7 PEAKS. 7 CONTINENTS. 2 POLES. 1 MISSION.
7 PEAKS. 7 CONTINENTS. 2 POLES. 1 MISSION.
A team of disabled adventurers are on a mission to be the first disabled team in history to complete the notorious Grand Slam. Very few adventurers have completed all stages of this impressive feat, which entails summiting the highest peak on each of the 7 continents and walking unsupported to the geographic North and South Poles. The Adaptive Grand Slam team will learn to climb using modified techniques and equipment in order to take on the world’s most challenging mountains. This evolving team is comprised of disabled adventurers, professional mountaineers and expedition leaders and supportive members of the extreme adventure community.
“Through our endeavours we can demonstrate that one can still achieve great things. If one has support, drive and determination, a debilitating injury should not stop you from reaching your goals". Martin Hewitt, AGS Team Leader. In this world first series, the Adaptive Grand Slam challenge aims to select, train and enable disabled adenturers to take on some of the most extreme expeditions and testing challenges on the planet and inspire others with life-long injuries and disabilities to achieve their goals.
The Adaptive Grand Slam (AGS) is comprised of the highest peak in each continent in addition to the North and South Poles. The organisers and adventurers of these expeditions are ex-servicemen, civilian members of the disabled community, professional mountaineers and expedition leaders and our supporters. The Grand Slam is considered, amongst seasoned mountain climbers and expedition leaders, as the height of expedition achievement and the AGS team are unique in that they have to rely on alternative ways and means of completing the challenge with their various disabilities.
To date, AGS team members have reached the North Pole unsupported and have successfully summited Mt Denali, Mt Elbrus, Mt Kilimanjaro and Mt Aconcagua. We have been forced to abandon our first summit attempts on Mt Aconcagua and Mt Everest due to severe weather. Our team have also summited Grand Paradiso and Mt Manaslu on training exercises.
Many people with life changing injuries face a long process of rehabilitation, finding themselves thrown out of action and into the perplexities of physical and psychological obstacles and difficulties with self-acceptance. The AGS was established to select, train and develop disabled teams to tackle extreme expeditions and challenges supported by professional expedition and challenge leaders in order to support the AGS foundation (Registered UK charity number 1173076).
The AGS aims to provide examples of achievement with disability and to inspire our community to achieve the extraordinary. In doing so, the team hopes to raise awareness of our disabled community, establish new records, conduct world first attempts and collaborate with like minded organisations. We also aim to enhance the development of prosthetics and other adaptive equipment through testing on our endeavours.
The AGS seeks to tackle the greatest challenges known to mankind. Our first epic series is to complete the notorious Explorers' Grand Slam. We select, train and prepare our teams for each mission. Each mission is undertaken by a small core team providing experience and continuity, with additional team members joining singular expeditions. If you are registered disabled and want to take on an extreme challenge, we want to hear from you. If you'd like to support the AGS foundation, please follow this link https://www.justgiving.com/ags-foundation
Challenges Completed: Mt Denali, Mt Elbrus, Mt Kilimanjaro, Mt Aconcagua, The Geographic North Pole
Challenges Attempted: Mt Everest.
Terry served twice in Iraq with 2 Para as a Private and Lance Corporal. He passed the SAS Briefing Course but chose to go to Afghanistan in 2008 as the Lead Section Commander for C Company, leading all of the Battalion and Brigade operations. Terry was injured in August 2008, sustaining a below the knee amputation of his right leg with a damaged right hand and amputated little finger. He was the fastest ever amputee to be discharged after just 4 months. Since his injury, Terry has gone on to achieve a position on the GB cycling team, obtaining several World Records, including winning the World Championship for team sprint. In June 2014, Terry successfully summited Mont Blanc (4,810m) in Italy and Mont Elbrus (5,462 m) in Russia.
Challenges Completed: Mt Elbrus, Mt Kilimanjaro, Mt Aconcagua
Challenges Attempted: Mt Denali
Matt Nyman was injured in Iraq when the AH-6 Little Bird he was on went into an uncontrolled spin during a special operations mission. He was thrown from the helicopter and into the tail boom which severed his right leg. After his injury, Matthew made an attempt at climbing Mount Denali however after reaching 17,200 ft, High Camp, he was turned down the mountain due to altitude sickness. Undeterred, in 2010 he returned and successfully summited the mountain. In the same year, he went on to climb Mount Lobuche with ‘Soldiers to Summits’. In 2013 Matt successfully summited Mount Elbrus with the Adaptive Grand Slam team and is a motivational speaker with Fieri Leadership and training instructor with Mission X.
Challenges Completed: Mt Denali, Mt Elbrus, Mt Kilimanjaro, Mt Aconcagua
Harry Taylor is a former British SAS member, mountaineer and security advisor. He founded ‘High Adventure’ with Loel Guinness, an extreme sports company specifically designed to set records in climbing, paragliding and skydiving. His team set a world distance flight record for a paraglider at 150.6km in Namibia. In 1991, with close friend Charles “Nish” Bruce he made a tandem skydive with oxygen from 27,000 ft over Badajoz in Spain. Taylor flew a tandem paraglider from Cho Oyu (8,201m) Tibet and was also the first British paraglider pilot to fly from Denali, Alaska. Harry was the Adaptive Grand Slam team guide on Mount McKinley in 2013 and Mount Elbrus in 2014. Harry, a co-founder of Mission X, will now guide the team on their remaining Adaptive Grand Slam challenges.
Jaco van Gass joined the Parachute Regiment in 2007. During his second tour of Afghanistan, he sustained life changing injuries, including the loss of his left arm at the elbow. Since then, he has taken on the world. He's completed the unsupported trek to the Geographic North Pole, he became the first disabled South African to summit Mt. Manaslu (8164m - the 8th highest peak in the world), he successfully summited one of our 7 summits: Mt. McKinley (6194m), he's a current member of the GB Paralympic Academy cycling team and has won 3 gold and 1 silver medal at the Invictus Games in 2014 and 2016.
Challenges Completed: Mt. McKinley, Mt Aconcagua, The Geographic North Pole
Challenges Attempted: Mt. Everest