Petra Cliffs Indoor Instructors & Staff

Sarah Fox

CWA Climbing Wall Instructor, Youth Programs Coordinator, Front Desk Manager, SumMAT Camp Assistant Director, & Donations Coordinator

Sarah has been a friendly face at the gym since 2014 and is a 'Jill of All Trades'. A graduate of St. Michael's College, Sarah is our Youth Programs Coordinator, SumMAT Camp Assistant Director, Front Desk Manager, and Donations Coordinator. In addition to all of those roles she also is an excellent instructor and loves to share her skills as a climber with others. With a strong background in youth programming she also co-leads some of our overnight expeditions and holds a Wilderness First Responder certification. Sarah is CWA certified as a Climbing Wall Instructor and loves to work with all levels. You can book a private lesson at any time or sign up for one of her clinics in the Fall/Winter/Spring seasons!

Max Forbes

AMGA Single Pitch Instructor-- Part-Time Guide, Front Desk Staff

Max is a student, climber, skier, photographer, writer, and professional pursuer of fresh air. Originally from Massachusetts, Max now lives in Burlington, Vermont where he attends school at the University of Vermont. On top of working for Petra Cliffs, Max is a Brand Ambassador for Adidas Outdoor and a contributor for Wild Northeast Magazine. Max is a certified AMGA Single Pitch Instructor and Wilderness First Responder. 

Morgan LaPointe

Front Desk Staff, Youth Climbing Team Coach - Recreational Team

Morgan joined the Petra Cliffs' front desk staff on Halloween 2016. She worked her first shift in a dinosaur costume and has been bringing joy to the front desk and Recreational Youth Climbing Team ever since. Growing up in New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts and Maine, Morgan learned to love New England's forests, mountains, rivers and coastline. She's excited to get to know New England's rock!

Patrick Strobel

CWA Climbing Wall Instructor, Front Desk Staff, & Youth Camp Staff

Patrick starting working at Petra Cliffs as a SumMAT camp counselor and has transitioned into a regular at the front desk. Growing up in rural Pennsylvania, Patrick moved to the Burlington area to attend school at the University of Vermont. He found a desire to climb big rocks on a NOLS mountaineering course and has fostered that desire throughout college. When not climbing Patrick enjoys running, cycling, and just being outdoors.    

Brittany Kirvan

CWA Climbing Wall Instructor, Front Desk Staff 

Nick Rucci

CWA Climbing Wall Instructor, Front Desk Staff, Route Setter 

After being a part of the climbing community for several years Nick officially joined the Petra crew after graduating from St. Michael's College in the summer of 2014.  Since then, he has lent a hand in many aspects of the gym life, but focuses mainly on front desk operations and route setting.  Being a CWA (Climbing Wall Association) Certified Climbing Wall Instructor and having a love for climbing, Nick enjoys sharing his skills with friends and newcomers to the gym.  When he's not climbing in the gym Nick can be found snowboarding, hiking, mountain biking, or slack-lining around town. 

Brennan Lynch

 Front Desk Staff, Youth Program Staff - Mini Monkeys Instructor & SumMAT Camp Counselor

Brennan started working at Petra Cliffs as a SumMAT Camp Counselor in summer 2016 and is now a Mini Monkeys instructor and a member of the front desk staff. She grew up here in Burlington, VT learning to ski, hike, and ultimately rock climb in the surrounding areas. She loves showing people that it's fun to get outside and try new things! If you see her in the gym, don't be shy, go say hi!

Craig Morrill

AMGA Climbing Wall Instructor, Youth Climbing Team Coach - Recreational Team, Front Desk Staff, & Events Coordinator, Route Setter

Born right here in Burlington, Vermont, Craig is one of Petra Cliffs' AMGA Certified Climbing Wall Instructors and has been working for the climbing gym since the fall of 2014. He loves to get on hard sport climbs around New England and focuses on routes that require delicate, intricate technique. Therefore, Craig is a good instructor for those looking to learn more about technique and route reading. Aside from being a certified climbing wall instructor, Craig is also a swimming instructor, sailing and watersports instructor, and is a Wilderness First Responder. When he isn’t instructing, Craig is also the Events Coordinator for Petra Cliffs.  

Book a private lesson with him now! 

Sophia Navarre

Youth Climbing Team Coach - Competitive Team, Mini Monkey Instructor Winter 2017

Sophia is a Nashville, Tennessee native whose love of climbing was born in a home-y, community-focused climbing gym just like Petra Cliffs. Since moving to Vermont for school, she has branched out and become more focused on climbing outside on both rock and ice. Sophia coached a team of climbers aged 10-12 for all four years of high school and competed in local sport climbing and bouldering competitions on her own. She's very happy to be back working in a gym and inspiring young climbers once more! Her main goal for Rec Team is to convince young people that they are strong, capable people--no matter whether or not they want to compete-- and to show them the amazingly FUN sport of rock climbing!

James Sherrard

Youth Climbing Team Coach - Competitive Team

For the past decade James has been climbing, hiking, backpacking, and until a knee injury slowed him down playing, captaining and coaching collegiate level Ultimate Frisbee. James is in his fifth year as a Teen Leader at an annual week long environmental program (Family Nature Summits) in addition to two years of co-leading rock climbing through the same program. After moving to Vermont to work in the water resources field, James began climbing at Petra Cliffs and volunteering at youth climbing events. He is excited to use his past coaching and climbing skills a a coach for the Youth Climbing Competitive Team. When not climbing or generally outdoors, he is available to chat about the health of Lake Champlain or tell terribly cheesy jokes!

Evan Kirk

Front Desk Staff, Youth Program Staff 

Climbing since 2010, Evan has recently joined the Petra staff since moving to Burlington to finish his undergrad at UVM. While he believes any climbing is great climbing, you’ll have to twist his arm to get him to clip bolts or pebble wrestle because he’d much prefer to be two pitches up plugging gear all day long. If he’s not rock climbing he’s running, mountain biking, cycling, hiking, skiing, ice climbing, or generally, doing anything that doesn’t involve water (unless that water is frozen of course). Evan usually works the front desk, but also works summer camps and birthday parties and enjoys helping new climbers gain the confidence and skills they need to have a great time on the walls. He looks forward to seeing you at Petra Cliffs and hopes to see you at the crags too!

Kristofer Fiore

AMGA Single Pitch Instructor, Youth Climbing Team Coach - Recreational Team, Route Setter

After years of wall-crawling at Petra, Kris finally joined the staff this year to coach the Youth Climbing Team and help with route setting. His favorite type of climbing often involves spending entire days weeding out cracks and hammering in bolts to discover first ascents in Vermont. If you can't find a partner for some far away rock that hasn't ever been climbed, give him a call. When not climbing, Kris is a summer camp director in New York, copy editor, and Colchester High School's ultimate frisbee coach. Kris also serves as Vice President of CRAG-VT and is a loving father of one beautiful canine daughter named Knuckles.

Sam Edson

Youth Climbing Team Coach - Pro Team, Route Setter

Sam joined the Petra Cliffs staff as a route setter and in the Fall of 2015 became one of the Youth Climbing Team coaches! As an avid climber, Sam has traveled to many of New England's most famous rocky areas in his many years as an experienced boulderer. When not climbing, Sam can be found wakeboarding, skateboarding, and hitting the slopes on his snowboard.

Gavin Cote

Front Desk Staff

Gavin joined the Petra Cliffs crew this past June as our youngest staff member. He started climbing in 2014 after participating in the Petra Cliffs SumMAT Camp for a summer expedition; he participated in two consecutive Ultimate New England Expeditions with the program in back-to-back summers. Around three years ago, Gavin joined the Youth Climbing Team, and now trains and competes as a member on the Pro Team. You will catch him running birthday pand helping out at the front desk

Eliza DuPont

CWA Climbing Wall Instructor, Art Coordinator, Front Desk Staff

Eliza has been working at Petra Cliffs and blessing us with her smile for almost four years. Her skills include working the front desk, indoor instruction including private lessons and women's adult clinics, coordination of our lovely art gallery and a variety of other miscellaneous duties. She is an outdoor enthusiast who enjoys a plethora of activities including climbing of course, but also skiing, biking, soccer, yoga, playing with dogs and laying in the sun just to name a few. Outside of her work for Petra Cliffs she is a photographer, caretaker and artist's assistant who is also taking classes to go back to school!  If you recognize her in the gym then you'll notice she often has a little golden dingo dog with a floppy ear by her side named August (Auggie!), so say hello if you spot them!

Hunter Hedenberg

AMGA Climbing Wall Instructor, Route Setter

Hunter teaches all levels of climbing, with focuses on training for strength and technique. She brings coaching, problem solving, and fun together for challenging and rewarding lessons. Hunter is a sponsored climbing athlete through Atomik Climbing Holds with a background in gymnastics and a knowledge base in climbing movement. She is also a certified instructor with the Climbing Wall Association, with experience teaching all ages. Hunter is available for any level of climber interested in all styles of climbing!

Book a private lesson with her now! 

Matt Haddock

Youth Program Staff - Vacation & Summer Camp Counselor

Matt grew up in Richmond, Vermont in a log cabin with his parents and brother. He spent his childhood hiking through Vermont trails, snowboarding at Bolton Valley, and spending as much time outside as possible. Matt is now a senior at Lyndon State College studying psychology, and hopes to use his degree in the social work field when he graduates. He is thrilled to be a part of the youth program staff at Petra Cliffs and enjoys his time working with the Vacation Camp as well as our SumMAT Camp. Matt has never been so happy to get up for work than at Petra Cliffs, and is looking forward to the wonderful adventures ahead!

Cassie Marion

Front Desk Staff

She may be new to the Petra team, but Cassie has been climbing since grade school and loves to be involved in guiding, teaching, and experiencing the outdoors. This true Vermonter recently graduated from UVM with a degree in Parks, Recreation and Tourism. She spends long periods of time guiding whitewater rafting trips on the mighty Hudson River in the Adirondacks, followed by hiking, bouldering, fishing, paddleboarding, and being rad. On the Vermont side of Lake Champlain, Cassie spends her time flying, skiing, climbing, biking, running, making maple syrup with her family and so much more! She loves the entrepreneurial life, and digs any challenge that comes her way.

Chris Cobler

Front Desk Staff

Chris Cobler started with Petra on the climbing team in 2013, where he quickly fell in love with climbing. prompting him to volunteer route-set, and help with the gym. He quickly earned a spot on the Petra Cliffs team where he now works at the front desk. You may find Chris doing anything from birthday parties to belay lessons, and working on any small projects around the gym that may arise. When Chris isn't working at Petra he is usually climbing, snowboarding, playing soccer, sailing, or sleeping. Chris is currently enrolled at VTC for Electro-mechanical Engineering. Chris also works for the Air National Guard out of Burlington where he is a Crew Chief for the F-16. Chris is always happy to lend a hand and greet you as soon as you come in!

Front Desk Staff

Matt Karkut, Alex Gemme, Olivia Hunt, Devon Achilles,  Sam Mervis, Andie Gemme

Youth Program Staff

Junior Climbing Team: Sophia Navarre, Sam Edson, James Sherrard, Craig Morrill, Kris Fiore, Sarah Fox

Mini Monkeys: Sophia Navarre, Olivia Hunt, Sarah Fox