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First Female To Free-Climb Yosemite’s Golden Gate Route On El Capitan In A Day

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Yosemite, CA — Rock climber Emily Harrington has become the first woman to free-climb the Golden Gate route on Yosemite National Park’s 3,000-foot granite wall in a single day.

The 34-year-old reached the top at 21 hours, 13 minutes, and 51 seconds later. Before this, only three men had accomplished this goal. Free climbing refers to the use of ropes to catch climbers if they fall, but not to help them ascend.

While Harrington had climbed this particular route on the wall, called Golden Gate, many times, she had never done it in a single day. At one of the route’s most difficult sections, Harrington’s foot slipped and she fell sideways, hitting her head into the granite wall, recounts her boyfriend Adrian Ballinger, a renowned Mount Everest guide who was assisting her in the climb.

Once she had reached the top, Harrington posted this on Instagram, “Impossible dreams challenge us to rise above who we are now.”