The United States Naval Academy spring tradition known as the Herndon Monument Climb took place last week and we’ve got some pictures of the annual — and very homoerotic — event.
The Herndon — as it’s known — is a tradition dating back to 1959 where members of the plebe or freshman class, having just completed their first year, place a freshman beanie on top of a monument to William Lewis Herndon that has been covered in lard which they then must climb as a group in order to replace the beanie with an upperclassman’s hat.
Thus signifying their transition from lowly plebe to upperclassman.
Legend says that the midshipman who is able to replace the beanie with the hat will be the first in his or her class to reach the rank of admiral.
The longest time on record for a successful climb was four hours and five minutes in 1995.
The quickest climb recorded was one minute and thirty seconds in 1969 — however, the monument was not greased that year.
43 minutes and 44 seconds in 1988 is the very fastest recorded time on a big, fat, sexy,
lubed greased pole . . . errr, monument.