Vern Tejas

Vern Tejas

Guide: International, Washington, Alaska

Vern is known for Denali’s first solo winter ascent, the first solo of Mt. Vinson (Antarctica’s highest), first winter ascent of Mt. Logan (Canada’s highest) and as lead guide for Col. Norman Vaughan’s first ascent of Mt. Vaughan in remote Antarctica. In 2000, Vern was named one of Alaska’s top 50 Athletes of the Century by Sports Illustrated and in 2012 was inducted into the Alaska Sports Hall of Fame. In addition to his fame in the extreme environments of Alaska, Greenland and Antarctica, Vernon’s success in guiding people to the summit is simply remarkable. Along with guiding numerous high altitude expeditions, Vern is a ten time summiteer of Everest and an avid adventure racer finishing 10th in 1999 and 13th in 2001 in the Eco-Challenge Race. Vern’s guided ascents are an extremely unique blend of his dynamic spirit, climbing expertise and guiding savvy, known throughout the guiding community. Recently Vern had outstanding success Mt. Vinson, Last Degree-South Pole, Denali, Elbrus (Europe’s highest) and has guided many of our Everest expeditions this century.  He has guided Vinson more than anyone. Notable among his accomplishments on the Seven Summits, Vern climbed and guided all 7 in 134 days (the current speed record), he has climbed all 7 at least 10 times. He also completed all 7 twice within one year. Vern is also the only person in the world to have completed “The Seventy Summits,” and first to guide Seven Summits and North and South Poles. With a guitar in hand and a smile on his face, Vernon treats everyone to the remarkable experience of life. [Click for Interview with Vern.]

20-year

Significant Ascents

  • First person to climb Seven Summits 10 times
  • Mt Everest (10 guided summit ascents)
  • Denali (55 guided, 1st solo winter ascent, 1st paraglider descent, 14:50 speed ascent)
  • Elbrus (36 guided & speed 3:20 ascent from hut)
  • Aconcagua (25 guided & 8:02 speed ascent)
  • Carstensz Pyramid (3 Guided, via Jungle route)
  • Vinson (39 guided & personal,1st solo ascent, 10:20 speed ascent, 1st paraglide descent)
  • Kilimanjaro (15 guided & 10:45 speed ascent)
  • Greenland (world’s northernmost mountain)
  • Mt. Hunter (first winter ascent), Alaska
  • Mt. Logan (first winter ascent), Canada
  • Mt. Blanc (3 guided & personal), Rainier (2 guided), Cho-oyu (1 guided)
  • Chimborazo, Matterhorn, Kinabalu, Cotopaxi
  • Peru: Urus, Ishinca, Pisco
  • Nepal: Island Peak, Mera Peak

Significant Explorations

  • 1st Traverse of Wrangell-St. Elias Range
  • Ski Mt. Guide Shackleton Traverse x 2
  • First Wheeled Crossing of Antarctica
  • Ski Guide Last Degree to South Pole x 2
  • Ski Guide Last Degree to North Pole
  • Scout Overland Traverse to South Pole
  • Kayak Guide Greece, Santorini and Crete

Awards & Recognition

  • Alaska Sports Hall of Fame
  • Life member American Alpine Club
  • Alaskan of the Year Governor’s Award
  • Sports Illustrated Top 50 Athletes Alaska
  • Eco-Challenge finisher 10th & 13th place
  • NPS Denali Pro Pin for Rescue
  • “Cover Boy” Alaska Magazine
  • 15 year member USHPA (Paragliding)
  • Producer “Strummit from Summit” CD
  • Host for Food Network’s “Tasting Alaska”
  • Talent ESPN TV special “Surviving Denali”
  • Talent for National Geographic “Ultimate Survival Alaska”

Certifications

  • Wilderness First Responder / CPR (8 times)
  • 20 year member AK Mountain Rescue
  • Avalanche Level 2

We had a great climb and were blessed with some really good weather. The food and planning worked out well along the way. All the camps were set up with gear which minimised the need to carry a lot of extra stuff – a real strength for AAI.

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