La Sportiva supports expedition alpinists in the community by sponsoring the Copp-Dash Inspire Award climbing grant...
By funding the CDIA grant, La Sportiva contributes to the mentorship of a new generation of alpinists, helps to inspire the outdoor community, and enables explorers to achieve their dreams.
Photo: Zach Clanton
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Why the Copp-Dash Inspire Award?
Our goal at La Sportiva North America is to create a positive impact on individuals, communities, and the environment by making the most technical and sustainably-sourced product, sponsoring passionate and high-performing athlete ambassadors, and funding non-profit organizations like the Jonny Copp Foundation that do good in the outdoor community.
La Sportiva is proud to have sponsored the Jonny Copp Foundation “Copp-Dash Inspire Award” since it was started in 2010.
The foundation and grant were conceived after two of our well-loved alpine climbing ambassadors, Jonny Copp and Micah Dash, were killed in 2009 by an avalanche on an expedition in western China.
La Sportiva values living with the kind of vigor, passion for the mountains, and character that Jonny Copp and Micah Dash embodied and supports the CDIA grant as a way to honor their lives and inspire others to live by their example. Oftentimes, the lessons we learn in the mountains and the stories and experiences we come away with are as, if not more, important than the climb itself. By funding the CDIA grant, La Sportiva contributes to the mentorship of a new generation of alpinists, helps to inspire the outdoor community, and enables explorers to achieve their dreams.
What is the Copp Dash Inspire Award?
The Copp-Dash Inspire Award (CDIA) provides storytelling mentorship and financial support to small expedition climbing teams attempting difficult first ascents in remote places around the world with light, fast and clean alpine form. Each year, La Sportiva and other outdoor brands contribute a portion of funding to the total $20,000 CDIA grant pool. This funding is then distributed to grant recipients for expeditions planned between May 1st and February 28th of the following year. In addition to financial support, grant winners also receive storytelling mentorship from the Adventure Film Festival, Alpinist Magazine, Sender Films and from professional photographers John Dickey and Mikey Schaefer.
Who are CDIA grant recipients?
This year, La Sportiva was honored to work directly with a few of the CDIA recipients including Jeff Shapiro, Zach Clanton, and Whitney Clark. A full list of last years grant recipients may be found on the Copp-Dash Inspire Award Website.
Jeff Shapiro and Chris Gibisch - First Ascent of “Pneuma” Kishtwar, India
Learn more about Jeff Shapiro and Chris Gibisch’s expedition from the trip report Pneuma by Chris Gibisch.
Jeff Shapiro and Chris Gibisch make the first ascent of “Pneuma” (VI AI4, M5, 1300m) in Kishtwar, India. Photo: Chris Gibisch.
Zach Clanton, James Gustafson, and Reese Doyle Explore Unclimbed Serendipity Spires in Alaska
This party of three spent 25 days exploring an entirely new alpine climbing arena called “Serendipity Spires” in Alaska. Learn more about their exploration experience in the photo essay trip report, Alaska’s Serendipity Spires by Zach Clanton.
Photo: Zach Clanton
Whitney Clark and Crystal Davis Robbins attempt Gupta in Kishtwar, India
La Sportiva sponsored Whitney Clark and Crystal Davis Robbins to attempt the first ascent of Gupta in Kishtwar, India.
Photo: Whitney Clark
Clark and Davis Robbins attempt Gupta, a steep, fin-shaped peak of snow, ice and granite in Kishtwar, India. Photo: Crystal Davis Robbins
Read more about Whitney and Crystal's trip in Whitney's blog article.
How to apply
Applications for the award are accepted from January 1st to February 28th and recipients are announced on March 30th. Proposals for expedition plans may include a wide variety of storytelling projects including photo essay, video, article, or slide show presentation. To apply for the Copp-Dash Inspire Award visit the American Alpine Club CDIA application page beginning January 1st 2017.
Words: Sofia Cortopassi | Photos: Whitney Clark and Crystal Davis Robbins