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Hello Hello Hello

A brief interview with
Sarah Marvez

late August, 2003

Sarah Sarah Sarah Sarah Sarah


FRB: Who is Sarah Marvez?

Sarah: I'm a climber and architecture student from Boulder, Colorado.

FRB: Why do you like bouldering?

Sarah: I love the simplicity of it. It's sort of a Zen concept-maximum difficulty in an insignificant context. It doesn't seem special to a casual observer in the way climbing a route or a mountain does- only by doing it can you understand how totally engrossing it is.

FRB: Who do you look up to in the climbing world?

Sarah: I look up to anybody who tries really hard, and people who stay modest. One of my biggest influences has been Elaina Arenz Smith. I love how she's really burly but is always making sure other people have spots and are encouraged no matter their ability level.

FRB: Who do you usually climb with?

Sarah: I usually climb with the girl posse, including my sister Stephanie and my friends Fiona, Elaina, Adie, and Jen. My awesome boyfriend Chuck comes along quite often, as do Robbie B, T.J., Sean, Bennet Scott and Brian Kimball.

FRB: Do you ever compete? How do you do?

Sarah: I do compete, but not religiously. I've met a lot of great folks at the Boulder Rock Club bouldering series, as well as at the Spot. I'm always up for the smackdown from the super strong women competitors on the Front Range ladies. You know who you are!

FRB: Been on any trips lately?

Sarah: I recently spent five weeks in the Black Hills of South Dakota.

FRB: Tell us about South Dakota?

Sarah: South Dakota has it all. Amazing limestone, scary trad, and incredible granite bouldering. The area is really blessed with an incredible climbing history and really friendly locals.

FRB: Describe some of the bouldering areas?

Sarah: The majority of the developed bouldering is at Mount Baldy. The rock is granite, and the holds are usually small crimpers or big hand slappin' slopers. Chuck and I were climbing there daily and didn't see a soul for about three weeks. It's that peaceful.

FRB: Did you put up any problems while you were there?

Sarah: I put up a couple of problems, both about V4 or V5. Climbing a problem for the first time is pretty special. John Sherman was climbing with us then, and it was fun to think of names that would make even the Verm blush. We tried, but as you know the Verm never blushes.

FRB: Is the bouldering in South Dakota scary/dangerous?

Sarah: Some of it is. Seeing the Thimble for the first time really showed me what a highball could be. I came away from that with a lot of respect for the old school climbers. Watching John Sherman and Kurt Smith in action was really inspiring, the way they keep it all together way off the deck. Thinking about John Gill doing the Thimble in his boots just blew my mind.

FRB: Who are the local boulderers in South Dakota?

Sarah: I couldn't believe how strong those guys were, especially the ladies! I went bouldering with Brandon and Amanda Taglioli quite a bit, and Amanda will climb until she is bleeding out of every tip! I also climbed with Heather and Mike Cronin, as well as Blake Workman. The locals deserve a lot of credit for putting up some wicked hard problems.

FRB: What do they think of all the new development?

Sarah: The locals have an awesome attitude. There was never any tension about us climbing in "their" area. The prevailing attitude was, the more new problems the better.

FRB: Did you do any John Gill problems
          while you were there?

Sarah: I climbed the Center Route and the Right Arete on the Yellow wall. The arrows are still there if you look close enough! Both problems are a pleasure to climb.

FRB: So you are in a bouldering movie coming out soon?

Sarah: Yup. The movie's called Friction Addiction- Black Hills Gold. There's been so much talent put into this film. It's going to be incredible!

FRB: Tell us about the movie.

Sarah: The film is a tribute to John Gill. We felt like he deserved to be recognized for all his amazing accomplishments. The film also showcases the Black Hills, one of the truly overlooked climbing areas in the West. And finally, we wanted to pool all of our talents and really push the climbing film genre to a new level.

FRB: What makes this movie different from other
          climbing videos?

Sarah: One of the big differences is it has chicks in it! That was one of our goals when we started out. I have been pretty frustrated with the lack of women climbers in most climbing movies. We wanted our movie to be more inclusive than that. Friction Addiction is full of the ladies crankin' right there with the guys. We wouldn't have it any other way.

FRB: Sounds cool. Where can we see it, and when?

Sarah: Friction Addiction is premiering at the Boulder Theater on Thursday Sept. 4th. Doors open at 7pm for live music and the movie will show at 8:30pm. Tickets are available day of show or at your local climbing gym or outdoor store!

FRB: What are your goals for the future?

Sarah: My goals are to keep having fun and hanging out with all the awesome people I've met through climbing. Not screwing up my ankles any more is way up there too.

FRB: Got any more trips coming up?

Sarah: I am counting the days until Hueco Tanks in December.

FRB: What do you plan on doing in Hueco this winter?

Sarah: I have a few things in mind, but Hueco has a way of finding projects for you. I'd really like to do Better Eat Your Wheaties- crimpy and nasty! Just the way I like 'em!

FRB: Good luck Sarah. Thanks for the interview.

Sarah: My pleasure.

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