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The American Alpine Club and Black Diamond are pleased to announce the 2021 Cutting Edge Grant recipients. The Cutting Edge Grant continues the Club’s 100-year tradition and seeks to fund individuals planning expeditions to remote areas featuring unexplored mountain ranges, unclimbed peaks, difficult new routes, first free ascents, or similar world-class pursuits. Objectives featuring a low-impact style and leave-no-trace mentality are looked upon with favor. For the 2021 grant cycle, Black Diamond is a proud sponsor and partner in supporting cutting-edge alpinism. $25,000 has been awarded to six recipients.
Ryan Driscoll will receive a grant to attempt the North Face (aka The Medusa Face) of Mount Neacola in Lake Clark National Park, Alaska.
Nick Aiello-Popeo will receive a grant to attempt the unclimbed 6,000-vertical-foot West Face of Ganesh I (7,422 meters/24,350 feet; also called Yangra). This Himalayan giant is the highest peak in the Ganesh Himal in eastern Nepal, on the Tibetan border. The mountain has only seen one recoded ascent, from the north in 1955. Himalayan historian Damien Gildea described the objective as “one of the biggest unclimbed faces in the Himalaya.”
Matthew Cornell will receive a grant to attempt the West Face of the North Horseman, and the West Face of Pyramid Peak in Alaska’s Revelation Mountains.
Vitaliy Musiyenko will receive a grant to attempt new routes on the North Face of Melanphulan (6,573 M) and the South Face of Nuptse in the Khumbu Region. Musiyenko had previously been awarded the Cutting Edge Grant in 2020, but the expedition was postponed due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.
And lastly, Sam Hennessey will receive a grant to attempt the East Face of Jannu East.
The Cutting Edge Grant is sponsored by Black Diamond, who’s equipment has helped climbers and alpinist to reach their summits for decades. Black Diamond is an integral partner in supporting climbers of all abilities and disciplines, with a long history of supporting climbers and their dreams through grants like the Cutting Edge Grant. Applications for the Cutting Edge Grant are accepted each year from October 1st through November 30th.
For more information, visit americanalpineclub.org/cutting-edge-grant
For more information on Black Diamond, visit blackdiamondequipment.com