A world champion climber is lucky to be alive after falling while trying to scale El Capitan on the Golden Gate Route in under 24 hours. Emily Harrington, 33, on Monday was free climbing Yosemite’s El Capitan, which is 3,200 feet of sheer granite. She was climbing in the dark, in the early hours of the morning, with just a single safety rope between her and disaster. Harrington had climbed about 150 feet when she lost her grip. Her boyfriend was holding onto the safety rope he said saved her.