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A Rope-Climbing Record

Anouk Garnier of France set a world record when she climbed a rope to the second level of the Eiffel Tower.

A woman climbs a rope that is hanging from the Eiffel Tower.

© Stephane de Sakutin—AFP/Getty Images

Anouk Garnier reached the second level of the Eiffel Tower and set a record.

If you’re going to try to break the world rope climbing record, why not do it in the middle of a busy city? Anouk Garnier of France climbed a rope 361 feet (110 meters) to the second level of Paris’s Eiffel Tower in a quest to make the record books—and to raise money for cancer research. 

“My dream has come true. It’s magical,” Garnier told reporters after the climb. “If there was one thing I never doubted, it was that I was going to do it.”

Garnier, a two-time world obstacle course champion, started rope climbing in 2022 because she wanted to try something new. When she learned that Ida Mathilde Steensgaard of Denmark set the women’s rope climbing record by climbing 85 feet (26 meters) at the Copenhagen Opera House, she thought she might be able to reach even greater heights.

“I said to myself, 26 meters isn’t that far. What monument could I climb?” Garnier told Agence France-Presse. She set her sights on the Eiffel Tower, training for a year before the big event.

A comparison of the heights of the Statue of Liberty, Big Ben, and the Eiffel Tower with illustrations.

© Bazuzzza/; Infographic Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.

Anouk Garnier climbed higher than the Statue of Liberty or Big Ben!

During her training period, Garnier began collecting donations online to support a charity called the League Against Cancer, which supports and provides treatment to people who are fighting cancer. Garnier’s mother has been diagnosed with the disease.

Garnier’s Eiffel Tower climb broke not only Steensgaard’s record but also the world record, previously held by South Africa’s Thomas Van Tonder, who climbed 295 feet (90 meters) in 2020.

“I made history, and this is crazy!” Garnier told France 24 News. 

In May, Garnier will carry the Olympic torch in Marseille, France, as it makes its way to Paris, the host city of the Summer 2024 Olympic Games. She intends to continue competing in obstacle courses…but she’s also looking around for another challenge. 


Here Come the Cicadas!

A map of the United States with the locations of the two broods indicated along with an inset of cicadas on a tree.

© Natureheart/; Photo composite Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.

Will the 2024 cicadas emerge where you live? Use this map to find out.

If you live in parts of the Southern and Midwestern United States, you can expect things to get loud. As summer approaches, trillions of cicadas will emerge from the ground, shed their exoskeletons, and take to the skies to mate. The males will make their presence known by producing a cacophonous mating call.

Periodical cicadas emerge only every 13 or 17 years, depending on the brood, or group. A 13-year brood called Brood XIX will appear in late April or early May, while a 17-year brood called Brood XIII will surface in mid-May. The adults will die soon after mating, but their offspring will go underground to begin the cycle all over again.

Check out a recent edition of In the News for more details!

Did You Know?

Five different obstacle course challenges are shown.

© UIPM World Pentathlon/Filip Komorous, © UIPM World Pentathlon/Augustas Didžgalvis; Photo composite Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.

Obstacle course racing will be included in the 2028 Summer Olympics as part of an event called the modern pentathlon. In addition to getting through obstacles, pentathlon athletes will face swimming, laser shooting, running, and fencing competitions.

Race to the Top

A young man climbs up a wall that is mounted to scaffolding.

© Pablo Vera—AFP/Getty Images

Sam Watson (shown here at the Pan American Games in 2023) will be one to watch at the 2024 Olympics.

Climbing is challenging enough, so imagine racing another climber to the top of a wall. In the sport of speed climbing, Sam Watson is the man to beat. On April 5, the 18-year-old American set two speed climbing world records in a single day. That is, he set one world record and then immediately shattered it with a new one!

Facing a 49-foot (15-meter) wall, Watson completed his first ascent in 4.85 seconds and his second in 4.79 seconds. He broke the previous record of 4.90 seconds, set by Veddriq Leonardo of Indonesia in April 2023.

Speed climbing made its Olympic debut in 2021 at the Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan. Watson will compete at the 2024 Summer Olympic Games in Paris. Will he set another record?

The Highest Climb

A group of climbers with oxygen tanks and other gear approach the summit of Mount Everest.

© Pemba Dorje Sherpa—AFP/STR/Getty Images

What’s the ultimate climbing experience? For many, it’s scaling Mount Everest, the world’s highest peak. Those who attempt to climb Everest face biting winds, bitter cold, and the perils of low oxygen.

You can learn more about Mount Everest at Britannica.






: physically strong

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