Jeff Lowe (United States)
Jeff Lowe has been a climber since his father first partnered him up
the Grand Teton in 1956 at the age of seven.
With more than 500 first ascents to his credit, Jeff Lowe
is a leading proponent in the movement toward light and fast climbs of the most
technically difficult routes in the most remote mountain ranges on Earth. Eschewing large
expeditions, the use of bottled oxygen and fixed ropes, and the support of high-altitude
porters, Lowe prefers aesthetic, technically challenging new routes. His lengthy list of
representative alpine-style Himalayan climbs includes the first ascent of the North Face
of Peak 19 [Tajikistan, 1974]; a nearly completed attempt of the still-unclimbed North
Ridge of Latok I [Pakistan, 1978] where the four-man team spent 26 days and came within
300 feet of the summit before being forced to descend due to illness and lack of
provisions; the first ascent (solo) of the South Face of Ama Dablam [Nepal, 1979]; the
first solo and first winter ascent of the French Pillar on Pumori [Nepal, 1983]; the first
ascent of the Northeast Ridge of Kangtega [Nepal, 1986]; and the first ascent (made in
winter) of the East Face of Tawoche [ Nepal, 1989].
Lowe is also known for first ascents of other notable
alpine routes such as the North Face of Mount Temple  and the Ramp Route  and
Grand Central Couloir  on Mount Kitchener in the Canadian Rockies; the first winter
ascent of the West Face of the Grand Teton ; the first alpine-style and second
overall ascent of the West Pillar of Taulliraju  in the Andes; and the solo first
ascent - in winter - of Metanoia on the North Face of the Eiger .
But Jeff Lowe is more than just an alpinist. In the late
1960s and early '70s he specialized in big-wall climbing, including numerous early ascents
of the Yosemite classics. He is also a renowned free-climbing master, the author of
hundreds of classic traditional rock climbs throughout the western U.S. Among his notable
first ascents on rock are Icarus  and Risky Business  in the Colorado Rockies;
the Direct Bonatti Route on Grand Capucin  in the Alps; the first solo ascent of the
North Buttress of Puscanturpa Norte  in Peru; and Wind, Sand, and Stars  in
Zion. Lowe has also been recognized as one of the world's premiere ice climbers. His first
ascents on ice are a checklist of classic international ice testpieces.
Continuing to push climbing standards, Lowe has recently
focused his attention on mixed rock and ice climbs. Among the most difficult mixed climbs
in the world, the Lowe routes have inspired a new generation of winter climbing
Although Lowe himself prefers long, naturally protectable
climbs in remote areas, in keeping with his personal vision of the beauty and diversity of
the sport of climbing, in 1988 he organized the first World Cup sport climbing competition
in the U.S. Thanks to his efforts, the climbing wall at Snowbird Lodge in Snowbird, Utah
has, for the past nine years, been host to America's National Sport Climbing
Championships. He conceptualized and designed the world's first refrigerated ice-climbing
tower for the inaugural ESPN Winter X Games held in Big Bear Lake, California. Lowe is the
originator and organizer of the annual Arctic Wolf Ouray Ice Festival which, for the past
three winters, has been the United States' best-attended ice climbers' rendezvous.
Lowe has written numerous magazine articles. He is the
author of three books: The Ice Experience (1979); Climbing (1986, written
in conjunction with Ron Fawcett, Paul Nunn and Alan Rouse); and Ice World (1996).
A compelling lecturer, Lowe gives thought-provoking
multi-media presentations put a human face and voice on the world of extreme alpinism. He
has been the keynote speaker at numerous mountaineering events, as well as making hundreds
of presentations to business organizations and outing clubs around the world. Through his
company, Arctic Wolf, Ltd., Lowe produces instructional and historical climbing videos and
books, as well as publishing a quarterly newsletter of international climbing news called Howl:
The Voice of Arctic Wolf.
Jeff Lowe lives in the mountains west of Boulder, Colorado
with his wife Teri and their children, 11-year-old Sonja and 14-year-old Hunter.