Climber Story: Jess James Reynolds

April 03, 2024 3 min read

Climber Story: Jess James Reynolds

To start, tell us a little bit about yourself

Hi, I'm Jess! I fell in love with climbing rocks (of all sizes) via peak-bagging and mountaineering throughout my twenties.

I was a trail runner living in LA, and found myself commuting to the east side of the Sierra every weekend for new objectives in the 13nr-14nr range that led me into trad climbing. I traveled to bigger mountains and glaciated peaks as my obsession grew, so did the exploring and curiosity.

I started spending a lot of time at the climbing gym and became more interested in the movement, technique and strength of climbing. Something very different than the other endurance, tech steps and miles put into gaining a summit!

It was when I met my partner (who favored bouldering) and we took off to Europe in Jan 2020 which ended up being over half a year in Switzerland and France. I might be one of the only Americans that learned to boulder in Fontainebleau and on the granite slabs of Ticino!

Since then I’ve spent many humbled moments under boulders, routes and trad lines I never dreamed of trying hard on.

How did you start climbing?

To sum it up...I was sick of choss! I wanted to start trying routes instead of scrambling across ridges (or scree cols) to summits via the Eastern Sierra.

What impact has climbing had on your life?

Climbing has given me a space to reflect, try, conquer, relate, cry, scream, laugh, be a whooo-girl, and yeet. Now I get to travel for work, love, personal vacation all over the world to connect with this amazing community. Community is everywhere. Climbing is so special in that way.

What are some other things you do that you find most fulfilling?

I believe that trail work, stewardship projects, and clean ups are very much as important as a day out climbing. Without these efforts, our climbing crags wouldn't be what we know and love. I also love to write poetry and run trails.

If you could tell the world one thing, what would it be?

Turn inward often, be comfortable alone, and travel.

 

Favorite thing about Dynamite Starfish?

Leslie and LA community are from my roots! I like to support women owned businesses, and her designs are always so relatable.  

Is there something you're working on that you'd like to tell our community about? We love a good story.

I am always working in grassroots efforts to create fun activations in outdoors.

I am lucky to work for adidas TERREX/Five Ten. We get to travel to events in outdoor sports, and the freedom they give me to connect with inclusive community efforts and conservation work is my favorite.


You can find Jess James on Instagram at @jess_james.

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.

Have someone you think we should feature? Send us a message and let us know!

Dynamite Starfish
Dynamite Starfish

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