mark jenkins

Mark Jenkins

This week, National Geographic adventure writer Mark Jenkins embarks on what he calls his World-to-Wyoming Tour. Every year, he visits the state’s community colleges and talks about his latest expedition. This year he says he’ll tell a bittersweet story about twice failing to climb the highest peak in Burma. But he says, he won’t just be telling stories.

Cory Richards

In the 1980’s, Laramie native and National Geographic adventure writer Mark Jenkins came upon an old book called Burma’s Icy Mountains. It was written in the 50’s by an eccentric British explorer, Frank Kingdon Ward. Jenkins was hooked, especially when he learned that no one knew for sure which mountain was the highest peak in Burma: Gamlang Razi was officially measured at 19,259 feet in 2013, but as for neighboring Hkakabo Razi, no one had ever stood on top and gotten a GPS reading. Some said it was higher, some lower.

Mark Jenkins

Adventurer Mark Jenkins of Laramie gets assignments all over the world for National Geographic, the magazine he writes for. He’s climbed Mount Everest, bicycled across Siberia, and even skied in Central Asia with the world’s oldest ski culture. Now, he’s one-upped himself.

To find out more about his expedition to the caves of Vietnam, I met with Jenkins in his gear room, a very orderly nook in the basement of his house, stacked with well-labeled bins full of outdoor equipment. It’s here that all of his adventures begin.

Mark Jenkins

Laramie resident Mark Jenkins returned to Wyoming after climbing Mount Everest in May 2012.

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Laramie resident Mark Jenkins recently returned to Wyoming after climbing Mount Everest. Jenkins is a travel writer for Outside Magazine and a contributor to National Geographic … and he joins us now to discuss his experience. He says Everest expeditions are long -- typically two months or even longer.

University of Wyoming

Laramie resident Mark Jenkins has reached the summit of Mount Everest.

Jenkins reached the summit of the world's highest mountain on
Thursday. He called his wife by satellite phone from a lower camp a
few hours later.

The University of Wyoming announced Jenkins' achievement. He
first attempted to climb the mountain in 1986 when he was a
graduate student at the university. He's a writer-in-residence for
the UW master's degree program in creative writing.