World’s Highest Rock-Climbing Wall
Nov 23, 2015 12:33PM
● By Stephanie Wilson
Just because it had never been done before doesn’t mean that it couldn't be done. And now that it has been done, you really need to see it to believe it. To believe that some people have the wherewithal to take some extreme sports, combine them, and then bring them to a whole new level of intense awesomeness.
The sports in question here: rock climbing, base jumping, and hot-air ballooning. Combined into one epic adventure that took place one sunny November morning in the high plains of Colorado at the base of the Rocky Mountains.
Daniel Krug, founder of Denver Climbing Company, is the man behind the adrenaline-pumping combo. The Colorado-based rock-climbing guide says the goal of his company is to introduce people to new sports and give them the skills to have adventures they never thought possible. Which got him thinking: what did he once think was impossible that he now had the skills to tackle?
A certified skydiver with hundreds of base jumps under his belt, Krug also has a ton of connections in the hot-air ballooning industry, thanks to his multiple balloon jumps and his time spent as part of balloon ground crews. So he decided to combine those passions into one epic feat that's been dubbed the World's Highest Rock-Climbing Wall. You have to check out the video below to fully understand the mind-blowing combo.
To put this together, Krug went to Home Depot, picked up some plywood and two-by-fours, and built the collapsable wall in his backyard, using some hand holds purchased at a climbing store. To test it, he hung it from a fire escape. And then he somehow convinced hot-air balloon legend Michael Gianetti, owner and pilot of Life Cycle Balloon Adventures, that this contraption should be hung from his hot-air ballon. Gianetti proved to be up for the challenge.
On the morning of November 9, 2015, two base jumpers joined Krug, Gianetti and his crew at a field in Longmont, Colorado. Up the balloon went, down the wall came, and then Krug hoisted himself over the basket and hung from a rope to supervise the safety of the climbers/jumpers as they rappelled down the wall, unhooked from the ropes, and got to free climbing...and then they got to free falling. (Cannafit, an online health, wellness, fitness, and nutrition platform, sponsored the second jumper.)
Circling this extreme airborne madness were three powered paragliders and a twin-engined airplane. A second hot-air balloon, sponsored in part by Green Labs Denver, also joined the fun in the sky, holding a camera crew and the founding publisher of Sensi magazine, a new pro-cannabis Denver/Boulder lifestyle magazine with a tagline of "Chronicling the New Normal." Here in the Rocky foothills, taking high-flying adventures to the extreme is certainly the new normal.
Now, if you think the pictures are incredible, just wait until you see the video. Watch how Denver Climbing Company takes extreme sports to new heights.
The World's Highest Rock-Climbing Wall