Mariel's Notes on Climbing and Nature

When I think of climbing I think of silence peace and challenge. I have not climbed for long… a little over a year but I have been hiking and loving nature all of my life. My love of the outdoors never ceases to grow in intensity. Nature gives me what people cannot… truth, honesty and unconditional love. It guides with the power of temperature, smell, tastes and sensations that thrill me in and out!

Since I began to climb I have an understanding of mountains in a different way. I am sure you have heard this that climbing makes you present. For me it makes me humble, real and aware. I cannot do the shopping or worry about my daughters or my career or what I am going to make for dinner. I can only "be" when I am on the side of a rock.

I have climbed a little in Yosemite, the Buttermilks, Joshua Tree and right here near my home in Malibu State Park. I am not skilled but I am enthusiastic to learn and get better. I am disturbed that I don't use my legs more and that I cry when I get scared and I get scared often. And most of the time I am on top rope, which means that I can't really fall because my boyfriend Bobby @bwillbe is always there for me.

At the end of the day getting outside and breathing and taking in the beauty of mother nature is what moves me… takes my breath away. When I climb I am more connected to that thrill. I can only focus on the task at hand… it occupies my mind my body and my senses. When I am finished I have a heightened sense of awareness of everything in me and around me that I didn't have before. I am more me than I was and that is a gift.