‘Baby Steps’: Caroline Ciavaldini Provides a Roadmap for Climbing Through Motherhood

CAMPING GEAR

The La Sportiva athlete is no stranger to blazing trails. Can she find a dual identity as a parent and a climber?

As a climber, Caroline Ciavaldini has pushed limits in multiple styles from lead competitions to heady trad ascents, and fiercely chipped away at archaic ideas of what women in the sport are capable of.

Now, as a mother of two rambunctious tots, Ciavaldini’s on a mission to dismantle the notion that motherhood comes at the price of one’s identity as a climber.

“Society says you’re supposed to forget yourself and just be a mum. Yes, I’m a mum, but I’m also a climber. I wouldn’t be Caroline without either one of them,” she says in The North Face’s new film she stars in.

She intends the short documentary, “Baby Steps,” as a roadmap for other adventurous parents out there.

Refreshingly, Ciavaldini and her husband, James Pearson, don’t sugarcoat the pitfalls. And that’s perhaps what makes the film so poignant and tractable. For the well-traveled couple, their connection to climbing is not only feasible in parenthood — it’s remarkably important, and comes second only to the integrity of their family.

Runtime: 18 minutes

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