Personal Stuff

1024px-Eldorado_CanyonI live in the small town of Eldorado Springs, Colo. just eight miles from Boulder, with my husband Gareth and daughter Iona.

The 2010 census puts the town’s population at 585, but most of these people live on the sprawling plains that lead up to the canyon’s mouth. At a guess, I would say there’s about 150-200 of us who live in the town itself, on a few dirt roads, pushing up to boundaries of Eldorado Canyon State Park.

For me, this is perfect: there is vibrant community of climbers, yogis, artists and moms to tap into when I feel like socializing and plenty of peace and quiet when I am in writing mode. I can run or hike on fabulous trails from my doorstep and it is just 5 minutes walk to world destination rock climbing.

There, said it. I unashamedly moved to Boulder to pursue my passion for rock climbing in 2004, a “hobby” that probably ruined my attempts to be a serious scientist. The addiction started when I was a graduate student in Sheffield, England where it was a mere 10 minute drive to numerous grit stone cliffs and, a slightly longer drive, to the infamous Peak District limestone. I took frequent trips to France, Spain, Italy and the U.S, to climb and climbing distracted me from the only sport I have really been any good at, which is running. But I have no regrets because, for me, there is not much better than being outdoors in beautiful scenery, playing on rocks in the company of friends.

Life’s different now with a kid and a mortgage to pay, but I still try and get outside climbing a couple of days a week, weather permitting. It will always be great to just be able to go out, touch rock features like I am running my hands over the face of an old friend, and truly forget any worries or concerns that I might have.

Seeing such natural beauty around me, every single day, inspires me to write environmental stories and contribute in my own small way to conserving this beautiful planet.