CORTLANDT MANOR, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Jerry Levine is now the oldest person to hike all of New York’s 46 highest mountain peaks.
The 82-year-old from Cortlandt Manor in Westchester County became an Adirondack 46er after he climbed Esther and Whiteface mountains Saturday.
Levine said he started climbing in the Adirondacks 38 years ago.
“Little by little, I accumulated about 29 mountains,” he told WCBS 880. “Before that, I had a heart attack and I couldn’t climb for a while and then after that I decided, with the doctor’s permission, to continue again and to finish the 46 mountains in the Adirondacks that are over 4,000 feet.”
Levine climbed with a group that included his sons, Gary and Peter, their wives and several grandchildren. Friend Phil Corell, a 46er, also joined him.
“It felt good,” he said. “Here I am grandpa and I’m still doing what I used to do all the time many years ago.”
But Levine said climbing all 46 peaks was no easy task.
“The terrain gets rocky, there are trees that fell over and then the heights, it starts to get very steep,” he told 1010 WINS.
Levine said he still works at an advertising agency and exercises regularly, both of which keeps him feeling young.
“I think the secret is I that don’t hang out with people my age,” he said. “I hang out with younger people and I still work and that gives me an incentive to continue to do whatever I did — I feel like I’m still in my 50s.”
To become a “46er,” a person must climb all of the 46 major Adirondack Mountain peaks. All but three are higher than 4,000 feet.
Esther is 4,239-feet high while Whiteface, the Olympic ski mountain, is 4,867-feet high. Mount Marcy, at 5,344 feet, is the highest.
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