Want to know what’s in the NewsWire lineup for 2012 before the climbs happen? Hint: the winners of the Mugs Stump, Polartec, Copp-Dash and Lyman Spitzer grants are a good indicator of the notable ascents to come.
Polartec Challenge Grant Recipients:
Malcolm Bass, Paul Figg, Simon Yearsley and Rachel Antill will attempt to make the first ascent of the southwest face of Rimo III. The Rimo group is a remote and rarely visited area in the Indian Karakorum, and Rimo III’s face is considered by many to be one of the last great challenges.
Kyle Dempster and Hayden Kennedy plan to complete their 2011 attempt on the east face of K7 and attempt the first ascent of the north face of Ogre II on the Choktoi glacier. The Choktoi glacier has a rich climbing history, containing some of the most impressive mountains in the world, and has a zero percent success rate.
Nick Devore (Polartec Athlete Advisory board member), Will Cardamone, Jake Sakson and Andy Jacobsen will attempt to climb and ski the unskied northwest face of Mt. Seattle in Alaska. The group plans to kayak from Yakutat to the Hubbard Glacier, where they will begin the glacial traverse to Mt. Seattle. Andy Jacobsen will shoot the trip for a segment in PowderWhore Productions’ new film next year.
Peter Doucette and Silas Rossi will attempt a new route on the southeast face of Mt. Bradley in Alaska. On their proposed route, the two-man team expects to find significant mixed climbing for the duration of the 4,500′ ascent.
John Frieh, Dave Burdick and Zac West will attempt the first ascent of Middle Peak in the St. Elias range in Alaska. Middle Peak’s more than 5,000-foot wall offers a unique opportunity for the team in a very remote region.
Freddie Wilkinson and Mike Libecki will travel to an area in Antarctica previously unexplored by climbers to climb first ascents on the Earth’s southernmost and most remote spires and big walls. Wilkinson and Libecki will take advantage of the continuous daylight during the winter solstice and attempt first ascents of as many spires as possible during the expedition. Libecki also recieved a Polartec Challenge Grant in 2011 for a climbing expedition to Franz Josef Land in Russia, which has been extended to 2012.
The American Alpine Club also awarded its Lyman Spitzer Cutting Edge Award, which supports American climbers on “small, lightweight climbing teams attempting bold first ascents or difficult repeats.”
Stan Price and Rusty Willis the storied, oft-tried North Ridge of Latok I.
Hayden Kennedy and Kyle Dempster for K7 and Ogre II.
Graham Zimmerman, Scott Bennett and Blake Herrington for Tahu Rutum, a stunning 6651m tower in the Karakoram.
David Gottlieb and Chad Kellogg for China’s unclimbed Karijiang (7221m), the third highest unclimbed peak in the world.
To climbers twenty-five and younger looking to explore unclimbed routes and mountains, the AAC awarded its Mountaineering Fellowship Grant:
Rob Gonzales-Pita (23), Jordan Griffler (23), and Greg Mionske (24), $300 each from REI Challenge Fund, for a new route on Mt. Hooker, Wind Rivers, Wyoming.
Dan Hilden (24), $300 from Rick Mosher Fund, for several possible routes on Denali.
Cheyne Lempe (20), $1000 from REI Challenge Fund, for Chiro di Luna route on Aguja Saint Exupery in Patagonia.
Grant Simmons (24), $400 from Rick Mosher Fund, for exploratory climbs in Cochamo Valley, Chile.
Brad Woolf (19), $800 from John Hudson Fund, for a new route on Mt. Russell in Alaska.
Graham Zimmerman (25), $300 for a new route on the Southwest face of The Blade in the Waddington Range, BC.
The Copp-Dash Inspire Award is accepting applications from January 1, 2012 through February 29, 2012 for small climbing teams attempting fast and light alpine climbing objectives with a desire to creatively document and share their experience. The award was established in memory of American climbers Jonny Copp and Micah Dash, who were killed in an avalanche in China in May 2009 along with filmmaker Wade Johnson.
Only teams/individuals from North America are eligible for expeditions occurring between April 1, 2012 and March 31, 2013. Award winners will be announced by March 30, 2012.
The Alpine Club of Canada will accept applications for their John Lauchlan Award until January 31, open only to Canadians.
The Mugs Stump Award was also awarded recently. Click here to read more.