Connor Herson (15) has done the sixth ascent of Lynn Hill classic almost 1 000 meters The Nose 8b+ in Yosemite (originally graded 8a back in 1993). Being 13 years old he French freed it during a day and last year Connor did 15 routes 8b+ and harder including one 8c+ second go. The two last years he has been Top-11 in the Youth World Championship. Old 8a interview
"The Nose is a very interesting route to me; it only has about 20 feet of really hard climbing in the changing corners pitch, as well as a few other pitches of still hard but slightly easier climbing. I'm definitely so psyched to have done it! In total, it was my sixteenth day working on freeing the route (10 days either rapping in to changing corners or climbing up to the great roof, as well as 2 three-day pushes), and those were mostly weekends or school holidays.
Last weekend, my dad and I went up to get our systems dialed and try the route (it was my first multi-day bigwall), and I surprised myself my sending the great roof and coming very close on changing corners. We decided to go up again this weekend when the weather forecast over Thanksgiving looked bad and school was cancelled due to poor air quality last Friday. I definitely wasn't expecting to send, but I did everything up to changing corners without falling and, to my surprise, sent changing corners on my fourth try! I still can't believe it!"
(c) Jim Herson who also belayed him and comments.
"The breakthrough of his ascent is not so much his young age but how quickly he put it together without using fixed ropes. El Cap is overrun with climbers these days. Fixed ropes on El Cap's popular routes are untenable. I'm most proud that he was able free El Cap without using fixed ropes and interfering with other climbers. And most importantly, he freed the Nose without missing a day of school!"