pic: tom evans, el cap reports
Another for the “age doesn’t mean shit” files, my friend Hans has once again set the speed record on The Nose of El Capitan. At 48, the full-time father with a full-time job has somehow found time to get faster than he’s ever been and smashed the record by more than 13 minutes. He’s first set the record in 1990 and each time it’s been broken he’s gotten it back–more than 20x over the years. After failing to recapture it last fall he trained through the winter and nailed it on the first attempt. Huge congrats to Hans Florine and his partner Alex Honnold (who capped what’s probably the most impressive single month in the history of Yosemite) for your Friday Psyche.
There’s a great photo account of the ascent on Tom Evans’ El Cap Reports site. Click below for the play by play:
I got up real early, as the day was predicted to be a hot one, and motored down to ElCap at about 5:30am. Fortunately for the climbers and unfortunately for me, they planned to climb completely in the shade for the entire route. That made photography difficult but I figured I could take a stab at it and maybe get lucky with some good shots.
The place was already filling up with spectators hoping to be on hand to watch a new record set on the Nose. They were not to be disappointed! Alex and Hans started at 5:52am as noted by the cheers of a couple dozen of the people who had walked to the base with them.
I’ve reported on Hans’ exploits on the Nose for years. If you’re interested in the history of the climb I recapped it here:
More and more we’re seeing athletes age without losing their top-end speed, or even getting faster. And while there are some facts on growing old that we can’t ignore it’s certainly clear that the limitations once imposed by professionals are being pushed further and further back.