Home Adventure Two Women Just Climbed One of America’s Hardest Routes

Two Women Just Climbed One of America’s Hardest Routes

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On Tuesday, February 6, Michaela Kiersch, 23, sent Necessary Evil (5.14c), making her the first woman to climb this benchmark route in Arizona’s Virgin River Gorge. Paige Claassen, 27, sent the same line the following day.

At 5.14c, Necessary Evil is technically not the hardest pitch in the U.S. as far as grades go—Jumbo Love, a 5.15b at California’s Clark Mountain, holds that title. But the conditions-dependent rock and the long reaches between tiny holds on this historic route have thwarted some of the world’s most elite climbers.

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