Photos: The power of climbing harnessed

Brown Girls Climbing addresses trauma and is increasing diversity at the crag.

  • Taylor assists 5-year-old Aki Williams-Rawlings. “Brown Girls Climbing was basically an answer to creating a safe space for girls and their emotions and their movement,” Taylor said. “But also celebrating ourselves as brown and black women.”

    Michael A. Estrada
  • Taylor holds the hand of one of her pupils, explaining why her hands hurt and what she can do to prevent it.

    Michael A. Estrada
  • Taylor gets the girls juiced with her own exuberance about what it means to be Black and Brown and proud.

    Michael A. Estrada
  • Kaily Heitz, left, and Emily Taylor scope out a route. Taylor started the Black Climbers Collective to create a safe space for climbers separate from the POC climbing community. “When we group (POC) all together, there is still a lack of healing space for me,” Taylor said.

    Michael A. Estrada
  • Taylor brings down Heitz after she topped out on a route.

    Michael A. Estrada
  • During warmup exercises, Taylor demonstrates to Aki Williams-Rawlings how to lunge.

    Michael A. Estrada
  • Milo, Taylor’s daughter, warms up without a rope.

    Michael A. Estrada
  • Taylor speaks to the girls.

    Michael A. Estrada
  • Like she encourages her daughter to do, Taylor starts her climbing session by doing a few routes without a rope.

    Michael A. Estrada
  • Emily Taylor and her 9-year-old daughter, Milo. “I’m giving her an understanding and a freedom of her own movement,” Taylor said, by teaching Milo, a member of Brown Girls Climbing, about the sport.

    Michael A. Estrada