The Highest Man on Earth
Dave Mauro’s successful summits
Wednesday, September 4, 2013
Dave Mauro is a regular guy.
He’s a financial advisor in Bellingham. He performs improv at the Upfront Theatre. Oh, and he’s just finished climbing the Seven Summits—the highest points on each continent—with an ascent of Mt. Everest, Earth’s highest mountain.
It all began in 1993 when he was talked into climbing Mt. Baker. He had never climbed a mountain before and the experience was not great. The mountain was socked in, and he was sweaty and tired. After climbing down from the summit, he considered his mountain climbing career to be over.
But in 2006 he got a phone call from his brother-in-law Ty Hardt, an Anchorage, Alaska climber/TV anchorman and filmmaker. Hardt was planning a climb of Denali, North America’s highest peak. His intention was to film a high-definition documentary of the climb and he wanted someone to play the role of a novice climber to add dramatic appeal. He wanted Dave.
At the time, Mauro was going through some tough times and, although he didn’t expect to make it to the top, in his words, “I doubted failing would bother me much.”
To everyone’s surprise, he found himself on the summit of Denali on June 13, 2007. It got him thinking. And climbing. It changed his life. By this spring, he had reached the high point of every continent except one: Mt. Everest, the highest point in Asia—and the world.
To accomplish this, he braved the bitterly cold winds of Antarctica to climb Vinson Massif, endured a literally hair-raising experience in an electrical storm atop South America’s Aconcagua, managed a politically challenging visit to Mt. Elbrus in Eastern Europe, suffered whiteout conditions on Africa’s Kilimanjaro, and overcame the threats of tribal warfare, leech-infested swamps and yes, cannibalism in New Guinea while ascending the Carstensz Pyramid.
Saving the best for last, at 3:42am May 20, Mauro stood on Everest’s summit, the highest man on Earth. In so doing he became only the 65th American to climb all of the seven summits.
Now he’s back in Bellingham, where he has been coming to terms with a return to “normal” life—a life lived within the confines of comfort and routine, lacking the by-now-familiar extremes of his adventures.
But, as Mauro is quick to point out, sharing the experiences of adventure is a satisfying endeavor in its own right. He will be giving a multimedia presentation about his experience on Everest, “Reaching the Sky: Bellingham to Everest on Mt. Everest” at 7:30pm Tues., September 10 at 7 at Backcountry Essentials in Bellingham. Come early, stay late and share in his glory.
Bustin’ a move on Horseshoe Bend
I was visiting Glacier on important business recently when the thing that always happens to me up there happened again: I had an insatiable urge to ambulate the enveloping terrain that compelled me to initiate a protracted dash through the woods.
Ephemeral mist vapors atomized the sun…
Getting creative with concrete
In mid-July, Downtown Bellingham Partnership sent out a press release touting a Park(ing) Day event that would be happening Fri., Sept. 16 on the roof of the Commercial Street Parking Garage. Since then, they’ve decided to host the pop-up party—part of a national movement taking place the…
Snohomish County’s secret side
If casino gaming or shopping malls have been your only reasons to exit the I-5 in Snohomish County, you’re missing out. Everett, Marysville, and Mukilteo offer a unique array of attractions, whether your interest is some R&R on a long strip of white sand, art, kid-focused fun or history.…