Category Archives: News

Sasha DiGiulian on her Future in Climbing

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Sasha DiGiulian was recently profiled in The Washington Post; it’s an excellent article, and features DiGiulian discussing how she got started in climbing and her plans for the future.

Raw footage of Sasha DiGiulian on Era Vella (5.14d/9a), in Margalef, Spain.
The completed film will be featured in Reel Rock 7 this fall.

‘Starting next month, that focus will be more important than ever as she begins college. She hopes to study sports business, and she’d like to be more involved in student life than she was in high school — to be as “normal” a college student as possible. She’ll also be the only freshman who returns from a World Cup event in Munich for orientation, flies to Paris for a week of climbing, comes back to school for a week before flying to a Seattle event, returns for a week at Columbia and then flies to Atlanta for another World Cup competition.

“It’s this mental battle, because I keep convincing myself that everything will work out fine,” DiGiulian says, “that I’ll be training religiously and be at all the competitions, but at the same time, I know Columbia will be quite rigorous. Sometimes I’m completely fine, but then I’ll go through spurts — like the other night, it hit me, and I got really nervous. I don’t know how I’m going to do it.

“Most of my competitors, in the World Cup circuit especially, are just climbing,” DiGiulian adds. “But I decided to go back to school. Because I know that, in the long term, I can’t be a climber forever.”’

Honnold and Florine Set New Speed Record on The Nose

Alex Honnold and Hans Florine exult after their record-breaking ascent of The Nose. Photo by

On Sunday, June 17, Alex Honnold and Hans Florine set a new speed record for climbing The Nose on El Capitan.  Their official time of 2:23:46 beats the previous mark set by Dean Potter and Sean Leary by almost 13 minutes.

In the interest of speed and simplicity, Florine and Honnold pared their gear load down to this minimal rack.

For more details on their achievement, check out these links:

Many photos from

Hyper-detailed trip report by Hans Florine’s Interview with Florine

Ranger dies on Mt. Rainier during rescue effort

Photo of Ranger Nick Hall, c/o National Park Service

On Thursday afternoon, climbing ranger Nick Hall fell over 3,000 feet on the northeast side of Mt. Rainier while attempting to prepare four injured climbers for helicopter evacuation.  The climbers had summited, and were roped together for descent when they slipped on the Emmons Glacier.  They called for help via cell phone with two members of the party dangling in a crevasse.  Three of the climbers were successfully evaced, while the final climber spent the night on the mountain with two rangers.  None of the climbers’ injuries were life-threatening.

Rangers, Search & Rescue team members, and other emergency responders receive neither the credit nor the respect they deserve for putting themselves in harm’s way for the sake of others.  Condolences to the family and friends of Nick Hall.

For additional details on this story, see this article from the Seattle Times.


Is this Alex Honnold’s biggest achievement yet?

In just a few years, Alex Honnold has gained notoriety from his numerous headline-making exploits.  Today, he may have surpassed his previous accomplishments with a historic “Solo Triple Crown” of Yosemite’s Mt. Watkins, El Cap, and Half Dome.  As reported on the Reel Rock Film Tour’s Facebook page, Honnold soloed the routes in 18 hours, free soloing 90% of the time and using aid as necessary.

A depleted Alex Honnold rests on the summit of Half Dome after completing the “Solo Triple Crown”.

Honnold’s first climb was on Watkins, which he finished in a record time of 2:20. The Nose came next, which he climbed in the dark in 6 hours. Amusingly (alarmingly?), he forgot his chalk bag when he set off on The Nose, and had to borrow one from aid climbers on the route.  He finished the “Solo Triple Crown” on Half Dome at 10:45 on the morning of June 6th.

This epic was filmed for the Reel Rock Film Tour, and will presumable be included in the upcoming Reel Rock 7, which will be available after its release from our stores.

Related Alex Honnold stories:

Alex Honnold on his 5.13 multi-pitch first ascent in Gran Trono Blanco, Mexico

Video: Alex Honnold at Phalanx of Will, Arizona

Huge Joshua Tree Clearance Sale- Memorial Day weekend only!

The upcoming Memorial Day weekend will be awesome for climbing at Joshua Tree- with highs in the 70s and clear skies in the forecast, this may be your last chance to get to JT before things heat up for the summer.  Oh, one other thing- we’re having our first annual Memorial Day clearance sale!

The following deals are good at the Joshua Tree store only from Friday, May 25-Monday, May 28:

Climbing Gear:

All Ropes 10-20% off

All Harnesses 20% -40% off

Camping Gear:

All Mountain Hardwear Sleeping Bags 20% off

All Tents 20% off

All Backpacks 20%-40% off


Insulated Outerwear 15-40% off

All Patagonia and Mountain Hardwear down insulated jackets 40% off

Patagonia Capilene mid and heavy weight long sleeves and bottoms 40% off

Winter Hats 40% off

Icebreaker Merino Wool mid and heavy weight Long sleeves and bottoms 40% off

All Socks 30% off

Vibram Fivefingers as low as $49.95

Evolve Maximus approach shoe- $83.95 (40% off)

Sale rack all items an additional 15% off

These promotions may not be combined with other coupons or discounts and are limited to quantities of product on hand.  All sales of rock climbing equipment are final.

Tragic weekend on Mt. Everest

Image by 3D RealityMaps

Update:  Sadly, the number of fatalities has increased to four.  This story has been picked up by the mainstream media- a more detailed report can be found at 

Planetmountain has reported that tragedy struck this past Saturday on Mt. Everest, as three climbers have lost their lives on the South Face.  A sudden storm hit the mountain on Saturday afternoon, although exhaustion and altitude sickness are also cited as factors in some of the deaths.  An additional two climbers remain missing, while others including 6 suffering from frostbite were evacuated by helicopter.  Italian mountaineer Simone Moro is credited with assisting the helicopter evacuations from Camp 2.

The day prior (May 18), Swiss alpinist Ueli Steck and Sherpa Tenzing reached the summit of Mt. Everest.  The summit is Steck’s first, following an unsuccessful attempt in 2010 in which he was forced to retreat due to frostbitten feet.

You can read the entire story on Planetmountain.

11 year old V13 bouldering phenom Ashima Shiraishi featured in the New York Times

Ashima Shiraishi’s ascent of Crown of Aragorn (V13) in Hueco Tanks was widely reported by climbing and outdoor media, and now she is getting the attention of major media outlets as well.  Last weekend, she was featured in a lead story in the New York Times, as well as a video featuring her training in New York City and working problems in Hueco.  Despite the propensity of non-climbers to painfully bungle terminology when writing about the sport, this article is very well written.  Click here for the article and video.

San Diego-area climbers remove graffiti from Mt. Woodson

Late last month, a group of San Diego climbers worked to remove a huge graffiti “10” from a highly visible boulder on Ramona’s Mt. Woodson.  The graffiti first appeared in 2010 at the end of the school year, and a huge “11” appeared on the opposite side of the road last year.  Hoping to break the cycle of annual tagging and avoid a 12 this year, Chris Lindner, Sean Arlantico, Shane Rock, Nate Claycomb, Samuel Vandegrift, and Myles Vandegrift used a biodegradable chemical called Taginator (donated by Allied Climbers of San Diego) to scrub the rock clean. 

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They carried nearly seventy lbs. of water, 2 bottles of Taginator, 5 wire brushes, 2 extension poles, 2 ropes, and all of their climbing gear on the 25 minutes hike up to the rock.  At the end of the day, the boulder was restored to its original condition, and this will hopefully help prevent future defacement of the rock on Mt. Woodson.  The climbing community of San Diego owes them their thanks!

“Please don’t do this cause I like nature.”  Exactly.

Video: Sasha DiGiulian wins 3rd consecutive sport climbing championship *Updated*

The 2012 SCS National Championships took place on April 6th and 7th in Boulder, CO.  For the third year in a row, Sasha DiGiulian topped the women’s finals, with Delaney Miller and Michaela Kiersch rounding out the top 3.  Not only has DiGiulian won three straight years, but she hasn’t even taken a fall!

In the men’s final, Vasya Vorotnikov took first, pulling off an insane inverted toe hook on the men’s finals route.  Vorotnikov was returning to competition after rehabbing a serious shoulder injury, so his win was a surprise to many.  Dylan Barks and Daniel Woods placed 2nd and 3rd respectively.  Woods continues to branch out beyond his well-known bouldering expertise with his good showing in this competition, as well as news that he has been redpointing some hard outdoor sport routes.  It will be interesting to see what he can accomplish in the coming months.

The complete video of Sasha DiGiulian’s ascent of the finals route was just posted by fellow competitor Carlo Traversi.

In the news: Forest Service to drop fees at most national forests

Soon, access to many U.S. national forests will no longer require a fee for access- this includes 19 areas in Southern California.  For more details, check out this article from the Los Angeles Times.

What do you think?  Will the removal of fees allow access by people that would have been kept out by the cost?  Will the reduction of revenue generated by the sale of Adventure Passes impact the availability and upkeep of amenities in the national forests?