This is El Capitan
a 3,000 foot granite monolith in Yosemite National Park. It is considered by many rock climbers to be one of the most beautiful cliffs in the world, as well as the location of some of the most desirable rockclimbs in the world. First climbed by Warren Harding in 1958, it is rated Grade VI, which means most climbers will take more than three days to climb it. I took Harding's route, now named The Nose (Harding just called it El Capitan, as there were no other routes.)

Here is how the route is described by a friend, Chris McNamara (whose website, SuperTopo, is the best on the web for Yosemite), has described it:

"Long, sustained and flawless, the Nose may be the best rock climb in the world; it is certainly the best known. On paper, at 5.9 C1, The Nose sounds easy. It’s not. With over 31 pitches of steep, exposed and strenuous climbing, The Nose is an immense physical and psychological drain. Extensive climbing experience on long routes is mandatory. The failure rate is high (David's note: about 50% of the climbers with the hutzpah to try, fail.) That said, anyone who is deeply committed to training for this climb can do it."

For a closer view, click here.

To start the climb, click How it all began.