doing in 10 years from now? Teaching/guiding as well as something with my brain. And “of course” still doing cool trips.
What do you do in your free time when you are not climbing?
Yoga, reading, watching dance and wishing I was dancing. Time with loved ones.
Mountains and Me?
They define me. They motivate me. They inspire me. They offer me a place of work, a place to test myself. They provide intense experiences shared with close friends.
Grandiose, beauty, peace, relentless, driving force, life, hardship, toil.
The summit is only a halfway point, but nonetheless there is a reward from summiting that is felt more greatly days and months after reaching the top.
Before starting. I feel hopeful, adventurous but intimidated. A desire to explore; uncover the unknown. Bold and small at the same time. Agro and frail. Fear the worst, yet visualize a grand success.
After a climb? Relief, satisfaction, self-review (self critique and analysis), proud, minimization of achievement (it was easy or it wasn’t so bad/hard), we are the shit!
It’s a Beautiful Thing
(A poem by Jen Olson)
(This poem was inspired while approaching one of the many magnificent awe-inspiring routes of the seldom visited and of mythical legends: Icefall Brook.)
I love the feeling, the moment of release, it’s satiating, almost tingling…
Wondrous, captivating, enticing and so candid.
Free to be me! Uninhibited, daring to perform unequivocal feats, meeting challenges face to face,
Oh the joy, the elation, the satisfaction of abandoning fears, they float away to be replaced by intention and focus.
All this by just:
Farting in the wilderness.