Community Member Spotlight: Midori Buechli

From Canada, @midoriontherocks shares some of her insights on being such a petite lady crusher! She actually sent her project listed in this interview before we had a chance to post it up, Congrats on the send!

🔸1. How tall are you? And your ape index? (if you know yours)

🔹I am 151 cm (4 feet 11.5 inches) and my ape is 0.

🔸2. How long have you been climbing for?

🔹I have been climbing for about 9 years. I started when I was 21, so now you know how old I am ;).

🔸3. What got you into climbing?

🔹Actually a guy I liked (who is now my husband) was spending a lot of time in the ‘bouldering room’ at our University, and getting into climbing was a good excuse to spend more time with him. But I got hooked really fast and then it became a lot more about improving my climbing / proving myself as a climber, than about hanging out with him!

🔸4. What are some of your favorite places / “shorty friendly” climbs you recommend for outdoor climbing in Ontario? What are some ways foreigners can be mindful of the land when traveling to these places.

🔹The largest bouldering area in Ontario is called the Niagara Glen, which is in Niagara Falls. I’m not sure that I would necessarily call it shorty-friendly. I personally find the style challenging compared to some of the other places I’ve bouldered (e.g. Hueco Tanks or Squamish). It’s all limestone so there is not a ton of texture but as they say, where there’s a will, there’s a way! The Niagara Glen has a ton of climbs with really great and challenging movement; one of my favorite climbs there, which is still on my to-do list, is called Black Eagle. It’s a V9 that involves a super cool double toe hook!

🔹People coming to visit the Niagara Glen should be sure to get a bouldering permit from Nature Centre and carry it with them. Check with locals or in the guidebook about which areas are closed to climbing and respect the closures. Ontario has had past and ongoing access issues due to people not respecting the land. Many of the boulders do not top out because of the vegetation growing on top, so please only top out on approved boulders. And as always Leave No Trace, and if you see trash left behind by someone else, please just pack it out!

🔸5. What are some of the crucial techniques you utilize for yourself when you can’t “just reach for it”?

🔹My absolute favorite part of bouldering is figuring out alternative (shortie) beta. I tend to do a lot of heelhooks, toehooks, kneebars and using intermediate crimps. It often adds a lot of moves and I’m quite a slow climber so I need to have decent endurance. Dynos / big moves are a major weakness for me, so I tend to avoid them, but I recently decided that in order to continue progressing in my climbing, I will need to work on them. Especially for us shorties, dynos are an important tool to have in the arsenal. I currently have a V2 dyno proj at the gym… hopefully I will get it soon!

🔸6. Do you have any climbing goals for 2020?

🔹I’ve never really trained before, so I would like to have a program and actually stick with it this winter!

I have a trip to Hueco Tanks coming up and I would really love to send Theatre of the Absurd (V10) and I am hoping to make some links on the mega proj, Right Martini (V12). In the summer I’m planning a trip to Rocklands and I would be really psyched to do a double-double (two double digit climbs in a day). Otherwise, I have a few local bouldering projects that I would like to do and a few route projects too for when it gets too hot in Ontario to boulder.

🔸7. How about personal goals for 2020?

🔹I just want to spend time with my husband and my friends and my family, get outside as much as possible, save money for trips and get more involved in my community.

🔸8. (Optional) What is your career like?

🔹What are your career goals? I’m a registered nurse. I would like to work get involved in clinical research in the future.

🔸9. (Optional) Do you enjoy any other hobbies besides climbing? 🔹There is very little that I enjoy more than climbing, but I love going to shows, eating sushi (is that considered a hobby?) and lately, doing watercolors.

🔸10. Who are some inspirations for you? 🔹Alex Puccio @alexpuccio is my hero! She has gone through so many setbacks and always comes back stronger than ever.

🔸11. (optional) Who do you think we should feature next? 🔹Favia Dubuk! @felinefavia

🔸12. What advice can you give to the shorty climbers out there? 🔹Try not to let your height become an excuse for not doing certain moves or certain climbs. Yes I get annoyed when a tall person can easily span the move that I am struggling to reach, but complaining about it or wishing I was taller is not constructive. Instead of dwelling on how unfair it all is, shift your thinking (and I am still working on this too) into a more productive mind-frame; Is there another way? Do I need to improve my technique? Etc.

🔸13. Any other special words you would like to say to our short and sweet community? 🔹Thank you so much for reaching out! It’s so cool to think that someone has been inspired by me. I really love the page and am inspired myself by all the other short people out there trying hard!

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