Margo Hayes


La Ram­bla (5.15a)


Si­u­rana, Spain


Break On Through

When the Basque climber Jo­sune Bereziartu red­pointed

Bim­baluna (5.14d/15a) in Saint Loup, Switzer­land, in May 2005, she set a high bar for women sport climbers—so high, in fact, that it would not be sur­passed for an­other 12 years. On Fe­bru­ary 26, 2017, Colorado climber Margo Hayes, 19, red­pointed La

Ram­bla, a 45-me­ter bench­mark 5.15a in Si­u­rana, Spain. After check­ing out the climb and France’s Re­al­iza­tion, she set­tled on La Ram­bla as her 5.15 pro­ject—and be­came the first woman ever to climb the grade. Hayes’s red­point took only seven days, but her prepa­ra­tion lead­ing up to it was me­thod­i­cal and sub­stan­tial: Hayes made sure she was ready by climb­ing 14 5.14s in her eigh­teenth year, in­clud­ing an as­cent of the 5.14d Bad

Girls Club at Ri­fle. She also moved to Europe to train and climb, push­ing hard to get ready, tread­ing the ra­zor’s edge be­tween suc­cess and burnout. While Hayes’s jour­ney was epic, it has ce­mented her role as one of the best climbers—male or fe­male—in his­tory, with more to come.

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