Shannon Montaño


Tell us about your climbing journey:

My first outdoor climbing experiences were on routes in the beautiful Southwest high desert mountains of New Mexico in 2007.  I got into climbing through the local Albuquerque climbing gym with college friends and climbing soon became a long lasting love.  I enjoyed the traveling and climbing in the southwest so much that every weekend soon became a flurry of packing friends, gear, food, and drinks into the car in order to drive to a new climbing destination.

Most memorable ascent:

My most memorable ascent would be Nobody Here Gets Out Alive, a classic at Hueco Tanks touted as "the best V2 in the world". How can you not take the opportunity to climb it, especially with a no hands feet only start!

Favorite climbing destination:

My favorite place to climb is The Enchanted Tower in the Magdalena mountains of Southern New Mexico.  This is where my love for climbing was truly born. There was never a bad day at "The Tower" especially when there were many great friends and an endless amount of good climbs. Of course, no Tower trip is complete without a stop to the nearby Pie Town (yes, this is an actual place in NM), for various slices of delicious homemade pie! I recommend the green chile apple pie!

Bouldering, Sport, Trad, or Free Soloing?  

I gained much of my climbing experience on a rope in the New Mexico Mountains, it wasn't until moving to Idaho in 2012 that the world of bouldering became prominent. New people and new experiences have made my fondness of bouldering grow and blossom. However, with all the wonder sport and bouldering has to offer, I prefer to remain neutral on the topic.

How long have you been coaching?

I began coaching just over one year ago with Asana's Recreational Team.  What started as a quick fill-in turned into a joy of teaching youths about the fantastic world of climbing. My journey continues as a coach for the BCT.

What are you favorite coaching moments?

For me, it's the little things that make the moments memorable:  like a climber trying their hardest and coming down with the biggest grin and excitement in their eyes or a climber making subtle changes/improvements in their climbing all without being prompted.  It makes me know that something I’m teaching is sticking with them and they are on their way to becoming a great climber.

In your opinion, what is the most important thing(s) a climber can possess?

The most important thing for a climber is enjoyment and love for the sport. It's this positive mental attitude that breaks down barriers within the mind and body. There has to be enjoyment in every movement and an appreciation for what one is capable of accomplishing.

Why is climbing and coaching one of your passions? What do you love about it?

Climbing is such a passion for me because it offers an opportunity for focused concentration and meditation. When I’m on the wall, every other thought drifts away, it dissipates and the only focus in my mind is my body, the wall, and my breath.  When I reach this place, it is a truly special moment.

Coaching has become a passion because this same notion of focus can be seen in young climbers, even without prompt. It makes me believe that climbing has a special kind of magic that nurtures people to be strong, capable, and confident. Youth climbers especially exemplify this idea and I love having the opportunity to foster confidence and inspire young climbers to be amazing people.

What is one thing you like to do outside of climbing or coaching?

ULTIMATE FRISBEE! I began playing in 2012 when I moved to Idaho by joining an adult league in Boise.  The support from the “ultimate community” was immeasurable for me as I was in a new city and didn't know a single person.  This became my new family. Since then, I have made it onto a fabulous mixed-club team called BoyShe. This team travels all over the US and even to some European tournaments to show the world what Boise has to offer.