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IMG 17911

Team of four climbers are preparing for Vinson ascent

The team has arrived in Pun­ta Are­nas and jumped right into a long to do list. Yes­ter­day we pur­chased 100 pounds of food, repack­aged it all, and prac­ticed set­ting up the tents. This morn­ing all of our per­son­al and group gear was packed, weighed and loaded onto the Car­go plane that will fly us to Antarctica. 

While the weath­er down there has been chal­leng­ing for the last few weeks, it is now becom­ing more sta­ble. The first teams on Vin­son, this sea­son, arrived in 25 knot winds and set their tents up in Minus 25F temps. Luck­i­ly for them a short weath­er win­dow opened and about 40 peo­ple sum­mit­ed Vin­son yesterday. 
A bit about the team:
Len Forkas has climbed Kil­i­man­jaro and tak­en a moun­taineer­ing course from Moun­tain Mad­ness. He is a seri­ous endurance ath­lete: 2 time solo fin­ish­er (& 1 time win­ner) of The Race Across Amer­i­ca, an ultra-dis­tance road cycling race. Len com­plet­ed the Lead­man series of races (26 & 100 mile runs, 50 & 100 mile moun­tain bike races), numer­ous 500+mile bike races, Iron Mans and marathons. He is the founder of Hope Cam, a tech­nol­o­gy which con­nects chil­dren with can­cer to their friends at school. To learn more about Len, check out his web­site; www​.lenforkas​.com and read his book What Spins the Wheel. Len and his fam­i­ly live in North­ern Virginia.
Michael Pater­son is an Emer­gency Room doc­tor and phil­an­thropist. His vol­un­teer med­ical ser­vice includes run­ning Ebo­la clin­ics in Africa and sur­gi­cal edu­ca­tion in Haiti. Michael has climbed Denali, Aconcagua and Kil­i­man­jaro and leads raft­ing trips to remote rivers in the Arc­tic and Alas­ka. Mike and his fam­i­ly have trav­eled and lived in South Amer­i­ca and Asia, but now live in Ever­green, CO.
Gun­tis Brands is a Lat­vian-Swedish entre­pre­neur now liv­ing in Zer­matt, Switzer­land (in the shad­ow of the Mat­ter­horn). Gun­tis has sum­mit­ed three 8000 meter peaks and count­less small­er ones. When Gun­tis and his fam­i­ly are not in Zer­matt, they put­ter around their home in Tuscany. 
Chris Warn­er has led over 200 inter­na­tion­al expe­di­tions, sum­mit­ed five 8000 meter peaks and pio­neered new routes in the Himalaya. Through his many years in climb­ing he has known Scott Fish­er, Chris Boskoff and Mark Gun­log­son (the tri­umvi­rate of Moun­tain Mad­ness CEOs). When he isn’t climb­ing he teach­es lead­er­ship to For­tune 500 com­pa­nies, pro­fes­sion­al sports teams and covert and spe­cial ops groups. You can learn more about his lead­er­ship work at www​.chris​b​warn​er​.com and read his book: High Alti­tude Lead­er­ship. Chris and his fam­i­ly live in Gold­en, CO
From left to right: Len, Michael, Chris, Gun­tis (pho­to by Chris Warner)
- Chris Warner