Fitness is Marie’s passion! She has been involved in the fitness industry for as long as she can remember. After 25+ years instructing group fitness classes, personal training and managing a health club, Marie was ready for a change and challenge. She began working for Touchstone in 2009 and has fell in love with the climbing community. Before Touchstone, she had never climbed in a climbing gym before. She was intrigued by the challenge of doing something different since Marie was bored stiff in a fitness/health club environment. She couldn’t be a better fit and she is happy to have found a place where she can inspire people to get and stay healthy in so many different ways. Marie enjoys hiking, boating, cycling, camping out…basically anything that involves being outdoors and/or spending time with her family!
What Michelle does: climbs, drinks…coffee, runs, draws, hikes, cycles, sleeps, eats. Why? Cause she can. Why not, is the real question! Life is toooooo short not to. Live happy – be happy!
David started climbing about 5 years ago after his friend Danny told me he should give it a try. He was instantly hooked and have been climbing ever since. Thankfully he has been blessed to live in a state with some incredible climbing areas and he’s always stoked to explore new locations. If David isn’t out climbing, he’s probably enjoying a nice cup of coffee, shooting some photos, or mopping a floor.
Zak started climbing 3 years ago. He enjoys long walks on the beach and reading a nice mystery novel. On any given day one can find him tossing a frisbee with some of his good friends around Fresno State’s Campus. Zak enjoys traveling, whether it’s to the coast or out of the country! His goal is to live, climb, and enjoy as many countries as possible in the upcoming decades.
John is a native of San Francisco and recent Fresno transplant. He got his first taste of climbing over 2 years ago after one of his best friends pressured him into trying it. In the beginning, he did it with his friends, but soon he found himself climbing solo. His tolerance to climbing was slowly starting to increase. At first, each session was spaced many days apart but before he knew it, he had such a strong craving for more and more climbing —he couldn’t get enough of it. The harder the climb, the higher he got. His friends weren’t worried of course, at least at first. “Oh it’s just a phase.” “He’s just experimenting.” However, soon they noticed he was getting high off climbing nearly everyday. They had to intervene. They thought, “But look, he’s getting so much exercise and getting stronger, that’s so unlike him.” “It may be too late, all he wants to do is go climbing wherever he can, we can’t convince him now; he’ll never listen.” “He still has a job???” “We’ve lost him…” Shortly thereafter John sold his sailboat, started reading books again, and woke up one day married to another climber whom he followed to Fresno where they now live with two cats.
After flunking soccer, swimming, and most other athletic activities, Aubrey found the sport of rock climbing and has been loving it ever since. One of the highlights of climbing for her was competing in youth bouldering competitions, and when she actually gets outdoors, she likes to go to Bishop and Yosemite!
Before Danny started climbing, he didn’t get the point; just a bunch of skinny dudes slapping the top of a manmade rock at an indoor gym. What could be so hard about that? Interested, Danny bought the cheapest pair of shoes online and tried it out, and after his first attempt (and failure) on a V0, the point became clear to him, and he was hooked. He loves the climbing scene in Fresno. Everyone is supportive of whatever you are doing, but there is always a slightly competitive side that keeps you on your toes too. His first pair of climbing shoes were the best investment Danny has ever made.
Karsyn has been climbing since she was five years old and before Fresno even had a gym! Every weekend her parents would drive her to Sacramento just so she could climb. 15 years later and she’s still completely hooked. Karsyn loves the places that climbing has taken her, especially Yosemite and Bishop for bouldering.
Noah is originally from the flatlands of North Texas. He started climbing almost nine years ago and was instantly hooked. He taught himself how to rappel off of bridges, worked briefly as a routesetter at the local gym, and went to school in Colorado all to get closer to the rock. He’s climbed all over the western U.S., and is always looking to broaden his experience and train for the next project, whether it’s sport climbing or high sierra peaks. Noah has a B.A. in Creative Writing from Colorado College; some of his other interests include ballroom dancing (yes, actually), and writing both fiction and poetry.
Matthew became fascinated with climbing when he first went to Joshua Tree for a camping and hiking trip a little over three years ago. He had been to indoor climbing venues before but witnessing climbing outside where it’s truly meant to be done was pivotal. Ever since he has been hooked and can’t get enough. Matthew loves sport climbing, bouldering, and lately, since moving so close to the Valley, long multi-pitch trad routes. His wife, Maiya, and Matthew moved up from the San Diego area and are psyched to be part of such a great gym and community!