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.