TIME

Sasha DiGiulian was told that “little girls don’t belong on the Eiger.”

On Aug. 29, she proved her critics wrong when she summited the north face of the Eiger after a difficult three-day climb. Not only is DiGiulian the first female to ascend one of the most challenging routes on Europe’s most notorious alpine wall, but she did it with very limited alpine climbing experience.

DiGiulian is a very experienced sport climber, having racked up several championships and having competed on the U.S. National team. But the move from the rock climbing wall to the mountain face is a relatively new one for her. About a year ago, after winning just about every sport climbing competition she could, she decided to challenge herself and transition her career to the outdoors.

“The beautiful thing about climbing outside is its limitless,” she says. “I love the puzzle solving element of climbing, it’s like you have this sequence that you have to get through and you don’t know if it is possible or not and you start trying different variables and options and maybe you move your body a little bit to the right or a little bit to the left and all of a sudden what you thought wasn’t possible is possible.”

Next on her list? Free-climbing El Capitan in Yosemite.

Advertisements