Waddell, the most decorated male skier in Paralympic history, will embark June 2008 with a "one-off", a one-of-a-kind, 4-wheel handcycle propelled entirely by arm power. The contraption provides traction and control with wheels capable of maneuvering over foot-tall obstacles. "Logs or large rocks that a walker can easily step over are massive obstacles for me," says Waddell. "My focus will be to climb the mountain one revolution at a time."
He'll be the first paraplegic, if successful, to summit the 19,340-foot Kilimanjaro, the tallest freestanding mountain in the world.
Waddell has used his abilities to challenge others, as a spokesperson for the Paralympics and winner of 13 Paralympic medals. "I am climbing Kilimanjaro because I want to shine a light back on the disabled community," says Waddell. "To show that if you really take the time to look at us, you might be surprised."
A skiing accident left Waddell paralyzed from the waist down when he was a promising young skier at Vermont's Middlebury College in 1988. Determined to get back on the slopes, he mastered the monoski and spent 11 years on the U.S. Disabled Ski Team. Waddell has been featured in numerous publications, including Outside Magazine, Skiing, Ski, and National Geographic Explorer; People Magazine named him one of "The 50 Most Beautiful People in the World." He also has appeared on Dateline and Oprah.
The journey to Kilimanjaro's summit will be filmed for the documentary, One Revolution. Click to One-Revolution.com fFor more information on Waddell's historic climb.