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McNeill-Nott Awards Announced

Posted on: March 5th, 2010 by admin

The striking upper northeast face of Mt. Ambition in British Columbia. McNeill-Nott Award winnes Nate Farr and Blake Herrington will attempt the north ridge, visible along the sun-shadow line in upper right. Photo by John Scurlock

The AAC has selected three expeditions to receive 2010 McNeill-Nott Awards. These annual grants, cosponsored by Mountain Hardwear, preserve the memory and spirit of Karen McNeill and Sue Nott, who died on Mt. Foraker in 2006. This year, three grants totaling $5,000 have been awarded to small teams planning adventuresome new routes.

In late spring, Nate Farr of Camas, WA, and Blake Herrington of Denver, CO, will attempt the north ridge of Mt. Ambition in the remote Spectrum group of British Columbia’s Coast Mountains. This peak has had only one previous ascent, and the mile-long, mostly technical north ridge likely has never been attempted. The majority of the mountains in the area are unclimbed, and if the two climbers have time they hoped to attempt the first ascent of other peaks.

In April, Clint Helander and Seth Holden of Anchorage, AK, will return to the Revelation Mountains in Alaska, where they’ve already done the first ascents of the Ice Pyramid (2009) and Exodus (2008). This summer, the duo hopes to complete the south ridge of the Angel, a line attempted six times by the well-known climber David Roberts; the peak has only been climbed once. They also may attempt an unclimbed peak called the Apocalypse (the highest unclimbed summit in the Revelations) and the first ascent of the west face of Mt. Mausolus.

Mike Ybarra of Woodland Hills, CA, and Seth Timpano of Lewiston, MT, will attempt the southeast face of Singu Chuli (“Fluted Peak”), a 6,501-meter mountain in the heart of the Annapurna Sanctuary of Nepal. Although this peak has four known routes (only one of which has been repeated), the direct route up the fluted southeast face is believed to be unclimbed.

Created with the support of Mountain Hardwear, which sponsored both Karen McNeill and Sue Nott, the McNeill-Nott Awards seek to preserve these two climbers’ spirit by funding amateur climbers exploring new routes or unclimbed peaks. Special attention is given to projects that have strong exploratory and adventuresome mountaineering components. Click here to learn more or download an application.