Babsi Zangerl has climbed Pre-Muir Wall, a 30 pitch VI 5.13c/d on El Cap in Yosemite with her partner Jacopo Larcher supporting her efforts. Larcher, a 5.14d climber, attempted to send the route but sustained too many injuries to his hands.
Zangerl is only the second woman to send Pre-Muir after Hazel Findlay’s second-ever ascent in 2012 with James Mchaffie and Neil Dyer. The line is a variation of Yvon Chouinard and TM Herbert’s Muir Wall A2 5.9 and takes a line up the centre of El Cap following parts of the Muir Wall, The Shaft and The Shield.
Zangerl, who lives in Austria, is one of the best big wall free climbers in the world and this is her fourth El Cap free route. She’d previously climbed El Nino VI 5.13c A0 in 2015, Zodiac VI 5.13d in 2016 and made the second ascent of Muagic Mushroom VI 5.14a in 2017.
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It‘s not „the Nose“ but maybe even better. 5 stars to the crux pitch of „Pre-Muir wall“!! Plan D was not a bad one! 😜. But I wished it would have been a team send as usual!! Jacopo cruised everything (of course), just the stemming pitch was heart breaking close. With bruised hands he fell on the very last hard sequence. 🙈 Sometimes you have luck and sometimes not! Eventually we ran out of time and @jacopolarcher decided to support me on my free ascent and climbed with me to the very top!!! Huge thanks my ❤️ Always fun to spend some days on the wall with you!!!…..and thanks to @hazel_findlay for the beta!!!#onesinglepush #haulinglikehell #groundup #4thfreeascentofElCapitan #climbing_pictures_of_instagram •••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• @blackdiamond @lasportivagram @vibram @verivalbio @powerbar_europe @frictionlabs @fazabrushes @climbskinspain 📸@jacopolarcher #multitasking
Zangerl climbed in a few competitions growing up, but preferred climbing outdoors and within a few years of starting she ticked V12 and 5.14. Her first multi-pitch was Acacia, a nine-pitch 5.13a on Switzerland’s Rätikon, a big limestone face known for its runout routes. Her first trad route was in 2012, a route called Super Crill 5.13b in Switzerland, a nine-pitch crack/face route.
Zangerl has been in California for a few weeks and had already sent Everything is Karate 5.14c/d, a one-pitch sport route first climbed by Ethan Pringle and repeated by Chris Sharma.
With Larcher, she had just sent Father Time, a 20-pitch 5.13 on Middle Cathedral in Yosemite. The route was established by Mikey Schaefer over two years and climbs a line through immaculate slabs and onto the steep headwall of the northwest face. On his fortieth day of climbing, after hand-drilling 113 bolts, he summited and returned to free it.
On Oct. 21, 2012, Alex Honnold, supported by Stacey Pearson, made a one-day free ascent of Father Time and the second ascent. “It’s 5.13b, straight up,” reported Honnold. In 2018, Nina Williams sent Father Time, supported by Katie Lambert. “And I have to say,” said Zangerl about Father Time, “all of the three crux pitches felt very techy and hard to us. We definitely had to work on them before we could bring the puzzle together.”
Zangerl has also been projecting the Changing Corners pitch on The Nose, but had to bail due to wet conditions. If whether permits, it sounds like she’ll be putting her efforts into the most classic big wall 5.14 free route in the world. In the past year, Nina Caprez and Hazel Findlay had projected The Nose.
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Having some struggle time on El Cap. Every thing dried up pretty fast here in the valley. Changing corners felt great yesterday, but the great roof is still soaking wet. (So I would change the names and call it the „great corners“ and the „never changing roof“!) It‘s time for plan C. Do you have any recommendations?? @blackdiamond @lasportivagram @vibram @verivalbio @powerbar_europe @frictionlabs @fazabrushes @climbskinspain