Jenn asked me to write about how and why I got into rock climbing. I wake up each morning and ask myself those same questions. How did this happen?! Why was this a good idea?! I'm a climbing instructor? Wait, what?!?
This whole idea that people will pay me money to take them climbing, an activity that I've always done just for fun, is still sinking in. But, to get back to Jenn's question, why did I get into this sport in the first place? Well, that's actually an easy one to answer: BOYS.
I got into rock climbing because a boy I was madly in love with was into rock climbing. The boy was a friend of my sister (another girl who got into climbing because of a boy) and her boyfriend, who also climbed. My sister eventually married her boy and had three kids with him, which has kept her from climbing as much as she used to but she does still rock it out on occasion. I did not marry my boy but I did keep climbing.
I guess that answers the basics of why I got into rock climbing in the first place. I stuck with it even after the boy and I broke up because it made me feel like a total bad ass. Sometimes it was fun, sometimes it was terrifying, but it always challenged my mind and body, and for that I loved it.
I got that start in rock climbing about 11 years ago now. In the past decade, I've had some up's and down's in climbing. There have been a couple of year long stretches where I did not climb at all, and then other years (like the past two) where I've climbed more than I've seen my own family (I'm sorry mom!!).
Derek and I moved to Alabama to get graduate degrees that we have yet to use, and there we discovered the beautiful southern sandstone at Sandrock and Horsepens 40. Just before we finished grad school, our home got wiped off the map by a tornado and about half the town got leveled as well. So, when we were finally done with school it was pretty easy to shove everything we owned into a 5x10 storage unit and hit the road for some happy adventuring.
It was a much needed mental vacation, and during that trip we got to go way West to visit climbing destinations in Nevada and California as well as see some classic American destinations like the Grand Canyon and the Petrified Forest. Oh, and we spent a month freezing our butts off in New Hampshire. That trip started about 16 months ago, and it led us back to North Carolina.
While we have settled here in North Carolina for the time being, we are planning more trips to get us out climbing in even more places. The next big destination on our list will get us climbing out of the country for the first time, as we have our sights set on Patagonia! I am looking forward to sharing our future traveling & climbing adventures with you guys here on Jenn's awesome blog! Feel free to also check out the blog I write with my husband, find me on Facebook and Pinterest too.