Updated: May 10
Tell us about yourself - who are you and what do you love doing?
I’m Molly, I love climbing and I’m a classic weekend warrior, most definitely not a pro. I’m an engineer by day, working in the glamourous sewage treatment industry(!) and in my free time I’m either climbing or doing something climbing related, like reading through guidebooks and planning the next trip. I love taking photos and eating chocolate too. I’m also lucky enough to have found someone who shares my passion for adventure, climbing and chocolate…and whom I now share my eyes with. My husband and climbing partner, Jesse, is blind and we just have the best time out on rock. I’m not sure I have the best attributes for sight guiding a blind climber – I’m quiet, have a bit of stammer, get my right and left mixed up and have no climbing qualifications to speak of. But it seems to work ok!
Give us three words that you identify with most?
What brings you the most joy outdoors?
Being in remote places with great views. There’s nothing better than having a crag to yourselves on a nice cool sunny day, breathing in the fresh air and sharing a pork pie on a belay ledge. I find that moving at a slower pace, taking in all the details, describing the surroundings, just adds to the adventure and makes you appreciate the beauty even more.
What has been your biggest challenge to date?
Surviving for a month in Greenland! Back in April 2017, I went to Greenland with the aim of skiing a new route, crossing several glaciers and climbing some new peaks. It was extremely remote and an unforgiving environment, still in full winter conditions with average daytime temps of -15degC and -30degC in the tent at night. It was brutal and exhausting both physically and mentally. Being somewhere so remote and having no room for error was exhilarating and tough. One of the scariest moments of my life happened when an anchor failed on our descent down from a high col, I watched 3 of my friends disappear about 280m down to the glacier below. Thankfully no one was seriously injured. We successfully summited some new peaks days later and lived to tell the tale. My feet were numb for about 3 months after I got back home! Would I do it again…hell yeah!
If you could share a core value or abiding principle with others, what would it be?
Always have the next trip planned and have something to look forward to. Whether that’s a plan to visit a new wall, a day trip, a weekend away or a longer holiday. In fact, having the next 2 trips planned is even better, because when you get back from one, there’s always another one to look forward to!
Tell us one small change we can make as individuals to help our community?
In the UK we’re extremely fortunate to have access to the countryside with the consent of landowners. I think we should do everything we can to retain this access by maintaining good relations with the landowners. Try to do what you can to keep landowners on side. Park sensibly, close gates, pick up litter, brush off chalk, smile nicely and say hello! So much of our climbing outdoors relies on this access, we need to do everything we can to maintain goodwill.