Alex Honnold Free Solos Moonlight Buttress


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Trad climber
Apr 10, 2008 - 11:18am PT

Karl Baba

Trad climber
Yosemite, Ca
Apr 10, 2008 - 11:28am PT
Moonlight Buttress is 12d and many 13s have now been free soloed. It's true that Soloing El Cap would be "proud" enough to cause somebody, especially a young somebody, to risk their life over.

But anybody who could even think about it, they'd know enough to know the risks. The same could be said for all the bold climbing that people are advocating on this site.

The progression of praise and glory go on until somebody craters, and then many wring their hands and sing a different tune for awhile



Apr 10, 2008 - 01:42pm PT
Alex makes a leap to another level, bringing lots of excitement for all web rats. Thanks Alex! But soloing Elcap? My heart is skipping just thinking about those polished slabs. The parachute idea seems interesting but unlikely to work on the slab.

Trad climber
East Van
Apr 10, 2008 - 02:47pm PT
Karl: A similar discussion is ongoing in the ski/snowboard industry punctuated by the recent death of Wallace Westfeldt. He died during a professional photo shoot in the Aspen backcountry. Lou Dawson touched on it yesterday in his blog at There is a sense of one-up-manship in professional sport where the only way to make a living is to go bigger than the last guy. Look at what pushing E11 has done for MacLeod's career.

I don't know what Alex's motivations were. They sounded pure from the article and it seemed that he was in control of the situation. I don't know the route and don't solo so I can't judge. An impressive accomplishment for sure.

Trad climber
Apr 10, 2008 - 03:22pm PT
Is this the same Alex?


Trad climber
Apr 10, 2008 - 06:05pm PT
"I don't know if anyone can beat it, either. I turned on my iPod at the beginning, played my Top 25, rocked that to the top, and had a couple songs to spare."

"the rock is choss, except for Moonlight"

Do these quotes suggest that either Moonlight was very easy for Honnold, he is too cavalier, maybe the reporter took it out of context, or something else?

My hands are sweating thinking about it. I hope he is careful. I want to read about Honnold free climbing more El Cap routes, not about a solo accident.

Edit: by free climbing, I mean with a rope.
the Fet

Knackered climber
A bivy sack in the secret campground
Apr 10, 2008 - 06:58pm PT
Holy shite.

I've heard for years, someday somebody could free solo El Cap. I thought it was perhaps possible, but so far out there. Probably in 100 years after we all croak.

Now with Moonlight Buttress going down, it doesn't seem so far fetched.

'All it would take is the right guy getting dumped by the wrong girl.'

Apr 10, 2008 - 07:40pm PT
Nice effort young Alex. Your motivation, determination and stamina have set a new level in ropeless climbing. Astroman, sans corde, is a confirmation of Peter's excellent adventure several years back. To climb Moonlight, which is thinner and less secure, is raising the bar. be safe lad

Apr 11, 2008 - 11:47am PT
Some footage of Alex in Indian Creek days before his solo on today.
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Apr 11, 2008 - 01:29pm PT
Awesome ascent of Moonlight Buttress. As others have said, to feel solid enough to leave the rope behind on a testpiece like that must be a great feeling.

I dislike the speculation about a free solo of El Cap. That bouldery face crux of Freerider has got to be about the exact opposite of locker fingerjams. A rope is nice to have there in case something goes even slightly wrong, and in a lot of other places on that route or other El Cap routes.
the Fet

Knackered climber
A bivy sack in the secret campground
Apr 11, 2008 - 02:07pm PT
Ok, how about The West Face of El Cap. I don't think anyone has free soloed it yet. 5.11d

Is it a 'real' El Cap route, I think so.

Trad climber
Apr 11, 2008 - 02:15pm PT

You are correct, it is the same Alex.

Funny that a fews days ago I got a new laptop and in browsing through my photo collection found a nice shot of Alex and I climbing in Tahoe, makes me happy to see that he is still doing well and sending hard.


Big Wall climber
Fresno, CA
Apr 11, 2008 - 02:24pm PT
" Ok, how about The West Face of El Cap. I don't think anyone has free soloed it yet."

There have been no free solos, at all, of any route on El Cap.

Trad climber
Boulder Colorado
Apr 11, 2008 - 03:15pm PT
East Butt has been soloed a bunch... although relatively short and moderate, it still gets you to the top of the captain. The slick sections would keep your attention without a rope fer sure dude...

Trad climber
Apr 11, 2008 - 04:18pm PT
The hike has been soloed. I saw some guy do it with an 8oz Aquafina bottle and Nikes.


Gym climber
Apr 11, 2008 - 05:57pm PT

James, you're on! I got your five bucks right here buddy.

It's yours, all I need is the proof...

Apr 11, 2008 - 06:12pm PT
I'll give you ten not to show me the proof.

someplace in-between
Apr 11, 2008 - 06:28pm PT
the footage of Alex on is worth checking out. Its pretty funny too.


Big Wall climber
Fresno, CA
Apr 11, 2008 - 06:56pm PT
"East Butt has been soloed a bunch... "

I'll go with that. By that token, I have free soloed Half Dome a couple of times. Once by full moon. Works for me. =)
Brian Kimball

Sport climber
Westminster, CO.
Apr 11, 2008 - 08:02pm PT
I am with Clint, any attempt to free solo the Free Rider is a tragedy waiting to happen and I really don't think we should be egging a nice guy like Alex on to go for it. Maybe if he was like Hitler or somebody of this nature then I might say "ohhh yeah bro you totally got it...for sure's all LOCKER BRA".
I personally watched him fall on the Huber Boulder pitch 2 times in a row...this is NOT a free solo pitch people. Even if you do stick the 12d crossover dyno crux move cutting your feet and swinging for dear life on that rotten bread loaf, there is NO GUARANTY that the hold will not break. Other things come to mind like the insecurity of the slabs, the Monster OW, the Scott Burke OW. Free Rider and Moonlight may have similar grades attached to them but Free Rider would definitely be the death sentence of the two. How would everyone really feel about coaxing someone into soloing El Cap. and then watching him fall to his death knowing you were one of the ones egging him on???

Free Soloing is "soooo cool mannnn"...until your DEAD! Then it is just big loss to all who are involved!

To all the people encouraging this El Cap. free solo business; I wonder if you will be at the funeral? Will you send flowers, would you be there for weeks on end to comfort his grieving and mourning family or just send a casserole???
Personally I hope we don't loose one of the finest rock climbers to ever live due to some silly party trick like this! I am WAY more impress with the rock climbing that Alex did the month prior to this solo or his free ledge to ledge ascent of Salathe Wall then rehearsing some 1,200' 12c finger crack and climbing it without a rope.

Climb on Alex-just do it on-belay "that is were it's at dude"
Messages 81 - 100 of total 117 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
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