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Kit DesLauriers (born 1969) is an American ski-mountaineer and the first person to ski down the Seven Summits. [1] Her ski-mountaineering feats earned her a National Geographic Adventurer of the Year award in 2015[2]. She is the first woman to have won two consecutive World Freeskiing Champion titles, in 2004 and 2005[3].

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Early lifeEdit

DesLauriers was born in Albany, New York and grew up in Westport, Massachusetts and Long Island, New York. Her grandfather built the first chairlift at Stowe Mountain in Vermont. Then, prior to starting high school, her family moved to Arizona. [4]

DesLauriers graduated from the University of Arizona with a degree in environmental political science, where she took up trail running and rock climbing. While pursuing her college degree in Arizona, Kit also obtained a scholarship from the National Outdoor Leadership School and in the summer of 1991, Kit spent a semester in Alaska. During college, she also modeled for a while so she could travel to Europe and further her ski skills, especially at Verbier. After college, she moved to Telluride, Colorado, where she lived for nearly ten years. She also spent lots of time in Indian Creek, Utah. In Telluride, she volunteered extensively with the San Miguel County Search and Rescue Team and also worked for the ski patrol at Telluride Ski Resort for two seasons, during which time she became a certified EMT and highly trained in technical and helicopter rescue.

Early skiing careerEdit

Kit first realized she wanted to ski mountains while standing atop a peak in Sikkim, India, in 1998. It was then she decided to focus on ski mountaineering and began refining her skills so that she could ski anything, anywhere in the world.

Freeskiing championshipEdit

She is a two-time women's world freeskiing champion, winning back-to-back titles in 2004 and 2005 after only two years of competition. In August 2005, she won the women's division of the Rendezvous Hill Climb to the top of the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort. The idea for the Seven Summits adventure was visualized during her time on the freeskiing circuit. The initial notion came from a 2005 meeting with Richard Bass, the first person to climb all of the peaks.

DesLauriers is the first woman to climb and ski Mount Aspiring/Tititea in New Zealand, and the first woman and first American to ski from the summit of Mount Everest. She is only the third woman to climb and ski Grand Teton in Wyoming. She is a certified Wildnerness Emergency Medical Technician, a Telluride Professional Ski Patroller, a Rescue 3 International low to high angle rope rescue instructor, a Helicopter Rescue Technician, and volunteers with Search and Rescue.

Skiing the seven summitsEdit

Her quest began in May 2004, when she became the first American woman to climb and ski from the summit of the highest peak in America -- Mount McKinley, in Alaska. This was followed in 2005 with a trek to Mount Elbrus in Russia, Europe's highest peak, a descent from Mount Kosciuszko, the highest mountain in Australia, Vinson Massif, the highest peak on Antarctica, and Aconcagua, Argentina, the highest peak in South America. In spring 2006 she climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa's highest mountain.

At 11 a.m. on October 18, 2006, DesLauriers pushed off of the summit of Mount Everest and made history as the first person to ski from the summit of the Seven Summits - the highest mountains on all seven continents.

Personal lifeEdit

DesLauriers and her husband, Rob DesLauriers, met in 1999 while on a mountaineering trip to Mount Belukha in Siberia. The couple live in Teton Village, Wyoming, where she is a stonemason and runs landscape design company Rockit Corporation. DesLauriers also coaches other women in skiing, and runs the "Turn It Up Women's Ski Camps." She also is a road and mountain bicycle competitor.

SourcesEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Hahn, Dave (2006-12-21). "The No Fall Zone". Outside Online. Retrieved 2017-06-01. 
  2. ^ "Kit DesLauriers, Adventurers of the Year 2014/2015 - National Geographic". 2014-11-06. Retrieved 2017-06-01. 
  3. ^ Hahn, Dave (2006-12-21). "The No Fall Zone". Outside Online. Retrieved 2017-06-01. 
  4. ^ "Breaking Barriers: Seven summits on skis". ESPN.com. 2008-02-06. Retrieved 2017-06-01. 

External linksEdit