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Dawn Wall Day 15: Momentum! Jorgeson Sends Pitch 16 and 17

The Dawn Wall show continued on Jan. 10, as the climbers pushed hard on day 15. Kevin Jorgeson sent the last of the 5.14 pitches.

As the days go by, more and more people are making the trip to watch Tommy Caldwell and Jorgeson project the Dawn Wall. Neither climber has stood on solid ground for 15 days. The first ascent of the Dawn Wall took 28 days by Warren Harding and Dean Campbell.

Joregson updated his Facebook page on Jan. 11 with this, “Momentum is a powerful force. When it’s on your side, everything feels a bit easier. When it’s not on your side, it feels like wading through mud. For seven days, my momentum was halted by Pitch 15. It took everything in my power to stay positive and resolved that I would succeed. Now that momentum has returned to my side, I’m staying just as focused and resolved because a lot of hard climbing remains. Yesterday I finished the last 5.14 pitch and another 5.13 pitch above that. Three more 5.13s guard my path to Wino Tower. Thanks for all the continued support everyone!”

Kevin Jorgeson on day 15, sending pitches 16 and 17  Photo Corey Rich and sourced from Jorgeson's Facebook page
Kevin Jorgeson on day 15, sending pitches 16 and 17 Photo Corey Rich and sourced from Jorgeson’s Facebook page

First-hand information from Tom Evans is a bonus as he walks us through each day with his detailed reports.

Dawn Wall News

Evans reported that a mob of people had gathered to watch, which proves once again that climbing is a spectator sport. During 1962, 12,000 people stopped to watch Ed Cooper and Jim Baldwin one day as they Cooper and Baldwin inched up the first ascent of the Grand Wall.

The Importance of Dawn Wall

A supply team headed up the fixed ropes to bring the climbers more food, batteries and so on. Conditions weren’t perfect, but Jorgeson climbed anyway. He sent the dyno crux on pitch 16 and continued to the top. In doing so, he quieted his critics who said Jorgeson wouldn’t catch up to Caldwell.

Other parties were climbing on El Capitan on Jan. 10 as the weather held. Jorgeson is now ready to climb pitch 18 as he finished pitch 17 after he sent pitch 16 on day 15.

Read Evans’ full report here

Kevin Jorgeson on pitch 17  Photo Tom Evans
Kevin Jorgeson on pitch 17 Photo Tom Evans