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Watch: Navy Plebes Mount Greasy Obelisk in 2011 Herndon Climb


The Herndon Climb, the annual decades-old tradition at the US Naval Academy in Annapolis wherein dozens of plebes attempt to get to the top of a greased-up 21-foot granite obelisk, took place earlier this week.

Hern2 Eye on Annapolis reports:

"Tradition has it that the midshipman who makes it to the top will be the first in his class to achieve the rank of Admiral.  The climb, a tradition since 1950, has recently been the subject of some controversy when former Academy Superintendent Vice Admiral Jeffrey Fowler disallowed the use of the lard. Current Superintendent, Vice Admiral Michael H. Miller reinstated the long standing tradition."

And, of course, next year should be the first year that openly gay plebes will be participating.

Watch the video, AFTER THE JUMP...


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  1. my dad was in the Navy, and in the mid-90's we lived on the Academy grounds. for a 15 year old gay kid, this was heaven. gorgeous, buff, shirtless men everywhere. Herndon was a big event; we'd bring lawn chairs out and watch it all go down. the best part is when they're climbing all over eachother and shirts come over, shorts are pulled down, etc etc. Again, for a teenage guy dude this was heaven.

    Posted by: Justin | May 26, 2011 10:13:21 AM

  2. Gay plebes and a greased up pole?


    Posted by: JoyZeeBoy | May 26, 2011 10:15:54 AM

  3. This sort of leering and suggestive story at this critical time of pending DADT repeal is really inexcusable. Do you not realize these sites are monitored by enemies ready to pounce on any hint of scandal relating to open service?

    Posted by: phineas | May 26, 2011 10:17:37 AM

  4. Lighen up, Phineas.

    Posted by: Seven | May 26, 2011 10:27:13 AM

  5. Terrible camera work. I think Towleroad needs to send its OWN camera man here next time for some better quality work!! ;-)

    Posted by: Ian | May 26, 2011 10:43:37 AM

  6. @phineas DADT repeal is NOT pending...DADT is repealed. Lighten up indeed.

    Posted by: Ian | May 26, 2011 10:44:54 AM

  7. Why don't they use a ladder? (just kidding!)

    Posted by: Chris in Irvine | May 26, 2011 11:05:49 AM

  8. Being the gay that I am, I would probably be standing as far as where the cameraman is, with my gross face thinking "Lard is bad for the skin" with both of my hands resting on one of my hips

    Posted by: Chris in Irvine | May 26, 2011 11:09:09 AM

  9. Field full of good looking guys. That's great!

    Posted by: Matt26 | May 26, 2011 11:14:33 AM

  10. Looks like happy hour at my queer local. :)

    Posted by: PK | May 26, 2011 12:42:45 PM

  11. @Ian - maybe you don't read the actual NEWS stories on this site. DADT is STILL the policy of our government until the certification process is complete -- a process that members of Congress continue to try to confuse and delay. While I agree with you that Phinneas' concerns may be overly-sensitive, he is absolutely right that DADT is a battle which is NOT finished

    Posted by: Buster | May 26, 2011 2:36:50 PM

  12. I agree this needs a better video in HD and with lots of close up of those sweaty bodies.

    Posted by: jaragon | May 26, 2011 6:13:27 PM

  13. A huge bunch of hot, half-naked men groping each other to reach the top of a lubricated pole? And some of you expect a gay-themed site to just ignore that?

    Posted by: Paul R | May 27, 2011 3:24:45 AM

  14. what ISN'T gay about this phallic-worship ritual?

    Posted by: Johnn | May 27, 2011 10:14:52 AM

  15. This makes me think of my younger and straight cousin showing off his new pair of $250 skinny jeans. I'm thinking, "For someone who jokingly calls his older straight brother a fag every 10 minutes, you really don't realize the irony in being concerned how your ass and legs look in a pair of jeans, do you?" Straight men are so funny.

    Posted by: Drew | May 29, 2011 5:56:56 PM

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