Nov 25, 2014

Feature Article: Merrell Outdoors - "Choosing Mountains in the Middle East over Mojitos in Marbella..."

Despite the incredulous disbelief flickering across the faces of family and friends, I would not be dissuaded from my holiday plans to climb Damavand in the Islamic Republic of Iran. Had I listened to a couple of the more popular media-influenced ‘facts,’ I would have been frightened off by cloak-and-dagger tales of a hostile, ‘anti-west’ country; ‘the axis of evil’ where men with stones stalk dusty streets in search of infidels while the government spends its time rigging elections and stockpiling vast arsenals of nuclear weapons. 
But I chose the mountains of the Middle East over mojitos in Marbella and what I discovered was just the opposite.
Challenging some of my own preconceptions, I joined an expedition to climb an 18,372 ft. peak called Mount Damavand, the highest peak in Iran and the highest volcano in the Middle East. Over the course of the expedition I experienced first-hand the hospitality of the Iranian people and the pride that they have in their rich, Persian history. I fell in love with the cozy teahouses of Teheran, the lively bazaars, vast deserts punctuated by historic oases, and rugged mountain ranges surrounding the country’s favorite cone-shaped icon.
Read the full story here... 


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