Ep. 12 - What’s Your Narrative Going to Be? with Shane Farver

Jan 10, 2024

Life doesn’t follow a clean and cut narrative arc — unlike the stories we tell. Sure, it might all start and end the same way for folks, but it’s the complex, messy middle that makes us, us. One of our tendencies with storytelling is to simplify, which means skimming over a lot of the details. But when we do that we might find the narrative doesn’t actually work, it's not really who we are.

Luckily, we can rewrite it. Narrative is a choice.

In today’s episode, we talk with Shane Farver, an adaptive climber, writer, former journalism instructor, and now Director of Marketing & Communications based in Utah. After a climbing gym accident in 2018, Shane found the story he was telling himself — and others — needed a revision. Since then, he has embraced the problem-solving aspect of climbing and pursued the sport he loves while continually adapting his body through techniques and accessories.

We talk about what makes ice climbing particularly accessible for adaptive athletes, how to ask “how”, and what it means to belong in the outdoors on your own terms.


2:10 - Storytelling and meaning making

4:35 - Clean vs. messy narrative arcs

10:15 - Grappling with his own narrative

18:00 - The value of being with folks like yourself who just get it

20:21 - How to be a good ally

23:53 - Seeing more people with disabilities leading their own outdoor clinics and other shifts

26:28 - Mindfulness

30:46 - The recovery journey

38:47 - What makes ice climbing particularly suited to adaptive athletes

44:06 - Other factors around access

49:19 - Paying it forward

Resources and links:

If you’d like to connect with Shane, his Instagram handle is @sfarver01. He does a lot of work with the Adaptive Climbing program at The Front if you happen to find yourself in Salt Lake City, and he's also just down the street from the new location of The Scratch Pad. This winter, he’ll be at a few upcoming ice fests.

Paradox Sports is the leader in the adaptive climbing space and definitely worth checking out.

For more stories with adaptive ice climbers, here is a podcast interview with Kimber Cross and here is a recent video featuring Mo Beck.

If you'd like to go out with an adaptive ice climbing guide, consider Santi Vega, a full-time mountain guide in the Wasatch and Uinta mountains of Utah.


Of course, a big thanks to our sponsor, Blue Ice, for supporting this show!

Blue Ice: Blue Ice is the best kind of ice, and also my choice when it comes to fast and light ice climbing gear. Their Aero Lites go in like a hot knife through butter and their climbing packs hit the sweet spot between function and lightweight. Designed to get to the point in the alpine, their gear is tested by mountain professionals between the Alps and the Wasatch. If you’re looking to get to the point too — and with a little less weight on your kit, check out Blue Ice’s gear at blueice.com or your favorite local retailer.


Episode cover photo by Maureen Beck.

Intro music by Hannah Noelle Enomoto (thanks, sis!).

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© 2023 Ice Ice Beta. All rights reserved.

© 2023 Ice Ice Beta. All rights reserved.

© 2023 Ice Ice Beta. All rights reserved.