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65+ Best Alex Honnold Quotes From The Infamous Free Solo Climber

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As a free solo climber Alex Honnold has had a fascinating life.

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Alex Honnold is the only climber to free solo climb the 3000-foot granite wall, the El Capitan in Yosemite National park, without using any form of safety gear.

His National Geographic documentary 'Free Solo' about the El Capitan climb has won the Academy Award of Best Documentary. The documentary portrays his thrilling journey through the days to fulfilling his dreams of free soloing the El Capitan.

From living several years in a van to now amounting to a net worth of more than two million dollars, Alex Honnold has had an interesting life, to say the least. His fascination with climbing began in his childhood years, through which he was often lonely, without many friends, owing to which, he would always end up rock climbing solo. Although Alex acquired fame for performing his climbs solo and without safety gear, he states that he does most of his climbs using safety gear and a partner.

Alex likes to prepare his focus both physically and mentally before the climb. This is one of the reasons why he asked his then-girlfriend, Sanni McCandless, to leave El Capitan one week before his climb. In 2020, Alex married Sanni McCandless and hopes to focus on his relationship more in the future, with less time spent climbing. He still free climbs but he has also taken an interest in reducing his environmental impact. Alex started the Honnold Foundation in 2012, to provide solar energy solutions worldwide.

Alex has had his share of interesting events in life. Here are some of his quotes to empower you through your own life challenges. If you enjoy these, do have a look at our [Edward Abbey quotes] and [Aldo Leopold quotes].

Alex Honnold Quotes From 'Free Solo'

Here are some truly noteworthy 'Free Solo' movie quotes from the documentary.

1.  "It’s always about excellence and perfection."

-Alex Honnold, 'Free Solo'.

2. "I like the simplicity of soloing. You've got no gear, no partner. You never climb better than when you free-solo."

-Alex Honnold, 'Free Solo'.

3.  "It’s not like I’m pushing, pushing, pushing until something horrible happens."

-Alex Honnold, 'Free Solo'.

4. "If the ultimate dream is to climb El Cap then I need a good map for how to do it."

-Alex Honnold, 'Free Solo'.

5. "No one in my family got hugged in my formative years… Love; no one in my family’s life has ever used that word."

-Alex Honnold, 'Free Solo'.

6. "There's a certain joy in swinging around, propelling yourself upward... the fluidity of movement."

-Alex Honnold, 'Free Solo'.

7. "It’s the best thing in life to take the one thing you love most and have it work out that you can make a living that way."

-Alex Honnold, 'Free Solo'.

8. "There always has to be something to give you the confidence to free solo.  Sometimes that confidence comes from being physically fit.  Sometimes it comes from preparation and rehearsal."

-Alex Honnold, 'Free Solo'.

9. "I don’t want to fall off and die either, but there’s a satisfaction to challenging yourself and doing something well. That feeling is heightened when you’re for sure facing death. If you’re seeking perfection, free-soloing is as close as you can get."

-Alex Honnold, 'Free Solo'.

10. "I'm not thinking about anything when I'm climbing, which is part of the appeal. I'm focused on executing what's in front of me."

-Alex Honnold, 'Free Solo'.

Alex Honnold Quotes About Facing Your Fears

Rock climbing is all about facing your fears.

These quotes about fear show how Alex stays calm through the storm.

11. "You’re not controlling your fear. You’re stepping outside of it."

-Alex Honnold.

12. "I've done a lot of thinking about fear. For me the crucial question is not how to climb without fear – that's impossible - but how to deal with it when it creeps into your nerve endings."

-Alex Honnold.

13. "I generally don't climb something if it makes me feel fear. The beauty of soloing is that there's no pressure - no one's telling me to do it. So if something seems scary, I don't have any obligation to do it."

-Alex Honnold.

14. "To be clear, I normally climb with a rope and partner. Free-soloing makes up only a small percentage of my total climbing. But when I do solo, I manage the risk through careful preparation."

-Alex Honnold.

15. "I try to expand my comfort zone by practicing my moves over and over again. I try to work through my fear until it’s not scary anymore."

-Alex Honnold.

16. "It’s about being a warrior… This is your path and you will pursue it with excellence. You face your fear because your goal demands it."

-Alex Honnold.

17. "There are certainly better technical climbers than me. But if I have a particular gift, it's a mental one — the ability to keep it together where others might freak out."

-Alex Honnold.

18. "I've walked away from more climbs than I can count, just because I sensed that things were not quite right."

-Alex Honnold.

19. "You will always feel fear, but over time you will realize the only way to truly manage your fear is to broaden your comfort zone."

-Alex Honnold.

20. "You might get run over; you might get hit by lightning. I mean, who knows? Each day, there is a chance you might die. And there's nothing wrong with that."

-Alex Honnold.

Alex Honnold Quotes About Rock Climbing

Here are some inspirational rock climbing quotes from Alex Honnold to motivate yourself before your climb.

21. "There's a constant tension in climbing, and really all exploration, between pushing yourself into the unknown but trying not to push too far. The best any of us can do is to tread that line carefully."

-Alex Honnold.

22. "I've always loved climbing; I don't see why other people wouldn't enjoy it just as much. As long as everyone does their best to respect the areas in which they're climbing, I don't see how the growth of the sport could be a bad thing."

-Alex Honnold.

23. "I love the feeling of touching the rock, the feeling of my body going up the rock."

-Alex Honnold.

24. "The diet for climbing all the time isn't really different from the diet for living. It's not like cardio sports where you're burning a bajillion calories every day."

-Alex Honnold.

25. "I love my climbing shoes. Virtually all of my big solos have been in the TC PROS. They are the most important thing when I'm soloing."

-Alex Honnold.

26. "Climbing moves are all about feeling it, and that is something I’ve spent my whole life doing."

-Alex Honnold.

27. "I've done routes where I've climbed 200 feet off the ground and just been, like, 'What am I doing?' I then just climbed back down and went home. Discretion is the better part of valor."

-Alex Honnold.

28. "If you’re climbing big routes that’ll take you 16 hours, or, like, El Capitan, you have to take something like a big, robust sandwich. Climbing isn’t like running or triathlons, where you have to constantly be eating blocks, gels, and pure sugar. Climbing is relatively slow, so you can pretty much eat anything and digest it as you climb."

-Alex Honnold.

29. "I know that when I'm standing alone below a thousand-foot wall, looking up and considering a climb, my sponsors are the furthest thing from my mind. If I'm going to take risks, they are going to be for myself – not for any company."

-Alex Honnold.

30. "Climbing is definitely very much strength-to-weight ratio."

-Alex Honnold.

Famous Alex Honnold Quotes About Life And Risk

Alex Honnold shares his life wisdom through these quotes which are sure to help your own.

31. "People think I just walk up to a sheer cliff and climb it with no knowledge of anything when in reality, there’s tons and tons of information out there, and I’m already well tapped into it."

-Alex Honnold.

32. "The simple facts of Chadian life - what it takes to survive in that kind of climate with nothing but a hut and some animals - stunned me. And this made me realize, perhaps for the first time, how easy my life was compared to those of people in less privileged societies."

-Alex Honnold.

33. "Music can be useful during training to help get you psyched, and I still listen to music on easy climbs or in the gym. But during cutting-edge solos or really hard climbs, I unplug. There shouldn’t be a need for extra motivation on big days, be it music or anything else."

-Alex Honnold.

34. "I have a journal of everything I've ever climbed since 2005. For the entry about free soloing Half Dome, I put a frowny face and added some little notes about what I should have done better, and then underlined it. Turns out that is one of my biggest climbing achievements."

-Alex Honnold.

35. "My comfort zone is like a little bubble around me, and I’ve pushed it in different directions and made it bigger and bigger until these objectives that seemed totally crazy eventually fall within the realm of the possible."

-Alex Honnold.

36. "So many people condemn me for risk-taking, but I find it sort of hypocritical because everybody takes risks. Even the absence of activity could be viewed as a risk. If you sit on the sofa for your entire life, you’re running a higher risk of getting heart disease and cancer."

-Alex Honnold.

37. "No matter the risks we take, we always consider the end to be too soon, even though in life, more than anything else, quality should be more important than quantity."

-Alex Honnold.

38. "I'm sponsored by the solar company Goal Zero, and they were gracious enough to install panels on my van and a nice battery system for the inside. I have lights and a fridge inside the van. And of course, I had panels installed on my mom's house."

-Alex Honnold.

Funny Alex Honnold Quotes To Cheer You Up

Here are some witty Alex Honnold quotes to showcase his lighter side.

39. "We are apes – we should be climbing."

-Alex Honnold.

40. "I love red bell peppers. Bell peppers in general, really. I like to eat them like apples."

-Alex Honnold.

41.  "At the crux of Half Dome, at the very top of the wall, imagine, like, a smooth wall of rock - a nearly vertical granite slab with tiny ripples for your hands and feet. And so you're really trusting the rubber on your shoes to stick to these ripples."

-Alex Honnold.

42. "I've never really understood the criticism that climbing is inherently selfish since it could equally be argued about virtually any other hobby or sport. Is gardening selfish?"

-Alex Honnold.

43. "My fantasy breakfast is just a really good egg scramble. Maybe I'll add a little feta, so, uh, obviously not totally dairy-free. Definitely some vegetables, maybe some really nice tortillas; something to make it like a Mexican-style breakfast. I just really love breakfast."

-Alex Honnold.

44. "I often joke that I've just become a professional schmoozer. Like, nobody cares how well I can rock climb anymore. It just has to do with how well I can schmooze."

-Alex Honnold.

45. "At the same time, I've never dieted or restricted calories. You're just sort of mindful about not getting plump."

-Alex Honnold.

46. "It [college] was lame for me. Probably because I had no friends."

-Alex Honnold.

47. "I crushed high school. I was a huge dork."

-Alex Honnold.

48. "I took a test once; they said I was a genius."

-Alex Honnold.

Alex Honnold Quotes About Environment

Let's take a look at Alex Honnold's views on the environment through these quotes.

49. "Much as Africa has leapfrogged straight to mobile phones, it has the opportunity to skip the dirty, grid-tied power plants that currently operate across the developed world and go straight to clean, distributed power."

-Alex Honnold.

50. "I live out of my van, which gives me a first-hand appreciation for power and lighting. A few years ago, I rebuilt the interior of my van to include solar panels and a battery that powers LEDs for lighting and allows me to charge my phone and laptop."

-Alex Honnold.

51. "I own very few things. I don't spend money on anything except food and gas."

-Alex Honnold.

52. "I guess I'm trying to lead a life of as little harm as possible and minimize my impact on the world. The amount I travel is kind of ridiculous, so I'm contributing to the carbon output and all that stuff. But every other aspect of my life I try to manage as well as I can."

-Alex Honnold.

53. "I am a vegetarian, and I sort of aspire to vegan-hood. So far I've noticed no difference at all in my climbing, but I feel a bit healthier overall. Though that’s only because I’m eating more fruits and vegetables."

-Alex Honnold.

54. "I make a fair amount of my food choices for environmental-type reasons than nutrition or taste. I’m trying to minimize impact, which is something most people don't necessarily think about when they’re shopping."

-Alex Honnold.

55. "In a general sense, I think it's bad to bring too much money into climbing since it takes away a little from the beauty of the mountains. But at the same time, I can't blame the Nepali government – or the Indian, Pakistani or Chinese, depending on where you're climbing – for wanting to capitalize on foreign climbers."

-Alex Honnold.

56. "'Dirtbag' is just the term we use, like a 'gnarly dude' in surfing. Within the climbing culture, it means being a committed lifer: someone who has embraced a minimalist ethic in order to rock climb. It basically means you’re a homeless person by choice."

-Alex Honnold.

57. "I've tried to approach environmentalism the same way I do my climbing: by setting small, concrete goals that build on each other."

-Alex Honnold.

58. "In the years after the expedition to Chad, I started the Honnold Foundation, a small non-profit that was my attempt to do something positive in the world. I sought out projects that both helped the environment and improved people's standards of living. The more I researched, the more I gravitated toward solar."

-Alex Honnold.

59. "My sister does all this community-service type stuff in Portland that makes the world a much better place. And I make as much in a two-day commercial shoot as she does in five years, which is ridiculous."

-Alex Honnold.

60. "I think the whole protein thing is overhyped. Most Americans eat far more than we need."

-Alex Honnold.

Famous 'Alone On The Wall' Quotes By Alex Honnold

Here are some interesting quotes by Alex from his book 'Alone On The wall'.

61. "I don't even drink coffee. I had a small cup once — it was like drinking battery acid. I had to poop all morning."

-Alex Honnold, 'Alone On The Wall'.

62. "There is no adrenaline rush. If I get an adrenaline rush, it means that something has gone horribly wrong."

-Alex Honnold, 'Alone On The Wall'.

63. "In a real sense, I performed the hard work of that free solo during the days leading up to it. Once I was on the climb, it was just a matter of executing."

-Alex Honnold, 'Alone On The Wall'.

64. "On the summit, part of me wished that someone, anyone, had noticed that I’d just done something noteworthy — though maybe it was better that I didn’t have to talk to anybody."

-Alex Honnold, 'Alone On The Wall'.

65."But no matter how hot the chick is, say if I was standing at the base of El Cap, and she urged me to free solo some route, my answer would be 'No way.'"

-Alex Honnold, 'Alone On The Wall'.

66. "When I protested that it seemed like too serious a situation to rely only on the sun and wind, Piero drew an analogy to climbing. Sometimes you find yourself in positions where falling would mean death. So you don’t fall."

-Alex Honnold, 'Alone On The Wall'.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully curated lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for 65+ Alex Honnold quotes about free soloing, leadership lessons and beyond, then do take a look at our Alex Morgan quotes or Simone Biles quotes for more inspirational sports stars.

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The Kidadl Team is made up of people from different walks of life, from different families and backgrounds, each with unique experiences and nuggets of wisdom to share with you. From lino cutting to surfing to children’s mental health, their hobbies and interests range far and wide. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family.

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