Rob was born in Ohio and didn't even learn about rock climbing until after graduating high school. Having his first climbing experiences at the New River Gorge, West Virginia gave him the climbing bug and he has been at for over 20 years. He continues to travel the world for climbing and adventuring, always seeking the ever elusive perfect route. His passion is establishing new climbs big and small. His favorite places to climb are in the Italian Dolomites and in Zion National Park. He has been teaching high school science for 15 years at an alternative high school for high risk youth where he leads an outdoor program and a real life hands on science curriculum. Rob now resides in Grand Junction, Colorado where he is a proud husband and a father of two boys
My most beneficial contrarian opinion has been that I can do anything if I want to and take the time to figure it out. Transcript: "What contrarian opinion I've held that has benefited me the most in my life? I can do that. Whatever it is, I can figure that out. There's a way I can figure that out, and that's been contrary to what most people have thought or said. And then I take the time and figure it out, and I get it done. I can look at two things that I recall in my life that I have been unable to fulfill, and that was due to moving. So I didn't have a chance to finish it because I was out of town, and I never was able to be back. But yeah, for most things, I can do it. So when you say no, I say I can if I want to."
My climbing highlights include my Thunderbird and Yosemite route climbs, as well as roof cracks. These are all highlights because they took me out of my comfort zone and required me to use new skills and perform at a high level. Transcript: "Top highlights of my life? I mean if we're looking at climbing highlights, physical achievements, I would say my Thunderbird route, my Yosemite route, these are big wall climbs, my roof cracks, what else? That's about it, I guess. Things that are highlights for me are things that took me out of my norm. Like if I did something that I was already good at, it was just more of an execution of something I should execute. But taking me to the next level of doing a new skill and then performing it at a high level is a highlight. And some of those big walls with the danger factor and the difficulty factor and then the roof crack factor, those were all brand new skills for me to go ahead and apply and do it really well or a high level for myself."
My career objective is to have the courage to enjoy my work every day. My personal objective is to achieve my personal potential both physically and mentally. Transcript: "What's one career objective and one personal objective you have that you want to do before you die? My career objective is I'd like to have the courage to enjoy my work every day. Some days you don't, so I want to have the courage to go ahead and pursue things that will make me enjoy my work every single day. I've done that for a long time and I just want to maintain, keep doing that. As far as a personal objective, I wanted to try to see what I could do physically and mentally. So I like to call that trying to achieve my personal potential. So I feel that I did that, I took when I was 20 to 30 years old and I went for it and it was really awesome and a really amazing experience to learn from. So that personal objective was to have that courage to do that and the career objective to have the courage to do the work that I love every day."
To evaluate physical weaknesses, I can put myself through a series of tests to measure my flexibility, power, grip strength, etc. and then make a training plan for improvement. To evaluate mental weaknesses, I can ask others for their opinions on my outlook and strategy for success. Transcript: "How do I evaluate my weaknesses when it comes to climbing? Obviously there's two types of weaknesses. There's physical weaknesses and mental weaknesses, so physical weaknesses I can go ahead and put myself through a series of tests to figure out my flexibility to figure out how much power I can generate My pulling my hand grip grip strength my flexibility all that kind of stuff I can evaluate measure it and then I can go ahead and make a training plan and then I can grow it That's pretty easy pretty simple Mentally I can go ahead and assess Whether or not I'm being positive what my outlook is kind of what my strategy for success is and I can go ahead and Break those down as long as I have a structure to go ahead and assess it against And usually that might involve others kind of getting other people's opinions, so I can do that through others As I don't have a direct coach to go ahead and assess how I'm doing I can't ask them, but I can assess my wife and my peers because they'll tell me how I'm doing"
Work hard and leave people with a smile, so they can trust and depend on you. Transcript: "Best advice I've ever received, I would have to say that work hard at what you do and also when you leave an interaction with another human being leave them with a smile and make sure that they can rely on you and trust you and depend on you so leave them with a smile work hard and you've always got somebody who's got your back"
Improve your core strength in order to improve your footwork. This will help you maintain better body position, lock offs, and maximize your efforts on the wall. Transcript: "Best way to improve footwork for an intermediate climber. Ultimately, when I have climbers that are asking me to help them break through a plateau of those grades, it typically comes into a footwork solution, and that footwork is directly related to your core. So what I would say is make sure that your core is very strong, and that when you're placing your feet on the footholds or heel hooks or whatever it is you're putting your feet on, that your core is engaged at a high amount, because that's going to go ahead and keep your body in and prevent the sagging. It's going to allow you to maintain your lockoffs and be in the better body position to maximize your efforts on the wall. So your core through your legs to your toes is the solution, in my opinion."