AAC Northeast Live Your Dream Grant, Spring 2013 awards:
- Peter Clark, from Easthampton, MA, $400 for his project to complete the first ascent of the 2,000-foot girdle traverse of Farley Ledge in Western Massachusetts and to document the climb in print and video. Over the past six years, Pete has dreamed of the ultimate southern New England bigwall: a monumental girdle traverse of Farley Ledge. Girdle traverses, in fact, are rooted in the history of Northeast climbing, from the Gunks to the granite cliffs of New Hampshire. According to Pete, "This project is a lot like "a Northeast climber's first trip to Yosemite to climb a big wall," except it's not in Yosemite. And it goes sideways." This project will allow Pete and his partners to create an authentic, homegrown bigwall experience in their own backyard.
- Christa Whiteman, from Stone Ridge, NY, $600 for a two-women team alpine ascent of Mt. Shuksan in the northern Cascades. Last summer, Christa climbed her first technical route in the mountains, the Disappointment Cleaver route on Mt. Ranier, as part of the only all-women team on the mountain at the time. Christa's experience opened her eyes to the world of alpine climbing and to the special experience of climbing in an all-women team. Christa will take the next step this summer with a technical climb on a more remote peak, giving her the chance to live her dream of developing her mountain skills in a small, self-supported team.
- Jeffrey Longcor, from Somerville, MA, $1000 to go alpine climbing in the Djangart Region of Kyrgyzstan with the New England based climbing club Vertical Ice Climbing Enthusiasts (VICE). Jeff's lifelong dream has been to attempt a first ascent in the wilderness of the world's greater ranges. But with a desk job in the city, Jeff said that "high-speed weekend adventures" were all he could manage. The recent and sudden death of his friend and ski partner changed everything. Jeff realized that certain dreams shouldn't be put on hold. So this summer, along with the VICE crew and with the support of the American Alpine Club, Jeff will live his dream with his first international expedition. This trip is also an opportunity for Jeff and his friends to put their mixed-climbing skills, self-taught and honed in the New England mountains, to the test, and in doing so, take the next step as alpine climbers.