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Free climbing, speed climbing, free-solo climbing. It’s all so confusing. But this climbing record by a tough little raccoon in Minneapolis (St. Paul) this week is as straightforward as it gets: the animal, without ropes or protection (that raccoon is gnarly), scaled the city’s UBS Plaza, a 25-story skyscraper.


The animal had reportedly finished 20 stories of its project by the end of the day Tuesday, capturing the city’s collective imagination while garnering national attention from media outlets and earning at least three fake Twitter accounts: “I made a big mistake,” wrote one.

The gifted raccoon finished its climb under the cover of darkness before animal control officials caged the 1-year-old female, rewarding it with a meal that included soft cat food. One of the main questions from onlookers was what, exactly, prompted the animal to go Alex Honnold in downtown Minneapolis. “It sounds like it found itself in an awkward spot,” John Erb, a Department of Natural Resources wildlife research scientist told local media. “Something could’ve spooked it and it started to climb. … People may have prevented it from backing its way down.”


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