Dubuque Native to Present Alaska, Everest, and Beyond

Oct 7, 2004 | University of Dubuque Theological Seminary

On Thursday, October 21, Dubuque native, Troy Henkels, will showcase his experiences in living life to the extreme from Alaska, to Everest, and beyond. The lecture and slide presentation will begin at 7:00 p.m. in Hadley Auditorium, Dunlap Technology Center on the University of Dubuque campus. 

A 37-year-old communication technician in Alaska, Troy earned his BA in business management at the University of Northern Iowa. After a couple of years in the corporate world, he decided to pack up his life and begin living to the extreme while traveling across the globe. Now living in Eagle River, Alaska, Troy has traveled extensively, and has lived in various places across the U.S. and around the world, including Iowa, Missouri, Colorado, the Virgin Islands, and Antarctica. He is an avid mountaineer, ice climber, paraglider, mountain biker, windsurfer, kitesurfer, musician, photographer, and journalist. 

Troy has been on eight climbing expeditions in the Alaska Range including a solo ascent of Mt. Dickey (9545) and a successful expedition on Denali (20,320). He has been a Dog Handler for a 3-time Iditarod Champion, and has been an asset at the start and finish of the Iditarod in Anchorage and Nome for 6 years. In addition, Troy has competed in several unique Alaskan adventure races including a winter endurance race across the interior of the state, as well as a mountain race, which ascends and descends 3000 feet in under an hour. 

Troy has spent a total of 16 months, two summers and a winter, in the Antarctic working as a communications technician. He played a key role on the Search and Rescue team at the American Base in McMurdo. Two of those months were spent at Amundsen/Scott South Pole Station. He has kite skied at the South Pole, Siple Dome, and the Ross Ice Shelf. 

Most recently Troy was a finalist in the adventure TV show called Global Extremes which took participants all over the world competing in a variety of adventure races culminating in five finalists attempting to climb the North side of Mt. Everest. 

In addition to having numerous articles and photographs published about his adventures - including many in the Dubuque Telegraph Herald - he has also written a book about his Antarctic experiences. 

Some of his expeditions and mountaineering experience include:

  • Eight climbing expeditions in the Alaska Range,
  • an expedition to Aconcagua - South America's highest peak
  • Stood on the Summit of Denali - North America's highest peak.
  • Mt. Everest 2003
  • Finalist in Global Extremes 2003, which consisted of a 36 hour endurance race across the Kalahari desert in Africa, a coast-to-coast race across Costa Rica, traversing of Iceland's largest icecap, and an attempt on Iceland's highest peak.
  • Paragliding expeditions to New Zealand and Australia with the longest flight being 40 miles.
  • Finisher in Alaska's grueling winter endurance Race - Iditasport
  • 16 months in Antarctica, at McMurdo and the South Pole. Member of the Antarctic Search and Rescue team.
  • 3-time finisher of Mt. Marathon, Seward, Alaska
  • Several 100 mile bicycle expeditions through Alaska wilderness and Denali Park.

While Troy has certainly done a lot, he has no plans of slowing down. His next adventure, slated for March 2005, is a ski crossing of the Bering Strait from Alaska to Russia and back. Don't miss out on this incredible opportunity to hear first-hand what it's like to live life to the extreme.