A portrait of Connor Herson.
  • Empath (5.14d on gear), Tahoe, CA
  • Meltdown (5.14c), Yosemite, CA
  • Blackbeard's Tears (5.14c), Promontory, CA
  • Cobra Crack (5.14b), Squamish, BC
  • The Crack of Destiny (5.14b), Squamish, BC
  • Pirate's Code (5.14+ mixed)
  • Kilogram (5.14- mixed)
  • Arsonist (5.14d sport)
  • Underage Linking (5.14d sport)
  • Free ascent of The Nose at age 15
  • First Free Ascent of Hairline (5.13d, 2000') on Mt. Whitney
  • Free ascent of the Salathé Wall
  • Onsighting multiple 5.13 multipitches
  • 3 USA Climbing youth or collegiate lead national titles
Born into a climbing family, Connor has been hooked on climbing from a young age. He enjoys pretty much any style—big walls, single pitch trad, bouldering, sport climbing, competition climbing, and all-day backcountry climbs. He's lived in the Bay Area his entire life and he climbs as much as possible, whether in the gym or at local crags. He is best known for hard trad climbs and big wall free climbing—he became the youngest person to free climb the Nose on El Cap at age of 15 and made the first gear ascent of Empath (5.14d)—but he also tries to stay well-rounded by switching disciplines based on his motivation. Outside of climbing, Connor is currently studying electrical engineering at Stanford University and feels as driven to pursue his academic interests as he does to climb.
Z4 cams (and offsets!): these are my absolute favorite cams. They're perfect for hard trad and have the right balance between performance and lightness/convenience.

- Connor Herson


Connor Herson wearing the Alpine Start hoody.