Erik Weihenmayer featured on the front cover of TIME Magazine after reaching the peak of Mount Everest in 2001.
He’s climbed the seven summits, scaled a 2700-foot vertical ice face in the Himalayas and raced through Moroccan deserts and mountains on ABC feature ‘Expedition Impossible’.
He’s also been blind since he was 13 years old.
Now, the inspirational figure has launched a 21-day project that will see him kayak 277 miles through the Grand Canyon and take on the ferocious white water of the Colorado River.
Weihenmayer set off on the expedition on 7 September, and will be kayaking alongside Lonnie Bedwell, a Navy veteran who has also lost his sight and became the first blind man to paddle the Grand Canyon last year.
“I hope that when others hear about two blind kayakers paddling the mighty Colorado River, they might be inspired that a no barriers life is possible for anyone,” said Erik.
“The Grand Canyon is this huge, iconic river—the most historic in U.S, if not the world. There are 20-foot waves sometimes and powerful rapids. We might get flipped 50 times on this three-week trip.
“I can survive that, but I would like to come out on the other side flourishing.”
The journey is one that would be tediously challenging for the most able of explorers, blind or not.
But Erik and Lonnie will also be accompanied by pro kayaker and guide Harlan Taney, who will be acting as the eyes of the mission.
To keep up to date with the trip, check out the official website here, and stay tuned for more from us once the conquest has finished.