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Kevin Jorgeson & Tommy Caldwell safely on the ground after the first 2010 winter storm in Yosemite, USA
Photo by Tommy Caldwell
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Tommy Caldwell climbs crux pitch on Dawn Wall in Yosemite

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After 6 years of efforts and intense climbing yesterday Tommy Caldwell, together with Kevin Jorgeson, made an important breakthrough in their attempt to free Dawn Wall on El Capitan in Yosemite, freeing what it is considered to be the crux pitch of the route.

A short but important update from Yosemite where American climber Tommy Caldwell finally managed to free climb the crux pitch that, until last night, had resisted all attempts high up on Dawn Wall, El Capitan.

"Oh my goodness!!!"Caldwell wrote on his facebook page "After six years I finally sent this beast of a pitch. Inspired by Keven's fight to the death near miss.This officially means all the hard individual pitches have been redpointed. I am so psyched my hands are shaking!"

As is widely known, Tommy Caldwell has been attempting this route since 2007 and, since 2009 always together with Kevin Jorgeson. Last night's success - probably somewhere in the region of 5.14d (8c+/9a) – is both an enormous breakthrough and the penultimate step in this enormous project that, when finally freed, will most certainly be the hardest big wall climb in Yosemite, if not the world. What is now missing is the final link, as Jorgeson and Caldwell explained last year, namely a ground-up free ascent of all pitches. Thanks to the latest developments the two could now rest for a few days and then return to the valley in December for Jorgeson to free the pitch and the two to embark on that yearned for, single push ground-up ascent.

A mere two days ago Jorgeson shared some information which, to the joy of all those who love number crunching, shows how demanding this last month has been up on El Cap. Apart from starting late in the season and continuing on even later, it's interesting to note that of the 120 hours spent climbing, 80 were done at night to make the most of better conditions...

Climbing Days: 20
Rest Days: 11
Total Hours Climbing: 120
Total Hours Night Climbing: 80
Feet to Crux Pitches: 1,100
Best Jumaring Time Base to Crux: 40 minutes
Best Rappelling Time Crux to Base: 10 minutes
Total Feet Jumared: 22,000
Hardest Pitch: 14 (first traverse)
Likely Grade of Pitch 14: 5.14d
Confidence Level for Pitch 14 Send: 8 out of 10
Highlight So Far: Team send of Pitch 7, 5.14a
Tommy’s Crux: The Dyno
My Crux: Pitch 12, 5.14b, The Molar Traverse
Split Tips: 0
Grated Knuckles: 3 (all mine…)
New Sequences Found: 7

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