One hundred years after Captain Robert Falcon Scott’s ground-breaking Terra Nova expedition, four unique individuals attempted to reach the most inhospitable place on earth. Two of them being the first adaptive athletes to ever do so.
THE PUSH uncovers the capacity of human spirit across a year-long journey to achieve the seemingly insurmountable ... ... yet the true story that unfolds is the inspiration for all of us to live up to our ultimate potential.
THE PUSH was recently featured at TEDx Connecticut College
THE PUSH proudly supports High Fives Foundation & the Reeve Irvine Center
August 2nd, 2011 - When describing this project, Doug Stoup said "this is the most ambitious project I have ever taken on." After many adventures to both poles, and countless journeys upon the ice, Doug, with the help of Roy Tuscany and High Fives Foundation, assembled this team to achieve nothing short of 100% success - and to bring new challenge to himself. But most of all, Doug says, "I want to encourage other disabled individuals to look beyond their capabilities" and be able to share this amazing experience.
The paddle trip on Lake Tahoe, while certainly a training opportunity with its own challenges, will also provide a more hospitable environment for this group to connect at a level that will only improve their strength as a team. Once on the ice, it's all for one and one for all. There are no other options out there.
When they are on the ice, you'd be lucky to catch a glimpse of an actual face, surrounded by a thick hood, eye wear and layer upon layer of clothing. But out on sunny Lake Tahoe in mid-summer, it's a completely different story!
We'd like to introduce to you The Push team. Some of the blogs posts in the near future will be from these core team members, but in the meantime, they are prepping for the big paddle event coming up August 9-12 on Lake Tahoe. Come out and support your fellow Lake Tahoe locals (if you happen to be one yourself). These are the guys to look for!
Grant Korgan, Athlete Based in Incline Village, NV age 33
Grant Korgen is an avid snowmobiler, skier, kayaker, adventurer, and nanomechanics professional. In 2010, while snowmobiling in the Sierra backcountry, he fractured his L1 vertebrae, and suddenly added spinal cord injury recovery to his list of activities.
Grant knew he needed only one thing – positive energy. His path of recovery began with complete loss of feeling and zero movement below his belly button. But Grant knew he needed only one thing – positive energy. Refusing to take “no” for an answer Grant pushed on. In one short year, Grant has graduated from wheelchair to walking with the help of two arm crutches.
On January 17th, 2012, Grant hopes to reach the South Pole in a standing position, leaving his sit-ski to trek the final portion of this incredible journey. Ultimately, in his words, he plans to “show the world that everyone should remember to live the highest version of themselves, and that humanity can choose every day to live their limitless potential.”
John Davis, Athlete Based in Truckee, CA age 40
At age 19, Santa Cruz, CA native John Davis, a then competitive mountain biker, was injured in a car accident leaving him paralyzed from the waist down. Shortly after, John pioneered the sport of downhill wheelchair racing, bringing his own custom-designed wheelchair to National Off-Road Bicycle Association (NORBA) mountain bike races for three years before other off-road wheelchair racers began to appear.
Since then, John went on to become a two-time Paralympic gold medalist in the Lillehammer and Nagano Winter Games. He also served as alpine and feature correspondent on the A&E Network for the 2002 Winter Paralympic Games in Salt Lake City, Utah. John credits much of his success to his understanding of competition. The word “competition” is derived from the Latin word “competere,” meaning “to seek together,” an approach he says he employs for producing gold medal outcomes by bringing out the best in himself, his competitors, his coaches and his team.
Doug Stoup, Expedition Leader Based in Truckee, CA age 43
Doug Stoup is founder and expedition leader of Ice Axe Expeditions, which leads adventurers to Antarctica and Norway. Doug boasts many first descents, including the first ski and snowboard descent of the highest peak in Antarctica. Having led 20 expeditions to Antarctica and 10 to the Arctic, Doug is perhaps today’s most traveled polar explorer. As founder of the Ice Axe Foundation, Doug also aims to educate youth about this amazing planet on which we live. He has been featured internationally in television and film and pioneered streaming media from remote expeditions.
Doug intends to continue pushing the edge by successfully leading, for the first time, two adaptive athletes to the most inhospitable place on the planet, the South Pole.
Tal Fletcher, Expedition Guide Based in Truckee, CA age 36
Tal Fletcher is an expert in assessing weather, snow safety, emergency medical care, rescue, evacuation, and winter mountaineering. Tal is a frequent guide for Point North Heli-Adventures in Alaska’s Chugach Mountains. Tal is also an FAA certified pilot and licensed skydiver and paraglider, and is notorious for his ability to accomplish “off-the-cusp adventures” such as an 1,800-mile bike ride from Canada to Mexico as well as running a marathon in sandals just to prove he could do it after he was dared. Tal regularly guides ski tours on the Antarctic Coast with Doug Stoup.
This expedition will mark Tal’s first trip to the South Pole and will be quite unique. For him, this adventure is about using determination, strategy and teamwork to help his close friends accomplish amazing goals. And for Tal, that’s what life is all about.
All Photos Courtesy of Keoki Flagg www.gallerykeoki.com