Emily Harrington is the kind of person who sets seemingly impossible goals for herself — and achieves them!
The 34-year-old is a professional rock climber who’s always pushing herself to reach new heights. This year, that drive took her 3,000 feet up Yosemite National Park’s El Capitan, where she made history.
On November 4, she free-climbed the granite monolith with Alex Honnold, who successfully completed a free solo climb there in 2017.
Free-climbing involves the use of equipment like ropes only in the case of an emergency, while free soloing uses no gear whatsoever.
While three other women have free-climbed El Capitan before Emily, she’s the first to scale El Capitan’s Golden Gate route in under 24 hours! Only three other athletes have done so in the world, and they’re all men.
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Emily began the grueling feat at 1:34 a.m. and finished in 21 hours and 13 minutes. She previously tried and failed on the same route last year, but this time, her determination saw her through to the top.
Despite running into some challenges along the way, including slipping and cutting open her forehead, nothing was going to keep her from the incredible ascent!
“I cried at the belay — it could happen this time,” she wrote on Instagram. “The final five pitches felt scary in my current state but I pulled over the final lip at 10:30 p.m. in disbelief.”
While Emily said even she didn’t believe she could make it at first, the outcome is the reason she’s always setting her sights higher.
“It didn’t seem like a realistic objective for me. I didn’t have the skills, fitness, or risk profile to move so quickly over such a large piece of stone. But I chose it exactly for that reason,” she continued. “Impossible dreams challenge us to rise above who we are now to see if we can become better versions of ourselves.”
Congratulations, Emily! Keep chasing those impossible dreams!
Share this amazing feat to celebrate with her.
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