Town: Spokane, Washington
Quote: “Here comes the sun, and I say it’s alright”- The Beatles
About Abbie: Hello beautiful people! My name is Abbie Salter, I am 20 years old, and I love all things outdoors (but most of all rocks). I hail from the spectacular city of Fort Collins, CO. Before I start, I want blame my family for building my passion for the outdoors, and for being the most incredible and excited adventure buddies in this world (so what, I’m biased!). I grew up primarily skiing and hiking. My parents dragged us on hikes nearly every weekend in the summer; even if stubborn five year old Abbie complained the entire car ride up, I was dirt covered and grinning ear to ear by the end. My parents always encouraged me to push my comfort level. One of my favorite childhood memories is bagging Long Peaks with my dad and brother, despite my fear of heights which had me crying through the scrambles, because I proved to myself I could overcome fears and have fun doing it. My dad had me skiing between his legs at age two, and then around age twelve my family strapped on the tele skis and started doing backcountry ski trips to the Tenth Mountain Division huts. I remember my first powder day I was terrified of all the snow, but three turns in I was whooping and hollering like it was Christmas morning.
Senior year of high school I began really to test my limits. Living in Switzerland I spent a lot of time doing solo hikes out in the Aps. I skied the infamous Haute Route with some family and friends. I started joining my family for weekly outdoor rock climbing in the summer. Saying I was totally in love doesn’t even begin to cover how enthralled I was with rock climbing in particular. Going to school at Gonzaga in Spokane, WA has allowed me to solidify my love for the outdoors. I have gotten to go skiing in Canada; rock climbing in Moab, Leavenworth, Bishop, Smith Rock, and Skaha; as well as lots of backpacking, trail running, mountain biking, and hiking throughout the Pacific Northwest. However, the best part was finding a community to do it all with me. Gonzaga Outdoors has been my second family in college. Full of people with genuine excitement and an unstoppable desire to be fully alive, Gonzaga Outdoors has allowed more to build both my technical outdoor skills as well as the soft skills that go along with it.
Where I truly find a sense of fulfillment is sharing my love for the outdoors with others. As a psychology and environmental studies double major I aspire to use the outdoors as a therapeutic tool for youth. The outdoors allows me to be totally myself. Anytime I was struggling growing up, I went outside. I feel more comfortable in my skin, happy, and alive. I want nothing more than to share this feeling of joy with others in hopes that they feel as empowered as I do outside.
Right now I coach Spider Monkeys (the little kids) at Wild Walls gym in Spokane and am the Director of Programming for Gonzaga Outdoors. Both jobs give me the opportunity to really grow as a leader. I still have a lot to learn, but I’m more excited than ever to do so. This year also allowed me to begin full time rock-climbing instruction. I took a Single Pitch Instructor course through the American Mountain Guides Association and have had the opportunity to guide a few top-rope climbing trips to Vantage, WA and Minnehaha (the local dirt bag Spokane climbing area). Rock Climbing has taught me more about myself, and life in general, than anything else, and I am beyond stoked to get others hooked as well.
For me, SheJumps is another incredible outlet for people to find themselves and passions. Girls are often discouraged from becoming outdoor enthusiasts because of traditional gender roles, and I want to change that. I am especially excited to provide climbing events to the Spokane area for SheJumps with the help of Anna Twohig (incredible lady). So, look out for trips in the Spokane area!!! I am so honored to be part of the SheJumps community. These ladies care about each and every person and want the best for them. It’s time women of all ages showed the world exactly what they can do. All hail the Girafficorn!