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2013 Lyman Spitzer Cutting Edge Award Winners Announced

2013 Lyman Spitzer Cutting Edge Award Winners Announced 

AAC’s most distinguished climbing grant goes to four teams traveling to the Himalaya 

January 8, 2013, Golden, CO—The American Alpine Club (AAC) is proud to announce this year’s Lyman Spitzer Cutting Edge Award recipients. Through the generous contribution of Lyman Spitzer, Jr.—longtime Club member and lover of the mountains—the AAC initiated the Lyman Spitzer Climbing Award Program, the Club’s most prestigious climbing grant.

The program promotes state-of-the-art, cutting-edge climbs through financial support of small, lightweight climbing teams attempting bold first ascents or difficult repeats of the most challenging routes in the world's great mountain ranges.

“This year's applicant pool was especially impressive, and it took us a while to decide on our winners,” said Paul Gagner, chair of the Lyman Spitzer Cutting Edge Award committee. “We are particularly happy that this year's awards are all very worthy and outstanding objectives in the Himalaya, from high and difficult alpine climbs on Shispare Sar and Lunag Ri, to a difficult ice big wall on K6 West, to a rock big wall on Uli Biaho, which, incidentally was first climbed in 1979 by an American team comprised of John Roskelley, Bill Forrest, Kim Schmitz, and Ron Kauk. This year's team will approach the wall via a different route that avoids the ‘death gully’ used on previous expeditions.”

The 2013 grant-recipient teams focus their considerable energies on four objectives spanning the Himalaya:

  • Doug Chabot, Bruce Miller, Rusty Willis: The unattempted north face of Shispare Sar, Pakistan Karakoram
  • Jesse Huey, Raphael Slawinski, Ian Welsted: First ascent of the unclimbed west face of K6 West, Pakistan Karakoram
  • Chad Kellogg and David Gottlieb: Lunag Ri, the highest permitted unclimbed peak in Nepal
  • Matt McCormick, Pat Goodman, Jean-Pierre Ouellet: New route on the east face of Uli Biaho Tower, Trango Valley, Pakistan

The annual application deadline for the Lyman Spitzer Grant is December 1st. A committee of three active climbers reviews the applications, selects the recipients, and decides on award amounts.

In addition to the Lyman Spitzer Cutting Edge Award, the AAC offers grants for everyday climbers through its new Live Your Dream Grant Program. Live Your Dream Grants seek to fund unforgettable experiences that give you the skills and confidence to realize your climbing aspirations. Applications are accepted from January 1 to March 1. For more details about AAC grants, visit americanalpineclub.org/grants.

About The American Alpine Club
The American Alpine Club is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that provides knowledge and inspiration, conservation and advocacy, and logistical support for the climbing community. The AAC advocates for American climbers domestically and around the world; provides grants and volunteer opportunities to protect and conserve the places we climb; hosts local and national climbing festivals and events; publishes two of the world’s most sought-after climbing annuals, The American Alpine Journal and Accidents in North American Mountaineering; cares for the world’s leading climbing library and country’s leading mountaineering museum; manages the Hueco Rock Ranch, New River Gorge Climbers’ Campground, and Grand Teton Climbers’ Ranch as part of a larger lodging network for climbers; and annually gives $80,000+ toward climbing, conservation, and research grants to adventurers who travel the world. Learn about additional programs and become a member at americanalpineclub.org