Where We Live: One man, one trek and the Wallowa Mountains


Portland State University professor completes the Eagles 33 Challenge

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A Portland State University professor has just done something no one else has done before, and few people have even attempted. He’s climbed all the major peaks in Easter Oregon’s Wallowa Mountains in one continuous trek. Now, he’s challenging others to do the same.

Selfie of Christof Teuscher. (Courtesy Christof Teuscher)

On September 6, 2020, Christof Teuscher completed his ultimate challenge: “The Eagles 33” in the Wallowas.

“The Eagles 33 Challenge consists of climbing  all 33 peaks–over 9,000 feet, with at least 300 feet of prominence in the Eagle Cap Wilderness,” said Teuscher.

“The challenge is to climb all of them in a single push, and that’s what I did.”

It took him a total of 104 hours and 42 minutes–so, a little more than four days.

When he’s not teaching electrical and computer engineering at Portland State, Teuscher is climbing mountains, hiking Oregon’s magnificent trails, or running ultra-marathons. It took him four attempts to conquer the Eagles 33 Challenge. Now that he’s done it, he’s encouraging other serious climbers to take up the task.

“Yeah, initially, that was my idea. But it has become a thing, and I know other folks have plans to attempt it, and that’s real exciting to me too, that others now want to do this,” said Teuscher.

He said that he began his final descent just as the wildfires started to take hold, knowing that he pushed the limit, as he encourages his students to do.

Teuscher grew up in Switzerland and said the Wallowas are very similar to the Swiss Alps. More on his outdoor adventures can be found online here.

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