Mt. Vinson
Antarctica
16,067 feet 4897 meters

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Alan Arnette is an Alzheimer's advocate for individuals, their families and anyone impacted by this disease through his professional speaking, climbing and website.

His objectives for the Memories are Everything® climbs are:
  • Educate the public, especially youth, on the early warning signs and how to prepare
  • Increase awareness that Alzheimer's Disease has no cure
  • Raise research money for Alzheimer's non-profits
He has completed two major projects:
Donate to Alzheimer's • NO CURE, always Fatal
• No easy, inexpensive method of early detection
• 3rd leading cause of death in the US
• New case every 68 seconds, 4 seconds worldwide
• Impacts more than 5+m in US, 25m+ worldwide
• Devastating financial burden on families
• Depression higher for caregivers
• Issues are increasing rapidly as population ages

Mt. Vinson Summited on December 9, 2010

Vinson Massif, AntarcticaVinson

600 miles from the South Pole, Mount Vinson was first summited in 1966 by climbers led by Nicholas Clinch from the American Alpine Club and the National Science Foundation, it was the last of the 7 Summits to be conquered. It was named after US Senator and Antarctica supporter, Carl Vinson. It is in Ellsworth Mountains Range. Just getting there is an adventure involving a 4 hour, 20000 mile plane trip on a Russian IIyushin 76 cargo plane from the tip of South America to the snow camp of Union Glacier Hills. Once there climbers are ferried via a Twin Otter to base camp. Climbs usually take place between December and February.

The climb is normally scheduled for about three weeks with the summit taking place around the middle of the time. However once there, weather can be the worst on the planet often stopping teams in their tracks for weeks. Similar to Denali, climbers carry all their personal gear plus a share of the group gear - no porters in Antarctica! The climb itself is a series of long snow slopes not requiring significant technical skills or gear however it is harsh with the weather and loads over 70 lbs split between a pack and a sled. Once you summit, if you summit, you might be stuck for more weeks waiting for the big IIyushin to return!

About 1200 people have summited Vinson since 1966. There have been no deaths. A popular option after a summit is to fly to the 89 degree and ski the final 70 miles to the South Pole.

The second highest mountain in Antarctica is Mount Tyree at 15,919'/4852m and is 7 miles north of Vinson. Only 7 climbers have made it the top of Tyree! It is significantly more difficult with it's steep faces. One of the most famous climbs in mountaineering took place in January 1989 when the legendary American alpinist Terry ‘Mugs’ Stump, an American climbing legend, soloed the west face without a rope in a roundtrip time of 12 hours - an amazing feat that still stands out 20 years later.

Vinson Resources:

7 Summits Climb for Alzheimers

The Alzheimer's Immunotherapy Program of Janssen Alzheimer Immunotherapy and Pfizer Inc. funded my climbs for the 7 Summits campaign and ongoing efforts between November 2010 and November 2012. All money I raised then and now from donations goes directly to the organizations I have selected. During the campaign, content posted here was my own but subject to certain limitations in conjunction with the support of the AIP.
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