10 Essential Questions: Katie McKenna

Meet Katie McKenna, a transplant from Indiana motivated by the energy and the confidence that comes from being outside.
Kristina Ciari Kristina Ciari
September 25, 2015

For our member profile this week we talked to ...

Name: Katie McKenna
Hometown: West Lafayette, Indiana
Member Since: December 2014
Occupation: Social Media Marketing
Favorite Activities: Mountaineering, biking, swimming, climbing, and hiking.

10 Essential Questions

How did you get involved with The Mountaineers?

I had heard of The Mountaineers before, but it was actually an ex-boyfriend who encouraged me to take the scrambling class. Although I was already an avid hiker, I wasn't entirely sure what I was getting myself into. I'm really glad he pushed me to take the course because I completely fell in love with it!

What motivates you to get outside with us?

Life can be chaotic, but when I get outside I feel an immense sense of peace that is hard to match. Being in the mountains is a kind of meditation for me. 

I am also motivated by the energy and the confidence that being outside gives me. Before I took the scrambling class, I was feeling unsure of myself and uneasy about certain things in my life. After doing some difficult scrambles, my confidence in myself grew and I finally realized how strong and capable I am. What I learned about myself from being outside started to filter into my life in the city.

What's your favorite Mountaineers memory?

My favorite Mountaineers memory is going on my first snow scramble on Burroughs Mountain with John Gilbert. Everyone in the group was so fun and encouraging, and the day was absolutely beautiful. It was on that outing that I truly fell in love with being outside and knew it was going to be my new obsession. I remember being on a really expansive snow field and feeling blissed out of my mind. I've been outside every weekend since that day in March!

Who/What inspires you?

I'm really inspired by other women who are active outside, especially women who lead. By watching them, it encourages me to do the same. Wanda Rutkiewicz is also a big inspiration of mine. I recently finished reading "Freedom Climbers" and was blown away by her tough and courageous attitude.

What does adventure mean to you?

Adventure means not being afraid to take risks, getting out of your comfort zone and being open to change.

Lightning Round

Sunrise or sunset? Sunrise.
Smile or game face? Smile.
Superpower? Being able to fly. Sometimes after a really hard scramble, I wish a giant bird would just swoop me up off the mountain and drop me off at my car. It would be nice to have my own set of wings, so I could fly down anytime I wish!
Post-adventure meal of choice? Veggie burger, french fries and beer!
If you could be a rock star at any outdoor activity overnight, what would it be? Climbing.

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