Assault on El Capitan (2013) 1h 7min · Documentary, Adventure, Sport · 25 September 2013
In June and July of 2011 42 year old Ammon and Kait his 22 year old his girlfriend set out to climb the never repeated route of Wings of Steel on Yosemite's El Capitan. Wings sat unclimbed since the first ascent in 1983. Shrouded in controversy and with a bounty waiting for the second ascent team, there seemed to be no better person to climb it than Ammon. But was Kait the best choice for a partner? With over 70 El Cap climbs by 60 different routes Ammon is clearly a seasoned climber. Kait is relatively green to the big walls, having only three El Cap ascents on her resume and all of them with Ammon by her side. This climb would be a test of their ability and their relationship. Logging over 500 feet of falls, a dislocated shoulder, Ammon presses on up the wall. Kait sits anxiously on a portaledge watching the person she loves suffer fall after fall, each fall pulling her petite frame hard into the anchors. On day four stress levels hit a boiling point as the couple began to turn on each other. For 13 days Ammon and Kait fight on and up. The story of Wings of Steel is as legendary as Ammon himself. The first ascent team spent 39 days climbing the controversial route. The result - death threats, physical assaults and a slander campaign that polarized the Yosemite climbing community for over 30 years. Retold in interviews with the first ascent team, their detractors, climbing historians and personal interviews with both Ammon and Kait, combined with footage shot during their historic ascent, the truth about the most controversial climb in Yosemite history will be told. - Written by Jeff Vargen
Director(s): Jeff Vargen
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