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2011 McNeill-Nott Award Winners Announced

2/23/2011:

—Tajikistan and Alaska Focus of Grant Recipient Teams—

Golden, CO—The American Alpine Club (AAC) is proud to announce this year’s McNeill-Nott Award recipients. With the untimely death of Sue Nott and her partner Karen McNeill on Mt. Foraker in 2006, the AAC and Mountain Hardwear decided to establish the McNeill-Nott Award in their memory. Sue Nott was a long-time member of the AAC. Sue and Karen were both Mountain Hardwear athletes as well as close personal friends who frequently climbed together. The McNeill-Nott Award seeks to preserve the memory and spirit of these two talented and courageous climbers by giving grants to amateur climbers exploring new routes or unclimbed peaks with small and lightweight teams. During the selection process, special attention is given to projects with strong exploratory and adventuresome mountaineering components. Technical difficulty is not weighed as strongly. Projects involving climbers who are supported financially by corporate sponsors are not considered.

Rolando Garibotti, Chair of the McNeill-Nott selection committee noted that: “We are very proud of the recipients that we decided to support this year. Both expeditions embody well the spirit of the grant. That said, we were surprised to receive fewer applications this year than in years past. We hope that people continue to see these grants as a way to help them pursue their dreams.”

This year’s two grant-recipient teams are focusing their considerable talents on objectives in Tajikistan and Alaska:

• Peak Patkhor (6080 meters)—Jesse Burkhardt, Bo White, Boris Lukanov, and Darren Benton will make an attempt on Peak Patkhor, in the heart of Tajikistan's Gorno-Badakshan region.

• Peak 8300+—Sam Johnson and Ben Chriswell, will attempt first ascents on 4,000’ buttresses on Peak 8300+ in Alaska’s Neacola Mountains.

The annual application deadline for the McNeill-Nott Award is January 1. A committee including three active climbers, currently Nancy Feagin, Zoe Hart, and Garibotti, reviews the applications, selects the recipients, and decides on award amounts. In addition to the McNeill-Nott Award, the American Alpine Club offers grants for everyday climbers doing everything from big walls to free climbing and alpine objectives. Check out the gateway Mountain Fellowship grant for young American climbers under the age of 25. For more details and specific application information for this and other AAC grants visit the American Alpine Club website.

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About The American Alpine Club

The American Alpine Club provides knowledge and inspiration, conservation andadvocacy, and logistical support for the climbing community. The Club awards more than$50,000 every year in the form of climbing, conservation, and research grants to buddingadventurers. The AAC also manages a climbers’ campground in Grand Teton NationalPark, publishes the most sought after annual climbing publications, the American AlpineJournal and Accidents in North American Mountaineering, and cares for the world’sleading climbing library. Learn about additional programs and become a memberat americanalpineclub.org. Join the AAC’s online community at facebook.com/americanalpineclub.