Alex Honnold makes his way up The Nose (VI 5.9 C1, 31 pitches) on El Capitan in Yosemite National Park, California. Honnold completed the route in just under six hours after climbing Half Dome’s Regular Northwest Face (VI 5.12a, 23 pitches) in 2 hours and 9 minutes. Combined, the two ascents amount to about 5,000 feet of climbing. [Photo] Tom Evans
News Flash: The following news flash is a preliminary report posted as a service to our readers. Read the full report in the June 25, 2010 NewsWire.–Ed.
Alex Honnold broke at least one Yosemite speed record on Tuesday when he solo climbed the Regular Northwest Face (VI 5.12a, 23 pitches) on Half Dome and The Nose (VI 5.9 C1, 31 pitches) on El Capitan. His ascent of the Regular Northwest Face took 2 hours and 9 minutes–a new record that is 41 minutes faster than his September 2008 free solo. Honnold then climbed The Nose in 5:59, just under six hours. It is possible that Honnold also has set a link-up record for the two routes. Combined, the routes involve about 5,000 feet of serious climbing.
Initial reports state that Honnold carried 30 feet of cord on Half Dome and a 60-meter rope on El Capitan. It is clear that Honnold free soloed much, if not all, of the Regular Northwest Face and some of The Nose. In an email to Chris MacNamara, Hans Florine wrote that Honnold “only used [the rope] getting to boot, for the king swing, and on the great roof.” In Tom Evan’s June 22 ElCap Report, he wrote that Honnold was “3rd classing everything [on The Nose]. He did pull on a cam from time to time but didn’t break out the rope until the King Swing, which he did well. The next time it came out was on the Great Roof when he actually climbed like a roped soloer would. It was typical Hondo climbing… almost looked casual.. Never rushed… cruising along.”