To Be the Best Rock Climber Is to Earn As Much As an Orthodontist

Alex Honnold, arguably the world’s greatest climber, tells his story, from dropping out of the engineering program at Cal to finally moving out of his van.

Last year, I moved out of my van. I’d been living out of a van for fourteen years. I bought a house in Las Vegas, a classic cookie-cutter house in the suburbs. It’s just functional. In some ways, it’s not unlike van life was. It’s cheap, it’s easy, it’s close to the airport. It’s close to the rock. Property there is really cheap. I didn’t have any furniture at first, so I lived in the van in the driveway for the first couple weeks. It felt more like home than an empty house did.

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