Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

2 Americans Make History Free-Climbing Yosemite's El Capitan

Yesterday a pair of Americans completed what had long been considered the world’s most difficult rock climb. Tommy Caldwell, 36, and Kevin Jorgeson, 30, became the first to “free-climb” the rock formation’s Dawn Wall in Yosemite National Park.

As soon as Kevin cleaned the final pitch and joined Tommy on the summit, the celebration began. Photo credit: Bligh Gillies (Corey Rich Productions)

They used only their hands and feet to scale the half-mile section, 3,000-foot vertical wall on El Capitan. Ropes and safety harnesses were used to catch them in case of a fall, but it was their own strength and will that got them to the top of the granite pedestal in the Yosemite Valley.

“When we first climbed the North American Wall on El Cap in 1964, we thought, ‘Well, that proves that any big wall in the world can be climbed,'" said Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia. "We never dreamed they could be climbed all free! Sending the Dawn Wall leaves Pope Francis with no choice but to admit our closest relative is the chimpanzee.’”

Jorgeson's Facebook page provides an incredible look into their journey sharing the many moments they encountered while trekking up the world's largest granite monolith, which began Dec. 27.

Here's one of my favorite entries:

Even President Obama congratulated the climbers with this tweet:

And from Caldwell's Instagram page you can see many breathtaking images like this one:

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Stunning Photos Show Similarities Between Humans and Other Animals

Protecting the Galapagos Islands

10 Animal Species That Could Vanish in 2015 if We Don’t Act Now

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

People relax in Victoria Gardens with the Houses of Parliament in the background in central London, as a heatwave hit the continent with temperatures touching 40 degrees Celsius on June 25, 2020. NIKLAS HALLE'N / AFP via Getty Images

The chance that UK summer days could hit the 40 degree Celsius mark on the thermometer is on the rise, a new study from the country's Met Office Hadley Centre has found.

Read More Show Less
A crowd of people congregate along Ocean Drive in Miami Beach, Florida on June 26, 2020, amid a surge in coronavirus cases. CHANDAN KHANNA / AFP / Getty Images

By Melissa Hawkins

After sustained declines in the number of COVID-19 cases over recent months, restrictions are starting to ease across the United States. Numbers of new cases are falling or stable at low numbers in some states, but they are surging in many others. Overall, the U.S. is experiencing a sharp increase in the number of new cases a day, and by late June, had surpassed the peak rate of spread in early April.

Read More Show Less
A Chesapeake Energy drilling rig is located on farmland near Wyalusing, Pennsylvania, on March 20, 2012. Melanie Stetson Freeman / The Christian Science Monitor / Getty Images

By Eoin Higgins

Climate advocates pointed to news Sunday that fracking giant Chesapeake Energy was filing for bankruptcy as further evidence that the fossil fuel industry's collapse is being hastened by the coronavirus pandemic and called for the government to stop propping up businesses in the field.

Read More Show Less
Youth participate in the Global Climate Strike in Providence, Rhode Island on September 20, 2019. Gabriel Civita Ramirez / CC by 2.0

By Neil King and Gabriel Borrud

Human beings all over the world agreed to strict limitations to their rights when governments made the decision to enter lockdown during the COVID-19 crisis. Many have done it willingly on behalf of the collective. So why can't this same attitude be seen when tackling climate change?

Read More Show Less
A crowd awaits the evening lighting ceremony at Mount Rushmore National Memorial in South Dakota on June 23, 2012. Mindy / Flickr

Fire experts have already criticized President Trump's planned fireworks event for this Friday at Mt. Rushmore National Memorial as a dangerous idea. Now, it turns out the event may be socially irresponsible too as distancing guidelines and mask wearing will not be enforced at the event, according to CNN.

Read More Show Less
Mountains of produce, including eggs, milk and onions, are going to waste as the COVID-19 pandemic shutters restaurants, restricts transport, limits what workers are able to do and disrupts supply chains. United States government work

By Emma Charlton

Gluts of food left to rot as a consequence of coronavirus aren't just wasteful – they're also likely to damage the environment.

Read More Show Less

Trending

The gates of the unusually low drought-affected Carraizo Dam are seen closed in Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico on June 29, 2020. RICARDO ARDUENGO / AFP via Getty Images)

Puerto Rico's governor declared a state of emergency on Monday after a severe drought on the island left 140,000 people without access to running water, despite the necessary role that hand washing and hygiene plays in stopping the novel coronavirus, as The Independent reported.

Read More Show Less