Live Your Dream Grant

This is your climbing club. This is your climbing grant.

The Live Your Dream grant, powered by The North Face, is designed to help every-day adventurers take their abilities to the next level. It is about personal progression. It is about supporting each other; getting out there to push our individual limits; taking our skills to the next proving grounds, wherever that may be. The purpose of this grant is to support and promote unforgettable experiences for climbers—to dream big, to grow, and to inspire others.

The Live Your Dream grant is for individuals of all ages, all experience levels, and all climbing disciplines—from bouldering to big walls, alpinism to ski mountaineering, peak bagging to bolt clipping and everything in between.

We encourage you to consider your ambitions, dream big, and send us an application.


Live Your Dream grant awards vary depending upon the prospective project and budget, but typically fall within the $200 to $1,000 range. Recipients will be announced in the month of May.

  • Objectives involving Ski/Snowboard mountaineering components are funded in part through the Hans Saari Memorial Fund. The fund, dedicated to the memory of extreme skier Hans Saari, has long stood to support ski and snowboard mountaineering adventures which highlighted the opportunity to accept physical and mental challenges, visit new places and people, and explore other cultures.

  • The Western Region Live Your Dream Grant is funded in part through the John L. Horn Memorial Fund, which long has provided an opportunity for members of the AAC’s Western Region to explore the world and expand their life's adventures, aspirations, and connections.

  • The Northeast Region Live Your Dream Grant is funded in part through the Mount Washington Valley Ice Fest, held each February in North Conway, NH.

  • The Live Your Dream grants are nationally funded through a partnership with The North Face. Additionally, all proceeds from the AAC's Craggin Classic Series serve to fund the LYD grant program along with generous donations from local individuals, organizations, and fundraising efforts by local AAC Sections & Chapters.


The two-month application period is open February 1st through March 31st each year. Applications must be submitted via the online portal no later than 11:59pm MST on March 31st. Recipients will be announced in the month of May.

Before applying, please carefully read the Criteria and Responsibilities of Live Your Dream grant recipients outlined below.


Increase your chances of receiving a Live Your Dream grant by crafting the best possible application. Here is what the Regional Selection Committees are looking for:

  • The project must accurately demonstrate a progression in skills and experience and outline a specific obtainable yet personally difficult goal. The objective should be at the edge of your physical and technical ability level. However, your individual experience level should be appropriate for the proposed objective.

  • Live Your Dream grants are for all ages, all ability levels and all climbing disciplines--ski mountaineering, peak bagging, mountain running, or any other challenging endeavor included.

  • Live Your Dream grants are awarded to individuals only. If you are attempting a project as part of a team, your teammates may apply separately.

  • Applications are considered for projects that occur within one year of the application award date.

  • Projects involving climbers who are supported financially by corporate sponsors will not be considered. However, proposals from “amateur" climbers who have received in-kind corporate support (e.g., gear) will be considered, but support levels must be disclosed.

  • Applicants must be US citizens or green card holders to apply. US Social Security Numbers are required for tax purposes.


  • Within two months of returning, all grant recipients are required to submit a Trip Report to the AAC. Failure to an submit a report will result in the applicant being ineligible for future AAC grants. Specific Trip Report Guidelines will be provided to grant recipients and are submitted through an online portal.

  • Membership in the American Alpine Club is not required to apply, however it is required to receive funding in the event that your project is selected. There is an application fee of $5 for current AAC members and $20 non-members. You may submit one application per individual per year.

  • If for any reason the project is canceled or significantly changed, awarded funds must be returned to the AAC in full. Please contact the Climbing Grant Manager if your proposal changes. Additionally, funds must used within one year of the grant award date.

  • Recipients agree to mention the Live Your Dream grant as well as their support from the AAC and The North Face when speaking about the expedition publicly at slide shows and events; you may be asked by the AAC to give a public presentation about the awarded expedition at Club events such as the Craggin' Classic Series.

  • Recipients will act as American Alpine Club Ambassadors to the wider climbing community and are expected to champion the mission and values of the Club both domestically and abroad. Recipients should do their best to practice environmentally low impact and leave no trace ethics, acting as strong mountain stewards.

  • Any photos of the expedition team or individuals submitted with the Trip Report are property of the American Alpine Club and The North Face and may be reproduced in any manner the AAC or TNF desires for marketing or promotional purposes. 


Banner photo: AAC member Austin Siadak