SUMMIT ON THE SUMMIT: Kilimanjaro

Lupe Fiasco shares the dream of SOTSK from the snow-covered peak of Mt. Kilimanjaro…

THANK YOU Kenna for bringing us all together!

THANK YOU Kenna for bringing us all together!

Read The Outside Magazine article about Summit on the Summit…
CLIMBER BLOG: Shannon Ethridge
I think this project ultimately picked me rather than the other way around. I was actually on a trip with Kenna and a group of mutual friends in early 2008 when the words about his vision began to permate into all of our hearts. He wanted to invite his friends to climb Kilimanjaro to raise awareness for clean water. It was a simple notion, yet Kenna knew the effort required action takers and that somewhere in his world of DOers…they existed. As many of my Angeleno friends jumped on board to help him, I naturally feel into the mix.At about the same time, this Gandhi quote had taken hold of me: “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”It had become a catalyst to begin my own search for a way to participate in a larger movement. If I could lead by example, would anyone follow? I had joined forces with my good friend Brooke Fedro to start a partnership that motivated creative, cause-oriented content with an action-oriented vision. Brooke and I knew we could DO something to help make Kenna’s vision a reality, but it was just going to taking some pavement pounding. A little hard work towards something you believe in is good for the soul, and I was ready to feed mine.What was an issue that I had no sense of quickly became my passion. The stories and statistics surrounding clean water for humanity overwhelmed me. This was a massive problem! Each person I told sensed the enormity. But I knew that even the simplest of actions could make an incredible difference in the lives of others, so I stayed on the long train ride towards Kilimanjaro.  When I invested in producing this massive effort, I truly saw it as a simple way that I could help those who needed it or a way to at least inspire others to do the same. If I just started to DO something…everything would fall into place…and that is exactly what happened.SOTSK was a success because of the collaborations that will exist beyond our footsteps on that mountain, because of the community we formed that will take larger footsteps in creating a movement for clean, safe drinking water.You don’t have to climb a mountain to change the world, but you could flush your toilet less often or volunteer for an hour and actually change a life.In the words of Nike…JUST DO IT!
- Shannon Ethridge

CLIMBER BLOG: Shannon Ethridge

I think this project ultimately picked me rather than the other way around. I was actually on a trip with Kenna and a group of mutual friends in early 2008 when the words about his vision began to permate into all of our hearts. He wanted to invite his friends to climb Kilimanjaro to raise awareness for clean water. It was a simple notion, yet Kenna knew the effort required action takers and that somewhere in his world of DOers…they existed. As many of my Angeleno friends jumped on board to help him, I naturally feel into the mix.

At about the same time, this Gandhi quote had taken hold of me: “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”

It had become a catalyst to begin my own search for a way to participate in a larger movement. If I could lead by example, would anyone follow? I had joined forces with my good friend Brooke Fedro to start a partnership that motivated creative, cause-oriented content with an action-oriented vision. Brooke and I knew we could DO something to help make Kenna’s vision a reality, but it was just going to taking some pavement pounding. A little hard work towards something you believe in is good for the soul, and I was ready to feed mine.

What was an issue that I had no sense of quickly became my passion. The stories and statistics surrounding clean water for humanity overwhelmed me. This was a massive problem! Each person I told sensed the enormity. But I knew that even the simplest of actions could make an incredible difference in the lives of others, so I stayed on the long train ride towards Kilimanjaro.  When I invested in producing this massive effort, I truly saw it as a simple way that I could help those who needed it or a way to at least inspire others to do the same. If I just started to DO something…everything would fall into place…and that is exactly what happened.

SOTSK was a success because of the collaborations that will exist beyond our footsteps on that mountain, because of the community we formed that will take larger footsteps in creating a movement for clean, safe drinking water.

You don’t have to climb a mountain to change the world, but you could flush your toilet less often or volunteer for an hour and actually change a life.

In the words of Nike…JUST DO IT!

- Shannon Ethridge

THANK YOU Guides, Cooks, Waiters & Porters!

We were blessed with an incredible support team…

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THANK YOU Dickie Morris for helping create this blog!
While we were climbing up the mountain in Africa, Dickie was across the world in Virginia receiving our texts, tweets, emails and pics…often working through the night due to the time-difference to get the posts up…

THANK YOU Dickie Morris for helping create this blog!

While we were climbing up the mountain in Africa, Dickie was across the world in Virginia receiving our texts, tweets, emails and pics…often working through the night due to the time-difference to get the posts up…

America’s drinking water systems face an annual shortfall of at least $11 billion to replace aging facilities that are near the end of their useful lives and to comply with existing and future federal water regulations. This does not account for growth in the demand for drinking water over the next 20 years. Leaking pipes lose an estimated 7 billion gallons of clean drinking water a day.
SOTSK PROJECT COORDINATOR BLOG: Danielle Dreis
I landed in Hollywood after a year of travel to 30+ countries. My dream was to get into feature films, but the universe had other plans for me. When I first met Brooke & Shannon and learned about SOTSK I was alarmed by the water statistics they presented, but at the same time inspired by their dedication towards solving this issue. After learning about SOTSK every other project seemed trivial, I needed to be a part of this climb. For me, my involvement in this project has been the pinnacle of my career…being able to work in the entertainment industry on a project that’s for the greater good has been incredibly fulfilling.  The experience was incredible. I feel so blessed to have been a part of such an amazing event. The SOTSK team is inspirational and I feel very fortunate to know these people. But in the end, what I hope I’ll never forget about SOTSK, is that we can make a difference…every one of us has the ability to positively change the future of people in need. So little can mean so much.  Every little bit helps. Awareness is the key to change. Understanding your impact and changing your habits will make a difference.  
- Danielle Dreis

SOTSK PROJECT COORDINATOR BLOG: Danielle Dreis

I landed in Hollywood after a year of travel to 30+ countries. My dream was to get into feature films, but the universe had other plans for me. When I first met Brooke & Shannon and learned about SOTSK I was alarmed by the water statistics they presented, but at the same time inspired by their dedication towards solving this issue. After learning about SOTSK every other project seemed trivial, I needed to be a part of this climb. For me, my involvement in this project has been the pinnacle of my career…being able to work in the entertainment industry on a project that’s for the greater good has been incredibly fulfilling.  

The experience was incredible. I feel so blessed to have been a part of such an amazing event. The SOTSK team is inspirational and I feel very fortunate to know these people. But in the end, what I hope I’ll never forget about SOTSK, is that we can make a difference…every one of us has the ability to positively change the future of people in need. So little can mean so much.  Every little bit helps. Awareness is the key to change. Understanding your impact and changing your habits will make a difference.  

- Danielle Dreis

THANK YOU First Ascent! 

We were hammered throughout the climb by rain, sleet & snow but beat back the elements and stayed warm & dry thanks to Eddie Bauer’s First Ascent new line of expedition quality mountaineering apparel and gear. The stuff’s amazing. It’s designed by some of the top climbers in the world, including SOTSK’s Melissa Arnot, and is incredibly comfortable & functional!

We were generously outfitted with baselayers, insulation and outerwear that featured premium European goose down and PrimaLoft. For most of the climb, our BC100s (the bright blue waterproof jackets) were our go-to outer item, made from 2.5 layer WeatherEdge Plus fabric which provided us incredible rain protection and also breathability so we didn’t overheat while trudging up the mountain. For cold nights at camp and the final ascent we wore our big Peak XV Down Jackets.

We all faced challenges while climbing to 19,340 feet. Thankfully our gear wasn’t one of them!