Member Spotlight: Dianne Roberts

Dianne Roberts, 69 years old, has been climbing for just two months. She is originally from the Portland area and now lives in Gorham. Between those two locations, about twenty years, she and her husband John early retired to Park City, Utah to ski and travel the west. They ‘ski bummed’ all over Utah, volunteered on the World Cups, and worked on the 2002 Olympics, and in the off season they hiked & biked most of the National Parks west of the Mississippi. Lucky for all of us, they returned in 2014 to old friends and family in Maine.

Where is “home”?

Gorham, Maine

What’s the best thing about living in Maine?

The best thing about living in Maine is the distinctive beauty of each of the four seasons.

What’s the worst thing about living in Maine?

The worst thing about living in Maine would be the long winters. That’s another reason Salt Pump Climbing appeals to me…I can climb year round and it’s not weather dependent.

How long have you been climbing for?

I have been climbing for just two months and even though I work out everyday and train with weights twice a week, climbing has made a significant difference in my overall muscle tone, strength and flexibility.

What makes climbing unique and/or different from other forms of physical activity?

I consider climbing my “flow activity”, which sets it apart from all my other activities. It requires an energized focus, a complete physical and mental immersion. For me it’s a kind of “moving meditation”.

What is your biggest climbing goal for the next year?

This year I’ll turn 70 and my climbing goal is to continue to challenge myself on routes of greater difficulty and to get more of my friends and family signed up to climb with me.

What is your biggest non-climbing goal for the next year?

My non-climbing goal is to continue to maintain and augment a healthy, active lifestyle.

If you were completely immobilized in a hospital bed for a year, what hobby would you do?

If I were immobilized for a long period of time, I would take up the study of genealogy. It’s a fascinating, but time-consumptive hobby that I have never been willing to invest the time to research.

What’s the hardest you’ve tried recently?

The hardest thing I’ve attempted recently is to overcome my long held fear of heights when climbing. I’m happy to say I can now scale a wall and look down. This has been very empowering!

What’s the hardest you’ve laughed recently?

The hardest I’ve laughed recently was reminiscing with my old roommate about some of our elaborate college pranks and wondering how we avoided getting arrested.

Who inspires you to try hard?

My husband inspires me to try harder, reach higher and “just go for it” when self- doubt sets in.

What’s your greatest strength?

My greatest strength may be my ability to tap into my inner child and find the playful joy in everyday life. I think it keeps me young and it may be another reason I enjoy climbing so much because it takes me back to my youth when I climbed trees and scrambled up steep embankments.

What’s your biggest weakness?

My greatest weakness is impatience. I just seem to be pre-programmed for finger tapping annoyance if something takes too long.

Why do you climb?

I climb because it’s fun, it challenges me, and makes me feel like a kid again!