A female reader lends a new perspective to the climbing thread:
Although I am no longer a climber, due to work schedules and age factors, I did climb quite a bit when I was young and fearless. I was one of the few women climbing, let alone leading. I loved friction climbs, because after I learned to master my nerves a bit. It felt like dancing.
I never had a very bad fall, but I did do some sliding and dropping out of cracks onto protection, so I learned to master recovery a bit. It has helped me in my later life—to get a hold of fear and take on challenges other women might not think of mastering. But nothing beats the freedom and joy of being young and going on a good climb with friends.
I asked our reader to elaborate a little on her experience as a female climber, since the sport tends to be predominantly male. She writes:
As a teenager I climbed with a climbing school in The Balls, on Beasore Meadows Road in the Sierras, which was also used by some of the great climbers of the day as a teaching place. Short climbs, top roped mostly, but lots of options. I got very good, very fast, but was still a child. One of my favorite memories: