Eva Abert is a 4-foot tall, 66-pound sprite with dark curly hair. In shorts and a tank top, she defies gravity by scaling vertical walls with the grace of a real-life Spider-Woman.

With just three years of training at Santa Rosa’s Vertex Climbing Center, Eva placed 16th in her age group at a national championship competition in Wisconsin, competing with 35 girls who were each given four minutes to climb as high as she could up four routes on an indoor climbing wall.