Is Rock Climber Alex Honnold a Real-Life Spiderman?

Adventurer makes first rope-free climb—and some say the most dangerous ever—of Yosemite’s El Capitain.

The climbing world is in awe of renowned climbing star Alex Honnold after he scaled California’s El Capitan without safety gear last Saturday.

Making the ascent of the 3,000-foot granite wall in just 3 hours and 56 minutes, Alex is the first person to “free solo,” or complete the climb alone and without the use of ropes. National Geographic called it the “greatest feat of pure rock climbing in the history of the sport.”

Photographer Jimmy Chin, who is also Alex’s long-time climbing partner, was on hand to capture photos and film for an upcoming documentary on Saturday’s historic event.

“So stoked to realize a life dream today,” Honnold wrote on his Facebook page after making the climb in California’s Yosemite National Park.

National Geographic’s Mark Synnott writes, “It’s hard to overstate the physical and mental difficulties of a free solo ascent of the peak, which is considered by many to be the epicenter of the rock climbing world. It is a vertical expanse stretching more than a half mile up—higher than the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. From the meadow at the foot of El Capitan, climbers on the peak’s upper reaches are practically invisible to the naked eye.”

Read more details about Alex’s climb at National Geographic