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92-Year-Old Man Breaks Grand Canyon Record

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Alfredo Aliaga is now the oldest man to hike the Grand Canyon’s 24-mile rim-to-rim trek. 

According to USA Today, he broke the rim-to-rim record on Jan. 2. 

Anabel Aliaga-Buchenaum, Aliaga’s daughter, stated, “We both started screaming and jumping up and down” when the realized he broke the record.

Aliaga, 92, told the outlet the accomplishment “felt amazing” and that people can do big things even in their 90s. 

He also downplayed the record, noting it is “only one step after the other.”

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The  Guinness World Records reported Aliaga trained every day to prepare for his record-breaking hike. 

He noted, “I have hiked in the Grand Canyon many times in my life,” and he admired the previous record holder, John Jepkema. Jepkema of Craig, Colorado, completed his hike over five days at the age of 91 in 2019. He died last March.

Aliaga hails from Germany.

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Aliaga said, “I knew that I was only a few months younger than Mr. Jepkema had been and thought that I had a great shot at setting a new record the following year.”

Although his record-breaking hike took place this month and took two days, the journey was much longer. 

It all began in 2006 when his wife passed away. Wishing to revisit all the places they had gone together, Aliaga took his 9-year-old grandson to the Grand Canyon for a hike. 

This became a favorite pastime. By 2022, he and his son crossed the Grand Canyon together in only four days. 

Alaiaga also explained, “Truly the best thing was meeting all the people on the trail, that support and kindness and just happiness was wonderful.”

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It took him 34 hours and 2 minutes to officially complete with 21 hours and 15 minutes of actual hiking time. 

He praised the witnesses who went with him on the historic hike. 

“Can you believe that two people who would usually cross the Canyon in eight hours agreed to be witnesses, walked at my speed, and were unwavering in their support,” he said. 

He points to his healthy lifestyle, which he says consists of three key elements, for keeping him fit enough for adventures.

“My secret to a healthy life is based on three things: eating healthy and drinking water, walking for 30 minutes a day, and sleeping in the dark of the night for eight hours,” he told Guinness World Records.

This article appeared originally on Independent Journal Review (IJR).

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