EP 5 Selena Pang


Selena is an AMGA Single Pitch Instructor and Apprentice Rock Guide. She was born into a Chinese immigrant family and raised in Japan where she grew up skiing. 
As a mature female climber of color and a single mother, Selena is intimately aware of the barriers to entry to the outdoor spaces and enjoys mentoring women in her community. As a recently empty nested mom, she looks forward to continual involvement educating,  empowering and making the outdoors an inclusive and accessible space for all.

Show Notes:

Mentioned Articles and Videos:

Selena’s Links:

Episode Intro:

Hello and welcome to another episode of Female Guides Requested Podcast on Wednesday. This is your host Ting Ting from Las Vegas. Our guest today is Selena Pang, another Vegas local, another Asian woman. I am excited! I had so much fun chatting with Selena and dreaming together about novel possibilities of guiding.

Selena grew up in Japan and started climbing in California in the 90’s. According to her it was an amazing era of climbing 30 something years ago.

She raised her son as a single mom by being a dedicated yoga teacher and doing business in real estates in Austin Texas. Only recently was she able to put climbing back in the center of her life.

Around four years ago she started exploring guiding as one of her career choices. She said that she still had lots to figure out in terms of how far she wanted to go on her AMGA track and how much physical load she realistically wanted to handle given her age and conditions.

Her current goal on guiding is to mentor newer climbers especially women and she is constantly  exploring ways to integrate climbing with yoga and more importantly other deeper aspects of life. Selena asked me once “how many people have said climbing has changed their lives?” Well, quite many including me. Which means guiding can also have quite many applications besides chasing summits, advancing technical skills etc.

Let’s enjoy Selena’s rich life experience and wisdom together.


00:00:00 – 00:29:14 Selena is a relatively newer guide. She got her AMGA Single Pitch Instructor in 2019 and started guiding then. She started climbing in the 90s in CA but being a single mom, guiding was not a feasible career options.

00:29:14 – 00:38:40 Selena was instructing for Texas Lady Crushers and taught courses for She Moves Mountains. She enjoyed working with women and mentoring newer climbers. She herself also took a few affinity courses from the AMGA.

00:38:40 – 00:58:26 Selena is still figuring out what guiding is about. Being 53 and having to manage Lyme disease, Selena doesn’t have the same stamina as a 20 or 30 something years old. Besides guiding is not a well-paid occupation even though the work is rewarding.

00:58:26 – 01:11:13 Selena talked about her upbrings and how different cultures shaped her (including coming from Chinese heritage, growing up in Japan, and spending most of her adult life in United States.

01:11:13 – 01:22:11 Selena recalled when she started climbing, it was a fringe sport so it was okay to be different. However as climbing became more main stream a minority (female, Asian, POC etc) nowadays can feel quite excluded.

01:22:11 – 01:44:30 Selena brings what she learned from teaching yoga to instruct people on climbing. She also talked about future plans and vision of using climbing as a vehicle to help people connect deeper with themselves and the land.