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2012 Lyman Spitzer Cutting Edge Award Winners Announced

AAC Awards $12K of Grants Supporting First Ascent Attempts in Pakistan and China

1/6/2012, 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 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.

Paul Gagner, the chair of the Lyman Spitzer Cutting Edge Award committee, noted, "I've been chairing the Spitzer Award committee for several years now, and the award winners we are announcing today, and their objectives, are among the best we've seen. These trips represent the dreams and aspirations of some of the very best climbers, and the American Alpine Club, and the Spitzer Award committee are very excited to help these dreams become reality."

This year’s grant-recipient teams focus their considerable energies on Asia:

  • Stan Price & Rusty Willis the storied, oft-tried North Ridge of Latok 1.
  • Hayden Kennedy & Kyle Dempster for K7 and the Ogre II.
  • Graham Zimmerman, Scott Bennett, and Blake Herrington for Tahu Rutum, a stunning 6,651m tower in the Karakoram.
  • David Gottlieb & Chad Kellogg for China’s unclimbed Karijiang (7,221m), the 3rd highest unclimbed peak in the world.

In addition to the Lyman Spitzer Cutting Edge Award, the AAC offers grants for everyday climbers attempting big-walls, new or notable free climbs, and alpine objectives. Of significant prominence is the Mountain Fellowship Award, which offers funding to climbers under the age of 25 to aid them in making the transition to the Greater Ranges. 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. For more details and specific application information for this and other AAC grants visit americanalpineclub.org/grants.

About The American Alpine Club
The American Alpine Club 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.