Destination: Valles Marineris

First Offered : 2000 – Status : Unclaimed

The Goal

Become the first expedition team to successfully accomplish an assault on the bottom of the Valles Marineris.

The attempt on the trough of the Valles Marineris must begin from the top of the canyon. No technological support, other than that required for life support and basic mountaineering, should be used.

The Canyon

The Valles Marineris is the deepest canyon system in the Solar System. The Grand Canyon would fit within the Valles Marineris sideways on. The length of the canyon is approximately the same as the width of the continental United States. In places it is seven km deep.

The descent into the canyon would require formidable abseiling and climbing techniques to successfully navigate the structure into its depths. Spectacular scarped walls and cliffs will greet those that attempt such an undertaking.

Claiming the Award

This more recent award was established in 2000. The team will collect the Foundation’s award which includes a trophy containing a symbolic sample from the Mariana trench at Challenger Deep in the Pacific Ocean, which is the deepest point on Earth. The sample was collected by robot for the Foundation. The plaque has the date of establishment of the award and a space for the names of the expedition team.