Welcome to Episode 49 of the Ω Powerband Podcast - a podcast dedicated to rock climbing in Aotearoa New Zealand. In this episode, I speak with mathlete, engineer, runner, boulderer, tradster and alpinist Rose Pearson.
Rose hails from Dunedin. A few forays to the local climbing wall sparked an early interest in climbing but all climbing opportunities ceased when her family moved to Springfield, Illinois, USA when she was 11.
Returning to New Zealand after completing secondary school, Rose attended Canterbury University and completed an engineering degree (majoring in electrical engineering). While there, she combined her "deep love" of mathematics and physics with a growing passion for bouldering. The more problems to solve, the better!
Bouldering slowly gave way to trad climbing and then alpinism. Rose was part of the first wave of young climbers to join the New Zealand Alpine Team. Unlike the others, however, she managed to complete her menteeship while also completing a PhD at Cambridge University.
Rose has since gone on to accomplish many impressive climbs, including first ascents in the Southern Alps, Canada and Peru. Yet, those accomplishments very nearly did not happen following a serious accident Rose and her brother suffered while adventuring through the western flanks of the Southern Alps.
In our conversation, we cover all of that as well as Rose's thoughts on risk in the mountains, managing irrational and rational fear and making good decisions. And we discuss the value of climbing clubs and communities and the importance of the deep connections that can be made with other humans through climbing. Enjoy!
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