2021 Goat Fort Indoor Climbing El Capitan Challenge

Some might argue that “The Nose” on El Capitan in Yosemite is the world’s most famous rock climb. The 3,000 foot monolith has been the center of the climbing universe for more than six decades. Our El Cap Challenge highlights four landmark ascents of this route: the first ascent; the first one-week ascent; the first one-day ascent; and the current speed record.

Participants will compete in teams of two. There will be a practice round and three rounds of competition. The final two rounds will have a limited number of participants. For these rounds, if more than the allotted number complete the proceeding round, the teams that climb at a higher relative difficulty* will advance.

Get Started: The practice round begins on November 17th. To participate climbers can register at The Goat Fort in Warren, Pennsylvania where they will receive their “Tick List” for tracking climbs**. If you miss the November 17th start date. No worries! You can start late; you just won't have as many days to climb.

The Competition: The competition is for teams of two. Registration begins on December 15th 2020. We will announce prizes at that time!

1. THE WARREN HARDING PRACTICE ROUND
Last 45 days of 2020
(Nov 17th to Dec 31st 2020)
  • In 1958, Warren Harding, with Wayne Merry, and George Whitmore, completed the 1st ascent of The Nose on El Capitan. They endured 45 days on the wall over the course of 18 months.
  • For this round, hopefuls will attempt to match this feat by climbing a minimum of 3,000 feet in the last 45 days of 2020. This round is designed to inspire climbers to boldly attempt our El Cap Challenge in January 2021.
2. THE ROYAL ROBBINS QUALIFICATION ROUND
First full week of January
(Jan 3rd - 9th 2021)
  • In 1960, Royal Robbins, with Joe Fitschen, Chuck Pratt, and Tom Frost, completed the 2nd ascent of The Nose on El Capitan in one week. For this round, each team member will need to match this feat by climbing a minimum of 3,000 feet in one week.
  • Only 10 teams (20 climbers) will advance to the next round.
3. THE BRIDWELL 24-HOUR CHALLENGE
24 hours from 9pm to 9pm
(Fri Jan 15th - Sat Jan 16th)
  • In 1975, Jim Bridwell and his team of John Long and Billy Westbay completed the first one-day ascent of The Nose. For this round, each team member will need to match this feat by climbing a minimum of 3,000 feet in 24 hours.
  • Only 4 teams (8 climbers) will advance to the final round.
4. THE ALEX & TOMMY FINAL ROUND
Exclusive 2-hour sessions
(The week of Jan 24th - 30th)
  • On June 6th, 2018 Tommy Caldwell and Alex Honnald broke the speed record on The Nose climbing the route in 1 hour 58 minutes and 7 seconds.
  • For this round, each team member will need to climb a minimum of 1,500 feet (3,000 feet per team) in less than 2 hours.
  • The winners will be determined as such:
    • In the case that more than one team completes the round, the winners will be determined by the team to complete the most feet at a higher relative difficulty*.
    • In the case that no team completes the round, the winners will be the team that climbs the most vertical feet in 1:59:59. (Note: In this scenario if one team member is able to climb more than 1,500 feet, any distance they climb greater than 1,500 feet will be excluded.)
* Relative Difficulty: This will be calculated as such: Each climber will have a relative grade, which is the average of the three hardest climbs they have completed. Note: Establishing a relative grade may take several weeks and we only count climbs at The Goat Fort. Climbs completed in other locations are irrelevant. Plan accordingly.
  • Example: V4, V4, and V5 would have an average relative grade of V4.
  • Example: V4, V5, and V5 would have an average relative grade of V5.
  • Example: V4, V5, and V6 would have an average relative grade of V5.
** Tracking Climbs: For each round, climbers will use our Tick List to track the climbs they complete. Their Tick List will in turn calculate the total feet climbed. As such, climbs that are not completed (and down climbing) will not count. To be eligible, climbers will need to:
  • Be proficient with The Goat Fort Tick List
  • Have climbed enough to establish their relative grade (suggested at least one month)
Note: We are aware that cases of COVID-19 are on the rise. In the event of another shutdown this event will be rescheduled to a later date.