54 Year Old-North Carolina Native Will Climb Tanzania’s Mt. Kilimanjaro For 35th Time
Posted By Shannon Emmanuel
(Kilimanjaro, Tanzania- July 24, 2014) North Carolina native, Macon Dunnagan, continues to prove that age is not a factor as he plans his 35th climb to the “Roof of Africa”, Tanzania’s Mt. Kilimanjaro, the world’s tallest freestanding mountain at 19,341 feet. Recently, he broke a record for making the most Kilimanjaro summits in one month when he climbed four times in 28 days. At 54 years old, he serves as an inspiration for others as he still has climbs scheduled through 2017. Dunnagan made his first ascent in February 1999 with little hiking and no mountain climbing experience and has yet to look back. He has since become a Kilimanjaro specialist and Expedition Director for Zara Tanzania Adventures, a Tanzanian tour company based in Moshi, in 2013. In 2013, the Tanzania Tourist Board named Dunnagan as a Goodwill Ambassador of Tourism for Tanzania. When asked why Dunnagan climbs the same mountain over and over again, he replied “I enjoy taking other people up Kilimanjaro and giving them an appreciation for the mountain, what it is, the environment and the people of Tanzania.” In 2005, his wife was diagnosed with ovarian cancer and she succumbed to the disease in August, 2007. He has since dedicated a number of his climbs to raising awareness and funds for ovarian cancer research and treatments by partnering with Ovarian Cancer Canada’s “Expedition of Hope.” Macon Dunnagan has also “tackled” polio, bringing new awareness through his summits, in collaboration with Rotary District 7680’s “End Polio Now.” Though only a few countries still feel the effects of polio, Dunnagan believes it’s important to continue with eradication efforts until the disease is extinct. He has helped raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for both causes and will continue to do so for as long as possible. In addition to his mountain climbing skills, Dunnagan is also a published author. Sons of Kilimanjaro is his debut novel and it details the summit of four men up Mt. Kilimanjaro, the individual reasons they have for climbing it and the lessons they learned along the way.