The Mountain We Conquer

Katie Mathieson ’15 neared the summit of Huyana Potosi, a peak among the Cordillera Real near La Paz, Bolivia, in the early light of day. Her group had left “high camp” at midnight, hiking for more than eight hours by the light of their headlamps toward the 6,000-meter (19,974-foot) summit. After scaling a 30-foot vertical ice wall, they continued the remaining 100 meters toward their goal. For Mathieson, the climb rounded out a month of reporting and collecting documentary footage in Patagonia, Chile, for the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, followed by a month of travel throughout South America. With funding from a Dean Rusk travel grant, Mathieson completed a series of articles for the Pulitzer Center, available at She currently lives and works in northeastern Thailand as a freelance journalist and photographer.


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