The video of how Alex Honnold climbed unprotected ‘The Phoenix’, in Yosemite, comes to light

BarcelonaNo ropes, no halter or protections. In 2011, American climber Alex Honnold climbed a route named The Phoenix, located in Yosemite National Park. With the ascent of 40 meters, Honnold became the first climber to climb a route with such a high degree of difficulty (7c+) without protection. But this milestone passed without sorrow or glory. Eleven years later, and having risen to fame after climbing via El Capitán in the same way in 2017, the video of how the climber achieved it has come to light. It was recorded by Peter Mortimer, one of the world’s most renowned climbing documentarians after works such as The Dawn Wall i The Alpinist.

In addition to the incline, which already makes it very difficult, the route of The Phoenix is ​​known for other reasons: it runs parallel to the waterfall of Cascade Falls and the rock is often wet and slippery. In addition, its difficulty is also aggravated because the fissure to put the fingers is extra plumb – that is, it is more than 90 degrees inclined with respect to the plane – and because the granite of the wall has little grip.

According to Honnold himself, one of the great advantages it has are “thick” fingers, which adapt to the spaces in the rocks and fill them, so that they give it more stability. On the other hand, Mortimer teaches from vertigo the constant danger the climber was facing. From the video it is surprising that Honnold, at the end of the climb, is critical of how he has done it. “I climbed very badly”, he says.

Alex Honnold became one of the most famous climbers in the world when, in 2017, he climbed El Capitán, also located in Yosemite National Park, without ropes or protection. This route is world famous for climbers and base jumpers, due to the difficulty of the 914 meter high granite monolith. In fact, Honnold’s rise was included in the documentary Free Solo which won awards such as the Oscar for best documentary in 2018.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *