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UW’s Jenkins to Share Burmese Climbing Adventures

February 17, 2016
man walking across mountaintop
Adventurer Mark Jenkins, of Laramie, and a team (colleague Renan Ozturk pictured) ascended the Hkakabo Razi peak, in the far northern part of Burma (Myanmar). Jenkins will discuss “Burma’s Resurrection: An Expedition Deep into a Forbidden Land” during a six-town program later this month and in March. (Mark Jenkins Photo)

Adventurer and journalist Mark Jenkins, of Laramie, will share his experiences exploring Southeast Asia’s Burma (Myanmar) during a series of public talks scheduled in six Wyoming communities in February and March.

Jenkins, a field staff writer for National Geographic and a writer-in-residence at the University of Wyoming, will present “Burma’s Resurrection: An Expedition Deep into a Forbidden Land” beginning Feb. 26 in Laramie. The program is part of UW’s Global Studies Excellence Initiative and continues the “World to Wyoming” outreach series.

On the border of Tibet, the Hkakabo Razi peak lies in the far north of Burma. Jenkins’ team traveled by train, bus, motorcycle, boat and foot, all while battling leeches, poisonous spiders and venomous snakes. Upon arriving at base camp, the team ascended the serrated and heavily glaciered west ridge of Hkakabo Razi.

Jenkins’ story about his expedition, “Point of No Return,” was in September’s National Geographic. The journey also was featured in globally recognized climber and filmmaker Renan Ozturk’s documentary, “Down to Nothing.”

In his public presentations, Jenkins will take audiences across Burma, culturally and geographically -- exploring his team’s hardships, fears, failures and freedom -- in addition to ascending the country’s highest peak at 19,300 feet.

Here is the schedule for the presentations, which are free and open to the public:

Laramie -- Friday, Feb. 26, 7 p.m., UW College of Education auditorium.

Gillette -- Tuesday, March 1, 7 p.m., Gillette College auditorium.

Sheridan -- Wednesday, March 2, 7 p.m., Sheridan Junior High School’s Early Auditorium.

Powell -- Thursday, March 3, 7 p.m., Northwest College’s Yellowstone Building conference area.

Cody -- Friday, March 4, 6 p.m., Buffalo Bill Center of the West’s Coe Auditorium.

Jackson -- Sunday, March 6, 5:30 p.m., Natural Museum of Wildlife Art.

A critically acclaimed author and internationally recognized journalist, Jenkins covers geopolitics and adventure. Among hundreds of his stories, Jenkins has written about land mines in Cambodia, the war in Eastern Congo, the loss of koalas in Australia, ethnic cleansing in Burma, climbing Mount Everest in Nepal and the vanishing ski culture of the Tuvan people in the Altai Mountains of Central Asia.

Jenkins has won numerous writing awards, including the Overseas Press Club Ross Award for “The Healing Fields” in 2013 and a National Magazine Award with colleague Brint Stirton for “Who Murdered the Mountain Gorillas” in 2009. Both projects provided the basis for statewide presentations at Wyoming’s community colleges as part of the “World to Wyoming” outreach series.

The public talks are sponsored by UW’s Center for Global Studies, UW’s Global and Area Studies Program, the Wyoming Humanities Council, the UW Outreach School and Wyoming’s community colleges, with additional support from the Ruth R. Ellbogen Foundation, the Homer and Mildred Scott Foundation and InterConnections21.

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