Sterling Athletes Team
Through an unlikely chain of events, I started climbing after moving away from the Southeast to the Bronx in New York. I always had an appreciation for traveling and all things new, so after my first climbing road-trip out west, where we hit up the most classic climbing areas in a little over two weeks, I knew climbing was something that could keep me entertained, even if only for a little while. Little did I know it would be the vehicle for nearly everything I do now; where I live, where I travel and who I'm with. It's my community, my motivation and my life. I love it.
Name: Colette McInerney
How did you get started climbing? My roommate Megan McDonald took me to a gym in Stanford Connecticut my freshman year while I was attending Fordham University in the Bronx, NY. I thought it would be interesting, but I had no idea I would be instantly hooked!
How old were you when you started? 20
Who or what inspired you to start climbing? My freshman roommates of course, but really it was my first serious climbing partner Jackie Moore that really motivated me to take climbing from being something I did once and while, to something that started to shape my world and become a priority.
Who served as your inspiration in life? My parents and sister. My mom is an incredibly strong and smart woman. She's always taken great care of her health and body, and she's continues to amazes me with her athletic pursuits today. My dad is a musician and I learned from him to follow what you love in life. My sister is my best friend and my biggest cheerleader. I have a super supportive family, I'm so very lucky!
What was your first outdoor climb?
I think it was some 5.8 top-rope at Foster Falls, in Tennessee. I was actually with my mom, step-dad and step-sister. My mom got into climbing before me! But my very first lead was "Popeye Meets the Burrito Master" 5.9 at The Pit in Flagstaff Arizona.
What do you do when you're not climbing?
Take pictures, run, yoga, make movies, freelance production, read, travel, write, try to learn Spanish.
Any training advice or suggestions?
Oh no, I'm a terrible trainer! I guess I really like running as cross-training. I don't think it necessarily helps my climbing physically, but I feel like it keeps my body limber and slim, and is a great release on non-climbing days.
What do you feel is your best accomplishment, outside of climbing?
Traveling and making life on the road work. It's the most rewarding incredible way to live ever!
What do you feel is your best accomplishment within climbing?
Hum... I'm kind of a scardy cat, so it was probably the epic whipper I swore I would never take and then did take on a red-point attempt of "Joe's Six Pack" 13a at the VRG. That whipper was a bigger accomplishment than the send for sure! And one of my best send days was the day I sent my long term project at the time "Hobytla" 13a then flashed my first 12d, "Bastard Stepchild" at the Cathedral the same day.
Not really a quote person. Probably anything that Maya Angelou or Trent Reznor writes.
If you could have 1 superpower what would it be?
Flying of course!
If you could have 3 wishes, what would they be?
- To speak every language.
- Photographic memory.
- World Peace (is that cheesy? I feel bad not mentioning that...)
What was your favorite childhood cartoon?
Thunder Cats, Jem.
Photos: courtesy Joe Kinder & Jorg Visser