Diversity

Adventure Media Review, Climbing, Diversity, Environmental Journalism, Environmental Justice, Expedition Denali / 04.06.2014

Just about anyone who writes for a living will be compelled eventually to write a book. Personally, I tried to put it off as long as possible. I simply didn’t have anything truly relevant to say or share on the scale of a 50,000-word manuscript. As it happens though that all changed in the fall of 2011 when I was invited by the National Outdoor Leadership School to take part in the first African-American team ascent of Denali, the highest peak in North America. Although I was not on...

5Point, Adventure Media Review, Climbing, Diversity, Film Review, Life Out Loud, mountainfilm / 02.05.2014

The new climbing film 14.c introduces a unique perspective on the sport that demonstrates the critical importance of family in the development of natural talent. Directed by George Knowles, the short film follows a few days in the life of Kai Lightner, a talented young man who at the age of 14 climbs with incredible skill and ability. As Kai ascends to the top of the most difficult routes, rated 5.14c, he relies upon the support and encouragement of his mother, Connie. With infinite patience and enthusiasm, this...

Adventure Activism, Climbing, Diversity / 23.03.2014

At the young age of 14 Kai Lightner is doing amazing things in the world of sport climbing. In the spring 2013 he ascended exceedingly difficult routes that included Southern Smoke (5.14c) and Transworld Depravity (5.14a) in the Red River Gorge of Kentucky. On the same two-week road trip he climbed Proper Soul (5.14a) in the New River Gorge of West Virginia. I wrote about him in the August/September issue of Rock & Ice magazine. And in August of last year Kai took his fourth champion title at...

Adventure Media Review, Destinations, Diversity, Expedition Denali, Life Out Loud, National Geographic / 03.03.2014

“The lure of the arctic is tugging at my heart. To me the trail is calling! The old trail, the trail that is always new.” ~Matthew Henson This story was excerpted from the forthcoming work of narrative nonfiction The Adventure Gap by James Edward Mills to be published this fall by the Mountaineers Books In 1909 a team of six men on dog sledges made their way to a single point at the center of vast Arctic wilderness. It was a block of ice 413 nautical miles off the coast...

Adventure Activism, Climbing, Diversity, Expedition Denali, Life Out Loud, National Parks / 24.02.2014

[caption id="attachment_458571" align="aligncenter" width="500"] Photo by Hudson Henry[/caption] On June 24,2013 Adina Scott made a satellite phone dispatch from 17,200 feet on Mount McKinley in Denali National Park. As part of the climbing team Expedition Denali, she and the 18 others had already spent a total of 16 days on the mountain and nearly a week camped at 14,200 feet. Now, they were making a valiant push toward the top. Speaking under clear skies, she was suddenly within striking distance of the highest peak in North America, a mountain...

Climbing, Diversity, Interview, Life Out Loud, Magazines, Rock & Ice / 21.02.2014

When one of the world’s best climbers notices you, you must be doing something right. As several young climbers waited for an autograph during a February fundraiser at the Stone Summit gym in Atlanta, Chris Sharma stood intrigued, watching 13-year-old Kai Lightner smoothly lap a 5.13. Emily Taylor, Kai’s coach, recalls, "When we made the introductions, Chris asked Kai to climb with him." Kai is an exceptional young talent, with great potential. Despite a few disadvantages he has already gone far. In March 2013, Kai sent Southern Smoke (5.14c) and Transworld...