Climbing Gold

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600 reviews
This podcast has
38 episodes
Date created
Last published
Average duration
41 min.
Release period
26 days


Alex Honnold and co-host Fitz Cahall share stories from the people who define the sport of climbing by pushing the boundaries and challenging the status quo of the previous generation. In season three, we dive deep into the art of risk taking. How do we get better at it? Why do we accept risk we don’t have to take? Can you reconcile your dreams with the reality that they could kill you? Each of us must ask when is the right time to walk away.

Podcast episodes

Check latest episodes from Climbing Gold podcast

The Power of Negative Thinking
Big, audacious dreams come with real risks. The dreamers are presented with a labyrinth of physical hazards, possible outcomes, hurdles, and dead ends. Often, we are told that success comes down to positive thinking, but maybe there’s a flip side to that coin. Few people have thought about risk more than Will Gadd, pioneer of modern mixed and ice climbing. And he’s got a lot to say. We also get some insight from Brette Harrington.
A Necessary Risk
Sometimes you don’t get to choose the risks you take. It’s a matter of survival. Alex talks with climber and photographer Nikki Smith about what she gained when she took one of the biggest risks of her life, how her passion for climbing has evolved as she’s forged her path to live authentically, and the importance of standing up for others. We ask some hard questions and get honest answers.
Spotting The Gray Rhino
To manage risk, you first have to see the threat. Best-selling author Michele Wucker and Alex talk about how he evaluates risk, creating safety nets and his greatest fear. 
Big Nature
In early 1980’s Yosemite, big wall climbing was tedious, difficult and often terrifying. Enter Lydia Bradey, a 19-year-old New Zealander. She’s not good at free climbing, but she has this overwhelming desire to experience the feeling of being on one the steepest bits of El Capitan thousands of feet above the ground. There are people who dream of doing things and there are the people that go do them. Today, we talk with Lydia about the dark art of aid climbing, Mount Everest and the power of big nature. Lauren Delaunay Miller, author of Valley of Giants, joins us to help tell her story.
Captain Safety
As humans, we sometimes prefer to ignore big risks that are lurking within our view. See climate change or storm clouds building over a ridge. Best-selling author Michele Wucker has dedicated her career to understanding how humans interact with risk in big and small systems. Her hypothesis: the risks we take create a unique fingerprint. Colin Haley, aka Captain Safety, has shaped his fingerprint through two decades of elite alpinism, soloing and identifying risk factors.
Faffing About
Hazel Findlay and Alex dive deeper into the intricacies of British trad climbing. Just don’t hit the ground.
Cheater Cheater
Far away from Yosemite’s spotlight on a crumbly backwater cliff, an unknown climber was about to change a sport by breaking some of its most sacred rules. Today, we are all very grateful he did. We talk with Alan Watts, pioneer of sport climbing in America, about the highs and lows of breaking the status quo. There’s an upside and a downside to every risk we take. 
The Stuff Of Nightmares
British trad climbing might be the most unique flavor of all. Is it an audacious game of risk or merely a fast track to a Darwin award? In 2000, while following in the footsteps of his heroes, a young James McHaffie booted up in front of the famed Masters Wall and launched upwards. What followed was a four hour fight for survival. Hazel Findlay helps supply perspective on the strange craft of British trad. 
Soviet Speed
This year's Olympic climbers weren’t the original USA climbing team. That honor actually goes to a rag-tag group of adventurous dirtbags including Beth Wald, Russ Clune and Todd Skinner, who managed to travel to the USSR at the tail end of the Cold War to compete in a one of a kind climbing competition.
Validate My Beta
Were the Olympics more a bust than a boom? If you had $20 million to grow the sport of climbing how would you spend it? Are we at the end of the era where we climb alongside the pros? The Climbing Gold Team takes a look back at the learnings from season 2 and looks into the future of our sport.
The Knife's Edge
These are the things in the shadows that no one wants to talk about. The open secrets elite athletes carry. The behaviors coaches would prefer not to see. The hard realities fans tend to ignore about the sport playing out in front of them. Today, Kai Lightner and Beth Rodden help us shine a light on disordered eating in climbing.
Show Me The Money
As climbing grows and enters into mainstream consciousness, we’d be naive to think that money won’t play a role. What does it take to “go pro” in climbing? How does the business of climbing evolve so that it doesn't fall into the same pitfalls that plague other sports? We dive into these questions with Rick Burton, a professor at Syracuse University Professor and Jonathan Retseck, founder of RXR Sports. 

Podcast Reviews

Read Climbing Gold podcast reviews

4.8 out of 5
600 reviews
itmann 2022/05/27
Love it
Great content and well produced
Sp2356889 2022/06/12
Easily the 4th best climbing podcast
Ok maybe 5th best but they got John Gill
matt1075 2022/06/08
Unfortunately the podcast is pretty mediocre. Too much dubbed over narration. I couldn’t even make it through 15 minutes. It definitely has potential ...
Treegroee2003 2022/05/06
I enjoy hearing Alex share his experiences and he seems to be a fan of the people he is interviewing. Fitz is a good counter balance to Alex and adds...
Gobblediguuj 2022/05/20
Awesome show but just chill with the sound editing
Love Alex and the overall content of the podcast but honestly just stop with the editing. The tape click noise and unnecessary cuts to the music is ju...
kdjkdkdkdk 2022/05/12
So woke
The douchiest podcast I’ve ever listened to
giopilli1 2022/05/07
Great show ruined by too many commercials
No by now I will not buy a whoop or athletic greens and honestly getting hammered on commercials every 5 minutes of the podcast does ruin the quality ...
Cristian Medellin 2021/12/20
For a Non-Climber but an enthusiast of Climbing, this feeds my curiosity
I am a non-climber due to other pursuits being stronger than my curiosity of climbing but climbing has always catched my eue from looking a man in a m...
CWO Groupie 2022/03/27
Great bones but over produced
Think the dramatic NPResque format does not fit with Alex’s interview style and distracts from the story telling and interviews. All of the narration...
cvavrina1 2021/09/24
Big difference btw seasons
Season 1 was so entertaining and educational! Season 2 has been the opposite. Bring back legendary tales and important historical events in the world ...


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