Hey hey, I’m Krissy! I’m a wife, dog mom, daughter, sister, athlete, entrepreneur, mountaineer, climber, skier, ultrarunner, coach, educator, WFR, photographer, thru hiker, nutritionist, lifter, world traveler, and recovering addict/alcoholic.
Hiking, running, camping, water sports and snowboarding were all deeply ingrained in me at a very young age thanks to my incredibly athletic parents who did all the things. I started my outdoor adventures when I was six years old at Girl Scout camp and ended up going for six summers, where I was taught basic outdoor survival skills and introduced to multiple outdoor sports. Growing up in Reno-Tahoe, four seasons of outdoor adventure were available to me throughout the year and I had a very active, outdoorsy (and clearly incredibly privileged) youth and upbringing. My parents worked really hard to get me outside as much as possible and I am forever grateful for them and the outdoor opportunities they gave my sister and I growing up. In high school, I was introduced to substances and was abusing them heavily by college. Going outside slowed down a bit while I partied for a couple of years, yet solo hiking served as a form of therapy for me during those tough and lonely years.
On Fourth of July 2011–while still very deep in my drug use and abuse–I went on my first real multi-day backpacking trip with a friend and it changed my life forever. He taught me how to set up camp, purify water, and make food. Even though I wouldn’t get clean/sober for about 2 more years, I actually realized that I preferred the wilderness to the bars and clubs on that trip. And I have been backpacking ever since, adding both miles and difficulty to my trips each year. In 2019, I started backpacking solo and it is one of the most empowering things I have ever done as a woman. I also completed my first thru-hike of 170 miles in 2020 with Arielle. All of this backpacking is what truly set me up for success when I unexpectedly came crashing into mountaineering and alpine climbing in 2019. I didn't exactly plan on making the progression, but it happened!!! And I am sooooo glad that it did!
In June 2019, I accidentally fell face-first into climbing and mountaineering on a hiking trip to the Swiss Alps. I immediately invested in multiple climbing courses (rock and snow) to learn as many skills as quickly and safely as possible in order to learn how to climb unguided. At one of these courses in 2020, I was guided by Connor, who became my mountain mentor and dear friend. This is how Whitney came into my life as a friend, peer, and climbing partner.
I am now leading multi-pitch trad, as well as climbing big mountains with Ben and friends. In under three years, we developed the skills and did the work to be able to climb the biggest mountains in the country––rock and snow––unguided and I am really damn proud of us (even though we have a very long way to go as climbers). I am currently going through the AMGA Single Pitch Instructor program and will be certified in 2023. As well as training for 6000-7000m peaks!!
At the end of 2020, I became a Leave No Trace Educator as well as a Wilderness First Responder. While I ultimately did these things to be able to guide and educate, I also became a WFR because I witnessed my mountain guide die in Patagonia in Feb 2020 and didn’t know how to properly respond to the wilderness emergency at hand. I now feel more empowered and prepared than ever to help someone in need. I also fully understand how short and precious human life is, which is why I send so hard!!!
In January of 2021, I started skiing again (after 20 years off) in an effort to combat SAD––seasonal affective disorder or depression. And it worked like a damn charm!! I spent the season learning about gear, backcountry touring, and avalanche safety I completed multiple AIARE courses, including the Level I as well as the rescue course and plan to continue my education this 2023 season with the Level 2. I am hooked on skiing and now have big future skimo goals with Whitney!!
Over the last ten years, I have noticed that the outdoors and mountain sports are dominated by white men who are not all stoked on women being in the mountains too. Fuck that. We can do everything they can do. And I want this community to serve as a kicking-off point to get as many women safely outside as possible. Because we belong. Every single one of us. Lastly, the mountains have healed my relationship with my body and I want to pass that on to every single woman who reads this.
I can’t wait to hear all about how hard you kick ass out there once you join this incredibly badass community. Happy sending!