Teen climber Margo Hayes is first woman to conquer La Rambla

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2017/03/01/teen-climber-margo-hayes-is-fi.html


*Pedantic note

Should be:
"…the 5.15a route…"

See the Yosemite Decimal System.
1.15a would be a very serious walk. :wink:


oops! i put in a note to fix my typo.


That would be a different La Rambla


You Madam are awesome, keep up the good work.


Pft, we could send that! No problem. :slight_smile:

“Hayes, who hails from Boulder, Colorado,”

Somehow I saw that coming. Most people I’ve met from Boulder have an insatiable appetite for outdoor activity. I was there for training a few years back and was seated next to a local lady throughout the week. One morning prior to class she said, “Did you do anything fun after class yesterday?” I told her I went to Pearl Street and had a great margarita. She responded, “That sounds fun! I was able to do some rock climbing for a few hours.” Damnit, I love Colorado and its people.


More importantly, she’s the first woman to send a confirmed 5.15a. That’s the big story here.

This is a gargantuan accomplishment, especially given her age. She and Ashima are probably both years away from hitting their peak performance.

This is the face of someone who just got a well deserved place in the climbing history books:

FWIW, this might not be the first female ascent of a 5.15a. Ashima grabbed a 5.14d/5.15a in 2015 after breaking a crucial hold off that may have turned it into a legit 5.15a. That’d make her the youngest person (13 years old!!) of any age to climb at that level. Problem is there aren’t even many male climbers out there that are capable of confirming the grade. :wink:


no idea if intended or not, but this phrase is excellent for climbing as topic ; )

what’s the YDS classification of Hoge Berg (“high mountain”) on Texel?

climbing it was tiring - we were drunken and carried a crazy amount of beer crates


That’s bad ass! You go girl!


This is why King Salman bin Abdul Aziz travels with two elevators.


I’ve been following Margo’s climbing since she was a little kid. She definitely is all that. And there’s possibly even better female climbers coming up behind her like Ashima and Brooke. This is definitely a sport that women – and girls – are seizing upon as an “in” sport like they earlier seized upon tennis, then soccer.

Agreed. The fact Dani Andrada can’t do this thing, and the obvious exertion coming from Sharma, Ondra etc on their ascents, makes this all the more impressive.

Hell - I’m working HARD on stuff 2 full number grades below this. Even one full number grade below (14a) requires bonkers amounts of dedication, training and perseverance.



This is a girl you want to marry.


No thanks. She’s in the “creepy” range.


This is a girl I want to BE.


Marry me!


Same, and I’m not any kind of girl. But if I was…


Yeah, as hard as it looks, non-climbers have no idea what 5.15a means. It’s BONKERS.

Most fit people can climb a 5.9 outdoors with a little practice. I know of 5.9 routes that fit college kids can’t even get on, though.

5.10 sport routes puts you in the category of pretty regular climbers. Think of yourself on slightly overhanging rock, a total of four fingers stuffed in two pockets in the rock, standing on a 1/4" wide ridge.

5.11 takes most people 2-3 years of serious, dedicated effort before it starts feeling like a good idea.

5.12 is where people land if they’re serious about training but don’t want to dedicate their lives to it. 10+ hours per week of climbing for a few years, I occasionally get a 5.12. Very occasionally. I look like that picture of margo afterwards. Bloody and tears of joy.

5.13? The people I know who send 5.13 outside are beasts or kids that started climbing at age 7. Props to you, dude. Unless you’re from colorado or utah, in which case you’re just average. :wink:

5.14. A man sending mid-5.14 in north america is going to get a lot of views on youtube. A woman sending 4.14 winds up in Climbing magazine or profiled in Time magazine. Looking up at a 5.14c/d, even as a pretty experienced climber, it doesn’t look possible.

5.15a is 4 minute mile territory. Men who climb this are genetic freaks with tendons of steel. A woman sending 5.15 is simply outrageous. We’ve got a lot of rock east of the mississippi, but I think only one or two 5.15a’s have been put up. When someone proposes 5.15a as a grade in the red river gorge, some czech kid comes along, flashes it and downgrades it to 5.14.


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