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Freshman Helen Stephens is Climbing to New Heights

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Bold Boulderer: Freshman Helen Stephens is moving up the ranks among the best young rock climbers in the nation.

Bold Boulderer: Freshman Helen Stephens is moving up the ranks among the best young rock climbers in the nation.

Olivia Chewning

Olivia Chewning

Bold Boulderer: Freshman Helen Stephens is moving up the ranks among the best young rock climbers in the nation.

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You think climbing the 11 stories in this school is hard? Well how about climbing the world’s hardest rock climbing challenges? Longtime competitive rock climber and freshman Helen Stephens not only — like the rest of us — climbs our daunting stairwells every day — but she also displays her talents internationally as she competes with the best in her category in rock climbing.

On her first ever year of eligibility on the international stage, Stephens was a member of Team USA and had several stellar performances in top-ranked competitions.

She represented Team USA at the 2018 Youth World Championship in Innsbruck, Austria, where she placed 39th and in the 2017 Pan American Championship in Montreal, Canada where she placed seventh.  She even recently qualified for the Buenos Aires Youth Olympics to be held in Argentina in October, an international competition that will draw the best youth rock climbers in the world.

Stephens started climbing at the young age of five at Atlanta Rocks, a Buckhead-based rock climbing park. She currently trains at a local rock climbing gym Stone Summit in Dekalb County where she practices climbing categories that include bouldering and free solo. The high-intensity challenge the sport brings and the push to compete at her best day in and day out is what drives her love of rock climbing.

“Rock climbing is so challenging and constantly pushes me to elevate my game,” said Stephens. “I always travel around to different gyms and trainers so I can continue to learn more.”

With her talents and skills, Stephens hopes to be able to become a professional rock climber where she can continue to compete outside of high school. Competing globally and improving as a climber is what she believes will help her achieve her dreams.

“Right now I am able to experience more and learn more from being eligible to compete on the international stage,” said Stephens. “I believe it will help me grow as a climber.”

Whether it is climbing the many stories here at North Atlanta or out competing on a global stage, Helen Stephens is most certainly climbing towards success to the summit.

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Freshman Helen Stephens is Climbing to New Heights