Military to the Mountain (M2M) is a High Fives program service that demonstrates our deep sense of appreciation for the men and women who serve our country – specifically for those veterans and first responders who have suffered life-changing injuries in the name of loyalty to America.
The goal of the program is to offer wounded war-fighters an opportunity to tap back into their physicality by pushing through mental and physical barriers. Experiencing the mountains for the first time post- injury redefines their limits and ignites new passion to take ridge lines they no longer thought were possible.
said David Vobora, Founder and CEO of the Adaptive Training Foundation.
In the winter of 2015, the High Fives Foundation brought veteran Marine Corporal Jacob (Jake) Schick to ski at Squaw Valley Resort. Schick’s life-changing injury came on September 20, 2004, when the vehicle Schick was driving hit a triple-stacked tank mine. To date, he has endured 46 operations, 23 blood transfusions, and an amputation below the knee. Schick was featured in the 2014 Clint Eastwood film American Sniper.
Schick’s experience with the High Fives Foundation initiated a larger project called Military to the Mountain (M2M). In 2016, the High Fives Foundation brought ten veterans of the United States armed forces to ski at Squaw Valley. This project worked in collaboration with the Adaptive Training Foundation (ATF) based in Dallas, TX. Adaptive Training Foundation’s mission is to provide “modified methods of training to restore hope to all those with physical impairments, especially with members of the veteran community who are severely injured.” ATF’s grueling 9-week training program prepared the Athletes for their week of skiing. With each passing year, the program expanded. Now, High Fives host 22 Veterans and First Responders from ATF and City of Reno to train and ski annually.
The 2016 M2M program was supported by the sale of Shirley, a custom-restored 1957 Willys Jeep 6-226 Wagon, at this year’s Hot August Nights classic car convention in Reno, Nevada. The vehicle sold for $50,000.
In 2017, the program was supported by Chive Charities who was proud to announce a grant of $64,000 to give 10 more veterans an experience of a lifetime – to give them another mission to accomplish with passion and gratitude.
Over the last six years, the Military to the Mountain program has continued to grow. In 2020, M2M expanded to serve first-responders with life-changing injuries as well.
TO PARTICIPATE IN THE 2021 MILITARY TO THE MOUNTAIN PROGRAM, YOU CAN EMAIL INFO@ADAPTIVETRAININGFOUNDATION.ORG (Dallas, TX) or WOLFEA@RENO.GOV (Reno, NV). YOU MUST BE A VETERAN OF THE UNITED STATE MILITARY OR FIRST RESPONDER LIVING WITH A LIFE-CHANGING INJURY. APPLICANTS MUST LIVE NEAR THE DALLAS, TEXAS AREA TO PARTICIPATE IN THE 9-WEEK TRAINING PROGRAM WITH ADAPTIVE TRAINING FOUNDATION OR NEAR RENO, NV TO PARTICIPATE IN THE 9-WEEK TRAINING PROGRAM WITH CITY OF RENO PRECEDING THE SKI EXPERIENCE IN LAKE TAHOE, CALIFORNIA.
All winter apparel for the participants in the 2020 program will be provided by the High Fives Foundation through the following sponsors: Phunkshun Wear, Sync Performance, Armada Skis, Arcade Belts, Leki, Smith Optics, vapur, K2, and Darn Tough Vermont Socks. Additional gear will be provided by Charlotte’s Web, New Balance, and bigtruck. Snacks and beverages will be provided by Clif Bar, Red Bull and Nooma. In addition, we would like to give a huge thank you to our supporters at Yeti, Dolan Toyota, Wanderlust Squaw Valley Yoga, Woodward Tahoe, and Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows.