On May the 12th 2011 I achieved my dream to climb
Mt Everest the worlds highest mountain. This was a culmination of years of high altitude mountain climbing, physical and mental training... Read more
Posted on Sunday 15th January, 2012
On March 24 this year I fly back to Nepal to attempt my next project, climb Manaslu 8163m and Lhotse 8516m in the same season. If I am successful I will be the only Australian woman to climb two 8000mt mountains back to back.
It took me awhile to recover physically and mentally from my Everest expedition last year because we had such a hard time in the storm during the summit climb. I was exhausted for a long time and just ate and slept for the first few weeks back at home. As I got my strength back I started questioning whether or not to go back to the high mountains again. Its not an easy decision to make because I leave a lot of people at home worrying about me. As I fully recovered I actually started to feel depressed because I didn’t have a big goal in my life anymore. I was still training and keeping fit but wasn’t working towards anything so it all felt empty to me. At my lowest point is when I realised that a big dream or goal is what drives me and gives me the fire in my belly. Thats when I came up with this latest project. I had been thinking in climbing Manaslu already but I wanted more of a challenge, something I had to seriously extend myself and train hard for. So I thought why not just climb Lhotse straight after? Immediately after thinking up the idea I felt at peace inside again and started to become very excited.
Manaslu is located in the Gorkha mountain region of Western Nepal and it takes about 9 days to trek into its base camp. I plan to climb with Dawa Tenzing Sherpa again this trip as I trust him with my life and we were so successful together on Everest. We will stock up our supplies in Kathmandu before heading to the base camp. The trek starts a days drive away from the city. We will use Manaslu to acclimatise for Lhotse and I don’t plan on taking bottled oxygen to it. We hope to summit as soon as we are acclimatised enough and we have good weather. Then we will head back down the valley and drive back to Kathmandu. After a few days of rest and a lot of steaks it will be time to fly to Lukla and start our trek up the Everest valley to Everest base camp. Lhotse and Everest share the same base camp and all the same camps on the mountain apart from the last one before the summit. Once we get news of a weather window we will begin our ascent of the mountain. As we will be well acclimatised we should be able to get to high camp fairly fast to be in place for our summit bid. I plan on using oxygen on Lhotse as I will most likely be quite tired by then. If all goes to plan we should be done around the end of May.
A big part of the motivation for this climb is that I am raising money for the Australian Himalayan Foundation. They are working on an education program in the Khumbu Solu region that effects thousands of children and aims to give them more opportunities through a better education. I hope to head down and visit some of the schools I will be helping after our Lhotse summit to finish my expedition.