Howdy! My name is Jade, and I LOVE rock climbing. I grew up in Bayfield, Colorado (southwest corner) and have spent most of my life in Colorado. I’m 28 years old and a new parent to a tiny human...which is CRAZY. In addition to caring for the tiny human, I am currently an affiliate professor of art history with a focus on Latin America and native North American art. I am multiracial — Mexican, white, indigenous — and my family is several generations from the four corners region.
How did you start climbing?
I started climbing 9 years ago on the front range of Colorado. I had never even heard of climbing until I got to college at CU Boulder. I grew up in rural Colorado and Arizona on a ranch, and outdoor activities beyond working with cattle and horses were completely unknown to me. I was introduced to climbing in a cringy way — by a send bro who didn’t teach me anything and expected a constant belay in large groups of other send bros. This resulted in me developing a fear of climbing for years.
Eventually, I realized climbing with supportive people who looked like me created a positive experience. Fast forward to today, and I live and breathe climbing of all traditions, grades, and environments with a new goal of using my skills and experience to help others achieve their climbing goals and to create a more accessible climbing community.
What impact has climbing had on your life?
Climbing has meant everything to me. Getting over my fear of climbing made me realize how powerful and strong I am. It has given me incredible skills of independence of self reliance. I never could have imagined that I would be in a place where I could just go out into the wild and climb an awe-inspiring monolith of rock by utilizing my own wits, strength, and planning.
Climbing gives me the ultimate calm in my brain and has supported me through unpacking a lot of trauma. I believe climbing is a great privilege, and I feel so lucky I found it. The community I have found in climbing is composed of my best friends in the world, a million scrappy doggos, and experiences that are the true highlight of my life.
What are some other things you do that you find most fulfilling?
I make jewelry and am a potter! I am obsessed with my two herding dogs, Hank and Louise. Being a mom has been pretty rad so far (though I’m pretty new at it).
If you could tell the world one thing, what would it be?
Respect and love the wildness inside you.
Favorite thing about Dynamite Starfish?
It's inclusive, inspiring, puts an excellent priority on the hanging out part of climbing 😂
Is there something you're working on that you'd like to tell our community about? We love a good story.
I’m currently trying to figure out how to be a climber mom! So far I’ve had mixed success with bringing my son to the gym. I’ve found that the tread climb is great because I can get a good workout in before he decides he is bored of his car seat. Each time I get out, regardless of how much actual climbing I do, feels like a win for both of us 💪🏽. I’m a bit obsessed with finding another climber parent to be my new best friend (hmu), and I’m exited to get the babe outside soon — I welcome any tips you have!
Want to get to know more of the climbers in the amazing Dynamite Starfish community? Check out our archive of Climber Stories here.
We hope you have enjoyed these sneak peeks into climbers' lives. We're on a mission to share diverse stories about rock climbing. Let's push the boundaries of who we know as climbers. Let's use our energy and passion for the outdoors to love our environment and inspire one another.