Born: Princeton, New Jersey, USA
Erik Weihenmayer (born September 23, 1968) is an American athlete, adventurer, author, activist and motivational speaker, and the first person without sight to reach the summit of Mount Everest, on May 25, 2001. For this feat, he was honored with a Time magazine cover story. He also completed the Seven Summits in September 2002, joining 150 mountaineers at the time who had accomplished that feat, but as the only climber who was blind. In 2008, he also added the Carstensz Pyramid in West Papua New Guinea, the tallest peak in Australasia, thus completing the more respected Seventh Summit. Weihenmayer has also made noteworthy climbs up the Nose of El Capitan in Yosemite in 1996, and ascended Losar, a 2700 ft vertical ice face in the Himalayas in 2008.In 2005, he co-founded No Barriers, a nonprofit organization with the tagline, What’s within you is stronger than what’s in your way. The organization helps people of diverse backgrounds and abilities to attack challenges head on, problem solve, build winning teams, and serve others.In September 2014, Weihenmayer and blinded Navy veteran, Lonnie Bedwell, kayaked the entire 277 miles of the Grand Canyon, considered one of the most formidable whitewater locations in the world.Today, while still adventuring, he is a prominent worldwide speaker, focusing on the topic of living a No Barriers Life.
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