Ambassador Spotlight | Mercadi Carlson

Ambassador Spotlight | Mercadi Carlson

Hometown: Salt Lake City, UT

Q: What’s your climbing style?
A: Trad Climber!

Q: What is your proudest accomplishment in climbing, and outside of climbing?
A: My proudest accomplishments in climbing have been pretty recent. I started out the beginning of the year, not being able to build anchors or place anything but cams. Going on a little road trip to some of the greatest climbing areas in the world, I’ve had to learn how to protect myself and my partner. I learned how to place nuts correctly, and to have confidence with that protection while running it out on the face (I am terrified of face climbing). I also learned how to build anchors, safely and efficiently, which I am very excited and proud to have obtained that skill.
I really don’t have a lot of accomplishments outside of climbing, since climbing has kind of taken over my life and all of my previous hobbies; but I recently became WFR certified, and plan on getting my SPI certification next so I can start guiding people in the beautiful place that I reside in. Taking both of those courses has taught me so much about protecting yourself and your partner from possible risks, and how to get out of tricky, scary situations and I am very proud to have obtained that knowledge.


Rock Climber Mercadi Carlson

Q: What advice would you give to your first year climbing self?
A: If I had any advice to give to my beginner self, it would probably be to trust your equipment, and to never stop pushing yourself. It took me a very long time to start feeling comfortable on top rope, let alone lead climbing. Climbing isn’t a natural feeling, you just have to brush that insecure feeling off and have confidence that you’re strong enough to push past that crux and get to the top. Climbing is hard and can be so challenging for beginners to feel comfortable. It just takes the little bit of confidence and trust to start pushing your limits and notice improvement.

Q: Who do you take advice from and why?
A: I tend to take a lot of advice from a lot of people. Everyone has their reasons for going about things so I like to test those techniques to discover what works for me. There are a million ways to do something but only a few ways work. I especially love taking advice from the men and women who have been doing this for a very long time. They always have the best beta and the most organized and time-efficient ways of getting up a route. There is a reason they have made it so far, and I really like to adopt different skills from different climbers so I can be really well-rounded in my climbing career.

Rock Climber Mercadi Carlson

Q: How has your training for climbing changed in the last year?                    A: At the beginning of my climbing days, I didn’t train for anything. I thought the best way to train for climbing, was to go climbing. But, doing the same kind of climbing, and the same grade for so long, I noticed that I kind of started to flat line. Having noticed this, training became something that I wanted to do more so I can finally push past the grade and style that I have been stuck in for so long. I have noticed a lot of progression from climbing and was finally able to start on sighting a lot of routes that I wasn’t able to do before, and realized that training is more important than I thought.

Q: What have you done to give back to the climbing community?
A: I try and give back to the climbing community by showing and teaching beginner climbers safety and respect for the beautiful outdoors that provide us with excellent climbing.

Rock Climber Mercadi Carlson

Q: What have you learned from failure?                                                             A: I learned that failure has made me stronger and more motivated. I rarely let failure stand in the way of my goals and aspirations to become a better and well-rounded climber. Failing over and over can be discouraging at times, but once you finally push past it and you achieve the red-point, it’s so exhilarating.

Q: Who are the climbers that inspire you the most and why?
A: The climbers who inspire me are the ones who choose to not give up. I get so stoked to see people try to push past their limit and continue to work and are always improving. I am inspired by the ladies and gents who will sit and figure out every move, those who will try anything and everything to get past the crux, and even those who never turn down a top-rope.

Rock Climber Mercadi Carlson

Q: What is your favorite climbing location and why?

A: My favorite climbing area is Indian Creek. I love to crack climb. It’s the most comfortable climbing style for me and the possibilities are endless in that area. There are routes that I can hop on that are going to destroy physically and possibly mentally, and then there is an endless hand crack that is just pure fun.

Q: Why Butora Climbing?
A: Butora Climbing has my favorite trad shoe, the Altura. I really appreciate the hemp lining due to some incredibly stinky, climber’s feet. They are extremely comfortable and I honestly can’t stand to climb in another shoe for very long. The protective padding along the ankles makes them less bloody through grueling off-widths, and the extended rubber along the side is a huge deal to me so the sides don’t blow out when I’m constantly climbing cracks.

Rock Climber Mercadi Carlson

Q: What are your favorite before and after climbing meals?

A: My favorite before-the-send meals normally depend on what I have time for. Whether I need to eat on the go with a tasty breakfast burrito, or if I can prepare myself for a solid day of climbing over coffee and cereal. My favorite after climbing meals are the meals that are prepared with friends after you have all suffered. Nothing ends a day better than great food and great conversations with great people after a great day of climbing.

Questions from the Internet

Q: What are some tips you would give to new outdoor climbers about crag etiquette?
A: The best tips I can give about crag etiquette is to just be respectful. Be respectful to the people you are around by not playing your music too loud and to not leave your rope up on a route so no one else can climb it. Being respectful the area you are in is important as well. It can be really upsetting to walk up to a popular crag and there is leftover tape, cigarette butts, human waste, and discarded shoe laces. I was always raised to leave a place better than how you found it. Pack in and pack out and follow the Leave No Trace Guidelines.

Q: Tips you would give to someone who is stuck on their project? How do you stay motivated when you are stuck?
A: My best tip for someone stuck on their project is to never give up. You may need to take a break for the day or for the week but never lose the motivation to send it. Always try harder, or maybe something different next time. Sometimes there is more than one way of doing things and it may take time to figure out what those ways may be. I stay motivated by the fact that the more I try, and the more trial and error I go through, the closer I get to sending.

Rock Climber Mercadi Carlson

Q: How have you overcome fear in climbing (fear of falling, fear of failure, etc.)?
A: I had a huge fear of climbing for a while. Lead climbing and trusting my gear was something I definitely struggled with, but the best way I found to overcome it was to do it. Do the route that you gives you the butterflies or the route that isn’t in your style. I have fallen and failed countless times and with each of those, I find myself more and more comfortable with my gear and with my climbing ability.


Check out our next Ambassador, Will Kelly


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