June 13, 2012, Golden, CO—The Northwest Region of the American Alpine Club is pleased to announce the winners of the first Live Your Dream Grant. The grant—new this year—was born from the idea that the most important climbs are our own. It funds individuals or small teams in the pursuit of their climbing dreams. The Live Your Dream grants provide seed money to climbers—of all disciplines, ages, and abilities—who have ambitions to expand their climbing horizons.
The five grant winning teams from the Northwest Region plan trips to Alaska, the Tetons, British Columbia, and Montana with goals of establishing new bouldering areas, alpine rock climbing, and light & fast ascents of classic alpine routes:
Jack Simonson—Hatcher’s Pass, Alaska, New Bouldering Area
Jack and his team will explore new bouldering areas in Hatcher’s Pass, Denali National Park. After being inspired by a trip report from Jaime Emerson’s blog, Jack hopes to open up this area as a destination for both boulderers and alpine climbers.
Steph Abegg—Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming, Peak Marathon of the Grand Teton and Neighboring Peaks
Abegg said, via email, “Our objective is to do a multi-day climbing marathon of many of the classic routes on the Grand Teton and neighboring peaks…Additionally, by climbing many routes on and beside the Grand, we hope to amass a nice portfolio of photographs that nicely illustrate all of the routes climbed, as well as amassing a nice artistic portfolio of unique night photography shots of the peaks from some of our camps. These can be put together into a very nice and informative overview of route information and photographic motivation for other climbers.”
Adam Baylor—Gimli Peak, B.C., South Ridge
Baylor intends to summit Gimli Peak (9,050’) in Valhalla Provincial Park in Southern British Columbia via its South Ridge route (Grade IV, 5.10a). After backpacking to the base of Gimli in 2008, Adam has dreamt of going back and seeing what the view was from the top. He started training seriously for it on January 1 and has motivated others with his tenacity. He writes, “This is a truly rewarding feeling to be able to push your teachers to climb harder!”
Winter Ramos—The Leaning Towers, Purcell Range, B.C., Canada, The North Ridge of Wall Tower
Winter said, via email, “This climbing area has rarely been visited due to a bushwhack approach, remoteness, and a small climbing community. It has seen very few ascents and has plenty of new route potential. The large granite walls look as impressive as the Bugaboos and are much closer to the United States Border.” With his experienced and well traveled north Idaho team, Winter is staying close to home and finding adventure in his backyard where they hope to establish a new line on the North Ridge of Wall Tower, and to bring enough equipment to finish a line started by friend Carl Dietrich on Hall Peak more than a decade ago.
Peter Lindahl—Various Ranges, Montana, 3 Classic Peaks Car-to-Car
This climbing project aims to establish benchmarks for future speed and endurance mountaineering projects. The objective is to climb three of the biggest and most notable peaks in Montana each “car door to car door” in a single day. Granite Peak in the Eastern Beartooth Range, Mount Cowen in the Western Beartooth Range/Absaroka Range, and Crazy Peak in the Crazy Mountain Range. Granite Peak will be climbed via the standard route, i.e. its South Face via the East Ridge (IV, 5.4). Mount Cowen will be climbed via its Northeast Ridge, (IV, 5.6). Crazy Peak will be climbed via the Crazy Couloir (AI 3) and ski-descended the same way (S4).
The “Live Your Dream” Climbing Grants are developed and administered locally with community support—each Region of the American Alpine Club has it’s own grant program.
In the Northwest Region, the “Live Your Dream” Climbing Grant seeks to support climbers from a range of ages and experience levels, as well as a range of climbing disciplines (sport climbing, bouldering, traditional rock climbing, ice climbing, mountaineering, etc.). Climbers from Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Montana, and most of Idaho (the northern and western parts) are eligible for the Northwest Region grant.
The AAC launched the program this year with $12,000, which will be distributed to at least a dozen individuals or small teams in pursuit of their personal climbing dreams. The emphasis of the grant is on projects that have significant positive impact on grantees’ progressions as climbers. Regions have been encouraged to supplement that funding with fundraising events in their own areas.
Northwest Regional Coordinator Eddie Espinosa said, via email, “After much deliberation, the Pacific Northwest Region Live Your Dream Grant Committee of Roger Strong, Graham Zimmerman, John Connor, and Emily Stiffler awarded the listed recipients our Region’s first Live Your Dream Grants.”
He continued, “Thanks to everyone who submitted an application. There were so many great ones to choose from—it was a very difficult task to narrow it down, and if we had it our way, we would’ve given everyone a grant!”
About the Live Your Dream Grant Program
Each Region of The American Alpine Club has its own local grants programs to support climbers in realizing their climbing ambitions and dreams. These grants are developed and administered locally with community support.
The purpose of the Northwest Region "Live Your Dream" Grant is to fund individuals or small teams in pursuit of their personal climbing dreams. The emphasis of the grant is on projects that have significant positive impact on grantees’ progressions as climbers, as opposed to cutting-edge or exploratory objectives. We seek to support climbers from a range of ages and experience levels, as well as a range of climbing disciplines (sport climbing, bouldering, traditional rock climbing, ice climbing, mountaineering, etc.). Climbers from Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Montana, and most of Idaho (the southeastern corner is excluded, as it is part of the Rockies Region of the Club) are eligible for the Northwest Region grant.
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 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. Join the AAC’s online community at facebook.com/americanalpineclub, americanalpineclub.org/news, or follow all the latest press on the Club’s Press Room RSS feed at americanalpineclub.org/prfeed.