EXPEDITION NEWS, founded in 1994, is the monthly review of significant expeditions, research projects and newsworthy adventures. It is distributed online to media representatives, corporate sponsors, educators, research librarians, explorers, environmentalists, and outdoor enthusiasts. This forum on exploration covers projects that stimulate, motivate and educate.
September 2016 - Volume Twenty-Three, Number Nine
Celebrating Our 21st Year!
U.S. Climbers Presumed Dead in Pakistan; $199K Crowdsourced for Rescue
A search for two missing U.S. mountaineers in northeast Pakistan has been called off, despite a GoFundMe campaign that raised $100,000 in the first 15 hours. Donations were capped at $199,000 when the crowdsourcing site was closed down early this month.
The climbers, Kyle Dempster, 33, and Scott Adamson, 34, both from Utah, set out on Aug. 21. They had reputations for being two of the world's most accomplished climbers.
It was their second attempt on the Ogre II peak (23,901 ft.), one of the world's most difficult to scale.
"Kyle and Scott are not coming home, but their spirit, stoke, and smiles will live on," the Black Diamond Equipment company, which sponsored Dempster, said on its Facebook page on Sept. 7.
According to Jonathan Thesenga of Black Diamond: "Given the time that has elapsed and the nearly continuous stormy weather since they were last seen, and the substantial risks that such high-altitude missions entail, Kyle and Scott's families have made the extremely difficult decision to end the search efforts."
Dempster twice won the coveted Piolets d'Or climbing award, most recently in 2013 for a climb in the same part of Pakistan.
Donors were told they will be provided with a breakdown of how their donations were used for the search and rescue efforts, and any funds in excess of actual search and rescue costs will be returned.
Learn more at the GoFundMe site: https://www.gofundme.com/2mjv38k
The Boss Gets Bronzed
One hundred years after the rescue of Ernest Shackleton's crew from a desolate Antarctic island, a new statue of the famous explorer has been unveiled in Athy, Co Kildare, Ireland, a few miles from his birthplace.
The rescue of Shackleton's 22 men from Elephant Island in August 1916, was the final act in the epic story of the expedition which began in August 1914 with an objective to cross the polar continent sea to sea. Entering the Weddell Sea in early 1915, the ship and its 28 crew, were quickly frozen into the floating ice and over the winter months the elements slowly overwhelmed the ship. Shackleton's leadership of his men in extreme circumstances, became a beacon for leadership against the odds.
The renowned polar explorer, who led three British expeditions to the Antarctic, and was nicknamed "The Boss," was born in 1874 in the townland of Kilkea, a few miles outside the town of Athy in Co Kildare. The family lived in Ireland until he was ten before moving to London, but Shackleton declared his nationality as Irish. Kildare County Council commissioned the statue of him by sculptor Mark Richards, which now stands outside the Athy Heritage Museum.
The 1.5 times life-size bronze is mounted on a limestone plinth, representing the indigenous mineral of Kildare and the central role of ice in Shackleton's Antarctic exploration.
This summer, Shackleton's granddaughter traveled 8,000 miles to open an exhibition in Chile.
When EN traveled to Antarctica in early 2010, one of the stops was Elephant Island where a statue (lower right) commemorates Luis Pardo of the Yelcho rescue ship.
The Chilean navy played a crucial role in helping with the successful rescue, with Luis Pardo serving as skipper of the scout ship Yelcho. Ms. Shackleton explained that Pardo took the risk of sailing in a metal-hull vessel rather than a wooden one because he wanted to save the stranded crew. Before departing, Pardo told his own father, "I'll be back with all those men, otherwise I won't come back."
Read more: http://www.lonelyplanet.com/news/2016/07/13/shackletons-granddaughter-opens-exhibition-in-chile/#ixzz4JRF6o8UL
Sally Ride aboard the space shuttle Challenger in 1983. (Photo courtesy of NASA)
Research Vessel Dedicated to Late Astronaut Sally Ride
Sally Ride's legacy as an explorer deepened last month when a new $89 million research vessel bearing the late astronaut's name arrived in San Diego to become part of a fleet operated by UC San Diego's Scripps Institution of Oceanography.
R/V Sally Ride
The 238-foot ship came within a half-mile of the Scripps Pier in La Jolla as a tribute to the university, which became Ride's home in the 1980s after she made history in becoming the first American woman to travel in space.
UC San Diego also is home to Sally Ride Science, a company that Ride co-founded in 2001 to promote science among school children.
Ride, a physicist, died of pancreatic cancer in 2012. She was 61.
Read more: www.sallyridescience.com
QUOTE OF THE MONTH
"Polar exploration is at once the cleanest and most isolated way of having a bad time which has yet been devised."
- Apsley Cherry-Garrard (1886 - 1959), member of the Terra Nova Expedition and author of The Worst Journey in the World (1922).
Travel Channel Goes Behind the Scenes of Mount Everest Climbs
Travel Channel's Everest Air, a special six-part event that premieres Oct. 26 at 10 p.m. ET/PT,will chronicle the real-life experiences of Jeff Evans, an Everest mountaineer, adventurer and medic, and his skilled crew of Sherpas and helicopter pilots.
"There's no doubt that Mount Everest casts a mystical net at those who have marveled at the idea of climbing the mountain," said Evans. "Every person that decides to climb it has a deep-seated desire to push themselves - it's an itch that has to be scratched. Leading an Everest rescue team was one of my most satisfying projects. Every day I witnessed an extraordinary group effort."
Jeff Evans is featured in a new Travel Channel series.
Patrolling Everest's slopes from base camp to its balcony, Evans and the Alpine Rescue Service team go higher and further than any group has gone before to aid climbers in need, according to the Travel Channel announcement.
Learn more here: http://tvseriesfinale.com/tv-show/everest-air-travel-channel-event-series-launches-october/
Adventure Capitalists is Shark Tank for Outdoor Enthusiasts
The wild success of the ABC hit Shark Tank has spawned numerous knock-off business reality shows. Each has a unique twist such as focusing on niches like restaurants or interior design. A new four-episode, hour-long series which debuted last month on CNBC is pretty much what it would look like if Shark Tank and Survivor - both Mark Burnett productions - had a child, writes Ky Trang Ho, on Forbes.com.
Like Shark Tank, Adventure Capitalists features a panel of wealthy moguls meeting with entrepreneurs seeking investments. But Adventure Capitalists, produced by 3 Ball Entertainment in Manhattan Beach, Calif., only showcases entrepreneurs peddling innovative outdoor recreation products.
"Outdoor enthusiasts tend to be intrepid personalities. Their ambition rarely stops when a particular trip or adventure is over," said DJ Nurre, executive vice president of programming and development at 3 Ball Entertainment. "The best products and ideas originate from these individuals who are living the lifestyle, and therefore, are first to see the need and opportunity for a new product."
Investors undergo extreme expeditions a la Survivor to test drive both the products and the entrepreneurs.
"Who doesn't love really good gear? Over the years I've worked on a number of survival/adventure shows and no matter how unpleasant the region or climate we are headed into, the entire crew gets pumped when it comes time to hit Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI) or Adventure 16 to gear up," says DJ Nurre, executive vice president of programming and development at 3 Ball Entertainment.
Obviously this is a show for all lovers of outdoor schwag.
Read the article here: http://www.forbes.com/sites/trangho/2016/08/18/adventure-capitalists-is-shark-tank-for-outdoor-enthusiasts/#55bbfe23436f
Watch investor and former skier & professional football player Jeremy Cooper in a promo clip for the show: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uO5SE9Hht_w
Watch full episodes here: http://www.cnbc.com/adventure-capitalists/
Col. Norman D. Vaughan stands in front of Mt. Vaughan (Photo: Gordie Wiltsie)
Documentary Film Focuses on Life of Col. Norman D. Vaughan
He was the last surviving member of Admiral Richard E. Byrd's 1928-1930 expedition. War hero, dogsled competitor, and big-time dreamer, the late Colonel Norman D. Vaughan,
will be the focus of a documentary film. Produced by DreamQuest Productions and directed by Allan R. Smith, the doc will follow the life of Vaughan from his early days with Admiral Byrd to his final days planning a 100th birthday climb of Mt. Vaughan in Antarctica, named in his honor by Byrd. Vaughan passed away in December 2005, four days after his 100th birthday.
He was the first to climb his namesake mountain, in 1994 at the age of 88. It was a feat that landed him on the NBC Tonight Show with Jay Leno, and one documented in the National Geographic film, Height of Courage: The Norman Vaughan Story (1994).
His widow, Carolyn Mugge-Vaughan, will serve as executive producer and work closely with Smith and DreamQuest on development of the film, titled Dream Big & Dare To Fail, Vaughan's catchphrase. The documentary team will be reaching out to those that have been a part of Norman's life for new interviews, as well as the team will be using archival footage from year's past.
DreamQuest Productions is currently seeking sponsorship in the range of $75,000 for a summer 2017 release.
For more information: firstname.lastname@example.org
DreamQuest Productions' recent film, Eight Summits: The Bill Burke Story, about the oldest American to summit Mt. Everest and the Seven Summits, has won several industry awards and is now in distribution and available on DVD.
See a clip of Vaughan in Height of Courage here: https://vimeo.com/22174938
Welsh "Epic" Campaign Leads to Epic Rescues
Branding 2016 the "Year of Adventure" seemed the perfect idea for a campaign to encourage holidaymakers to the Welsh mountains.
Visit Wales's £4 million ($5.3 million) campaign, backed by survival expert Bear Grylls and extreme athlete Richard Parks, was designed to make Wales a leading global destination for adventure tourism.
It encouraged visitors to "Find their Epic" in the country, with the word "epic" raised on the Snowdonian mountains in four-meter tall letters.
But mountain rescue groups say a surge in visits by unprepared walkers has led to a record number becoming stranded and they are calling for safety lessons to be given to tourists, according to a story in the UK Daily Telegraph (Sept. 6) by Sam Dean.
Llanberis Mountain Rescue Team was called out to Snowdon 43 times in August - an increase from the previous record of 34 in August 2015. The rescue team relies on donations and spent about 1,000 volunteer hours attending incidents.
Rob Johnson, the team's chairman, said: "To have 43 incidents in 31 days is not sustainable and serious consideration needs to be given to the future management of Snowdon and its visitors.
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/EpicWelsh
Eagle Scouts Learn to Cave
Cave explorer Bill Steele, 67, who two years ago retired from a 34-year career with the Boy Scouts of America, is still helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent, especially in regards to contributing his considerable knowledge of caving back to Scouting.
According to a story in the September 2016 issue of the National Speleological Society News, as director of the National Eagle Scout Association (NESA), Steele, who has explored more than 2,500 caves across North America and Asia, helped launch the NESA World Explorers Program dedicated to conducting national competitions to select young Eagle Scouts to experience life-changing opportunities in numerous fields.
Bill Steele is helping Eagle Scouts become explorers.
As part of NESA's Speleologists program, four Eagle Scouts participated in a Cave Research Foundation expedition to Mammoth Cave, Kentucky, last June, to help with exploration, mapping, and studies in the world's longest cave. Their experience included adding length to this 405+ mile long cave, thus resetting a world record.
This seven-inch squeeze box was used to allow Scouts to train for 7-inch crawl spaces. They also practice for navigating tight spots by squeezing through a metal coat hanger. (Photo courtesy of Jake Tholen)
Part of their pre-cave training was to make sure the Scouts knew how to fit into small spaces. A "squeeze box" was used to get them accustomed to the confined spaces they might experience underground.
According to Steele, "The National Eagle Scout Association plans to continue working with the Cave Research Foundation to select aspiring future speleologists who are Eagle Scouts to have an experience at Mammoth Cave. Hopefully it influences their path in life toward speleology."
Learn more about the NESA World Explorers here:
Everest Summit Faked
Nepal has imposed a 10-year mountaineering ban on two climbers who claimed to be the first Indian couple to have climbed Everest, according to a story on the BBC.
A government investigation concluded last month that photographs purporting to show the pair at the top of the world's highest mountain were faked. Officials say the ban is intended to deter other climbers from making spurious and dishonest claims. The pair's claims to have reached the peak in May were challenged by climbers. They argued that photos showing Dinesh and Tarakeshwari Rathod at the summit were obviously doctored.
Tourism department chief Sudarshan Prasad Dhakal told the AFP news agency that an analysis of photos submitted by the two revealed they had superimposed themselves and their banners on photos taken by another Indian climber who summited Everest.
"The ban should serve as a warning for mountaineers to follow ethics," Dhakal said.
Read the story and see the doctored images here: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-37220114
Explorers Club Accepting Applications for 2017 Student Grants
The Explorers Club is offering exploration grants averaging $1,500 for high school students and college graduates; and an average of $2,500 for graduate students.
Proposals are being considered in a wide array of disciplines, including Climate Change, Geoscience, Paleoclimate, Marine Science, Marine Biology, Marine Life, Fish, Coral, Ocean, Fresh Water, Rivers, Lakes, Estuaries, Anthropology/Archeology, Plants and Molds, Animals and Conservation Science. Deadline is Oct. 10, 2016.
For more details: www.grants.explorers.org
Another Way to Raise Funding: Appear in a Beer Commercial
It was #TBT on Facebook when we came across a vintage 1979 Olympia beer TV commercial featuring John Roskelley, the noted mountain climber and author from Spokane, Wash., known for his first ascents and notable ascents of 7000 and 8000 meter peaks in Nepal, India, and Pakistan.
John Roskelley proves coffee drinking is more dangerous than climbing.
The 30 sec. spot promotes the brand's pure artesian brewing water as Roskelley rappels down a cliff face.
Reached by email, Roskelley remembers he also appeared in a Chrysler commercial while climbing Monkey Fist at Smith's Rock, and a Sanka commercial with fellow climbers Rick Ridgeway and Bev Johnson.
"If the truth was known, the prop guy for the Sanka commercial was supposed to keep the coffee 'steaming,' and when the director said take a big gulp like you really enjoy the moment, I burned the shit out of my mouth. The prop guy had brought it to a boil and handed it to me. I had skin peeling off inside my mouth for a week," he tells EN.
(And people think climbing is risky).
According to The Paley Center for Media where the spot is enshrined, Roskelley says, "Since too much caffeine bothers me, I drink Sanka brand decaffeinated coffee. It tastes terrific and it's ninety-seven percent caffeine-free, so it makes sense for me."
Olympia was acquired by Pabst Brewing Company in 1983 and is still available. Today Roskelley is a teetotaler having given up drinking in 1997 to set a better example for his daughter Jordan who he continues to climb with.
See the Olympia TV spot here: https://youtu.be/1p2jUmb3CuQ
Salomon Designs New Everest Boot
Salomon is touting its custom-made mountaineering footwear by working with trail runner and mountaineer Kilian Jornet's Summits of My Life project - an attempt to set ascent and descent records for the most important mountains on the planet, culminating with a record attempt on Mount Everest. Last July, Jornet visited Salomon?s Annecy Design Center (ADC) in the French Alps.
Salomon will have to wait until it can test its new boot on Kilian Jornet on Everest.
The prototype footwear system consists of three separate parts and was developed in collaboration with Jornet over nearly three years. "It?s like one shoe for doing everything. You start from the base and you just add layers all the way to the summit," Jornet says. "It?s modular, so you can get from the easy trails to the more technical terrain up high."
On Sept. 15, Jornet announced postponement of his Everest attempt: "There's a little bit of frustration because we are in good shape and well acclimatized, but the weather and the conditions are very dangerous. We've learnt a lot about the mountain and how to come back in the future."
See the video about the new footwear here:
Learn more about Jornet at:
ON THE HORIZON
Explorers will journey to Ellis Island for dinner.
The Explorers Club Annual Dinner Planned for Ellis Island, Mar. 25, 2017
It could be the end of an era. Last June, New York's landmark Waldorf Astoria hotel announced it would close in spring 2017 so owner Anbang Insurance Group Co. can begin converting most of the more than 1,400 rooms to luxury condominiums. The luxury hotel, managed by Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc., is set to reopen as many as three years later, with about 300 to 500 hotel rooms remaining.
The scope and details of the renovation, as well as the exact timing and duration of the hotel's closure, are still pending.
This sent dinner planners at The Explorers Club scrambling for space to host their iconic annual dinner, now in its 113th year. Some boring Hilton Hotel ballroom just would not suffice. Recently Club officials announced a new location and date for 1,200 explorers and their guests: New York's Ellis Island on March 25, 2017.
This year, the focus is on Cold Places - "environments that fundamentally shape our inner spirit, outer limits, and enable human stories that drive us all," according to the Club's announcement.
Still to be worked out will be the logistics of transporting over a thousand people in black tie, ball gowns and Manolo Blahniks from lower Manhattan back to their hotels when they start ferrying off the island close to midnight.
The logistics are hardly a challenge. That right there will be proof this is a group that can handle almost any outdoor hardship with aplomb.
For more information:
Get Sponsored! - Hundreds of explorers and adventurers raise money each month to travel on world class expeditions to Mt. Everest, Nepal, Antarctica and elsewhere. Now the techniques they use to fund their journeys are available to anyone who has a dream adventure project in mind, according to the book from Skyhorse Publishing called:
Get Sponsored: A Funding Guide for Explorers, Adventurers and Would Be World Travelers
Author Jeff Blumenfeld, an adventure marketing specialist who has represented 3M, Coleman, Du Pont, Lands' End and Orvis, among others, shares techniques for securing sponsors for expeditions and adventures.
Buy it here:
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