Austin Hansel climbs the ladder of life


Brock Averett

Dallin Hawkins, Managing Editor

Austin Hansel has pursued his passion of rock climbing and accomplished quite a bit. “So I went to the Youth World Championships for competitive rock climbing and I placed 7th as a member of the US National team.” And to those who have never rock climbed, Austin gives a comparison.

“Really it’s like freeing for me. It like gets my mind off everything so it’s like some people like swimming. To me it’s a lot like swimming.”

A fear of heights has never phased Austin. “I have never been scared of heights until I get like 500 feet. So one time I was like, ‘Oh I’ll try this big wall’ and then I was like, ‘Nah. it’s way too tall.’” When he competed in Italy for the Youth World Championships, the wall he climbed was 55 feet tall.

When asked what the greatest honor a rock climber can have, Austin responded. “To win the World Cup. So for me I have to make the adult US team. Which I’m going to try out in March for. And it’s in Boston, Massachusetts. And then there is world cups all over the world.” The winner gets a trophy and they get to say they are the World Champion.

Austin has some goals for his rock climbing hobby. “For me I just want to keep it fun. Like I don’t care how I place. But as long as I keep it fun for me, I place well and it’s fun.”

He also has a role model in the rock climbing world. “My biggest idol is Sean McColl from Canada. I definitely Man Crush Monday him every day.” Sean McColl has won the World Cup and other championships.