Softly spoken and unassuming, Natalie has been one of the UK’s best female climbers for the last decade, including being crowned British lead climbing champion on numerous occasions (8 British titles in all!)
Over 20 years ago I discovered climbing completely by chance at a shopping centre one weekend, where a mobile climbing wall compelled me to give it a go. My family weren’t at all sporty or outdoorsy, but I quickly realised that I had a head for heights and a natural talent for climbing. After nearly a decade of competing internationally at junior level – with a European Cup win and multiple national titles – I started exploring outdoor sport climbing in some of the world’s premier destinations. I redpointed climbs up to 8b before returning to senior level competitions briefly, but with limited time due to university studies, my sights turned to traditional climbing closer to home in the UK. I headpointed E7 and explored Scottish winter climbing and skiing, before eventually moving to Chamonix for four years, where I could combine my passion for multiple mountain disciplines. An unexpected return to the competition stage – this time as a member of the GB Bouldering Team – ensued in 2019, culminating in an 11th place finish in the European Championships as well as an 8A tick outdoors. My full-time work as Editor-in-Chief of UKClimbing.com and a freelance translator and writer takes me away from the wall, crags and mountains more than I’d like at times, but I’m privileged to be able to work in the outdoor industry and try my best to make it more inclusive and bring important stories to light. My work has been published in Alpinist Magazine, Sidetracked Magazine, Mondial Magazine, Rock&Snow Japan and The Scotsman and one of my essays was listed among notable works in the Best American Essays 2020 anthology. I have also translated multiple mountaineering and climbing books and I am a member of the judging panel for the 2021 Boardman Tasker Prize for Mountain Literature.