OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Omaha is approximately 1,090 feet above sea level, compared to Earth's highest mountain, Mount Everest, at 29,032 feet.
For Alex Harz, the two places are connected by a promise.
As a student at Central High School, he remembers seeing something on TV about Mount Everest.
"I told myself right then and there that one day, I would climb that mountain," he said via Zoom from his home in Colorado.
Time passed and Harz gave little thought to that promise. Until years ago, it suddenly re-entered his mind. The next day, he began training.
To prepare for Mount Everest, Harz first climbed mountains in Colorado, Washington, Argentina, and Alaska. Then, the year before he planned to leave for Nepal, Harz quit his job to train seven days a week to ensure he was physically and mentally ready.
The experience wasn't meant to be Harz's alone. He wanted to document all of it and produce the first in a series called "The Quest."
Harz describes his style as immersive: part Anthony Bourdain, part Bear Grylls.
"Trying to reveal content and stories from rarely seen places around the world that you normally wouldn't see, especially in the West," he explained.
Alex reached the summit in under two months. He and his team recorded 63 hours of footage. Their 72-minute film, "THE QUEST: Nepal," was released last month. It has since earned several international film festival awards.
"Everything I thought I knew was completely different," he recalled of the moment when he stood atop Mount Everest.
"I couldn't believe I was actually there. And I actually started crying in my goggles just like a baby. And I think it was just that emotional release of all that work, all that commitment, honoring my promise and then I gave respect to the mountain itself," he said.
Harz encourages others to take "whatever your Everest is, your goal in life, and make sure to give it the best you possibly can."
"THE QUEST: Nepal" is currently available on about 20 platforms including Prime Video, Apple TV and YouTube.