Andy Knapp -- Survivor

In today’s Minneapolis Star Tribune I profile Andy Knapp, a 60-year-old retail buyer at Midwest Mountaineering in Minneapolis and a lifelong adventurer who’s now fighting cancer.

The story focuses on Knapp’s life in the wilds as well as his fight over the past five years with tough-to-treat renal cell carcinoma kidney cancer.

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Knapp biking to Alaska in the ‘60s.

Can perseverance and fortitude forged from a lifetime in the outdoors boost your strength in other parts of life? For Knapp the answer is a big Yes.

He has fought kidney cancer with the same type of strategy he’d apply to a tough mountain climb: Each painful therapy, each new experimental drug is a pitch to scale on a steep face. Kick one foot into the snow, rest, breathe, then step up and kick again.

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Knapp and his team on the summit of Mt. McKinley.

The story also includes some high adventure, including descriptions of Knapp’s 1972 solo 502-mile mountain-range-traversing journey in the Brooks Range of Alaska; eight-week-long bicycle rides; mountain climbs past 20,000 feet; and kayak trips around the inland ocean of Lake Superior.

See Knapp’s full story here: http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/health/12360066.html?page=1&c=y

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1972: Knapp hikes solo 502 miles through Alaska’s Brooks Mountain Range
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Andy Knapp, December, 2007

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