World record for climbing, 10 feet at a time

Levandowski, on the bouldering problem he'll try to climb 2,500 times in 24 hours. Photo by Mark Leffingwell.

At 5 p.m. today, Will Levandowski, a Ph.D. student in geophysics at the University of Colorado at Boulder, will start his attempt at setting the world record for greatest vertical distance rock climbing in 24 hours.

He’s going to do it on a 10-foot tall boulder problem on Flagstaff Mountain. Story & video here.

I first spotted Will doing laps on Flag in November or December, when I was up there for a quick lunchtime bouldering session. He had earbuds in, so I didn’t want to interrupt whatever was playing on his iPod (probably science podcasts, I’ve now learned). Plus, he was lapping this V1 problem on the Mugs, below the Beer Barrel and Tree Slab, like a man on a mission. And even the nosy reporter in me didn’t want to interrupt a man on a mission.

Turns out, Will just likes to do this anyway. But he decided to put his habit toward both a record with Guinness and a charity, Operation Smile. If you want to contribute to Operation Smile via Will’s one big day of bouldering, you can here.

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