Written By Rishabh Singh.
CHANDIGARH: A 27-year-old woman mountaineer from Himachal Pradesh on Saturday scaled Mount Everest, her third 8000-metre peak in a row within 24 days.
Taking the Southeast ridge route, Baljeet Kaur, who belongs to Solan, reached the top of the world’s highest mountain at 8848.86 metres on Saturday morning at 04:30 am local time. Pasang Sherpa, the director of Peak Promotion, a Kathmandu-based mountaineering agency, said Kaur conquered Everest with her guide Mingma Sherpa.
In 2016, she had to cancel her summit push, just around 300 metres shy of the top, after her oxygen mask malfunctioned. It is learnt that Kaur was all set to attempt summiting her next peak — Mount Lhotse — the fourth highest mountain in the world that stands at 8516 metres next to Mount Everest.
“Kaur was safely back at Lhotse camp 4 by 11 am Saturday and resting. She will start climbing Mount Lhotse on Saturday evening only and is expected to make her summit push in the early hours of Sunday,” said Pasang.
Everest and Lhotse peak expeditions share the same routes till Everest camp 3 and then branch off.If Kaur successfully completes the Everest-Lhotse traverse by summiting Lhotse, it will be her fourth back-to-back 8000-metre summit. On April 28, Kaur had scaled Mount Annapurna, the 10th highest mountain in the world at 8,091 metres, followed by Kanchenjunga, the third highest mountain in the world at 8586 metres, on May 12.
Kaur had also climbed Mount Dhaulagiri (8167 meters), the seventh highest mountain in the world, last year and is the first Indian woman along with Gunbala Sharma from Rajasthan to scale Mount Pumori (7161 meters) in 2021. If Kaur completes Everest-Lhotse traverse, she would also become the second India woman to do so. Chhanda Gayen, a mountaineer from West Bengal, had scaled both Everest and Lhotse in 22 hours in 2013.
Gayen, 35, along with her two Sherpa guides had died on Kanchenjunga in 2014. Another Indian woman climber from Arunachal Pradesh, Anshu Jamsenpa, has also scaled an eight-thousander back-to-back. Jamsenpa had become the first woman in the world to summit Everest twice within 5 days in 2017.
(Rishabh is student of BA-JMC first year from Maharishi University Of Information Technology, Noida)