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Yosemite climbers reach top of El Capitan in historic ascent

Updated: 2015-01-15 14:07

Yosemite climbers reach top of El Capitan in historic ascent

Climber Kevin Jorgeson (shirtless) climbs Pitch 17 as his partner Tommy Caldwell belays from below on the Dawn Wall of the El Capitan rock formation in Yosemite National Park California in this January 12, 2015 handout photo released to Reuters January 13, 2015. [Photo/Agencies]

LOS ANGELES - Two climbers completed a historic 19-day ascent to the summit of Yosemite National Park's El Capitan in California on Wednesday after scaling the rock formation's 3,000-foot (900-metre) sheer granite face without climbing tools, representatives said.

Tommy Caldwell, 36, and Kevin Jorgeson, 30, made it to the top of El Capitan at 3:30 pm (2330 GMT), spokeswoman Jess Clayton of clothing company Patagonia which played a sponsorship role in the climb, said in an email.

The two men, who were the first to climb El Capitan's so-called Dawn Wall without bolts or climbing tools but used safety ropes in case of falls, climbed the rock face in stages beginning on Dec 27. They had been expected to reach the summit on Wednesday afternoon.

The Dawn Wall of El Capitan is divided into 32 climbing pitches, which are varying lengths of rock that the climbers mastered with only their hands and feet. The wall has been scaled before, first by legendary climber Warren Harding in 1970, but never without climbing tools.

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