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Monday, January 12, 2009

Monday Morning Time Waster

Eric Perlman has been submitting clips from his upcoming Masters of Stone VI video to, featuring last summer's record-breaking speed climb of the Nose by Hans Florine and Yuji Hirayama. Three segments are now live, and they're great fun to watch. In any discussion of big-wall speed climbing, you always hear that records are broken not by climbing super-fast but by climbing moderately fast with minimal pauses, and, indeed, Hans and Yuji don't appear to be sprinting: the climbers move methodically; their ropes snag; Yuji forgets to unclip a sling and curses "Merde!"; the two debate who's supposed to move next; Yuji tugs on the rope for slack—at times they seem like two bumblies on a big-wall ascent, yet they're climbing El Cap in less than three hours.

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