Symposium 2015 Ecole St-Barthélemy

Leave a Comment

Great morning speaking to the students at Ecole St. Barthélemy about the importance in life of having dreams, setting goals, healthy lifestyle and confidence to pursue anything they want in life. Cheers to each and every one of them for their inspiring questions.
IMG_1122 - Copy

Al Hancock Interview (Canadian Hero)

Leave a Comment

Canadian Climbing History has been made in the Himalayas

24-May-2014
 
On May 18th at 8:39 Nepal time, Monique Richard of Montréal, Quebec and Al Hancock of Edmonton, Alberta summited Makalu the fifth highest mountain in the world, at the same time becoming the first Canadians to do so in the history of the Himalayas. We are so proud to have summited and to have the honor to fly the Canadian flag high above our heads and represent every Canadian from coast to coast.
youtube

Al Hancock’s “Big 14” Challenge

31-Oct-2014

Over the past seven years, Al Hancock has been quietly making Canadian history.
The former journeyman millwright and oil sands maintenance supervisor has summited Mount Everest, the world’s tallest peak, twice. And in the spring of 2014, along with Quebec climber Monique Richard, he made Canadian history by ascending the peak of Mount Makalu, which ranks 5th. Hancock followed that up two months later with a successful climb of the extremely challenging K2, the world’s second highest peak.

This Edmonton-based climber is on a roll. He’s successfully scaled six of the world’s 14 tallest mountains. His plan, over the next three years, is to become the first Canadian, and only the second North American, to summit all 14 of the world’s peaks over 8,000-metres.

The next leg of Hancock’s journey begins next March when he’ll travel to Nepal to tackle Annapurna and Dhaulagiri, 10th and seventh on the list, respectively.

Wonderful Sunny Day Snowshoeing

1 Comment

Great day, but more importantly, great friends Martin Husar and Marc-Antoine Laporte and me snowshoeing from Mont Olympia to the Mountain Cross Lookout and back in ideal cool sunny December weather. Of course a caffé latté in St. Sauveur on the way back. Keeping in shape and enjoying the great pleasures of Nature.

 IMG_1036 (Copy)

Mount Washington Single Parents

Leave a Comment

Foundation Esprit de Corps challenge with 19 single parents. Remarkable strength of character to push through their limits to summit Mt. Washington in winter conditions and to realize what determination, focus and hard work can achieve. Team effort, team spirit and the passion of the coaches made this a reality. Bravo gang.Mont Washington Dec.2014

North Atlantic Crossing St-Malo – Quebec

1 Comment

We did it! 

Team Delta: After 14 months of training, August 2nd 2014 we sailed out of St-Malo, France in a VOR 60 (Volvo Ocean Racer) Kevlar mono-hull racing sailboat called Esprit de Corps 11 across the North Atlantic to Quebec under skipper George Leblanc. We are 10 Quebec entrepreneurs who had little or no experience sailing but who recognized the great opportunity and learning experience to cross the vast ocean in such a purebred classic machine. This pedigree raced the 1998 Whitbread Round the World Race covering 39,000 nmi (nautical miles / 72,000 km) over a 9 month period. Her mast is 103 feet and she weighs in just under 30,000 lbs, and was designed to tear up the waves and push at more than 30 knots.

IMG_1427 (Copy)

Day 1 got us pounding against oncoming waves in medium light winds following west along the north Brittany coastline. It felt great to finally get going but also meant that the reality of Open Ocean and grinding cramped conditions came home to roost. Most of us including myself had the rude awakening of seasickness the first and second day. Generally our first few days were rough until our bodies settled in to the rolling swells and insomnia conditions. We had 2 revolving shifts over a 5 day period. First shift of 3 hours on deck, next 3 hours on call, followed by 6 hours off. That meant 12 hours on and 12 hours off over 24 hours. Second shift every 5th day¬ was as back-up helmsman and was 3 hours on followed by 3 hours off 24 hours consecutive. The on deck team consisted of Francois Labarre or Gilles Barbot (First Mates) rotating every 3 hours, +2 man crew + back-up helmsman. It was a well-oiled schedule prepared for surprize. George our captain was never far from view.

Besides hauling sails up and down according to wind direction and strength, tacking or jibing, keeping our bearing west at approximately 280°, always being on look-out for floating debris, we were often awesomely entertained by passing dolphin pods jumping to our delight and leading us in unison at the bow. Occasionally a whale would surface and you would see the vertical spray from its ‘blow hole’. These were the very special moments of the day to see such amazing mammals and creatures of the sea. Some of the crew saw 2 huge turtles. Most incredible to me was all the birds (different species of seagulls) that were ubiquitous even in the middle of the ocean. I never expected that. Often they would circle just above the mast as if trying to land on it. Occasionally you would see a small flock hovering just above the waves and it would mean some attack was going on just below the surface. One night against the backdrop of a full moon we saw birds that appeared like large bats flying in seemingly archaic acrobatic flight.

Atlantic Crossing  (6)Atlantic Crossing  (26)

We were truly all alone in the middle of the ocean. The last boat we saw was about 100 miles off the French coast and the next one about 10 days later was a few hundred miles before Newfoundland. What impressed me early one evening was a thin narrow band of reddish light on the horizon separating sky from sea. It was a 360° panoramic view the likes of which you would never see anywhere else except on such a perfect flat plane. Although alone on the sea surface, below one suspected was a living world of unimaginable proportions. This sense of awe I found enormously profound. It occurred to me at one moment lying in my bunk that my father emigrating from England at 6 months old 106 years ago with his poor family traveled the same route to the New World as I was doing. The big difference being they were fleeing poverty and I was accomplishing a goal, not to mention my father unfortunately getting polio on his boat.

Our weather conditions varied from one hot sunny day when we all jumped overboard to swim and wash ourselves in the cool ocean to a local depression with 40 knot winds. Calm, wind, sun, clouds, rain, and storm – we experienced it all. Hoisting our larger spinnaker one morning got us into serious trouble spinning out which then caused the halyard to potentially wreck the spreader bar high on the mast. George immediately recognized the ominous danger and cut the rope letting it fly downwind sporadically. We hauled it in but the line got tangled in the propeller shaft. It took 4 hours to cut the rope away under the boat by Guillaume, Alex and Robin.

Atlantic Crossing  (38)Atlantic Crossing  (7)

We arrived 17 days later in Rivière au Renard in Gaspé. Not the fastest time but what we could manage with the conditions. I left the boat with Manu and Robin and flew to Montreal for business reasons. The rest of the team stayed onboard and mostly motored up the St. Lawrence River to Quebec City arriving 2 ½ days later. The dynamics of our team made this journey a great success. George, Gilles and Francois empowered us through their experience and sailing wisdom. They were key to our accomplishment.

Opportunity – Voyage – Challenge. These 3 words rolled over in my mind as what this crossing meant to me.

Opportunity when Gilles Barbot invited me to be part of the first ever ‘traversée de l’Atlantique’ by Esprit de Corps. We have done a lot of challenges together over the years and this would be another first for us. Opportunity is golden and not to be taken lightly.

Voyage to me was the amazing environment of being in such a small boat sailing alone across such a vast wilderness of water totally vulnerable to Mother Nature and the unknown. You are really at the mercy of the elements and you know it when you are out there. Albeit flat, the extraordinary beauty of sunrises and sunsets, the moon, waves, wind, clouds, rain, sounds, ocean visitors all add up to a deeply personal and profound experience.

Challenge is what changes you, opens your eyes, feeds your passions, delights your senses, strengthens your resolve, tests your commitment to living. It is the messenger to living a full, happy, healthy and extraordinary life. For me personally, I needed to take this challenge on to conquer my fears of vast Open Ocean on what I called merely a beautiful ‘popsicle stick.’

North Atlantic Crossing

After 14 months of training, August 2nd 2014 we sailed out of St-Malo, France in a VOR 60 (Volvo Ocean Racer) Kevlar mono-hull racing sailboat called Esprit de Corps 11 across the North Atlantic to Quebec

Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic sunset
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic sunset
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic with dolphins
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic with dolphins
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic with dolphins
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic with dolphins
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
Sailing VOR60 across the North Atlantic
St. Malo
St. Malo
St. Malo
St. Malo

 

Amazing Team: Guillaume Le Prohon, Alexandre Forgues, Véronique Labbé, Patrick Garneau, Kevin Jutras, Robin Lacasse, Patrick Brassard, Aviva Lavallée Roberts, Emmanuel Chenail, Theodore Fairhurst.

Crew Delta: Skipper George Leblanc, 1st Mates; Francois Labarre, Gilles Barbot. 2nd Mate: Gauthier Da Silva

 

New Challenge – Sail a VOR-60 across the North Atlantic

Leave a Comment

 

After 14 months of training in Quebec city and Montreal, we are ready to sail. We have been mentored by skipper Georges Leblanc  (www.georgesleblanc.com/) and Francois Labarre to man one of the most sophisticated racing boats of its era, a VOR60. It is a carbon fiber mono-hull 65′ racing machine pushing a 100′ mast that sailed the 1998 Volvo Ocean Race around the world.

youtube

We are 2 teams of 20 entrepreneurs, +skipper, 1st mate and Gilles Barbot the dreamer who made this happen. The Alpha Team of 10 are sailing east from Quebec to St-Malo, France departing July 11. The Delta Team also of 10 (myself included) sail from St-Malo to Quebec leaving August 2nd. We are passionate souls who dream of a world much bigger than ourselves. We want to explore our destinies.

EDC2

Delta teamAlpha team

Saint-Malo is a walled port city in Brittany in northwestern France on the English Channel that was in the past notorious for piracy.  Jacques Cartier, who sailed the Saint Lawrence River and visited the sites of Quebec City and Montreal – and is thus credited as the discoverer of Canada, lived in and sailed from Saint-Malo.

 I am doing this challenge to experience and test myself on a whole new plane of adventure. We must constantly renew and invigorate ourselves to measure our inner strengths and wisdom. I always embark on these challenges on edge, allowing every cell in my body to fire up. Great challenges are opportunities to discover who we are and what we can become. As I have said so often, “we only get out of life what we are willing to put into it.”

To follow our progress – Alpha & Delta (starting August 2nd) – visit:  http://share.findmespot.com/shared/faces/viewspots.jsp?glId=0LqXr95m6cNXVGvpBmHqf9fakP7cEa5ek

and:      http://equipegleblanc.wordpress.com/

https://www.youtube.com/user/volvooceanracevideos  

Alpha Team Members: Michel Savonitto, Yann Rousselot-Pailley, Paul Alain, Eric Bélanger, Jean-Francois Audet, Yannick Pagé, Cédric Gagnon, Martin Fafard, Marc Boucher, Daniel Arguin.

Delta Team Members: Guillaume Le Prohon, Alexandre Forgues, Véronique Labbé, Patrick Garneau, Kevin Jutras, Robin Lacasse, Patrick Brassard, Aviva Lavallée Roberts, Emmanuel Chenail, Theodore Fairhurst

Crew Alpha & Delta: Skipper George Leblanc, 1st Mates; Francois Labarre, Dave Gaudreau, Gauthier Da Silva, Gilles Barbot.

Carstensz Pyramid & Kosciuszko

2 Comments

Mount Carstensz Pyramid 

 

It has been an 8 year project – climbing the Seven Summits – highest mountain on every continent – but I reached that goal on the 19th March 2014. Carstensz Pyramid, 4884m, is in the western Indonesian half of the 2nd largest island in the world Papua New Guinea but simply called Papua. The other half is known as Irian Jaya or Papua New Guinea, an independent country. I left Montreal on the 7th March and flew to Bali with stopover in Doha. On the night of the 11th, I met my team of 2 Indian twin sisters, a Pakistani brother and sister, an Australian, 2 guys from United Arab Emirates, 2 other Quebecers and myself a Quebecer. All team members, as I would soon realize, are solid strong mountaineers. A rather large team but the diversity of us as it turned out worked beautifully. We caught a flight after midnight from Bali to Timika in Papua. In Timika we again flew on 2 eight passenger prop planes to Sugapa where we landed on a high mountain airstrip. Motorcycles were waiting to transport us to the local village nearby.

Papua 330Papua 360

A short lunch later and we were off bouncing down a really rough dirt rocky road on the motorcycles occasionally encountering roadblocks manned by locals demanding passage money. A big negotiation would then pursue until finally something was reached and we pushed on.

We finally arrived at the end of the road and then a short walk to a tiny village at the edge of the jungle. We stayed the night in a wood shelter surrounded by round straw huts and a native population awed by our presence. We felt a bit like being in a zoo – watched by all the curious.

Next morning we started hiking through the jungle and for the next 2 days we were prodding through mud at times almost knee deep. Rarely the terrain was flat, usually climbing or descending and mostly gaining altitude. Jumping rocks or balancing across fallen trees to cross over raging rivers. The first 2 days were 9 sweaty very hot humid hours.

Papua 380Papua 370

Day 2 it poured rain in the dense very primitive forest until we arrived at camp 2 drenched and cold but out of the deep jungle.Day 3 we climbed up to a ridge and crossed over multiple connected hills until we at last saw those spectacular white-capped mountains – our objective in the distant horizon. A short descent brought us to camp 3.

Several long days followed winding ever up, down, or around valley or hilltop constantly dealing with slippery mud, rain, steep ascents or descents until we spotted our serene Base Camp bordering a turquoise moraine lake. We had arrived into such natural beauty surrounded by towering peaks. Carstensz was now partially in view and the magnitude of the technical climb became apparent. These mountains recently formed by geological standards and are straight up very sharp rock, great for hand and foot holds but bad for slicing ropes.

Carstensz Pyramid 211Carstensz Pyramid 191

The 18th March we rested at Base Camp enjoying such phenomenal beauty.

Carstensz Pyramid 161Carstensz Pyramid 111

Next morning at 3 am on the nineteenth we hiked to the foot of Carstensz and literally began climbing 60° to 90° walls. By 10am we were high on the ridge preparing for the Tyrolean Traverse (crossing a 30m huge gap in the rock leading to the summit. Upside down but roped into our harnesses, we pulled ourselves across with our hearts pounding furiously. Next followed a few more committed suicidal jumps across gaps and around ledges until we finally reached a rocky steep pinnacle and climbed to the absolute summit.

It was a ‘slice.’ Photos, hugs and glory for a while but the obvious was still awaiting us. Down climbing factually is the most dangerous. Back over all the same obstacles, and then rappelling down +80% of this steep mountain. Some 12 hours later exhausted but relieved we rejoiced our success in Base Camp.

Carstensz Pyramid 281Carstensz Pyramid 271

Next day began the long return back out through the mud, rain and tough terrain.

At about 3:30 pm the following day (day 9), I reached the top of the ridge I earlier mentioned (day 3), had a snack and drank most of my water, expecting to make the long traverse over the ridge and descent to our next camp at the edge of the jungle in about 1 ½ hours. It didn’t go that way. Unknown to me, there was a 2nd older trail leading off in another direction that unfortunately I followed. I was exhausted after a very long day yet happily visualizing dinner and my warm sleeping bag.

By about 5 pm I came to realize I was off-track. I also realized I did not have enough time left in the day to retrace my steps back up the ridge to my last absolute reference point. My best gamble I decided was to continue climbing down the mountain and hope this trail would merge with the correct one before or near the valley river below. I decided I had nothing to lose following this strategy provided I went slowly and did not hurt myself. Evidently, a twisted ancle or broken leg could end up fatal since I would unlikely ever be found.

At 6:30 pm the game was over. Darkness had set in, and I knew I was spending the night out alone without shelter, food or water. After a couple of expletives, I was resolved to my fate. Essentially, I had been preparing myself for years for such an event. Often back home in Quebec in winter, I would go out snowshoeing or back-country skiing and purposely get myself lost, and then about an hour or two before dark I would sit down and calmly evaluate all the signs using my compass, shadow of the sun, etc. to decide on a strategy to find my way back out of the woods before dark. I have spent a huge amount of time alone in nature hiking, mountain biking, skiing, snowshoeing so I was not afraid. In fact I was pretty psychologically positive about this new experience. I put on my Gore-Tex jacket and pants, emptied my pack so I could lie on it, opened my umbrella and got under it. Of course, the rain started immediately.

It became very clear to me what plan of action I needed to put in place at dawn. I must stop descending into the unknown and re-climb up to the ridge and over to the last known reference point. I figured it would take about 2 ½ hours which would also coincide with any rescue effort by my team starting at dawn. I would properly place myself in view and/or return to the correct path.

The night was long but the sweet amazing sounds of the alpine / jungle were an amazing delightful symphony to my ears. It rained off and on but I managed to keep relatively dry.

At first light I was marching back-up to the ridge according to plan. It was sunny, I was in good spirits. I was convinced I would be found or find the right trail.

Not far below the ridge I heard human voices. I immediately yelled out. Poxi, our guide and some of the porters had been in shifts during the night and early morning searching for me. Some had tears in their eyes when they saw me. Not only was I relieved but deeply moved by these people. They may live a simple life but peoples values and emotions are the same the world over – people are people, regardless where they live or what education they have. It touched me deeply.

The balance of the trip was mostly uneventful save for the constant mud and rain and long days.

More photos and a video will follow when I get home.

Team: Francois Houde, Catherine Dupasquier, Tashi & Nungshi Malik, Mirza Ali, Samina Khayal, Dan Bull, Saeed Almemari, Hamad Almazronic, and myself Theodore Fairhurst. Guides: Poxi Dainga, Meds Pesak, Pegi Landah.

Carstensz Pyramid

Mount Carstensz Pyramid- Tyrolean Traverse
Mount Carstensz Pyramid- Tyrolean Traverse
Mount Carstensz Pyramid- Tyrolean Traverse
Mount Carstensz Pyramid- Tyrolean Traverse
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid - Tyrolean Traverse
Mount Carstensz Pyramid - Tyrolean Traverse
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid near summit
Mount Carstensz Pyramid near summit
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid - Tyrolean Traverse
Mount Carstensz Pyramid - Tyrolean Traverse
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz summit
Mount Carstensz summit
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Mount Carstensz Pyramid
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea village
Papua New Guinea village
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Mount Carstensz Pyramid summit
Mount Carstensz Pyramid summit
Mount Carstensz Pyramid near summit
Mount Carstensz Pyramid near summit

 

April 10, 2014

Mount Kosciuszko

As mentioned above, there is some controversy whether Mount Kosciusko 2,228 meters (7,310 ft.) in the Australian Mainland or Mount Carstensz Pyramid 4,884 m (16,024 ft.) in the Australian Continent on the island of New Guinea which lies on the Australian Continental Shelf is really the 7th Summit. Most serious climbers will now climb both mountains.

I summitted Kosciuszko April 10, 2014 with my partner in life Rosanna Grande. It was a miserable cold, rainy, windy April day with very little visibility. We were soaked to the bone and only descended the mountain after dark.

IMG_0544 (Copy)IMG_0540 (Copy)IMG_0542 (Copy)

 

 

 

Back Country Nordic Skiing and Snowshoeing

2 Comments

Great weekend of back country skiing and snowshoeing in the Laurentians north of Montreal with Rosanna (Grande) and wonderful friends Hal Myers, Roz Turgeon, Marc-Antoine Laporte. Getting trained and ready to climb Carstensz Pyramid in Papua New Guinea leaving March 7. I will have 5 days minimum hiking through the jungle to reach Carstensz base camp. Fist time for me spending this much time in the jungle and it will be quite a contrast with our winter here.
Rosanna and Ted FairhurstRosanna GrandeSnowshoeingMarc-Antoine Laporte & Theodore Fairhursttheodore fairhurstMarc-Antoine Laporte

Welcome World

Leave a Comment

Dare To Reach is Re-Structured & Re-Born

Mission Statement:

Be bold and always reach for something bigger than yourself. It is not about climbing the biggest mountain, it is about attempting to reach your best at whatever challenge you dare. It is our personal search for balance and meaning in life.

_____________________________________________________________________________________

My Personal goals for 2014:

1/ March 7th I am leaving to attempt to climb Carstensz Pyramid in Papua New Guinea. It is my 7th and final summit [Seven Summits (highest mountain on all 7 continents)]. Asia, Antarctica, North America, South America, Africa, Europe, Australasia.

2/ Sail across the North Atlantic from St. Malo, France to Quebec City August 2014.

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Many thanks to DeuxPointZero (Fabrice Beaucourt & Emmanuelle Vincent) for their passion, patience and excellence to build this most beautiful website platform.

_____________________________________________________________________________________

My deepest gratitude goes to my dear friend Martin Husar. He is the mastermind and genius of concept and design of this site. Without him squeezing precious moments from his busy life DareToReach simply wouldn’t be of this magnitude. Thank you dearly.

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Finally, this site is for YOU, whether you are ten years old or one hundred, we all need to feel alive, we all need to challenge ourselves to find out who we are; what we are made of; and we need to reach for our goals and dreams.

 

Visit to Bombardier with CEO

Leave a Comment

Pierre BeaudoinEDC7Dec2013

An absolutely brilliant day at Bombardier with Pierre Beaudoin, CEO and President, and my entrepreneur sailing teammates Destination TransAtlantic 2014St. Malo to Quebec.

Pierre graciously gave us a grand tour of the plant, and displayed an openness rarely seen in such circles.

We started at 6am jogging 2x up Westmount, followed by sailing theory for an hour and then lunch and afternoon at Bombardier.

Mount Washington-EDC Foundation

Leave a Comment

 

Mt Washington groip 10-03-13

I have the honour and good fortune to serve as a director on Esprit de Corps Foundation in Montreal. We have a program to help struggling working single family parents reach their goal of hiking up Mount Washington in New Hampshire in blustery winter conditions. I have immensely enjoyed helping and being a team member on two such groups March 8-10 2013 and November 29-30, Dec 1 2013. Although they are trained weekly by Esprit de Corp for 4 months, this challenge is way out of their ‘confort zone’ in terms of mountain experience, physical and psychological difficulty in cold icy conditions. They have shown amazing inner strength and fortitude as a team and individually and I believe have reached a new plateau in their lives.

Mt.Washington1Dec2013

youtube

Mountain Biking Black Star Canyon

Leave a Comment

IMG_0384 (Copy)

Hot sunny California

Great day mountain biking with my friend and climbing teammate Mike Chapman. We climbed Cho Oyu in Tibet (2008) and Everest (2010). Mike picked me up Monday morning at Steve Sideroff’s house in Santa Monica, loaned me one of his bikes and we hit his favorite hills in Orange County. Keeping our eyes peeled for mountain lions and rattlesnakes, we snaked up Black Star Canyon several thousand feet to the look-out. What a view. Barren country, totally different then I’m used to, but I loved it.

IMG_0381 (Copy)John Dahlem

Really special to get together with a guy you spent months with climbing mountains half way around the world. Later that day we drove down to Huntington Beach to visit another teammate from Cho Oyu and Everest John Dahlem. John is the only guy I know who has done the 7 Summits and last degree of both poles. He has gained the distinction of “Grand Slam”.

Mountain Biking Black Star Canyon

Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon
Black Star Canyon

 

 

Rafting the Tuolumne, California

Leave a Comment

Steven Sideroff, a psychologist and friend from UCLA needs to get out of his box. In comes friends Hal Myers, Al Darbonne and myself to join in his adventure to raft down the mighty Tuolumne River as it sorties famous Yosemite National Park. Extraordinary 1000’ V shaped valleys carved out eons ago from glacier melt, the river rips through this canyon as it drops 70 to 100 feet per mile through slick Sierra bedrock. Eighteen miles of class 1 – 5 rapids. Today it is 110° F – but the water is freezing. A blanket wave of heat envelopes you one moment, but then the next white churning almost freezing water swells up and blasts you out of sight. Sweet it feels. Does life get any better? Three days running rapid after rapid, camping under Californian stars, listening all night to the constant roar of the Tuolumne only a few feet away.

Steven is writing a book about ‘Resilience’ and creating a program that Universities and medical clinics can apply to move people into a positive zone. He can imagine returning to the Tuolumne soon bringing patients and faculty together to run this river. Why – he loves it and this gets you out of your comfort zone ‘big time’. What better way to build bonds, trust and self-confidence than being a team in a tiny raft on a mighty big seething river.

IMG_0119 tuol-34tuol-54

Banging through Class V rapids early on our 2nd day brought out fear, passion and joy. All of us are white water amateurs yet inspired to experience new adventures and places. As Hal said –“ this is my first time off the grid in years.” Unfortunate for those who can’t or won’t taste the sweetness of Mother Nature at her finest. This is rattlesnake and cougar country, we keep our eyes peeled on the steep sun-burnt desert-like slopes facing both banks. Nothing moves except for the high flying hawks but our imaginations are peaked.

The river snakes, tumbles, caresses, pounds, pokes , careens and at least another thousand metaphors describing its flows around and over polished rock after shiny stone to the distant ocean. Its beauty and dancing movement hypnotizes you. The message: be inspired when you can, grab the moment when it comes, get out there and ‘go for it’. We have but one life – use it or lose it.

Tuolumne River, Calif

Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River
Rafting Tuolumne River

youtube