Dean Potter: Rock Climber, BASE Jumper & Net Worth

Dean Potter is a fearless man best known as the rock climber, BASE jumper, Alpinism, and Highlining, who sadly is not with us.

This former athlete has achieved several challenging first ascents, free solo ascents, enchainment, and speed ascents in Patagonia and Yosemite National Park.

Although gone sooner, Potter had left behind his mark and inspired many others to overcome the fear over adventure.

Dean Potter Rock Climber
Dean Potter Rock Climber

In the article, we have mentioned detailed biography of Dean Potter, including his career, death, achievements, and net worth.

Quick Facts: Dean Potter

Well, before we get started, let us know some of Potter’s quick facts:

Birth Name Dean Spaulding Potter
Age of Death 50 Years Old
Nick Name Dean
Date of Birth April 14, 1972
Gender Male
Profession Rock Climber
Place of Birth Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, United States
Nationality American
Ethnicity White
Horoscope Aries
Marital Status Married
Spouse Steph Davis (m. 2002 div. 2010)
Children None
Father Anthony Potter
Mother Patricia Dellert
Siblings None
Education University of New Hampshire
Religion Christian
Height 6 feet and 5 inches or 196cm
Weight 83kg, i.e., 185 pounds
Eye Color Hazel Brown
Hair Color Dark Brown
Net Worth $1.7 Million
Source of Income Rock Climbing
Known for Rock Climbing, Alpinism, BASE Jumping, and Highlining
Cause of Death Wingsuit Flying Crash
Social Media Twitter, Instagram
Merch Reel Rock 6, Reel Rock 10
Last Update June, 2022

Early Life and Family of Dean Potter

Dean Spaulding Potter, a former rock climber, was born on April 14, 1972, in the Army officer military hospital of Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, United States of America.

Potter was born to his father, Anthony Potter, and his mother, Patricia Dellert, who belong to the white ethnic groups holding the nationality of the United States.

The free climber grew up along with his parents in New Hampshire, where he used to climb big rocks during his high school days in southern New Hampshire.

Spaulding then joined the University of New Hampshire, and unfortunately, before graduating, he left the college to pursue his passion for climbing.

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How old is Dean Potter? Age and Body Measurements

Professional rock climber Dean Potter is unfortunately not with us anymore as Potter passed away at 43.

Potter celebrated his annual birthday on the 14th of April and fell under the zodiac sign of Aries, representing her personality as honest, original, and optimistic.

Moving towards his physical appearance, Dean stands tall with an impressive body height of 6 feet and 5 inches or 196cm.

Similarly, he weighed around 83kg, i.e., 185 pounds having an athletic body type. Potter had hazel brown eyes and dark brown hair color.

Dean Potter: Career

Early Career

Potter began his professional climbing journey as a free solo climber, competing in several climbing competitions like El Capitan in Yosemite.

He climbed this six hundred feet rocky mountain, which was the first significant climb of his career.

Similarly, in July 2006, he climbed his second most challenging climb, “The Reticent Wall” of El Capitan in Yosemite Valley.

Dean Potter during Rock Climbing
Dean Potter during Rock Climbing

Potter completed the climb in 34 hours and 57 minutes, along with Ammon McNeely and Ivo Ninov. 

Likewise, as a speed climber, Dean and his fellow partner Sean Leary set a new speed record to climb up The Nose of El Capitan in 2 hours, 36 minutes, and 45 seconds.

With this record, they beat the previous record with only twenty seconds which Yuji Hirayama and Hans Florine set.

However, his record was later surpassed by Jim Reynolds and Brad Gobright, followed by Tommy Caldwell and Alex Honnold with only 1 hour and 58 minutes in June 2018.

Highlining and BASE Jumping

Potter was first involved in slacklining after being introduced by Charles Victor Tucker III, also known as Chongo.

He used to walk on the ropes without any safety measures like a lanyard or jumping parachute.

The free climber crossed the slacklining in the Yosemite National Park at the height of 3,000 feet (910m) above the ground.

This talented and brave rock climber also invented a freebasing, solo climbing without ropes or BASE jumping parachutes.

Potter made a short movie in 2014 When Dogs Fly of 22-minutes which shows the adventure of his hearing dog, Whisper.

However, the short movie became viral as many animal rights activists criticized the idea of the movie.

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Delicate Arch Climb

The Delicate Arch of Arches National Park was forbidden to climb, which Potter climbed in 2006, gaining controversies.

After the climb, he also lost the support of his sponsorship from Patagonia clothing company.

However, Potter thinks why not climb it as there is no legal reason not to climb the delicate arch.

Later, the Delicare Arch climb was banned within Arches National Park.

In addition, Potter refused to climb Totem Pole, the spire in Monument Valley, as it holds religious significance.

A rumor of his climb at Salt Lake Tribune was spread by the Potter’s handler at Patagonia, especially in Utah, and many began to see the Delicate Arch as a symbol for the state’s wild beauty.

Death of Dean Potter

This legendary fearless BASE jumper died on May 16, 2015, and his partner Graham Hunt while flying in a wingsuit from Taft Point above Yosemite Valley.

Potter walking in highlining
Potter walking in highlining

Hunt and Potter both died in a crash after an impact as neither of them had deployed their parachutes.

With their death, the total number of BASE jumping death reached five only in 2014 at U.S. national parks.

Honors and Achievements

  1. First solo of the route with Cerro Fitz Roy at Patagonia in 2002 Supercanaleta.
  2. First ascent at Day Canyon, Moab, Utah in 2003 Concepcion 5.13+ (67m).
  3. Second ascent with Leo Houlding at Half Dome, Yosemite Valley in 2006 Southern Belle (V 5.12d R/X).
  4. First free solo ascent at Glacier Point, Yosemite Valley in 2006 Heaven (5.12d/13a).
  5. First FreeBASE ascent of the Eiger at Eiger, Bernese Alps, Switzerland in 2008 Deep Blue Sea (5.12+).
  6. The fastest ascent was 2 hours, 36 minutes, and 45 seconds at The Nose, El Capitan, Yosemite in 2010.

Personal Life of Dean Potter

Dean Potter was a total adventurous and fearless guy who lived an extraordinary and exciting life. 

Before he left the world, he was a single person while he was once married to Steph Davis in 2002.

Dean Potter with his Wife and Dog
Dean Potter with his Wife and Dog

Steph is also a rock climber, BASE jumper, and wingsuit flyer as Dean, who met in 1994 while climbing a Long’s Peak.

The couple lived together till 2010 and got divorced. However, within such an extended period, they didn’t give birth to any child.

But, Dean lived with his Australian Cattle Dog, Whisper.

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How much is Dean Potter’s Net Worth?

Dean was a passionate climber who sacrificed his education only to pursue his career as a full-time climber.

He was a fearless guy who would fly across any dangerous routes and climb over any steep rocks.

Potter was making a pretty good amount of money from his sponsorship and setting up records on records.

Dean Potter had a total estimated net worth of $1.7 million during his active professional years.

He dominated the sport during his time, becoming the first human to free climb El Capitan and Half Dome. 

Social Media Presence

Dean Potter was an active social media user as he was available on multiple social media platforms.

You can explore the beauty of nature on his social platforms, which will mesmerize your eyes.

Instagram: 55.8K Followers

Twitter: 2.1K Followers

Facebook: 38K Followers

Frequently Asked Questions

What was the cause of Dean Potter’s death?

Dean and Hunt hit a wall during the flight from Taft Point above Yosemite Valley, and both died on impact.

Why did Dean Potter lose his sponsorship from the Patagonia clothing company?

Potter, in 2006, climbed the Delicate Arch in Arches National Park, which was forbidden to climb. As a result, he lost his sponsorship from the Patagonia clothing company.

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