Hilaree Nelson

Named one of the most adventurous women in the world of sports by Outside Magazine, Hilaree has claimed first ski descents in Mongolia, India, Russia and Greenland. An intrepid explorer, her moxie is as impressive as her résumé: She is the first woman to have climbed both Everest and neighboring 27,940-foot Lhotse in 24 hours—on a sprained ankle. She climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro with a broken leg, and skied from the summit of the world’s sixth-highest mountain (26,906-foot Cho Oyu) without supplemental oxygen. Hilaree is a veteran guide of big-mountain expeditions, including a ski descent of Denali in 2011. A native of the Pacific Northwest, she grew up skiing in the Cascade Mountain Range before moving to Chamonix, where she launched her ski mountaineering career as the European Women’s Extreme Skiing champ in 1996. Her proudest professional moment has been skiing the 5 Holy Peaks of Mongolia.


  • Denali Summit and Ski, Alaska Range, June 2011
  • Ski Exploration in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, May 2010
  • Attempted ski descent of Gasherbrum II, Pakistan, turned around at 7500m, June 2008
  • Ski exploration in Prince William Sound, Alaska, April 2007
  • Climbed and skied several peaks throughout Bolivia, Spring 2006
  • Skied from the summit of Cho Oyu in Nepal
  • Kamchatka, Russia: exploring the region via helicopter and ski touring
  • Cerro Mercedario Ski Expedition: first ski descent of the south face of Mercedario, from 19,500 feet, Los Andes, Argentina