Showing posts with label Alex Honnold. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Alex Honnold. Show all posts

Alex Honnold and Renan Ozturk To Attempt One of the Toughest Free-Climbs in North America

While we're obviously still gearing up for a very busy Himalayan climbing season in the days ahead, there are other interesting expeditions in the planning stages as well. Take for example the new project from Alex Honnold and Renan Ozturk, which will send them to Alaska to take on one of the toughest free-climbs in all of North America.

According to Men's Journal, the two climbers will attempt the first free ascent of Wine Bottle Tower on the East Face of Mt. Dickey in June. In terms of altitude, Dickey is a modest climb at best, topping out at a mere 2909 meters (9545 ft). But, its East Face is a spectacular big wall built to test the skills of any climber, including ones as talented as Honnold and Ozturk.

The route they'll take up Wine Bottle Tower is extremely technical, requiring plenty of skill and talent to even consider undertaking. It also happens to be 1600 meters (5250 ft) of sheer vertical granite, which makes it about 609 meters (2000 ft) taller than El Capitan in Yosemite.

The first – and only – ascent of this route was done back in 1988 by Austrians Thomas Bonapace and Andreas Orgler. But those two men made the climb using aid to help them up the incredibly difficult rock face. Honnold and Ozturk will try to free the wall instead, something they attempted back in 2013 with Freddie Wilkinson, only to turn back less than 15% of the way up the route.

Men's Journal says that the two men haven't shared their exact plans yet, but it seems likely that in June they'll have to ski to Mt. Dickey to begin the climb and decide from there what their strategy will be. Since the route is mostly unscouted by either of the climbers, it seems likely that they'll spend several days on the project, setting up portaledges as they go. A straight shot up the wall in a single, massive push seems very unlikely, even for two guys as talented as this.

Either way, it should be interesting to see how this one develops. We'll have to wait for June to get further updates.

Video: Black Diamond Introduces the HonnSolo 11 Free Soloing Airbag Pack

Typically I'm not a fan of April 1 on the Internet. It's filled with all kinds of fake news (we have enough of that already!) and it seems that sites go to great lengths to try to pull one over on their readers. But occasionally someone does something that is genuinely funny and its hard not to share. That's the case with Black Diamond Equipment and climber Alex Honnold, who unveiled the new HonnSolo 11 climbing pack. To give much more away would be to spoil the fun, so just sit back and watch. If you missed it last Saturday, you'll probably still get a good chuckle out of it now.

Video: Rock Climbing Norway with Magnus Midtbo (Oh! And Alex Honnold Too! Sort of!)

In this video we head to Norway to take on some of that country's big walls with talented rock climber Magnus Midtbo. As you can imagine, the scenery is pretty epic, and Magnus gets a chance to show off his skills on some amazing rock faces. But, the headline for the video also implies that Alex Honnold is along for the ride, which really isn't the case. Sure, he shows up briefly, but then is quickly gone, so don't expect to see these two men doing too much together. Still, it is a nice look at some of the challenges that Norway has to offer.

Video: Emily Harrington and Alex Honnold Free Climb "Solar Flare"

It's always a joy to watch two amazing rock climbers ply their trade, and that is exactly what we get in this clip. We'll follow Emily Harrington and Alex Honnold as they free climb Solar Flare, a 5.12d route in the High Sierra mountains of California. As usual, these two make it look easy, but make no mistake, this is rock climbing at its finest.

Spanish Climber to Attempt Repeat of Fitz Roy Crossing Solo

Back in February of 2014, climbers Tommy Caldwell and Alex Honnold completed what many thought was an impossible climb by linking up Cerro Fitz Roy and its surrounding peaks in southern Patagonia. The route was dubbed the "Fitz Traverse" at is involves climbing Aguja Guillaumet, Aguja Mermoz, Cerro Fitz Roy, Aguja Poincenot, Aguja Rafael Juarez, Aguja Saint-Exupery and Aguja de l'S, all in one go. This once-Holy Grail of rock climbing hasn't been repeated since, but a Spanish climber is about to give it a go.

Last week, Pedro Cifuentes set out for Patagonia, where he hopes to make the same climb as Caldwell and Honnold in solo fashion. Going in alpine style, and completely alone, Cifuentes estimates it will take him about 40-50 days to finish the traverse, which is considerably longer than his predecessors, who finished it in just 5 days. But, having a partner makes a huge difference, and the Spaniard admits he isn't up to climbing at the same level of speed that the two Americans can achieve. Instead, he'll look to be self-sufficient and travel in alpine style, carrying a 90kg (198 pound) pack with him filled with his supplies, food, and gear.

In total, the distance he'll travel will be a mere 5 km (3.1 miles), but it will also involve 4000 meters (13,123 ft) of rough vertical climbing to overcome. That climbing is where Cifuentes will slow down, as doing every pitch by himself will be time consuming and demanding.

This won't be Pedro's first go around with a significant rock climbing challenge. In 2013 he become the first person to solo all three Towers of Paine in succession in Patagonia as well. That expedition took 29 days to wrap up. Later that year, he also attempted a solo climb on Nameless Tower in Pakistan, but was forced to retreat due to incredibly poor conditions.

Cifuentes admits that his solo attempt on the Fitz Traverse is a long-shot, but he enjoys the challenge and hopes that his skill, planning, and determination will help get him through. He says, "I'm not looking for summits, but for experiences. It is not my first expedition, nor will it be the last. I do it for me, to enjoy, for the experiences, for what you see, for what you learn .... it is very difficult to convey what it means to face alone an escalation like this ... every second is very intense, thousands spend Of things, you're out of the world ... The top is fine ... but it's not what I'm looking for. If so, there are easier ways to get it. "

Pedro is on his way to the start of the climb now and should get started shortly. Hopefully he'll reach his goals in the mountains of Patagonia, but if not, perhaps he'll at least get the experiences he's looking for.

Video: The North Face Athletes Question Madness - Conrad Anker and Alex Honnold

Yesterday, I shared a video that launched a new brand campaign from The North Face that invited us to "Question Madness." The campaign celebrates the 50th anniversary of the company, which has become synonymous with outdoor adventure and exploration. Today, I have two more videos from that exemplify what the company is going for by introducing viewers to some of their sponsored athletes. In this case, those two people are mountaineer Conrad Anker and rock climber Alex Honnold. Check them out below.




Video: The North Face Invites Us to Question Madness

The North Face has just launched a new marketing campaign using the hashtag #QuestionMadness. Much like the famous "Think Different" ads from Apple Computers back in the day, this campaign introduces us to some of TNF's sponsored athletes. People like Conrad Anker, Alex Honnold, and Renan Ozturk, who are pushing the edge of adventure and exploration. Are they mad or are they geniuses? That is the question, and in this beautiful video we get an opportunity to see them doing what they do best, while we ponder whether or not it is all worth it or why they pursue these challenges. If you read this blog with regularity, you probably already know the answer to that. Particularly on your own personal level. Enjoy!

Video: Getting Up Getu with Alex Honnold and Felipe Camargo

In this video, you'll travel to Getu, China with Alex Honnold and Felipe Camargo as they attempt to climb Corazon de Ensueno, an 8-pitch, 14b rated roof route that has only been completed successfully once in the past. The short film takes us through their efforts to repeat that climb, with fantastic imagery shot by none other than Jimmy Chin himself. Check it out below. It is definitely one of the better climbing videos we've seen in some time.

Actor Jared Leto Joins Alex Honnold on El Cap in Yosemite

Academy Award winning actor Jared Leto seems to have added yet another skill to his resume that already includes musician, songwriter, director and author. It seems the celeb is also an accomplished rock climber, as was evidenced last weekend when he went climbing in Yosemite with Alex Honnold.

On Friday Leto and Honnold scaled the East Buttress of Middle Cathedral, which is ranked amongst the 50 classic climbs of North America. Then on Saturday, the two men climbed three shorter, easier routes on the 600-foot Manure Pile Buttress, before moving onto the East Buttress of El Capitan on Sunday.

Later, Leto posted a photo of The Nose on El Cap – perhaps the most iconic climb in the world – hinting that he might like to try that at some point. Later, he shared the photo below on his Instagram account of he and Honnold. They're joined by Jimmy Chin, who dropped by for a photo bomb apparently.

A photo posted by JARED LETO (@jaredleto) on

Video: Introducing the 2016 North Face Speaker Series

For 2016, The North Face has once again assembled a stellar crew for its Speaker Series. This year you'll get the chance to listen to people like Conrad Anker, Alex Honnold, Jimmy Chin, and Renan Ozturk talk about their adventures around the globe, sharing what they learned and how those expeditions shaped their lives. In this video, we get a preview of what those sessions will be like, with some amazing footage gathered from TNF sponsored expeditions. As usual, the clip looks top-notch, and will probably not only inspire you to want to listen to these men and women speak, but also get out on more adventures of your own. Never Stop Exploring.

Alex Honnold and Colin Haley Set New Speed Record on the Torre Traverse in Patagonia

It has been a good couple of weeks in Patagonia for Colin Haley. Not only did he set a speed record on Fitz Roy, completing a round-trip ascent of that mountain with Andy Wyatt in just 21 hours and 8 minutes, he also put up the first solo ascent of Torre Egger as well. That would be enough accomplishments for anyone's career climbing resume,  let alone just one month. But he wasn't finished just yet, as Haley was later joined by his friend Alex Honnold to set yet another speed record, this time finishing the Torre Traverse in an incredible 20 hours and 40 minutes.

What's the Torre Traverse you ask? Only one of the toughest challenges in all of climbing. In this case, it involved a north-to-south traverse of Patagonia’s Cerro Standhardt, Punta Herron, Torre Egger, and Cerro Torre in a single push. Those peaks are pretty much a collection of the toughest and most well known rock climbing walls in the region, with each being a considerable challenge on its own. Linking them up adds a new dimension to that challenge. So much so that it has only been done once before. That was back in 2008 when Haley made the same climb with Rolando Garibotti, spending three days on the attempt.

The Traverse has been a project in the works in Patagonia for decades, with some of the top climbers first envisioning it way back in the 1980's. At that point, one of the peaks – Punta Herron – hadn't even been climbed as of yet. Over the years there were a number of attempts to put all the routes together that were necessary to make the traverse, but it took until 2008 for it to all come together. It hadn't been repeated since, until Monday, when Haley and Honnold did it, and in a very impressive time.

According to National Geographic, the two climbers went camp-to-camp in 32 hours, with heir record time representing their actual time climbing. Considering the challenges that the Traverse presents, and the skill sets and climbing knowledge that Alex and Colin bring to the table, it seems likely that this record will stand for awhile.

Find out more details of the climb in Nat Geo's article here.

Video: Meet Sufferpup, the Dog that Climbers Cedar Wright and Alex Honnold Rescued On An Expedition

Cedar Wright and Alex Honnold are two of the best climbers around. They have teamed up on numerous expeditions, including an attempt to climb all 15 of the highest peaks in California. While out on one of those trips they came across and abandoned puppy, and since they tend to label their expeditions as "sufferfests" they dubbed the dog "Sufferpup." The adorable creature latched on to the two men, and hung with them throughout the journey. Now, he's all grown up, but this video gives  you a glimpse of when they first met.

Video: Trailer for the Reel Rock Tour 10

The Reel Rock Tour is an annual celebration of climbing through some carefully selected films that celebrate mountaineering and rock climbing at its finest. Each fall, those films go on a tour across the U.S. and other parts of the world, to share some of the best in climbing from the year that has passed. This year, highlights include a film that follows Alex Honnold as he travels to Patagonia for his first experiences there, an exclusive look at the historic Dawn Wall ascent, and a tribute to Dean Potter. This video is a trailer for the Reel Rock 10 tour that is just now getting underway. It gives you a glimpse of what to expect, and as usual it looks like it'll be quite a show.

Video: Climbing the Bugaboos with Alex Honnold

This all-too-short video takes us to Bugaboo Provincial Park in British Columbia,  Canada where we join free soloist Alex Honnold on an incredible line up a mountain there. Sadly, the short clip only teases us with the amazing scenery, and Alex's fantastic skills, although it is enough to understand that he is climbing in a beautiful setting. The clip comes our way from National Geographic, which has launched a new adventure video of the week series. If they're all like this one, they'll certainly be worth watching.

Video: Alex Honnold's Birthday Challenge

Last August, to celebrate his 29th birthday, Alex Honnold attempted to climb 290 pitches in a single day. This video follows along with him on that quest, as he spends 16 hours on the rock, completing more climbs in that period than most people do all year. If you needed further evidence that this guy is a machine, here it is.

Video: A Line Across The Sky - Climbing in Patagonia with Alex Honnold and Tommy Caldwell

We have another outstanding climbing video today, in a setting that is amongst the very best in the entire world. This short film takes us to Patagonia with Tommy Caldwell and Alex Honnold, as they attempt to complete the first Fitz Traverse - a four-mile (6.4 km) long trek that includes 13,000 feet (3962 meter) of vertical gain that crosses Cerro Fitz Roy and its six satellite peaks. A perfect weather window gave Tommy and Alex the opportunity to complete this project, which took five days to wrap up. The expedition will be fully documented in an up coming movie from Sender Films, but this video gives us our first glimpse at what they faced, and overcame, on this incredibly tough route.

Video: Alex Honnold Solos Heaven in Yosemite

Last month, Alex Honnold was back in his old stomping grounds in Yosemite, where he was soloing the 5.12d rated route called Heaven. The video below takes us up that climb, and as usual with Alex, it is pretty impressive. Once you've finished watching him do his thing on the rock, head over to slick his new website at AlexHonnold.com.

Video: Alex Honnold 3.0 - Everything You Wanted To Know About The Rock Climber

I came across this video on YouTube earlier, and thought it was definitely worth sharing. It is a 30+ minute short film about Alex Honnold, and his rise to fame as one of the best rock climbers in the world today. The video is funny, insightful, and interesting, with a look at where Alex has been, and where he might be going. Good stuff for his fans.

Video: Rock Climbing South Africa with Alex Honnold and Hazel Findley

Recently, rock climbers Alex Honnold and Hazel Findely joined forces to take on some of the toughest climbing in southern Africa. The duo visited Namibia and South Africa in search of problems to solve. The video below is a trailer for an upcoming film entitled Africa Fusion that chronicles their adventures. At just over two minutes in length, it is barely a tease of what is to come, but it looks like it'll be worth the wait for the full film.

Africa Fusion Official Trailer from Fresh Rock Films on Vimeo.

Video: Urban Ascents with Alex Honnold

Is there anything that Alex Honnold can't climb? After watching this video, you'll probably be asking yourself the same question. It is 5+ minutes of Alex doing his thing in all kinds of urban settings. We saw a brief preview of this awhile back, but the full film gives us even more footage of the talented rock climber acting like Spider-man.