Minnesota adventurer becomes first solo climber to summit Denali in January

Author:
Updated:
Original:

Fourth time's a charm.

Grand Marais arctic adventurer Lonnie Dupre became the first person to reach the summit of the tallest peak in North America on a solo climb in the month of January.

Dupre reached the 20,320-foot tip of Alaska's Mount McKinley (also called Denali) shortly after 5 p.m. CDT Sunday, according to his official Facebook page. His team got a ping from a GPS tracker signaling his arrival at the summit.

This embed is invalid

"Its been many years in making," Stevie Anna Plummer, project coordinator for Dupre, told Channel 2 News. "Lonnie just stuck to it. I'm extremely proud of him. He's never not completed an expedition and now he can add this one to the list."

But it's not over for Dupre yet; the 53 year old still has to get back down the mountain.

Plummer told Alaska Dispatch News that the descent is often the hardest part of the journey because climbers are "extremely fatigued" and need to be "extra careful with their footing."

Dupre started the climb on Dec. 18, 2014. This was the fourth year the Grand Marais adventurer attempted to climb to McKinley’s summit in January. Bad weather thwarted his previous attempts, according to Dupre’s website, OneWorldEndeavors.com.

Climbing the mountain isn’t easy – only a team of two Russians has reached the mountain’s summit in the month of January, the Duluth News Tribune says. In all, 16 climbers from nine expeditions have reached the summit in the winter – six climbers died on those expeditions, Dupre's website says.

The mountain is known to have unpredictable weather and vast crevasse fields, making it difficult to climb even in the summer. In the winter, wind speeds can exceed 100 mph and with only six hours of daylight, temperatures often plummet to minus 50 degrees or colder, his website says.

Next Up

Flickr -  Bank Plaze Nov 2020 - Chad Davis

US Bank employees won't return to downtown Minneapolis office next month

The company, citing COVID's resurgence, has pushed back its office return plans.

Katie Storm Twitter Bally Sports North - Aug 4 2021

MN native Katie Storm returning home for role with Bally Sports North

The St. Cloud State grad had worked for Fox Sports North before leaving for Philadelphia.

Flickr - Wisconsin State Fair cream puff - USDA

Free cream puff for people who get vaccinated at the Wisconsin State Fair

Get a shot, then head over to Cream Puff Pavilion for a free treat.

theodore wirth trailhead

Minneapolis parks now requiring masks in all indoor spaces

Anyone going inside recreation centers, ice arenas, and indoor spaces at pools must put on a mask.

Eric Reinbold - Pennington County Sheriff Aug 4 2021

At-large murder suspect was caught after triggering trail camera

Authorities had been searching for Eric Reinbold for nearly a month.

Flickr - toxic algae bloom - MPCA Photos

Climate change is warming lakes, leading to more toxic algae blooms

The MPCA says blue-green algae blooms are occurring all across the state.

vaccine, covid

Minnesotans can now register to get $100 for getting the COVID-19 vaccine

It's available for those who get their first jab between July 30 and Aug. 15.

Phillip Miller

Benton County prosecutor charged with sexual assault of teenager

Phillip Miller has been charged with varying levels of sexual assault charges.

Pixabay - pistol holster handgun

Permit-to-carry law doesn't violate 2nd amendment, MN Supreme Court says

A man charged with carrying a pistol without a permit argued it was unconstitutional.

covid

Here is Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Wednesday, August 4

The delta variant has been leading to higher case counts and hospitalizations in Minnesota.

Related

Low visibility hampers Grand Marais climber on Denali

Lonnie Dupre hopes to continue his climb Wednesday if he can see at least 100 feet in front of him. The adventurer is trying to become the first person to climb North America's tallest mountain -- alone -- in January. He tried last year but had to stop at 17,200 feet because of the bad weather.