Sometimes natural terrain is just not tough enough. A French climber known as the human spider recently climbed one of Dubai’s tallest skyscrapers.
“Spiderman” Alain Robert successfully scaled the 1,000 ft, 75-story Cayan Tower with nothing more than sticky tape on his fingertips and a bag of chalk. Choosing to climb the building without a safety harness, the 52-year-old completed the climb in 70 minutes.
Afterward he told The Telegraph he planned to climb more buildings.
“In Dubai there are lots of artificial mountains,” he said. “Dubai is building all the time. When you’re out there you think you are finished but if you look around you see skyscrapers everywhere.”
Robert built a reputation for himself over the years for scaling tall buildings including the Eifel Tower. In 1999, he climbed the Sears Tower becoming the second man to do so. Later that year he scaled the 558-ft Marriot Hotel in Warsaw.
The grip strength required for such climbs is so great and Robert climbs for so long that his fingers no longer fully extend. Several attempts in the past were either cut short or ended by arrest as many of Robert’s early climbs were illegal. Later he began climbing structures as a publicity stunt for the buildings’ owners.
This latest climb in Dubai was one of the highest for Robert without a safety line, but not the tallest overall. In 2011 he climbed the world’s tallest tower in Dubai, a full 2,717 feet, using a rope and a harness to comply with the organizers. The climb took him more than six hours.