Local climbing legend Tommy Caldwell chooses difficult journeys,
with little chance for success, because he believes they teach him the most.
To say Tommy was born to climb is like saying you might find a big horn sheep in the Rockies. He told me that he’s climbed the nearly thousand-foot Diamond on the east face of Longs Peak, here in Rocky Mountain National Park, four times in one day.
As a young boy, Tommy’s dad encouraged him to embrace fear and doubt, and allow them to turn into inspiration. Adopting this attitude has pushed him into establishing some of the most difficult routes in the country. In fact, he has free climbed 12 of them on El Capitan in Yosemite.
Perhaps his most famous ascent though, was Dawn Wall in 2015. Considered the longest hard free climb in the world, Tommy and his climbing partner, Kevin Jorgeson, pushed themselves to unbelievable “limits”, doing the “impossible” ~ typically having to wait until dark, when the temperatures were cold, and the friction was high, in order to give themselves every opportunity for success in climbing the route’s hardest moves.
“What sticks with me about the Dawn Wall are the incremental steps;
when I felt myself growing and getting stronger.
I realized the power of a big goal. That pursuit is the true magic.”
~ Tommy Caldwell
Enduring Nature’s relentless elements, and given unbelievable odds, these two visionaries scaled some 3,000 vertical feet along some of the most widely spaced, razor-thin, frictionless granite holds imaginable.
In the end the payoff was huge! After spending 19 days on the side of the rock wall, their courage, belief, mountain-sized will, and dauntless work and dedication, (along with the support of family and friends), have provided them the honor of knowing they accomplished what the “experts” said was “too steep and too difficult to be climbed!”
Tommy documents this incredible accomplishment, along with the journey of his adventure-filled life in his new book, “The Push”. (Now available)