Women and high altitude mountaineering
I mentioned Melissa Arnot a few posts back, going for a second attempt at an Everest summit, this time without supplemental O’s. Mountaineering is a funny sport, very often not in the mainstream news at all. Many of the great climbers seem, in fact, to steer clear of publicity. Well, that’s an American perspective-it’s still, I guess, more mainstream in central Europe, and places like Spain which seem to be producing tons of talented climbers. Kind of a shame that these athletes do not get the attention because there is a lot of exciting stuff happening. Everestnews has a nice story a while back about the growing rivalry between two women mountaineers, both vying to become the first female to bag the 14 8000ers. You can see the list here. [There are currently 23 women (6 are deceased) who have climbed at least 4 8000m peaks.] The women are Oh Eun-Sun of Korea, who is currently climbing Makalu and then, if successful will go directly for Kangchenjunga (!) [that would total 11 for her], and Edurne Pasaban of Spain (Basque country; same place that produces great cyclists), who is on Kangchenjunga [that would make 12]. Oh Eun-Sun set a record last year when she climbed 4 8000m peaks in 6 months. OMG (!) Everestnews had a nice feature on Pasaban and her awful experience on K2. The competition between these two amazing athletes will be a nice story to follow.