Zach Hammer (‘24) Crushes the Rock Climbing World


“I’ve been climbing basically my whole life,” says Zach Hammer (‘24). Since he was three years old, Hammer has competed in Youth National Championships since he was around nine years old, and Adult National Championships that past two years, but his accomplishments don’t stop there. 

The past two years, Hammer has qualified for the US Team and World Cups, competing in five Adult World Cups last year, and this year two so far this year, with five more to go. This year is the Olympic qualifying year, so depending on how I do determines if I go to the Olympic qualifiers.” 

Hammer has yet to make it to the finals in a World Cup (a competition with the best adult rock climbers across the world) but he hopes that this year, he will. According to Hammer, he and his friends also qualified for the team, becoming the youngest people in the US to ever run the times they were running. He is the third person in the US to ever climb a wall in under six seconds before they turn 16, and the 5th in the world to do so. 

As the captain of his team, Hammer is admired by his teammates and his coach. “Our team looks to Zach as a leader, not only because he is a phenomenal climber, but because of his exceptional character,” says Brad Bar, Hammer’s climbing coach. Zach Hammer is nationally ranked for rock climbing, all while being involved in the Skyline community by helping run the Ultimate Frisbee team. 

Although Hammer is more focused on climbing this year, he still helps out his friend Austin Rodriguez (‘24) with the Ultimate Frisbee team whenever he can. “It’s a very community based thing,” Hammer said,  “I wouldn’t say it’s the most serious in the world, but I think that’s kinda what’s fun about it. We’re all just kinda there to have a good time.” 

Rodriguez and Hammer got into running the team when the old captains graduated in 2021. “Me and Austin kinda took over and decided we were gonna do it.” They schedule practice, drills, scrimmages, etc. “It actually is more work than you’d think because I’d have to plan games and scrimmages, get jerseys, and all that stuff.” 

Hammer has made the Ultimate Frisbee team a great community to be a part of. On top of that, Hammer’s resilience and positivity makes the halls of Skyline a better place. As Henry Strait (‘25) says, “You never know what it’s gonna be with Zach Hammer, but you know it’s gonna be good.”  

Skyline is rooting for Hammer to make World Cup finals and hopefully the Olympic Qualifiers as well.