Blog posts in No Barriers

Now Two Blind Kayakers

Some of you have already heard that an amazing blind guy, Lonnie Bedwell, a Navy Veteran, just kayaked the Grand Canyon. He was part of a descent of the Colorado River with an organization serving veterans, Team River Runner. I’d heard of Lonnie and even met him once at an event for disabled skiers, and he’s humble, and down-to-Earth, as well as courageous.

Big October Ahead!

Today I am embarking on a month-long adventure in Peru. First, I’ll be joining a team of injured veterans as part of our third Soldiers to Summits expedition, set high in the Peruvian Andes. S2S is part of my No Barriers organization in which we use mountain journeys as both a metaphor and training ground for setting goals, building world-class teams, innovating through adversity and stepping up to lead and serve others again.

Breaking Barriers at the No Barriers Summit

I come away from every No Barriers Summit energized and inspired to double my efforts to build a community that has the tools and the mindset to break through barriers and make contributions to the world. The recent 4-day event at Telluride was no exception.  Here are my highlights:

Are you coming to Telluride?!

The No Barriers Summit is just weeks away and I'm getting excited! The line up of speakers, scientists, and entertainers is incredible. This is an event for the whole family, with lots of adventurous activities in beautiful Telluride, Colorado. As a bonus, you'll save $25 per person if you register before August 1st. You really need to be here August 8th through the 11th! Here are some of the highlights:

What's Your Everest - Asheville edition

A gentle reminder for everyone in the North Carolina area that the next What's Your Everest? climb will feature an ascent of the highest peak on the East Coast, Mount Mitchell. Although I won't be able to attend this No Barriers event personally, lot's of my friends will be there, including some of the soldiers who have taken part in our Soldiers to Summits programs. If you want to be inspired, I hope you'll join this climb and screening of High Ground!

What's Your Everest? videos

On June 1st, nearly 60 people reached the 14,065-foot summit of Mount Bierstadt here in Colorado. What makes this exceptional is that many of the climbers faced incredible adversity to even get to the base of the mountain. Among the many stories, we had: a blind person who had never climbed a mountain before, a woman who had received a heart transplant, a man who survived two heart attacks (the last just three months ago), a stroke survivor, and several wounded warriors. No Barriers put together a great little video about our  climb that is well worth watching.

No Barriers Essay Contest, 1st place!

Last but certainly not least in our No Barriers Mindset essay contest is the winning entry from Michelle Smith. I think Michelle Smith really captured the spirit of my message and has implemented the mindset in her own life. For her winning entry, Michelle will receive the Grand Prize, an awesome tent from my longtime sponsor, Mountain Hardwear.

No Barriers Essay Contest, 2nd place

Here is an excerpt from the Second Place entry into the No Barriers Mindset essay contest. I appreciate how Mackenzie is not letting a medical condition get in the way of enjoying a favorite activity. When you take on the No Barriers Mindset, you both adapt and leverage your situation to live life to the fullest. For this essay, Mackenzie will be receiving a pair of trekking poles from Leki, my longtime sponsor. Reach! Erik 

No Barriers Essay Contest, 3rd place

Here is the Third Place entry into the No Barriers Mindset essay contest. I like Megan's grit and determination, though I do encourage her to dream big! As a reward, we are sending her a sterling silver REACH pendant  as a bit of encouragement during those hard days ahead. Reach! Erik   Megan Jones, 12th grade, Piqua High School, Piqua, Ohio

No Barriers Essay Contest Runner-ups

Back in April, I created an essay contest for students to explore the No Barriers Mindset. My goal was to get kids thinking about how they can apply some of my “tools” in their own lives to not just overcome challenges but shatter them.

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