El Capitan's Dawn Wall climbers hold news conference

YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, Calif. -- It was party time for the two climbers who conquered Yosemite's El Capitan after a grueling 19-day journey into the record books.

Tommy Caldwell and Santa Rosa's Kevin Jorgeson celebrated their historic climb with champagne at the summit of El Capitan on Wednesday.

The duo held a news conference on Thursday to discuss their experience.

"I never thought rock climbing could garner so much attention from the world. It's kind of crazy and a little uncomfortable. I'd love to turn all that attention right back around to everyone that's inspired by this project and encourage them to find their own Dawn Wall," Jorgeson said.

They became the only two climbers to successfully free climb the rock's nearly vertical Dawn Wall.

"I hope that everyone that's been following along can take the Dawn Wall as an example of what's possible," he said.

Caldwell's wife read a statement from the climber because he had lost his voice. "I'm deeply honored by the outpouring of support surrounding our climb. I figured that if we managed to pull this off, our community of climbers would be excited. But never did I imagine that it would resonate with so many," he wrote.

The duo envisioned conquering the Dawn Wall seven years ago and finally made their dream come true after years of practice and preparation.

"My main goal is to live an inspired life. Big rock climbing became my venue because it holds a beauty and excitement that can be elusive in today's world. It connects us with our natural world in an extremely intimate way," Caldwell wrote. "Through climbing, I have grown to love Yosemite and appreciate the National Park Service that works to protect it."
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