ATHLETES + FACILITATORS

**The bios below are of the women that instructed clinics from our festival held in October 2018.

ATHLETES

Abbey Smith
Abbey Smith is a freelance producer, writer and professional rock climber born and raised in Colorado. For nearly two decades, Abbey has carved her own niche of mountain athlete, taking her passion for adventure, storytelling and exploratory bouldering all over the world from the extreme altitudes of the Indian Himalayas and the Peruvian Andes to remote islands in Thailand. Her international exploits have been featured in several films, online web series, commercials, and in the pages of ESPN, Fortune, Men’s Journal, Outside, Backpacker, Climbing, Alpinist, and other international print and online publications. She currently lives in Los Angeles, California. Sponsors: Marmot & La Sportiva

Angie Payne
Born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, Angie Payne began climbing indoors at the age of eleven. Upon moving to Boulder in 2003 to attend the University of Colorado, Angie employed her plastic pulling skills to find success in the world of competition bouldering. Angie also has numerous notable outdoor ascents under her belt including more than 30 first female ascents of various boulder problems.  In 2010, she completed The Automator and became the first woman in the world to climb a confirmed V13.

Anna Pfaff
Growing up in Ohio, Anna Pfaff didn’t get a lot of exposure to the mountains. It wasn’t until she left to study nursing in Denver that she roped up for the first time, and it didn’t take long for her to catch the bug. Ever since then, she has spent most of her days travelling the world in search of big walls and remote alpine objectives the quench her thirst for adventure. From the Himalaya, to the Andes, to Newfoundland, Anna is in her zone when tackling mixed climbing routes in the furthest reaches of the backcountry.

Colette McInerney
Colette McInerney is a filmmaker, photographer and sponsored rock climber from Nashville TN. She has been climbing for 16 years and working in the industry for the last 8. She describes herself as a climber first and a photographer second, expressing how one passion lead to the other. Most recently she’s been working with Never Not Collective, an all female adventure production team who is currently planning their next big project, “Pretty Strong” an all women’s climbing film.

Hazel Findlay
Hazel Findlay has been climbing for 20 of her 26 years, and started out trad climbing on the limestone sea cliffs of Pembrokeshire. She dabbled in competition climbing – she was the British junior champion six times – but at 16 decided to give it up to focus on climbing on rock, especially trad climbing which is her main passion. Hazel has been a full time climber for the last four years, which has allowed her to travel all over the world climbing interesting pieces of rock.
Hazel was the first British woman to climb a trad route at E9, and free El Capitan in Yosemite, which she has now done three times. Hazel has also red pointed 8c and onsighted many 8as, loves all types of climbing from bouldering to alpine climbing and is especially interested in the mental challenge that climbing evokes.

Jessa Goebel 
Raised in North Carolina, Jessa started climbing in the gym at the age of 9. Soon after, she was competing on a national and international level, climbing outside on weekends and breaks from school. By the end of high school, competition became less of a priority as climbing outside became more of a priority. Her focus would be turned to boulder problems and traditional lines in the Southeast. Currently all Jessa’s efforts are toward taking 20+ years of skill and experience into the mountains. At the moment she resides in Fayetteville, West Virginia, within walking distance of the New River Gorge and works as a sales rep and athlete in the outdoor industry.

Kate Rutherford
Kate Rutherford loves to climb. The integration of body, landscape and community help inspire her to seek new lines and friends all over the world. Bishop, California is now home, its perfect for exploring cracks and summits in the mountains, doing art and learning to boulder.

Laura Sabourin
Laura is a climbing instructor and trainer in Flagstaff, Arizona.  She loves working with climbers of all abilities to dive deeper into their experience.  As a certified trainer for The Warrior’s Way, Laura helps empower climbers with new processes for falling, thinking, and moving on a climb. She believes that a love-based approach to climbing creates space for playing with new challenges and enjoying the learning process. Laura loves all types of climbing, but she is most drawn to steep desert cracks and long, aesthetic walls.

 

 

 

Nikki Smith
Nikki Smith has been shooting climbing and the outdoors for more than 16 years. Her work has been on the covers of many climbing and outdoor magazines and used by outdoor and climbing companies all over the world. She has been an instructor at the Rock and Ice Photo Camps and is passionate about helping others document their world.
Nikki is also an avid climber with more than 200 first ascents throughout the west and Asia and has authored five climbing guidebooks for Utah.

 

Nina Williams
Nina is a professional climber originally based out of Rhode Island, USA. She began her career at the age of 12 in the gym, training with a team and competing on a local and national level. She loved the outdoor climbing of New England but eventually moved West in her early twenties.
Nina spent 8 years in Colorado focusing on bouldering competitions and expanding her outdoor resume. She trained in the gym while making numerous visits to Joe’s Valley and Hueco, as well as several trips to Rocklands in South Africa. After sending Ray of Light, a V13 in Rocklands, Nina shifted her attention towards the mental aspects of climbing. She explored 30-50ft highball bouldering with ascents such as Footprints (V9), Evilution Direct (V11), and Ambrosia (V11) in Bishop, CA. She also began learning the skill-sets for traditional climbing after her first visit to Yosemite, testing herself on the West Face of El Capitan (5.11c) and The Final Frontier (5.13b) on Fifi Buttress.
Nina is currently in the process of getting her Certified Professional Coach license and gearing up for school in the fall. She resides in Boulder, CO where she seeks a balance between hard bouldering, alpine trad, training, and coaching. When she’s not climbing she enjoys a good cup of coffee and hanging out with her hedgehog, Ms. Frankie Von Quillsbury. She is a representative of Adidas Terrex, Five Ten, Organic Climbing, Black Diamond, and Native Eyewear.

Sammy Podhurst
I am one of the senior ski, rock & alpine guides for Aspen Expeditions Worldwide since 2011. I am also an AIARE Level 1 Avalanche instructor. I am working my way through the AMGA (American Mountain Guides Association), with the goal of one day receiving the revered IFMGA certification. I am currently an AMGA Assistant Rock Guide, and an Apprentice in the Ski & Alpine disciplines. Ski touring is the name of the game for me; and if the descent does not involve some form of long ascent or technical climb, it is hard to find me there. I love to take my adventuring abroad, traveling to places like India, Nepal, Vietnam, Cambodia, as well as Europe and South America. Some of my most memorable climbs/skis have been in the Cordillera Blanca range, a part of the Peruvian Andes, checking several summits above 6,000m.

FACILITATORS

Allison Stowers 
Allison Youngblood Stowers is a licensed physical therapist who earned her clinical doctorate in physical therapy from Georgia State University. A love of rock climbing and a dedication to its outdoor community brought Allison and her husband to Chattanooga, TN. That same love of climbing and the rehabilitation of common injuries seen among climbers are what ultimately lead Allison down her professional path.

Andi Abode
Andi has been RYT 200hr certified through Yoga Alliance since May 2013, and has been teaching yoga ever since. A few years later she found her love for climbing and began incorporating her needs as a climber into her yoga practice. She moved to Chattanooga in 2016 to pursue a stronger connection to the outdoor community and her love for climbing.

Stephanie Sutton
Stephanie Sutton is one of the owners and setters at Tennessee Bouldering Authority, one of the first bouldering specific gyms in the country. The gym is known for its world class setting and churning out some of the strongest climbers in the country. Stephanie has been climbing for over 8 years and setting for over 7 years. She moved to Chattanooga in 2012 and she and her husband, Ben, recently became business partners with Kasia Pietras, taking co-ownership of TBA to help it’s legend live on.

Kate Johnson
Kate Johnson works for the Access Fund as a traveling trailbuilder. She has been working trails for 5 years and has been climbing for 6. She is from Maine.

 

PANELISTS

Brittany Leavitt
Brittany Has spent the last four years making  Impetuous stride towards leading and teaching others the enjoyment of the outdoors, while also helping guiding and promoting the importance of Diversity Equity and Inclusion in the outdoors. While part taking in great work with many great organizations and groups like Outdoor Afro, Brown Girls Climb, and REI. Brittany’s most recent adventure was being able to be a part of the first African-American led team to Kilimanjaro. When Brittany is not climbing on rocks our backpacking through the mountains. She spends her time as a preschool teacher for the Smithsonian.

Nikki Smith
Please see above

Becca Droz
Becca is a psyched climber, beatboxer and AMGA single pitch instructor. Inspired by rocks of all sizes (from pebbles to bigwalls), Becca has pursued her biggest climbing objectives in all female teams and values the unique camaraderie this brings. In the gym and outside in Boulder, CO, Becca specializes in instructing women’s climbing courses to help students improve competence and confidence in climbing with an undertone of transferring this awareness into the rest of life.