Our Coaches

Justin Willis

Justin Willis

Head Coach

Justin started climbing as soon as he could walk with his dad. When he was eight he began competing in bouldering competitions and soon had started the climbing team in Billings, MT that has now grown to more than thirty kids. He placed 7th in the sport climbing national championship in 2008. Shortly after he was introduced to the world of ice climbing and changed his main focus from rock to ice and mountain climbing. Since then he has represented the USA in eight Ice Climbing World Cups. During the 2015-2016 season he placed 3rd in ‘Under-22 World Championships’ in Rabenstein, Italy becoming the first American male to receive a medal in a World Cup Championship in the last 20 years. When not coaching the Gnar Pirates for Defying Gravity, competing around the globe or climbing large routes in the mountains, he is a counselor for high-risk teens at InnerRoads, a wilderness therapy program.

He is a sponsored climber and skier and lover of all things steep. His sponsors currently include - Outdoor Research, Petzl, Cilogear Backpacks and Julbo Eyewear.
 

 

Bridget Creel

Bridget Creel

Assistant Coach

Bridget is a student at the University of Montana studying Ecology and Organismal Biology. She grew up in Bozeman, Montana climbing occasionally with her family, but her passion for climbing was not ignited until 2007 when she joined the Bozeman Climbing Team. Her enthusiasm for competition climbing brought her to the ABS Youth National Championships in 2009 and the USAC Sport Youth National Championships in 2010 where she placed 8th in female Youth D. While she left the climbing team to pursue distance running in high school, her passion for climbing sparked by the Bozeman Climbing Team has carried on and she has remained an avid climber ever since. She continues to hop in the occasional competition and loves climbing for the endless exploration and challenge it provides.