Steph Davis free soloed the Diamond on Longs Peak, free soloed Castleton Tower and BASE jumped off the top, freed the Salathe Wall, has climbed all over the world, and over the past few years has pursued BASE jumping and wingsuit flying with the same passion. She’s shaped her life around climbing and jumping, living out of a car for several years, but eventually settling into a double-wide in Moab, where she now lives and helps operate Moab BASE Adventures with her husband Mario Richard. Her new book, Learning To Fly: An Uncommon Memoir of Human Flight, Unexpected Love, and One Amazing Dog was published in March 2013. We asked her our 10 Questions:
1. You’ve spent a lot of your life climbing and BASE jumping. When you meet people who don’t do those things, how do you explain what they mean to you?
Usually I just say it’s fun. But also about everything else in life: learning, places, community, and relationships.
2. What’s the best thing about the outdoor industry (or culture)? Worst?
The best thing is the down-to-earth attitude and lack of pretense. The worst thing: not having enough time to do everything – but that is probably true with life in general.
3. Where do you eat most in Moab, besides your house?
The Love Muffin.
4. What’s the biggest reason you choose to be vegan?
Because factory farming is abhorrent and no one should add one more penny of their money into sustaining it.
5. Pick one: Smartphone or knife.
Both, of course.
6. You’ve free soloed at a pretty high level. What’s the draw, for you?
I like all styles of climbing for different things. I like the focus and the solitude of solo climbing.
7. Why should we read your new book, Learning To Fly?
Because if you don’t like it, I will come to your house and give you your money back.
8. What’s a piece of advice you’d give to someone getting started in BASE jumping?
The best jumper is the one who never gets hurt. Find that person and try to be like him/her. Avoid huge groups. BASE jump because you love doing it, not because you want to “be a BASE jumper.”
9. What’s your goal for the next 12 months?
Give Learning to Fly its final push into the world and then put all my energy back into climbing (and jumping)! It’s been a four-year project.
10. Most people think I’m _________ but I’m ___________
I really have no idea.
Bonus: How do you define adventure?
Adventure is when you aren’t sure what’s going to happen.
Photo by Tommy Chandler