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The Tallest Land-Based Mountain on Earth
In June 2018 65 Degrees North set out to summit Denali
With a summit elevation of 20,310 feet (6190m) above sea level Denali is the highest peak in North America, and with a vertical rise of about 18,000 feet, it is the tallest land-based mountain on Earth!
Located in Alaska, Denali has always been revered by native Athabascans who inhabit this northern region, and it is inseparable from indigenous Alaskan lore. Every native Athabascan who saw Denali towering over their horizon named it accordingly, “the great one” or “the high one.”
Denali (formerly known as Mt. McKinley) offers one of the greatest physical challenges in the world, and certainly the most challenging in the western hemisphere, in one of the coldest places on the planet. Due to the low pressure of the Arctic and extreme distance from the equator it has an effect on the body that makes it equal to several thousand feet higher.
Denali is a deadly mountain of extreme conditions…
With unpredictable weather and temperatures as low as -40°C, its hostile environment, notoriously harsh storms which are known to last a week at a time, and high altitude, make it a severe test of personal strength, resilience and fortitude.
The team relied on mental, and physical, strength and endurance to carry their heavy loads and haul pulks containing all their food, clothing, climbing and survival equipment for this brutal unsupported summit attempt.
They were pushed to their absolute limits as ferocious storms forced them to stay in their tents for several days, and their chances of summiting looking less and less likely with food supplies beginning to dwindle, but the weather eased at a critical moment and the team battled their way to the summit!
At 4am (UK time) on June 25th all 5 team members successfully reached the summit of the World’s tallest land-based mountain!
“This challenge has given me the focus and drive to push myself and has had a positive effect on my mental health and well-being. I hope I can motivate and inspire others to take on their own challenges, big or small, as there is life beyond injury”