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Tommy Caldwell

Tommy Caldwell

American musician
Tommy Caldwell
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro American musician
Was Musician
From United States of America
Type Music
Gender male
Birth 9 November 1949
Death 28 April 1980 (aged 30 years)
The details (from wikipedia)


Tommy Caldwell (born August 11, 1978) is an American rock climber. He is accomplished in several types of climbing, including sport climbing, hard traditional climbing, big-wall speed climbing and big-wall free climbing. He made the first ascents (FA) of some of the United States' hardest sport routes (as of 2008) including Kryptonite (5.14c/d) and Flex Luthor (a possible 5.15a) at the Fortress of Solitude, Colorado. In January 2015, Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson completed the first-ever free climb of the Dawn Wall of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park. It was documented by photos and journalistically by Tom Evans (see El Capitan).
Caldwell is a big-wall climber, with the first free ascents (FFA) of a handful of El Capitan routes to his credit. In May, 2004 he completed the first free ascent of Dihedral Wall. In 2005, he and Beth Rodden (swapping leads) made the third and fourth free ascents of The Nose. Two days later, on October 16, Caldwell free-climbed The Nose in less than 12 hours. A few days later, Caldwell climbed The Nose in 11 hours, descended the East Ledges, and then climbed Freerider, topping out 12 hours later – the first ascent of two El Capitan free climbs in 24 hours. On El Capitan, Caldwell has also free-climbed: Lurking Fear, Muir Wall (Cosgrove var. to Magic Mushroom finish, FFA), West Buttress, Salathé, Zodiac and Magic Mushroom.
Caldwell accidentally sawed off much of his left index finger with a table saw in 2001. Doctors were able to reattach the severed portion, but Caldwell subsequently had it removed so as not to hinder his climbing career.
Caldwell and fellow climbers Beth Rodden, John Dickey and Jason Smith were held hostage by rebels in Kyrgyzstan in 2000. Caldwell pushed a lone captor off a cliff, and subsequently escaped to government soldiers. They later learned that the captor survived the fall. A book about their ordeal, Over the Edge: The True Story of Four American Climbers' Kidnap and Escape in the Mountains of Central Asia was written by Greg Child. A follow-up article, "Back from the Edge", was published in Outside magazine the following year. Caldwell and Rodden married in 2003, and divorced in 2010. In 2012, he married photographer Rebecca Pietsch, they have a son, Fitz. Caldwell gave a filmed lecture "How Becoming a Hostage and Losing a Finger Made Him a Better Climber".

Notable ascents

  • 2001: The Honeymoon is Over V 5.13 Longs Peak, Colorado, USA. FA with Beth Rodden belaying.
  • 2003: Flex Luthor (5.14d/15a?), Fortress of Solitude, Colorado, USA
  • 2003: West Buttress (FFA) VI 5.13c, El Capitan, Yosemite Valley, California, USA
  • 2004: Dihedral Wall (FFA) VI 5.14a, El Capitan, Yosemite Valley, California, USA
  • 2005: The Nose VI 5.13, 3rd/4th Free Ascent (with Beth Rodden), El Capitan, Yosemite Valley, California, USA
  • 2006: Linea di Eleganza VI 5.11b A3 90 degrees M7 Fitz Roy, Argentine Patagonia. FFA with Topher Donahue and Erik Roed.
  • 2008: Magic Mushroom (FFA) VI 5.14a with Justen Sjong, May 12–17, 2008, El Capitan, Yosemite, California, USA
  • 2012: Yosemite Triple Crown 5.13a, 1st All Free Ascent with Alex Honnold
  • 2014: Fitz Traverse VI 5.11d C1 65 degrees, First Ascent with Alex Honnold
  • 2015: Dawn Wall (FFA) 5.14d with Kevin Jorgeson, December 27, 2014 – January 14, 2015, El Capitan, Yosemite, California, USA

The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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