Have you ever been on a path, where it seemed like everything was lining up the way it should be – things were going smooth, your life felt perfect – and then one day, seemingly out of the blue, something happened, and everything changed?  What once felt comfortable, suddenly felt unstable. What once felt like solid ground, now felt like falling through space.  

As climbers and outdoorsy folks in general,  we pride ourselves on being strong – both physically and mentally.  We’re high achievers that see in mountain faces and blank walls, problems that need to be solved.

But at the end of the day, we’re all human beings.  Not every problem can be solved – and sometimes, what’s most important is being able to look in the mirror and say, today is the day to make some changes.

In some ways, this is what my recent conversation with climber, skier and musician Kjersti Gedde was about.  We talked about her recent decision to walk away from a stable career in the outdoor industry, how music and songwriting helped her navigate through overwhelming grief, and what it means to give yourself permission to simply be who you are. 


Evan Phillips



Alaska Rock Gym

The Hoarding Marmot