Skip to main content

Climb Mountains for Clean Air and Healthy Lungs

Climb for Clean Air
Image used with permission by copyright holder
November is Lung Cancer Awareness month and it comes with some startling facts.

Did you know that lung cancer kills more people than breast, colon, and prostate cancers together? It’s also the primary terminal cancer for American women. Those grim statistics have helped give way to an awesome initiative: The Climb for Clean Air program, which is turning 30 in 2017.

summit climb for clean air initiative

Started in an effort to end the deadly scourge of Tuberculosis (TB), which killed without mercy, the American Lung Association has been around for over a century. It changed it’s name from the snappy “National Association for the Study and Prevention of Tuberculosis” to The American Lung Association when it began to tackle more pulmonary issues. Just a few of its successes include discovering a treatment for children with TB, banning smoking on flights, identifying the gene that’s to blame for cystic fibrosis, and discovering a treatment that inhibits growth of lung cancer tumor cells. Additionally, they’ve worked to strengthen the Clean Air Act, which helps us all breath easier.

Still, a staggering 30 million people in the US have some form of chronic lung disease meaning there is a lot of work left to be done to protect those useful wind bags (not at all an accurate scientific or medical term) in our chests.  

That’s why fundraising events like The Climb for Clean Air are so important. And in this case, it is also ridiculously fun. The Climb for Clean Air program began in 1987 and since then, over 1,500 people have received the training, support, and guidance to climb mountains. And not just any dinky little mountains: we’re talking Mount Rainier (11,245 feet), Mount Hood (14,410 feet), and Mount Baker (10,781 feet). Over five million dollars for research has been raised through the program. Essentially, you are provided with everything you need to become a mountain climber (no prior experience necessary) while raising money to help save and enhance lives. Has there ever been a cooler fundraiser?

sign for climb for clean air fundraiser

“The Climb for Clean Air program brought together many things in my life — from the need to do something adventurous and challenging to the chance to honor my mother, who died of lung cancer in 2003, and to help fight lung disease,” said Mt. Hood participant Wendy Barnes. “I have worked with a group of pulmonary specialists for 18 years and see patients for lung diseases such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and lung cancer. My climb also honored these wonderful patients and their courageous attitudes.”

This year’s honorary co-chairs are ridiculously badass: Stacy Allison, only the first woman ever to summit Mount Everest, Lou Whittaker, revered mountain climber and co-founder of Rainier Mountaineering who has climbed up and down Mt. Rainer an unbelievable 250 times, and his son, Win Whittaker, who has climbed Mt. Rainier an equally insane 182 times, which begs the question, do the Whittaker men ever just watch a movie?

fundraiser climb for american lung assocation

Registration for the 2017 June, July, and August climbs is already open, so get going because as Jack Kerouac said, “…in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in the office or mowing your lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain.” And climb it for a cause!

Editors' Recommendations

Elizabeth Dahl
Elizabeth Dahl is a southern girl in the heart of Los Angeles who lived far too long before learning what an incredible food…
How to Support the Teachers in Your Life
how to support the teachers in life talking students

For most folks, the beginning of fall conjures up images of bright foliage, plump apples, and pumpkin spiced everything, but for me, the season always makes me think of school. Maybe it’s because I loved being a student or because my mom is a teacher, but the crisp cool autumnal air always brings me back to the days of lockers, backpacks, and study hall (yes, I was a teacher’s pet — sue me!)

All that being said, I thought it might be important for those without teacher moms to write an article about how to support the teachers in your life as they embark on the new school year. This list is by no means exhaustive, but it does offer a few tips and tricks for showing up for your pals who are out there doing one of the most rewarding — and difficult —  jobs around.

Read more
Arc’teryx Wants to Buy Back Your Used Gear for the Good of the Planet
arcteryx rock solid used gear program interview arc teryx jacket in use

It’s likely no secret to you that clothing waste is a massive environmental issue the world over. As fast fashion moved during the last couple of decades, clothes have become disposable items that some people toss after only a few years. Whether the garment is worn out because it’s cheaply made or they simply want something new, this waste has created mountains of clothing in landfills. But some clothing brands and businesses are doing their part to curb the problem, which is exactly the mission of Arc’teryx’s new Rock Solid Used Gear program.

The program is a nod to Arc’teryx’s original name from when the company was created in 1989, Rock Solid, and is essentially a repurposing hub to keep quality products in circulation as long as possible while lessening the company’s environmental footprint. Arc’teryx products are known for their top-of-the-line technical construction, so they are using their extensive knowledge to buy back gently used gear, clean and repair it, and resell it at a lower cost. Not only does this reduce the amount of clothing that ends up in the trash, but it also makes their products affordable to more consumers.

Read more
The 10 best Johnny Depp movies, ranked
Willy Wonka in "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory."

Johnny Depp put his career in a tailspin in the late 2010s and early 2020s. From domestic abuse issues to drug abuse, the talented performer lost roles in the Fantastic Beasts series and hasn't appeared in many big films during the last decade. Current struggles don't erase past successes, though. Depp is one of the best actors of the 1990s and 2000s. His skills range from comedy, drama, fantasy, horror, and everything in between.

Depp often transforms into characters who look nothing like one another, from pirate captains to chocolatiers in top hats. His willingness to get out of his comfort zone and pursue audacious characters defined his prime and helped him become a Hollywood legend. These are the best Johnny Depp movies of all time!

Read more